by December 21, 2012 0 comments

With no support for Flash on future versions of Android and iOS, it seems that most web administrators will have to change their websites over to HTML5 to cater to the exploding consumption of mobile media consumption. Once HTML5 gets ratified by the W3C, Adobe hopes it will provide the best cross-platform experience. 

Q: Has Adobe been contributing to the progress with HTML5?
Burnett: Adobe has been doing a lot of work with the W3C and Webkit to help progress the specifications of HTML5. Apart from releasing a bunch of tools for use with HTML5, we’ve built two technologies for CSS called CSS exclusions and regions. We’ve given them over to W3C for the future specification of CSS 3. The new CSS technologies will work very well with HTML5 support, that is already present on many of modern browsers such as Chrome and Firefox.

Q: Will the CSS developments need ratification by W3C before deployment?
Burnett: We’ve got our own people in the committee for shaders and custom CSS filters, who are working to get the specifications done. However, my iPhone is running HTML5, before it has been ratified by the W3C. Browser manufacturers are not going to wait around until the W3C ratifies HTML5 and CSS3 technologies. Hence, we will see them in browsers before W3C officially ratifies them.

Q: Why has Adobe stopped development of Flash player on mobile platforms?
Burnett: We’ve discovered that when people use Flash, they usually use Flash for something that is very interactive and engaging. This kind of content usually falls under gaming. When consumers play games online in desktops, they tend to use Flash, but mobile phone users usually use browsers to surf more static content. They launch apps if they want to play a game. At Adobe, we took a while to recognize this trend. If you implement a game for a desktop web browser, it turns out brilliantly. However, it is quite difficult to optimize a Flash game for mobiles and so HTML5 is the best standard that will run across all your devices.

Q: But majority of media content online uses Flash? How will they move to HTML5?
Burnett: Most of the content online using Flash was made to be consumed over the desktop or notebook, not through a phone. Web administrators will update their sites and revamp Flash to HTML5, but there is no doubt it will take time. If you compare mobiles to traditional systems, they have less processing power so Flash content is not going to be efficient anyway. We’ve given over the support of Flash to the platforms itself, so they can continue to support the older versions if they want to. The future of browsers in mobile devices will be in HTML5, not Flash.

Q: What does HTML5 bring to the table that Flash didn’t?
Burnett: It doesn’t do everything that Flash does, but it is standard-based and that makes a lot of difference. The truth is that we haven’t even scratched the surface of what it can do. With tools such as Adobe Edge Animate and Edge Reflow, we make it easy for animators and web designers to utilize new CSS rules and HTML5 easily. There will be no more hassle of installing multiple plugins to support animation and 3rd-party content.

Q: Did iOS not supporting the use of Flash influence this decision?
Burnett: I think that maybe if iOS had supported Flash, it may have had a longer shelf life. One thing people don’t realize is that the press blew up the whole Apple vs Adobe fight. In reality, we are largest 3rd-party application developer for Macintosh systems. We even work together with Apple on many web committees. The change was mainly triggered by the trend of people switching over to mobile devices for information consumption. 

Q: What products are Adobe offering to promote HTML5 development?
Burnett: We have launched a suite of products under the umbrella of Adobe Edge, which include many tools that range from HTML5 development to animation. We released Edge Animate for the public after doing multiple beta runs. Edge Animate is based on Webkit, and can be used to generate animations easily, while the code is automatically generated by Animate in the back end. The selling point of Edge Animate is that the animations produced run across all major platforms without plugins, and is absolutely free for download!

Edge Animate can be downloaded from You will have to set up a free Creative Cloud membership with Adobe before downloading the product!


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