App Store Opens its Doors to Adobe Flash


Yesterday saw Apple announce removal of the infamous restrictions on 3rd party development tools for iOS devices. Twitter lit up, the blogosphere jumped into gear and speculation began in earnest. So what's this all about and what does it mean for Flash?

What Happened?

Back in April 2010, Apple chose to tighten regulations for 3rd party development tools, effectively rendering Adobe's iPhone compiler useless. In his blog post Thoughts on Flash, Steve Jobs defended his position, listing a number of concerns.

If developers grow dependent on third party development libraries and tools, they can only take advantage of platform enhancements if and when the third party chooses to adopt the new features.

Yesterday's press release from Apple marks a significant change in attitude.

In particular, we are relaxing all restrictions on the development tools used to create iOS apps, as long as the resulting apps do not download any code. This should give developers the flexibility they want, while preserving the security we need.

What Changed?

It's not immediately obvious why this 180° from Apple has come about. It could be argued that it's a direct response to market performance of Smartphones; Android's growing popularity may well have been a factor, but Steve Jobs denies this, saying that figures have been exaggerated.

Whatever the motives behind the decision, Adobe are understandably positive.

We are encouraged to see Apple lifting its restrictions on its licensing terms, giving developers the freedom to choose what tools they use to develop applications for Apple devices.

What Does this all Mean?

Those of you who purchased Adobe Flash CS5 will be able to use the iPhone packager to deliver apps for iOS devices (iPhone, iPod touch and iPad). Adobe have also made clear that they will resume development of the iPhone packager for future releases.

What About Browsing?

Removal of these restrictions does not mean that Flash Player will be brought on board as part of Safari on iOS devices. Neither does it mean that Adobe AIR will be natively supported.

Your Turn

So what do you think? What does this mean for you as a Flash developer? Do you embrace the change, or resent it? What do you think this means for Flash and Apple? We'd love to hear your thoughts!

Related Posts
  • Code
    Mobile Development
    Inspecting iOS Applications with RevealPreview image@2x
    In this article, I'd like to tell you about Reveal, an OS X application created by Itty Bitty Apps that lets you inspect your application's user interface at runtime. Be ready to be amazed.Read More…
  • Code
    Mobile Development
    In the Spotlight: Brian LeRouxPreview image@2x
    The explosive growth of the mobile space has accelerated the search for a robust and viable cross-platform solution. In 2008, shortly after the introduction of the iPhone SDK and after fiddling with Cocoa and Objective-C, Brian LeRoux and his colleagues at Nitobi decided that their time was better spent building a cross-platform solution than building native mobile applications.Read More…
  • Code
    In the Spotlight: Jeremy OlsonInterview jeremy olson preview image@2x
    Jeremy Olson is the founder of Tapity and the company's lead designer. Tapity focuses on designing, developing, and marketing mobile applications. Jeremy and his team don't create just any mobile application, they craft software that stands out in a crowded App Store and closely follow Apple's philosophy with respect to design and attention to detail.Read More…
  • Code
    iOS 2013: A Year in Review and 2014 PredictionsPreview image@2x
    For iOS developers, 2013 was a pivotal year. I'd even go as far as saying that it was the most significant year since the introduction of the iPhone, almost seven years ago. The reason is of course the unveiling of iOS 7. Let's take a look at some of the key moments of 2013 and take a sneak peak at what 2014 has in store for us.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    App Training
    How to Install and Remove Apps From the Mac App StoreMacappstore400
    Software used to be sold in stores and installed from discs.  Now, it's is often distributed electronically via the Mac App Store or the developer's own website. Sometimes both. To the new Mac owner, or one coming from Windows, the concept of a disc image may be confusing. As is an App that can't be installed because … it is from an unidentified developer. Then there's the process to uninstall unwanted apps. Installing or removing software on your Mac is done a number of different ways and this tutorial will make you a master.Read More…
  • Computer Skills
    OS X
    50 Things You Probably Didn't Know About OS X MavericksMavericks400
    Mavericks, the latest major release of OS X (pronounced Oh-Es Ten), is version 10.9 of Apple’s desktop operating system. With, reportedly, over 200 new features Mavericks is no incremental update. Jonny Ive might suggest that “Apple has reimagined the operating system for the desktop”, but the truth is Apple has incorporated some of the best ideas from third-party developers and has sought to integrate some of the features of iOS (the operating system for the iPod Touch, iPhone and iPad) into it’s desktop big brother.Read More…