Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Android Software Technology

Adobe Officially Kills New Flash Installations On Android 313

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the ding-dong-the-witch-is-dead dept.
hypnosec writes "Adobe has announced that it will be making the Flash Player for Android unavailable for new devices and users from August 15 in continuation of its plan to discontinue development of Flash Player for mobile browsers. The company announced its decision through a blog post and further said that only those users who have already installed the flash player on their devices will be receiving any future updates. To ensure that this is the case, Adobe is going to make configuration changes on its Google Play Flash Player page."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Adobe Officially Kills New Flash Installations On Android

Comments Filter:
  • Good riddance. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:32AM (#40997357)

    Flash has always sucked on mobile. I'm glad Adobe is finally admitting it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ArcherB (796902)

      Flash has always sucked on mobile. I'm glad Adobe is finally admitting it.

      I agree, but many sites still use it, unfortunately. Those sites will become unavailable if Flash is removed on mobile devices.

      Which makes me wonder about the wisdom of this decision. As mobile devices become more popular, website designers are forced to make a choice; keep using Flash and be unavailable on mobile devices or redesign with a switch to something else. Adobe loses either way.

      • Re:Good riddance. (Score:5, Interesting)

        by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:42AM (#40997511) Journal

        It seems particularly curious to kill it when they already have(and are ostensibly releasing security updates for, to the degree Adobe ever manages that) Flash 'working' on Android versions up to 4.0

        Do they gain something by killing their marketshare faster than they otherwise would through people gradually upgrading? Naively, I would think that they would try to milk the fuck out of that marketshare while they still can, and do some zealous hunting for alternatives.

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          I always wondered about that, why would they kill off something that is in a lot of web sites, and then I got all conspiracy theory and thought that they were in cahoots with Apple to kill Android, since Android was basically the only one that can support it, and is competition to Apple's clout

        • by gl4ss (559668)

          well, they called elop up for some tips. ..actually I'm thinking that adobe sells some expensive server-side solution for transferring vids to .h264 on the fly and sites/blogs/video services have to now do that.

          losing options sucks anyhow.

          • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Interesting)

            by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:38PM (#40998265) Journal

            I have no reason to doubt the power of Adobe's marketing department; but server-side transcoding seems unlikely to be a very lucrative niche. Flash has supported h.264 video for a while now(since somewhere in the 8.x or 9.x window, I think) and much of the 'flash video' on the web, even if it still has a .swf or .flv extension, often turns out to be h.264. In that case, the only change they'll need to make is to the site code: instead of the "detect flash, if flash detected, play, else, tell them to go download flash", they'll need "detect flash, if flash detected, play, else, HTML5 play".

            What will be interesting is if, for those customers who actually use the fancy 'flash video' features(RTMPe, anything DRM related, whatever 'adaptive streaming' sauce Adobe may have offered) will now have the exciting opportunity to purchase the Adobe Video Client SDK for Android in order to build apps to replace their now nonfunctional websites...

        • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Insightful)

          by dmt0 (1295725) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:46PM (#40998333)
          Simple. Adobe sells content authoring tools. Everyone who writes in flash, has already bought the tools, and the market is saturated. Now is the time to milk all those who are rewriting their flash content into HTML5.
        • ...and so begins a conspiracy theory people will probably wonder about for years. I'm sure the apk's will be available for loading onto rooted devices for a long time. losing access to so many sites will be painful for non root android users I'm sure.
          • by FunkyELF (609131)

            I'm sure the apk's will be available for loading onto rooted devices for a long time.

            Don't need to be rooted to sideload an APK... it is just a checkbox away in standard Android settings.

        • Re:Good riddance. (Score:5, Insightful)

          by jeremyp (130771) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @01:56PM (#40999205) Homepage Journal

          What is this "market" of which you speak? There is no market because Flash Player is given away. There's no money, in fact it is a drain on Adobe's resources.

          Adobe makes its money on the content authoring tools. All they need to do is make those tools target HTML5 and H.264 and everything and everybody's happy. They still sell the authoring tools - in fact perhaps they sell more authoring tools - and they've transferred the drain of maintaining the target platform to the browser vendors.

      • by Githaron (2462596)
        Since they obviously don't care about the platform anymore, they should consider opening the source code.
        • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Interesting)

          by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:57AM (#40997695) Journal

          I suspect that that would be a no-go. They clearly don't much care about whatever pile of hacks and shims and eldrich blasphemy got Flash running on something that wasn't Win32; but I would strongly suspect that cross-platform stuff like, say, their precious little DRM system, that they hope will save them from HTML5 video by ensuring that 'premium content' providers remain loyal, is worth far more to them closed than open.

