We’ve talked about Adobe Flash on iDB quite a bit. The absence of the platform plugin in iOS products has been a hot button issue since the original iPhone was released. For those who have been living under a rock for the last few years, let me break it down for you.

Adobe’s Flash is used in close to 80% of the top 100 most visited websites, so needless to say, it’s pretty popular. Apple, the maker of some of the hottest portable electronics right now, has barred Flash from its mobile platform for several reasons. And now it looks like after years of watching home-grown tweaks bring Flash content to iOS devices, Adobe might finally have an answer of their own…

Adobe has been previewing new video streaming technology at the NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) all week. The Las Vegas event saw several companies come and showoff their latest technologies, but obviously all eyes were on Adobe’s booth when they saw what they were advertising.

Adobe’s new technology is called HLS, or HTTP Live Streaming, and uses an MPEG2 stream that is used in devices like the iPad. They even had Flash video running on an iPad 2 via HLS at their NAB booth this week. Adobe announced multiple new methods for delivering Flash to devices that didn’t have the plugin installed.

Although it’s not full Flash support, it is a step in the right direction for Adobe. With over 100 million iDevices currently in use, what company would want to miss out on such a big market?

It might all be too little too late, though. Content providers have found other ways over the years, such as HTML 5, to deliver their media to iOS. It’s possible that when Flash does finally arrive to iDevices, the announcement will fall on deaf ears.

What do you think?

  • Eric

    So much inaccuracy in this “article”. No where NEAR 80% of the top websites are flash encoded anymore. 65% is html5 now. Amd this new streaming ISN’T flash. So stop saying flash is coming to iPhone please.

    • No where near 65% of websites are html5. html5 isn’t even a ratified standard yet, and quite frankly it has terrible support across all browsers. Don’t make up stats.

  • Nick4G

    geez enough with the updates. this is why im saying good bye to my iphone in december!!!

    • I think you are going to regret that.

      • Nick4G

        how so? just because of the jailbreak? ill live without it. im hoping soon the lg thrill 3d will be out in fall!

      • No he won’t. The iPhone isn’t anything spectacular. There are other good options out there.

  • moimoimoimoi

    the problem is HTML5 is fragmented – Safari/Firefox/IE/Chrome/Opera all support different codecs … its a real pain to have to rencode video 3 or 4 times to be viewable across all browsers …

    unfortunately or not, Flash (or until WebM) is the only true cross-browser capable video streaming tech right now

  • adidas101

    Haha ios is lagging android ftw full flash XD

    • Micke

      But far from every Android device supports full flash, so it’s useless to compare. The Android fragmentation is horrible.

    • Manuel

      Flash with android = HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE. Been there, don’t ever want to do that again. I can live without flash because everything I go on is working fine without flash. I used a driod

      • I’m using an N1. Flash works fine for me. It has been improving too.

        But, guess what? The flash vector graphics rasterizer is what causes pretty much all of the slowdown. Guess what else? The mobile safari rasterizer for SVG (HTML5 vector graphics) is also pitifully slow. So while you think HTML5 is a viable replacement for flash, real running devices can seem to make either their vector engines work.

        For non vector stuff, flash screams along nicely, even on the phones.

    • Manuel

      Driod 2 and flash on it sucked badly. Plus my battery got raped watching a 1 minute vid that looked horrible on wifi at 18 mbs. Illl stick to no flash

  • Eldaria

    If Adobe wants to be on iOS and Apple don’t want it, then why don’t they do like everyone else barred from iOS by Apple, and release it in Cydia?

    • Aaronieru

      That’s exacty what I’ve been thinking!

  • Joe

    Http is apple’s own streaming technology. You should know that.

  • The iPad 2 streaming looks better then the Xoom…LOL

  • XepptizZ

    This would be perfect to fullfil my needs. Some sites just don’t wanna innovate, but are the first to get the episodes online.

  • Jwelden

    No one is forcing you guys to come to this site and if the article doesn’t appeal to you don’t read it. Quit your fucking crying already it’s getting old.

  • I don’t likeFLASH .. Odd! I dont need no more

  • Irha

    @cody Apple is not going to add flash support, so service provides who want to support streaming technologies AND use Adobe’s server for that have a risk of switching to a completing technology for supporting iOS devices. Adobe is making sure they don’t. That is the end of the story. Most of the content in the article is irrelevant.

    What happened to my previous comment and Cody’s response to it? Is someone moderating?

    • Your comment wasn’t moderated but it is nowhere to be found

  • the whole point of the article was to inform folks that adobe has been working on a new technology for serving up videos to devices like the iPad. That adobe is still trying to invent ways to make their flash platform (flash media server in this case) relevant to iOS. to that extent it is relevant. thanks for reading.

