As you recall, the iPad doesn’t support Flash as Apple CEO Steve Jobs disparages it as a shoddy, battery-draining application.
Adobe’s PR spin is that it loves Apple, but it has a lot of disclaimers.
Here’s Adobe’s take, replete with other links and resources, on how, “Everyone loses when technological barriers impede the exchange of ideas.”
Where does this dispute leave travel-industry developers in their efforts to create compelling apps using video and animation?
Should they chuck Flash out the window and await the fine-tuning of HTML5?
“Jobs is counting on the buzz and cool factors to pull an attractive demographic that will force organizations to work on the Apple platform [without Flash],” says hotel industry consultant Robert Cole of RockCheetah. Â ”The big travel players will probably need to do this, or risk being perceived as slow, followers, non-tech savvy, or heaven-forbid, not cool.”
The problem is this may lead to a lot of dumbing-down for the time being.
“The challenge in travel is that sites need to take this limitation into consideration and, in many cases, it means either building stripped-down sites or deploying multiple sites for the appropriate environment,” Cole says. “I see it as either reducing customer usability and engagement, or driving up operating costs for the site publisher.”
In travel, we see the negative impact of closed systems every day: desktop development gets hindered and airlines’ merchandising efforts get slow-tracked because of the burden of legacy systems or a lack of standards.
Regarding the Adobe-Apple Flash conflaguration, Coles notes that a resolution could come with the widespread adoption of HTML5, but this could take years.
In the meantime, he sides with open source systems.
“As I donâ€™t really like Steve Jobs dictating what technologies I can use, and there is not sufficient technology available to build comparable sites as quickly in HTML5, he can pound sand,” Cole says. “I am changing phones in June and this is a big reason that Iâ€™m going to an Android phone.Â I can getÂ Flash now and use HTML5 when it becomes available.”
Mobiata President Ben Kazez, however, sides with Apple in the Adobe-Apple debate.
“Our view is that Apple is correct on this one,” Kazez says. “Flash apps currently don’t provide the same immersive, engaging customer experience as native apps written for each platform. Â In our view it’s the same as the debate between web-based apps and native apps.”
“We’d much rather develop a simple mobile website and focus our attention on engaging native apps,” Kazez says. “It leads to higher adoption, higher conversions, and ultimately more revenue.”