          What surprises me, really, is that Adobe never got Flash to work properly even as the capabilities of handhelds have shot through the roof. Ok, Flash sucks on a 528MHz ARM11 with 192 MB of RAM and a painfully-underpolished Android 1.6 OS. Why does it still suck on systems with 2-4x as many cores(each clocked 2-3x faster and generally based on a more sophisticated ARM flavor), and a GB of RAM?

          • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Informative)

            by AuMatar (183847) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:34PM (#40998217)

            Multiple cores isn't going to help, processing is done in a single thread. Nor is more RAM, unless RAM was the problem to begin with. Most likely the bottleneck is the CPU, and I doubt you're really using a 3x faster CPU. Even if you are a 2-3x faster clock doesn't mean running code 2-3x faster- things like cache misses and mispredicted branches don't scale. Also remember that IPC is generally lower on ARM than on comparable x86 chips, so comparing raw numbers isn't that much of a help.

            • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Informative)

              by rrohbeck (944847) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @01:24PM (#40998869)

              Yup. Flash always sucked on low powered CPUs like Atom. It'll consume 20% on a modern fast CPU with accelerated video and if you don't have video acceleration it'll be much higher.
              On an Atom Netbook with Intel GMA under Linux it's unusable. I disabled the plugin, downloaded the .flv files and played them with VLC - no problem.

        • Re:Good riddance. (Score:5, Informative)

          by bluescrn (2120492) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:58AM (#40997701)
          The thing is, Flash on mobile is very alive. Just not in the web browser.

          Look into Flash+AIR, you can build Flash content into mobile apps for iOS and Android, and this support some of the latest+greatest features, such as Stage3D (hardware-accelerated 3D graphics API)
          • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

            by h4rr4r (612664)

            It still sucks.
            I will not install AIR on my device, ever.

            • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Informative)

              by bluescrn (2120492) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:17PM (#40997951)
              But you don't 'install AIR'. You install just-another-app, and never know that it's made with Flash (unless you're really looking for it)
              • by Skapare (16644)

                That defeats the ability to access the info quickly, which is what a web site did. Now you expect someone to install an app? People are already slowing down on that because of all the security issues. Presumably most apps are not an issue. But enough are that people are learning to just not install anything that comes around. The app model is basically dangerous because Android doesn't isolate them very well (neither does iOS for that matter).

              • by h4rr4r (612664)

                Then why is there an AIR installer in the market?
                Why have some of the Amazon free apps of the day required you to have it installed to use their app?

      • Adobe loses either way.

        Not if Adobe produces tools to recompile existing Flash vector animations into JavaScript+SVG or JavaScript+Canvas and recompile ActionScript into JavaScript. Isn't Adobe Edge part of this effort?

      • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Desler (1608317) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:49AM (#40997619)

        Adobe cared about selling the Flash creation tools not the Flash platform itself. They'll just change the tools to export HTML5.

      • by CohibaVancouver (864662) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:13PM (#40997895)

        Those sites will become unavailable if Flash is removed on mobile devices.

        ...and tragically, most of them are pr0n.

      • Hopefully they choose to redesign and switch to something else. Flash is nothing but bad news for anything other than playing video and stupid little (although often fun) flash games. It really has no place in a good website design. I can't stand most pages that use flash extensively (I usually hit back as soon as I see that loading bar).
      • I agree, but many sites still use it, unfortunately. Those sites will become unavailable if Flash is removed on mobile devices.

        No, they are available today.

        Thanks to iOS devices, for a few years now pretty much any Flash site you can think of has in fact worked fine without Flash. You just don't know it because by default they give you Flash if you can.

        Pretty much only Flash game sites remain as things that cannot easily be transitioned to running wholly without Flash, but in case you had not noticed a lot

      • Re:Good riddance. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by mcwop (31034) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @01:00PM (#40998525) Homepage
        Hopefully, that one guy that has designed every restaurant website there is, switches to HTML5 and CSS3.
      • by Wraithlyn (133796)

        Any site that is UNUSABLE without Flash will either adapt, or die. And thank goodness for that.

        Flash was (still is?) a great way to provide an enhanced experience for desktop users. Any web developer worth the title would provide fallbacks for critical path functionality.

        People that built nav menus, or unskippable intros, or (heaven forbid) entire sites out of Flash without proper fallbacks should be rounded up and shot in the head.

        Progressive enhancement. Graceful degradation. These are not buzzwords, t

    • I created a few games in Flash for playing in a webbrowser, and for the lols I also tried it on an Android, and it worked quite well actually! Sad to see it go.

      Flash allows creating a complete game with all graphics, audio, etc... in a single file, that works the same on almost all platforms. This is quite handy. So I really wish Flash to stay strong, and, have a fully perfect open source player (in other words, have the official player itself be open source).

