Apple is increasingly finding itself alone in the war for choice on the web, the pocket, and the home as companies and other groups rally behind the Flash Platform.
The latest news is that Opera’s Jon von Tetzchner has come out in favor of Flash claiming “It is the only proprietary part of the Web we support”. A pretty big deal coming from Opera! Along with this news is that Nokia is also banking on Flash.
This all comes just one day after news broke that several large media companies, including Time Warner and NBC Universal, told Apple they won’t retool their video libraries for iDevices.
Last week, online video giant Hulu spoke out in support of Flash while explaining features of their (very slick) new video player:
Our player doesn’t just simply stream video, it must also secure the content, handle reporting for our advertisers, render the video using a high performance codec to ensure premium visual quality, communicate back with the server to determine how long to buffer and what bitrate to stream, and dozens of other things that aren’t necessarily visible to the end user.
This follows the end-to-end support of Flash and AIR by Google during their Google I/O conference where Flash was showcased in the browser, on devices, and also as a major part of Google TV and the WebM initiative. Tech writers who have had access to Android 2.2 (FroYo), Flash Player 10.1 and AIR for Android have had surprisingly (to some) positive reviews.
While these recent developments are new and encouraging for Flash developers, do not forget that for over a year now, a number of high profile companies have thrown full support behind the Flash Platform through the Open Screen Project. As an aside: the Open Source Media Framework version 1.0 was just released today!
Looks like a lot of big players disagree with Steve Jobs and his “Thoughts on Flash”. Also looks as if the United States government is increasingly unhappy about Apple’s shady business practices… remember, if the United States is this concerned, chances are the European Union will tear Apple to pieces over these issues.
Good luck, Steve (not really).
UPDATE: To clarify; I’m talking public and corporate opinion here, not whether Flash as a platform is out of the woods. Adobe still must innovate on the platform and continue to refine the runtimes to succeed long term. I have no doubt that they will on all counts.