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QuickTime Creator Brings Flash and Office To the iPad, By Subscription 118

Posted by timothy
from the but-then-you-have-to-watch-flash dept.
New submitter adycarter writes "Steve Perlman, the man responsilbe for QuickTime and WebTV, has recently launched OnLive Desktop which now offers a 'plus' service enabling iPad users to use Flash, Microsoft Office and the ability to use a Gigabit-speed version of Internet Explorer. The service runs on the same basic technology as their game streaming service in that you're using your iPad as client to access a machine located in the cloud."
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QuickTime Creator Brings Flash and Office To the iPad, By Subscription

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  • Thanks (Score:5, Funny)

    by rjamestaylor (117847) <rjamestaylor@gmail.com> on Saturday February 25, 2012 @06:37PM (#39160915) Journal

    Thanks for ruining my awesome iPad experience. :)

  • by sideslash (1865434) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @06:39PM (#39160927)
    Presumably this plays nicely with third party keyboards for the iPad, but I'm skeptical of how useful Office would be without a precision pointing device. And even with the keyboard, while that would be great for entering a bunch of text, it's not clear to me whether key combinations would make it across intact (Ctrl+V, Shift+End etc.).
  • If you're within range of Wi-Fi, you're probably in a position to use a full-fledged MacBook Air instead of an iPad. If you're not, how fast will OnLive eat up the 5 GB/mo cap of 3G/4G Internet?
    • by Anonymous Coward

      People who have an iPad but not a MacBook Air?

    • People who bring their iPads everywhere but not their heavier laptop?

      • by tepples (727027)
        In that case, the solution I've chosen is to buy a smaller, lighter laptop like an Aspire One or an Eee PC, not buy an iPad and work around its app restrictions.
        • I do a lot of use while walking around - but not the kind of use that this service would be for.

        • Your average netbook or small laptop is somewhere around 2-4 lbs, while an iPad is about 1.4. The weight quickly adds up if you're walking or biking around, once you consider the mouse, power adapter, etc. The iPad usually (not always) has better battery life to boot. The iPad is more comfortable to consume content on, though the netbook has the advantage for creation.

          I don't even have an iPad; I'm just pointing out that there are usage cases where it'd be nicer to have one.

          • The iPad is more comfortable to consume content on, though the netbook has the advantage for creation.

            The problem comes when people buy a device on which to consume, short-sightedly assuming that they're never going to want to create. This sunk cost discourages them from spending the money need to get started with creation come the time that they do end up wanting to create.

            • by gstoddart (321705)

              The problem comes when people buy a device on which to consume, short-sightedly assuming that they're never going to want to create.

              But, really, how big of a 'problem' is this?

              I know quite a few people with tablets (of all sorts and sizes), and every one of them loves the form factor, and primarily uses it specifically to consume content.

              Watching movies in airplanes, surfing the web, playing games, checking your gmail ... that seems to be what most people buy these things for. You can lay in lawn chair in

              • In my experience, what you're describing doesn't correspond to the realities of what people expect to use these things for.

                But there needs to be a critical mass of people who create on the side in order to maintain enough demand for devices for creating. Otherwise, only people who create for a living will absolutely need devices for creating, and as such devices lose economies of scale, prices are likely to rise.

                • by gstoddart (321705)

                  But there needs to be a critical mass of people who create on the side in order to maintain enough demand for devices for creating. Otherwise, only people who create for a living will absolutely need devices for creating, and as such devices lose economies of scale, prices are likely to rise.

                  Well, the desktop or laptop are still viable options for that.

                  Unfortunately, or fortunately, or as a matter of reality ... companies make products based on what people want to buy. If 5% of the consumers need a certain

                  • I'm not really willing to pay extra to have features in my device that I don't use so that your hypothetical content creator can also buy his device at an affordable price. That's just me subsidizing you. Why would I want to do that?

                    So that you can view works that express the views of people who live somewhere other than Austin, Boston, or Seattle. CronoCloud keeps telling me that if I want to develop video games in genres that work best with an input device not commonly bundled with a PC or phone, I have to move to a city that's a hotbed of the mainstream video game industry, and there appear not to be any such cities in my home state.

    • If you're within range of Wi-Fi, you're probably in a position to use a full-fledged MacBook Air instead of an iPad. If you're not, how fast will OnLive eat up the 5 GB/mo cap of 3G/4G Internet?