  • Misc

    HTTP live streaming was developed by apple and has been in use since last year. It is not “Adobe’s new technology”. The article should be corrected.

  • straight from adobe’s blog –

    We introduced HTTP Dynamic Streaming (HDS) last year for the Adobe Flash Platform.

    As we continue to evolve this technology we will be adding support for another format, HTTP Live Streaming (HLS).

    So I guess talk to adobe?
    The article said it’s their new technology, not brand new never before seen technology. Thanks for reading.

    • Misc

      Adobe’s article clearly says they are “adding support” for this other format.

      Your article says “Adobe‚Äôs new technology is called HLS, or HTTP Live Streaming”.

      This line indicates that it is Adobe’s technology and it is introducing it. When in fact it’s not their technology, they are adopting it.

      Your article still needs to be corrected.

    • Frank

      It says they will be ADDING SUPPORT FOR ANOTHER FORMAT.
      Itndoes NOT say (unlike your article) that HLS is THEIR OWN format.
      HLS is infact APPLE technology

  • this looks like Adobe is scrambling. They refused everything before, but now, as iphone is spread across two of americas strongest phone providers, and ipad is STILL winning the tablet wars (with no sign of breaking stride for another couple years)… all of a sudden Adobe has an idea that can play flash on iOS? Do they really expect people to believe they couldnt have thought of this sooner?
    no. They gambled that people would refuse to buy iOS devices because most of the web was flash based. But what they didnt count on was all the developers of those flash based websites buying iOS devices and making their sites compatible. Now, Adobe’s fighting to stay relevant in a world that called their bluff.
    good luck. my suggestion? JUST MAKE A FUCKING APP! LOOK INTO RECODING! cuz this half assed streaming bs isnt gonna give you that many steps in the right direction. Stop being so stubborn and accept that Apple has the upper hand here.

  • DoesntMatter

    Listen, the problem is people with mobile phones expect a more home computer experience ever since smart phones became more popular. They want to type in the address of whatever they do at home, and expect it to function the same way in their mobile browser. Needless to say, it’s the industry’s fault for answering too many demands. Apple or Android, it doesn’t matter–they are now required to provide full support because they have delivered a media device feel in their interface. Since Android is playing the flash market, they are at least listening. Apple makes great devices (at a price) but so far they have resisted flash, yet they still manage to swing millions of people a year to buy into the iPhone craze. My real question to Apple though, is why they support flash on OSX if they feel so strongly for html5. If they wanted to change the way web developers provide content, they would have mandated it…yet they only dismiss flash on mobile devices. My guess is they don’t want to spend more time developing flash support since it could potentially raise the cost of the already expensive hardware in the future. In keeping with the traditions of Apple, and staying aggressive, they should have ditched flash long ago on their computers as well–but now customers are stuck in this loop of love/hate.

  • Doesnt Matter

    Listen, the problem is people with mobile phones expect a more home computer experience ever since smart phones became more popular. They want to type in the address of whatever they do at home, and expect it to function the same way in their mobile browser. Needless to say, it’s the industry’s fault for answering too many demands. Apple or Android, it doesn’t matter–they are now required to provide full support because they have delivered a media device feel in their interface. Since Android is playing the flash market, they are at least listening. Apple makes great devices (at a price) but so far they have resisted flash, yet they still manage to swing millions of people a year to buy into the iPhone craze. My real question to Apple though, is why they support flash on OSX if they feel so strongly for html5. If they wanted to change the way web developers provide content, they would have mandated it…yet they only dismiss flash on mobile devices. My guess is they don’t want to spend more time developing flash support since it could potentially raise the cost of the already expensive hardware in the future. In keeping with the traditions of Apple, and staying aggressive, they should have ditched flash long ago on their computers as well–but now customers are stuck in this loop of love/hate.

    • Sean

      Apple’s computers have always supported flash. Te problem here is that apple knew long ago what android users are figuring out: flash kills a mobile battery. I hate apple, but I have an iPhone because the sad truth is they know how to build a solid product. Part of their process is keeping any third party product that may diminish the experience as far away as possible. apple has no beef wIth adobe whatsoever. They just arent going to fold their multi-billion dollar strategy for a company that hasnt actually been developing anything for years.
      Adobe has been making nothing but updates to their admittedly awesome product for years. Now they want to start a war because someone wants them to do a little work. But like I said: apple is THE dominat force in the smart phone/tablet market. If they decide they are going to do something with the internet, the Internet developers of the world (most of whom enjoy the benefits of one or more apple Products) will do what they can to conform. Adobe USED to be dominant enough to resist that… But not in this fight.