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Iphone Media (Apple)

Flash Comes To the iPhone Via App 182

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the doesn't-seem-very-convenient dept.
An anonymous reader writes "While the HTML5 and Flash standard debate rages, Apple, a major promoter of HTML5, has allowed its iOS devices to run Flash videos. Apple has given approval to an app developed by Skyfire that translates Flash code into HTML5. According to CNN, when a user clicks on a Flash video the Skyfire app downloads the Flash video on Skyfire's server where the video is decoded and then encoded in HTML5 and is delivered to an iOS device. The app is embedded in the Safari browser."
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Flash Comes To the iPhone Via App

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  • by MozeeToby (1163751) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:06PM (#34113042)

    Why do so many articles ignore the fact that there is more to Flash than video? Granted, most games aren't going to play well on a mobile device but there are lots of Flash based sites that work just fine. Being able to access those sites or not is a pretty big deal if your out and about and need to look up information on a nearby business.

  • by HalAtWork (926717) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:07PM (#34113056)
    Apple, a major promoter of HTML5, has allowed its iOS devices to run Flash videos

    No, Google has allowed YouTube to serve the MP4 format to iOS devices, and other sites serving videos have done similar things more recently. Flash isn't involved, and Flash videos could not and still cannot be played on iOS devices. Apple has always had the same stance in regards to iOS and had never made any special exceptions.
  • by pjfontillas (1743424) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:12PM (#34113118) Homepage
    I can think of one use, but it's not something that's common (yet). Sound Manager 2 makes use of Flash and when done right it can be used to add sound to the UI. It's not done right, if at all usually, but sounds that represent interactions with the UI can do wonders for the user experience and intuitiveness.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:12PM (#34113132)

    Oh dear.

    The word you are looking for is principal.

  • Re:Lot of trouble (Score:5, Informative)

    by delinear (991444) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:27PM (#34113354)
    It's actually not a bad idea for video - and from Apple's point of view it helps gain traction for their supported flavour of codec - but unfortunately some of us still have to use Flash for non-video related functionality, whether it's building/maintaining sites that "those upstairs" insist have to have Flash embedded, or even using certain config/CMS tools that require Flash (one of the ones I regularly work with uses a Flex front-end). It's a bit misleading to say this is "Flash on the iPhone", by any stretch, it's not even Flash video on the iPhone, since the entirety of the conversion is handled by a third party before it even reaches the iPhone.
  • by Mortice (467747) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:36PM (#34113514)

    "the video is decoded and then encoded in HTML5"

    I'm glad to see the standard of technical journalism around here is as high as ever, Slashdot. Please point me at the part of the HTML5 which describes its capabilities as a video container format and/or codec. Hint: the presence of a tag doesn't cover it.

  • by stewbacca (1033764) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:45PM (#34113658)

    My industry (rapid e-learning and software simulation training) is nearly 100% Flash. There really is no other option. Even the rapid e-learning powerpoint plug ins are all Flash based.

    And this isn't even a bad thing, because it's a great tool for this use.

  • by hazydave (96747) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:46PM (#34113678)

    More correctly, they're reformatting a Flash/AVC "wrapper" and HTML tag (or at least those they can detect, since flash players usually involve other code) into the very same video in an MP4 wrapper with a tag. Conceptually trivial, if all you're after is playing flash video. A far cry from supporting all of flash, particularly since the video sites are the first to offer HTML5 alternatives (YouTube, for example).

  • by lennier1 (264730) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @12:47PM (#34113688)

    Only video?

    Depends on your field of work. There are many web-based monitoring applications which use Flash to display graphs (moves the burden of transforming values into graphics to the client, freeing up server resources in the process).

  • by nashv (1479253) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @01:22PM (#34114190) Homepage
    Because if you just factor in the traffic to YouTube, you'll realise that video IS the most used application of Flash. And just making video work without Flash will cause a huge drop in Flash usage.
  • by itsdapead (734413) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @01:24PM (#34114212)

    Why do so many articles ignore the fact that there is more to Flash than video?

    Probably because, for most users, the deal-breaker is not being able to access video content on news and, er, other types of site. There are plenty of casual games and other apps in the App Store - but not many non-Flash sources of video.

    Being able to access those sites or not is a pretty big deal if your out and about and need to look up information on a nearby business.

    Perhaps the pundits who write these articles would avoid those sites on principle anyway. Plus, what are the chances of those sites working with a touch interface?

  • So very, very WRONG (Score:5, Informative)

    by sootman (158191) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @01:24PM (#34114218) Homepage Journal

    "Apple has given approval to an app developed by Skyfire that translates Flash code into HTML5."

    NO IT DOES NOT. As others are pointing out, all this does is use a server to transcode Flash VIDEO and serve it to you. This will not do ANYTHING ELSE with Flash--it certainly DOES NOT "translate Flash code into HTML5 [code]". Better description here. [tuaw.com]

    Also worth noting: "Hulu has also blocked Skyfire to guarantee that users who want to watch the streaming TV service on the iPad have to continue to pay $10 per month for Hulu Plus."

  • by CheerfulMacFanboy (1900788) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @02:02PM (#34114688) Journal

    So, contrary to what the title and the summary say, this has nothing to do with 'flash on the iPhone' and everything to do with 'some company is transcoding flash video to h264 and sending it off to the iPhone.

    Considering most "Flash videos" are H.264 encoded - what transcoding? More like "filtering out the skin for the video player build into the Flash Player".

    Yes Virginia, Flash Player contains the evil H.264.

  • by gig (78408) on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @02:47PM (#34115310)

    The HTML5/Flash debate is no longer raging, it's very much winding down. Java and Silverlight in the browser have also been supplanted by HTML5 already.

    The Skyfire app is not embedded in Safari, it has its own WebKit view, same as Safari and many other OS X apps.

  • by tepples (727027) <{tepples} {at} {gmail.com}> on Wednesday November 03, 2010 @10:04PM (#34119822) Homepage Journal

    And, generally, people complain about that too.

    Or have you never heard of "home brew?"

    Geeks have. The majority have not. The majority don't even know that one can hook a slim PC up to an HDTV with a VGA, DVI, or HDMI cable, and then use it as an Internet video player, as a DVR, or as the fourth game console, all in one box.

    Every single software or hardware maker does what Apple does.

    Oh, that explain why you can't run Linux on a PC or compile your own apps for Mac OS X.

    No, wait, something seems off here...

    Please allow me to rephrase: Most hardware makers making products for sale in the United States in form factors not traditionally associated with personal computers (e.g. handheld, set-top) sell goods that have been damaged [wikipedia.org] with lockdown.

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