      So? I don't understand some nerds. "You have 5GB bandwidth, therefore anything that uses it is useless!" Um, you have it in order to use it. How is this not obvious?

      Same goes for the MacBook Air comment. So what? If I'm using my iPad, why would I want to go over to my Air if I don't have to? I'm sitting in a comfy chair right now, browsing /. On my iPad, if I need to use Flash (super rare these days, but let's just pretend), do I want to get up and go to where my notebook or desktop are? Why?

      • "You have 5GB bandwidth, therefore anything that uses it is useless!" Um, you have it in order to use it. How is this not obvious?

        What's not obvious is how many minutes of monthly usage you can get from 5 GB, and that depends on the bitrate coming down from OnLive's server. Another Slashdot user pointed out [slashdot.org] that HSPA+ phones can burn through a 5 GB allowance in ten minutes.

        I'm sitting in a comfy chair right now, browsing /.

        As do I on my netbook.

        On my iPad, if I need to use Flash (super rare these days, but let's just pretend), do I want to get up and go to where my notebook or desktop are?

        On your iPad, if you need a keyboard to compose a longer comment, do you want to get up and go to where your Bluetooth keyboard is? If you need to use Eclipse, Visual Studio, XCode, IDLE, or another comparable developer tool, do you want to get

        • What's not obvious is how many minutes of monthly usage you can get from 5 GB, and that depends on the bitrate coming down from OnLive's server. Another Slashdot user pointed out [slashdot.org] that HSPA+ phones can burn through a 5 GB allowance in ten minutes.

          And if this was streaming a Blu-ray movie losslessly, you might have a point. But it's not, it's just a remote session, which people have been doing via 3G on iPads for a couple years now without issue. There's no way this is something to fret over.

          As do I on my netbook.

          Which has nothing to do with anything we are discussing. People are buying iPads over netbooks. And even if it were the other way around, this topic is about iPads.

          On your iPad, if you need a keyboard to compose a longer comment, do you want to get up and go to where your Bluetooth keyboard is?

          Nope, I just type it on the iPad. It's really quite easy.

          If you need to use Eclipse, Visual Studio, XCode, IDLE, or another comparable developer tool, do you want to get up and go to where your PC is?

          If I need to do something real quick, I do

          • by tepples (727027)

            And if I was going over my data cap regularly, then maybe I'd start to worry, but I'm not. Why should I get all Chicken Little about things that aren't problems?

            Because comments to other stories mention people finding out that they are "going over [their] data cap regularly".

            • And if I was going over my data cap regularly, then maybe I'd start to worry, but I'm not. Why should I get all Chicken Little about things that aren't problems?

              Because comments to other stories mention people finding out that they are "going over [their] data cap regularly".

              Yes, some people will hit their data caps, but not many. Hence, it's not a problem. By your logic, nothing is good, since everything has limits that people will hit at one point or another.

              Quit being such a priss, and learn to enjoy life. You worry too much about things that don't even effect you.

              • By your logic, nothing is good, since everything has limits that people will hit at one point or another.

                Nothing is good in excess. Some things are fine in moderation

                You worry too much about things that don't even effect you.

                1. Affect. 2. "First they came for the Communists." I just fear that opponents of general-purpose computing [slashdot.org] will end up coming for the micro-ISVs. This has already happened in a couple cases, where big businesses have access to entire classes of computing platforms to which micro-ISVs have no access.

                • By your logic, nothing is good, since everything has limits that people will hit at one point or another.

                  Nothing is good in excess. Some things are fine in moderation

                  That's a tautology, and means nothing.

                  You worry too much about things that don't even effect you.

                  1. Affect. 2. "First they came for the Communists." I just fear that opponents of general-purpose computing [slashdot.org] will end up coming for the micro-ISVs. This has already happened in a couple cases, where big businesses have access to entire classes of computing platforms to which micro-ISVs have no access.

                  Who is an opponent of general purpose computing? No one. General purpose computers will exist forever (for as long as digital computational technology exists).

                  • Who is an opponent of general purpose computing?

                    The people who see dollar signs in locking down computers by taxing all programs that run on the computers that they make, taxing all works that are viewed on computers that they make, and taxing the production of computers that they don't make. The first two are done using mandatory verification of the device manufacturer's digital signature, as video game console makers have done since the NES and Atari 7800. The last is done with patents, as Microsoft and Apple have lately been doing to Android device ma

                    • Who is an opponent of general purpose computing?

