It’s the brand of Adobe’s shame: “Flash Player Required.” Almost four years after the iOS platform took the world by storm, Adobe still hasn’t been able to get Flash Player on Apple’s platform, and while their arguments that Apple was just being unreasonable might have held some weight a couple of years ago, the failure of even modern Android systems to deliver decent Flash performance is very much a testament to the correctness of Jobs’ Thoughts on Flash.
It looks like Adobe’s finally ready to give up the fight, at least in part. Adobe has just announced a new method in which Flash video content can be streamed to iOS using HTML5.
Adobe is now supporting HHTP Live Streaming, or HLS, on the Adobe Flash Platform. This support will allow video streaming on any platform where Flash is not installed, provided that the browser is up to HTML5 spec. Best of all, it’s invisible to end users: an embedded Flash video viewed in Chrome on the desktop might serve up Flash Player, while that same page accessed with an iPad would stream the video using 4F4 over HTTP.
If Adobe can get Flash to automatically stream HTML5 video if Flash Player isn’t available, that will make 95% of the Flash content users actually want to watch on their iPads accessible under iOS. The other 5% — Flash webgames and advertisements — we can probably all live without.