    • by bluescrn (2120492)
      But unfortunately, the alternative (HTML5), sucks even more - at least for game-related uses :(
      • I've still yet to see a HTML5 video player that works nearly as fast as a native video player. There's also silly bugs, like using volume keys in full screen bumps it back to window.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I'm certain it was Steve Jobs that killed Adobe Flash player on mobile devices a couple years ago.

  • Die flash die! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by onyxruby (118189) <onyxruby@@@comcast...net> on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:36AM (#40997421)

    These words have been a mantra of mine for years. I suspect that many other people share this worldview. The death of flash cannot come soon enough for many, many good reasons.

    I'll light the bonfire, who's bringing the beer? Is killing flash the best thing Steve Jobs ever did?

    • by wbr1 (2538558)
      I've got a palette of yuengling black and tans. Lets party.
    • I don't understand this hate! Most games that work on Linux are written in Flash.

      • you want adobe to blow cash on development so you can play free games?

        • You can develop these games with the open source flex framework. You write actionscript code and get all the resources (images etc...), and compile it all into one swf file that works everywhere.

          This is the thing I find weird: Adobe made the developer tools to create an swf open source, but not the player to view them...

          • EDIT: But with the good tools to create these games, Adobe earns cash so ...

          • You can develop these games with the open source flex framework. You write actionscript code and get all the resources (images etc...), and compile it all into one swf file that works everywhere.

            There are paid developers behind Adobe Flex too, no matter how open source it was.

        • Yes I do. But what the hell does that have to do with anything?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      "the flash, the!"

      hey, anyone who speaks german can't be all bad.

    • You're missing the point: it's not the platform, it's the apps.

      While the Flash plugin was never great, there's a reason Flash lived for so long -- fantastic authoring tools. Drag-and-drop GUIs, full featured IDEs, etc. made it a snap to build great looking Flash apps.

      Until HTML5 has equivalent authoring tools, it's not truly going to be able to replace Flash.

    • You shouldn't want something dead, you should want a better technology to replace it.

  • Strange direction (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sl4shd0rk (755837) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:39AM (#40997473)

    I've never seen a company "give up" like this. I would have thought Adobe would have a vested interest in making their software work on a platform everyone is clamoring to dominate. It's like they just said "meh,.. F- it". They also discontinued Flash on Linux (not sure about mac).

    • by Compaqt (1758360)

      Are they committing suicide?

      First they give up on Linux Flash, now Android Flash. Can't quite figure it out.

      Have they been afflicted by the RDF?

    • by alen (225700)

      adobe sells development software. their other products are already used in the development of mobile software. the probably didn't see a need for Flash

      believe it or not Adobe also has HTML5 development software they sell

      • believe it or not Adobe also has HTML5 development software they sell

        Does it have a similar feature set compared to Flash? Are things like animation and syncing audio supported? Can you create vector graphics and have it exported as a canvas or SVG? I think it's going to be a bitch to transition to HTML5 for creating e-learning content. The ideal situation would be that Flash would be able to export to HTML5 without losing any functionality, I can't see that happening though.

        • by gl4ss (559668)

          Does it have a similar feature set compared to Flash? Are things like animation and syncing audio supported? Can you create vector graphics and have it exported as a canvas or SVG? I think it's going to be a bitch to transition to HTML5 for creating e-learning content. The ideal situation would be that Flash would be able to export to HTML5 without losing any functionality, I can't see that happening though.

          No, But some years ago when this roadmap was made it was supposed to happen "real soon now"(tm)(html5 getting to that stage on all browsers including mobiles).

    • by Artraze (600366) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:01PM (#40997735)

      The flash runtime is really only a cost for them: they have to maintain it ('cause it's so secure!), optimize it, and port it to a lot of platforms.

      What they make money on is the flash toolkit. Adobe has decided that maintaining the runtime isn't worth is and instead moving their toolkit over to HTML 5 (and continuing along with being able to export video, etc). Really, it's mostly a win for them. They kept going along with the runtime because it did afford them certain benefits, the install base (which they monopolize) in particular... I think I hear it was something like 90% which probably beats HTML 5 by a wide margin. However, they see the writing on the wall: HTML 5 is getting more common and flash player less. They have a mature toolkit and it's time they compete on that alone and stop wasting (excess) resources working on a costly* side project that really only made sense half a decade ago.

      (*I mean seriously, in terms of bad PR alone...)

    • you've never seen Microsoft discontinue support for old versions of VB?

    • by Jim Hall (2985)

      I've said it before, but it bears repeating: The irony is that Adobe does not see that by dropping support for platforms, fewer developers will want to use Flash because it is no longer "cross-platform." And if fewer developers want to use Flash, then fewer people will consume Flash content ... and eventually Adobe will decide to drop support on yet another platform because fewer people are consuming Flash there. The cycle feeds itself. It's only a matter of time before Flash goes away entirely.