                      The people who see dollar signs in locking down computers by taxing all programs that run on the computers that they make, taxing all works that are viewed on computers that they make, and taxing the production of computers that they don't make. The first two are done using mandatory verification of the device manufacturer's digital signature, as video game console makers have done since the NES and Atari 7800. The last is done with patents, as Microsoft and Apple have lately been doing to Android device manufacturers.

                      What does Android have to do with general purpose computing?

                      As you point out, this has existed for decades now, and things are just fine. No one is trying to kill of general purpose computing. NO ONE. They are just trying to make *THEIR OWN* products (to varying degrees) locked down. Even Android is more locked down than your Linux PC. There are grades on a scale, and no one is going to remove the "totally open" end from that scale. It's both impossible, and financially foolish. There will always be some co

                    • no one is going to remove the "totally open" end from that scale

                      Back in 2005, Alsee wrote a comment on Slashdot that proposed an application of Trusted Network Connect that makes "totally open" incompatible with home Internet service providers [slashdot.org]. What has changed since then?

          • by Gilmoure (18428)

            This isn't a religious issue.

            Yes. It. Is!

            Someone is wrong. On teh internets!

    • I was going to say that it would be useful for people who are walking around while using their iPads (that's a big chunk of my use-case - writing down notes while going to different spaces at a site) but then, I don't need to surf the web at high speed while doing that, nor am I using office since it doesn't do handwriting recognition.

      I do only bring my iPad + a bluetooth keyboard when I travel since it's lighter than a laptop and I usually just connect to a workstation remotely if I'm in a laptopish use sc

    • by Forgen (1061718)
      Mwahaha, only fools have caps on their data plans! Sprint+Android=inf iPad data! Only problem is some iPad apps think the wifi connection is cable-high-speed, so it by default requests too high of quality of video stream and buffers video instead of falling back to a lower bitrate.
  • Good Enough (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SuperKendall (25149) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @06:40PM (#39160931)

    For someone who MUST have Flash (almost no-one) this is a perfect compromise.

    I'm not sure I'd pay a monthly fee just to view restaurant menus though.

    • For someone who MUST have Flash (almost no-one) this is a perfect compromise.

      Flash is useful for watching videos. Thought, I'm not sure anyone MUST have Flash, or even an iPad for that matter.

      There are many other ways to get content from the web either way.

      • Flash is useful for watching videos.

        That is an example use they gave.

        Although these days almost any Flash video site you can name feeds up h.264 when loaded on an iPad.

  • Zombo Com (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 25, 2012 @06:42PM (#39160951)

    Ever since I got my iPad I was unable to unlock the full potential of Zombocom because of Flash absence. Now I feel like everything is possible again.

    Thank you, OnLive.

  • by jo_ham (604554) <joham999@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Saturday February 25, 2012 @06:42PM (#39160953)

    This has been going for a while, and one might argue that remote sessions are not a new thing by any stretch of the imagination, but it's certainly a useful service if you need it - especially for Office apps.

    Word on the grapevine is that Microsoft are working on a native iPad app (or suite of apps) for Office, however - better late than never for those who want to be able to do more than just view Office formats on a tablet.

    (and yes, yes, tablets suck for real work, yadda yadda, no one is using them for real work, toy os etc etc - just heading off that stuff at the pass.)

    • by EdIII (1114411)

      (and yes, yes, tablets suck for real work, yadda yadda, no one is using them for real work, toy os etc etc - just heading off that stuff at the pass.)

      Welll... they do.

      RDP and other remote control apps are neat, but very hard to do real work with. Using a tablet as a tablet, means one handed typing. Anything else is basically no different than a laptop. Having it propped up and typing with two hands does not really count as a tablet either.

      That's all the article is really about. Using the tablet as a thin client to desktop with a lot more resources. Hardly ground breaking as an idea. The challenge is that tablets are a really poor thin client interf

  • The data cost to use this will be high and drain the battery fast.

    Also with input lag as well.

    • by Nerdfest (867930) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @07:09PM (#39161115)

      Unfortunately, that may be one of the prices that needs to be paid when one chooses a platform where you're not allowed to run anything you want. It also may turn out that some of the services like this will actually speed up the experience, like with Opera mini. Anything heavy on processing and light on moving graphics will be much faster run like this. It may turn out that Office runs faster than it would natively.

      • Running remote programs on the iPad like iTap mobile into a Windows RDP server is really quite snappy over WiFi. Not native speed but certainly acceptable for everyday use. This system seems to be a bit more sophisticated and thus faster.

