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Adobe is killing Flash to focus on HTML5- Steve Jobs wins postmortem

Technology-altering news

Adobe has sent an internal memo to partners and staff with the tech-altering announcement that will discontinue support and development of their mobile flash plugin and focus on HTML5 and Adobe AIR, according to ZDNet who first discovered the memo. Adobe has published their announcement (found in full at the bottom of this story) and support for the plugin has ended, effective immediately. Adobe Flash will still be available on smartphones but will support is officially over for the product.

Adobe has announced that it will be laying off 750 employees to focus on digital marketing software, choosing a new horse in the race. The reason this is a win for Steve Jobs is that he opined against Flash on mobile devices frequently and loudly.

Last year in a statement, Jobs said, “Flash has not performed well on mobile devices. We have routinely asked Adobe to show us Flash performing well on a mobile device, any mobile device, for a few years now. We have never seen it. Adobe publicly said that Flash would ship on a smartphone in early 2009, then the second half of 2009, then the first half of 2010, and now they say the second half of 2010. We think it will eventually ship, but we’re glad we didn’t hold our breath. Who knows how it will perform?”

HTML5 is well regarded as the new coding language because simply put, it works on any device as opposed to being restricted to PC devices.

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Flash to Focus on PC Browsing and Mobile Apps; Adobe to More Aggressively Contribute to HTML5

Adobe is all about enabling designers and developers to create the most expressive content possible, regardless of platform or technology. For more than a decade, Flash has enabled the richest content to be created and deployed on the web by reaching beyond what browsers could do. It has repeatedly served as a blueprint for standardizing new technologies in HTML. Over the past two years, we’ve delivered Flash Player for mobile browsers and brought the full expressiveness of the web to many mobile devices.

However, HTML5 is now universally supported on major mobile devices, in some cases exclusively. This makes HTML5 the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms. We are excited about this, and will continue our work with key players in the HTML community, including Google, Apple, Microsoft and RIM, to drive HTML5 innovation they can use to advance their mobile browsers.

Our future work with Flash on mobile devices will be focused on enabling Flash developers to package native apps with Adobe AIR for all the major app stores. We will no longer continue to develop Flash Player in the browser to work with new mobile device configurations (chipset, browser, OS version, etc.) following the upcoming release of Flash Player 11.1 for Android and BlackBerry PlayBook. We will of course continue to provide critical bug fixes and security updates for existing device configurations. We will also allow our source code licensees to continue working on and release their own implementations.

These changes will allow us to increase investment in HTML5 and innovate with Flash where it can have most impact for the industry, including advanced gaming and premium video. Flash Player 11 for PC browsers just introduced dozens of new features, including hardware accelerated 3D graphics for console-quality gaming and premium HD video with content protection. Flash developers can take advantage of these features, and all that our Flash tooling has to offer, to reach more than a billion PCs through their browsers and to package native apps with AIR that run on hundreds of millions of mobile devices through all the popular app stores, including the iTunes App Store, Android Market, Amazon Appstore for Android and BlackBerry App World.

We are already working on Flash Player 12 and a new round of exciting features which we expect to again advance what is possible for delivering high definition entertainment experiences. We will continue to leverage our experience with Flash to accelerate our work with the W3C and WebKit to bring similar capabilities to HTML5 as quickly as possible, just as we have done with CSS Shaders. And, we will design new features in Flash for a smooth transition to HTML5 as the standards evolve so developers can confidently invest knowing their skills will continue to be leveraged.

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We are super excited about the next generations of HTML5 and Flash. Together they offer developers and content publishers great options for delivering compelling web and application experiences across PCs and devices. There is already amazing work being done that is pushing the newest boundaries, and we can’t wait to see what is still yet to come!

The American Genius is news, insights, tools, and inspiration for business owners and professionals. AG condenses information on technology, business, social media, startups, economics and more, so you don’t have to.

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