      This is not

    • If Ballmer scores Flash exclusivity for Windows/8/RT and Surface then he trully earns his (evil)genius CEO pedestal right next to Gates and Allison.

      Adobe certainly hates Linux/Android and had some feuds with Apple too, so this might not be completely off idea.
  • by bullgod (93002) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:41AM (#40997499)

    - Prince Vultan

  • by neurocutie (677249) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @11:55AM (#40997679)
    So is it possible to somehow grab a copy of Android Flash now that would be installable in the future?
  • This is a really bad day to be working for Kongregate.

  • by Eravnrekaree (467752) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:01PM (#40997743)

    I do not see the need for a flash player going away any time soon due to the immense amount of content in Flash. Flash is so widespread it is hard to get rid of. It seems Adobe is attacking Google here, perhaps because Google is switching to HTML5.

    I agree it would be best for Flash to disappear, Adobe is a corrupt, evil company that uses various unsavory practices. But how to get contnent developers to stop using it? As long as people keep making stuff in flash unfortunately it will remain popular. Part of the issue is making a good replacement for flash. HTML5 helps a.lot with this but as well what really makes flash popular is that developers love Adobe Flash development tools. The sad thing is flash's development tools are very popular with developers and I do not see them giving up flash until something better comes along. I have yet to see anything come along that actually can exceed the features and ease of use of Adobes tools.

    Many here presume Flash will go away. This is sort of like saying Linux will become popular, people here do not understand why people use software, they use software because it works well. Adobe has great tools that work well and just expecting people to stop using them when there are no alternatives or the alternatives are inferior is absurd.

    • The emergence of tools to convert Flash to other formats would allow developers to continue using Flash for development while still enabling web sites to avoid delivering Flash.

    • Moreover, the issue with DRM (either abolish it, or create an open standard, I leave it to you to determine which is more practical...) hasn't been addressed yet. Companies like Hulu and Amazon use Flash specifically to prevent people from being able to download streaming video and save it onto their devices.

  • Hell is going to freeze over before most of the restaurants I visit build usable websites. Now they won't be viewable from mobile at all!

    • Then patronize the restaurants' competitors. I just tried chick-fil-a.com, for example, and it works just fine in Firefox with Flashblock on. Do you want me to try the site on my Nexus 7 tablet when I get home to make sure it's 100% pure HTML5?
      • by GodInHell (258915)
        I think you're looking in the wrong payscale [alinearestaurant.com].
      • by Trepidity (597)

        I don't really plan to patronize mega-chains, and sadly most of the mom-and-pop restaurants around here do not have modern websites.

        An exception is some that are so behind on technology that they use 1990s-era web technology, which is actually readable.

        • by CastrTroy (595695)
          A restaurant web site works best when it's the 1990s era web site. A single page with the address, a map, the phone number, and hours of operation. Another web page linked from the first that shows their menu. That's all a restaurant needs. It's amazing how many restaurants and other businesses can't even be bother to post their hours of operation on their website, or put their phone number in an easy to find location, preferably on the front page.
      • by Skapare (16644)

        I don't think Trepidity [slashdot.org] is talking about big evil corporate chains.

      • Or call them up, tell them about the situation, and offer to redo their web site for the going rate.

    • by Skapare (16644)

      There's some new thing coming around called HTML5.

    • Pluggers only go to Country Kitchen Buffet anyway, grandpa.

  • by Skuld-Chan (302449) on Wednesday August 15, 2012 @12:03PM (#40997757)

    Flash wasn't just about videos and ads on the internet. Some of us developed useful applications like forms for front line people, reports for pointed hair people and video games (look up sharpform - a lot of video game UI's run on Flash). Its sad that the platforms it supports is shrinking and not growing.

    Ages ago when I worked for Adobe - an internal conference was show casing everything they just acquired from Macromedia. The mantra was "the future of the company is everything we just acquired" (that wasn't the official mantra, but after attending plenty of developer sessions that was what I was feeling) - I'm sure that is still true to a certain extent, but there was a genuine feeling that Flash could actually take on Java as a web runtime - especially because we were going to have the worlds first full runtime on a mobile device (at the time they were talking about Symbian and WebOS).

    Don't laugh - one of the internet's biggest websites youtube.com runs on top of Flash media server :) (or at least it used to!). Also this was long before HTML-5 and Javascript was showing any promise. If you wanted to have a rich web app your choices were Java or Flash.

  • Flash on Android isn't going away, it's just changing. You can write apps in Flash, package them as Adobe Air apps and install them on Android just fine. That's how it's worked on iOS for a long time now because of Apple's restrictions on browser plugins, so I imagine this is just their way of consolidating development efforts on both platforms.

The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. -- John Muir

Working...