        I've found that I can run my hospital's POS, ancient EHR system via iTap mobile and get results not much different from using a Windows laptop. Really annoys the IS department because they hate Apple thingies.

        (Even worse, our new POS EHR system will use iPads almost excl

    • How so? I have a 250GB limit on my home Internet connection. As for lag, people play video games via OnLive. And how would it drain battery? You can stream Netflix via 3G for many hours without worrying about the battery.

      Even a capped 3GB 3G connection will last for quite some time before hitting the limit. It's not like you somehow have to use this 24/7, nor are you limited to 3G.

  • Five dollars a month buys you a cloud-accelerated web browser (that would be Internet Explorer 9, complete with fully functioning Adobe Flash and Acrobat plug-ins) and priority access to the OnLive Desktop service -- freeloading "standard" subscribers can only access the service on an as-available basis.

    Running remotely on powerful PCs in the cloud that are connected by Gigabit Ethernet to the Internet

    So THATS what the poster means by "a Gigabit-speed version of Internet Explorer."

    Just sayin- iPad users can already use a "cloud-accelerated web browser" - for free. One of the best browsers out there: Opera.
    Opera needs some love....

    • I know the point was flash on the iPad, but I really don't care very much about flash. I only use it for when youtube refuses to give me Html5 videos.

  • too much, too late (Score:4, Interesting)

    by pbjones (315127) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @06:45PM (#39160979)

    with people now dropping Flash, and free work-arounds available, a paid Flash experience is doomed. As for Office, if you need it, buy a Macbook Air, or similar. BTW, there are rumours of Office for iPad floating around, and an MS-Works for iPad would sell well, IMHO.

    • by nessus42 (230320)

      with people now dropping Flash, and free work-arounds available, a paid Flash experience is doomed. As for Office, if you need it, buy a Macbook Air, or similar

      They're offering an entire Windows remote desktop, not just Flash and Office. I guess it remains to be seen as to whether there's a big enough market for this, but you really don't know the answer to this.

      |>ouglas

  • There is already a service that works like this. An app called iSwifter gives you a Linux Firefox window that runs flash based content. It works decently, though can get a hinlegalgy at times. iSwifter is a one time fee. They do Not charge per month (I think they originally did, but nobody wanted to pay). I use iSwifter for King Schools flight training programs, which are flash based. Works pretty well.
  • Is it impossible to code a flash-compatible player that can run on iDevices?

    • No it's impossible to get it past the gatekeeper.
    • Is it impossible to code a flash-compatible player that can run on iDevices?

      Ask all the Android fanboys who stopped using it as a bullet point.

    • by Jaro (4361)

      There are browsers with Flash support available on iDevices, like Pidgin and others. Only the performance sucks.

    • Possible, yes - but only those with jailbroken iPads would be able to install it. Apple are very strictly opposed to flash on the iPad, and won't be certifying such an app for the forseeable future.
    • by toriver (11308)

      No, but since the app store terms mandate that any interpreted code (using non-Apple interpreters) be shipped with the app and not downloaded, the usefulness would be very limited.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 25, 2012 @07:12PM (#39161129)

    He is not the "QuickTime creator". Steve Perlman was a contracted tester on portions of QuickTime. His main claim to fame in that timeframe is that when the people actually responsible for QuickTime (like Bruce Leak) left Apple for elsewhere shortly after it shipped, he stayed behind at Apple.

    He was however a co-founder of Catapult who did the X-Band modem and service as well as founding WebTV as listed here.

    • by dsyu (203328)

      Mod AC parent up. Steve certainly was at Apple and worked on Quicktime, but I wouldn't call him the "creator" of Quicktime.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        I worked with Steve at Apple for a couple of years; we were both in ATG. Steve did not play any meaningful role in Quicktime. Quicktime was done by a completely different organization and they were not particularly fans of what we "researchers" were doing :) Bruce Leak and others were really the creators and principals.

        At Apple Steve did research on hardware accelerated embedded multimedia. It was similar to what he went on to do at WebTV (and then sold to Microsoft for a pile of bucks, which was a nice tri

    • by Noughmad (1044096)

      But his name was Steve! This fact alone should be enough to disperse any doubt of his contributions to society.

  • Oh no (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 25, 2012 @07:12PM (#39161135)

    He subjected the world to QuickTime and WebTV, and now he's trying to bring Office and Internet Explorer to the iPad? What will he do to us next? This monster must be stopped.

  • by Lehk228 (705449) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @07:12PM (#39161137) Journal
    he created Quick Time AND Web TV?

    can we pitch in and buy him an Exit Bag?
  • I sent them an email, a few weeks ago, asking about other options besides Windows. Like, Ubuntu or Mac OS X, for the remote OS.
    I also asked about clients for other platforms.

    No response yet.

    I doubt I'd use it for flash things or word processing (I use Dropbox to keep documents synchronized). What I would more likely want it for is a persistent IM presence, with centralized logging. Currently, I also use Dropbox for centralizing the logging, but I have to do some over-head to check and be sure that I don'

    • I highly doubt they would start running sessions of *nix OSes.

      May I suggest getting a cheap colo [lowendbox.com] and set it up for remote access? It'll probably be around the same amount a month and you'll have much more control.

      • by johnkzin (917611)

        Thought about it. barely any advantage over running it on my own system (which I have done, via VNC). Which, as I hinted at, if the remote desktop is VNC, then it's got too much latency and can have usability issues. I'm sincerely hoping they're doing something orders of magnitude better than VNC.

        • by radish (98371)

          Assuming they use the same tech as they do for games, it's orders of magnitude better than VNC.

  • SO how do we roll a DIY version of this with my existing windows or mac desktop? I RDP into my machines now, but the interface isnt as useful on touch as the one OnLive presented. Bandwidth restrictions aside, how to get my 'RDP' session to work like this?
  • by burne (686114) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @07:47PM (#39161293)

    and adding injury to insult: charging for the privilege.

    In 21 months of iPad-use I've noticed the lack of flash perhaps five times.

    On the other hand: it saved me from annoying adds about a gazillion times.

    No thanks, I'll pass this one.

    • by thegarbz (1787294)

      See it all depends on what you do on the internet. In the one time I've used an iPad (trying to show my friend a video on their iPad) we gave up and retired to the office because there was no other way we could get that content going.

      I envy your flash free life, but I don't envy your iPad.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    for Android.

    I understand that the average user is not going to use a tablet in the same way they would use (or in lieu of) a laptop. I'm ready to dump my laptop for a tablet, however, and the only thing that's keeping me from taking the plunge is the lack of a full-featured productivity suite. I've got a Transformer Prime with its keyboard dock and its precision pointing device and I'd like to actually do something productive with it. Documents to Go, Polaris Office, Google Docs, etc are all great for vi

  • Privacy? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hawguy (1600213) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @08:04PM (#39161373)

    People are quick to jump on Google because they track your searches and can follow you with their ad engine, so I'm surprised that no one mentioned the privacy implications of this service. This opens up a whole new world of trackability (likely more even than Amazon's Silk browser) - running MSIE in a hosted server session gives the provider visibility into everything you do in that browser - everytime you scroll a page, every time you zoom in, every text box you fill in (even if you leave the page without submitting), all of that is trackable.

  • The basic technology OnLive has is remote desktop. Mainly they do this for games. Their games client runs on an array of platforms (PC, Mac, Android phones and tablets), and could probably be ported to many more without much difficulty.

    As far as I can tell, the client is a souped-up rdesktop. They've paid close attention to doing the right video and audio compression and other things to minimize bandwidth and latency. The remote system behaves like local (convincingly so in most cases I've seen). (Deci

  • Kind of like PCAnywhere for the ipad.
    (Or whatever your favorite remote computing software is.)
  • by tyrione (134248) on Saturday February 25, 2012 @11:55PM (#39162171) Homepage

    The Man who created QuickTime? Really? The guy was gone by 1990. He brought WebTV thanks to Keith Ohlfs and other technologists to a market no one wanted and sold it ironically to Microsoft for bank and that was a write off for them. He's perfect as a VC guy--incubate, hype up, sell for unjustifiable value, dump and repeat.

    From his wiki page: ``In 2011 Perlman announced that he and colleagues at Rearden have invented distributed-input-distributed-output (DIDO) technology, which a Wired article claimed to be "an experimental wireless communications system that could render cellular connections obsolete".

    Someone should shoot the Wired writer for such a bs claim.

    The man's all hype and no results.

    • The guy was gone by 1990

      Speaking of 1990 - "OnLive Desktop Plus"?

      Sounds like bloatware RealNetworks would have installed.

  • This app isn't available in Canada, so I presume it's only available in the US. The rest of us can tune out.

    It's a shame, really, as I would have liked to try it out.

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