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  • No "End-Around" For You: iPhone 4.0 SDK Bans Flash Runtimes


    Apple's new developer license agreement bans any cross-compilation of iPhone and iPad apps developed for other platforms, including Flash runtimes that had been referred to an "end-around" to Apple's blanket prohibition of Flash on the iPhone OS. The ban also extends to other non-Apple frameworks like Java and Silverlight. While it could be Apple's traditional not-invented-here attitude, the move also reflects the need to evaluate how code works with the new iPhone 4.0 multitasking API's.

    Apple changed the iPhone Developer Program License Agreement to restrict the use of cross-platform compilers in developing apps. Section 3.3.3 of the agreement, which devs have to accept before they can download the iPhone 4.0 SDK, states that apps "must be originally written in Objective-C, C, C++, or JavaScript as executed by the iPhone OS WebKit engine, and only code written in C, C++, and Objective-C may compile and directly link against the Documented APIs (e.g., Applications that link to Documented APIs through an intermediary translation or compatibility layer or tool are prohibited)."

    The change seems to be primarily targeted at Adobe, which has been trying to get Flash content onto the iPhone for years. Steve Jobs, however, dismisses Flash as "too slow to be useful" and a "CPU hog." Adobe had announced that Flash Professional CS5 would have a tool called Packager for iPhone OS, which turns Flash content into stand-alone iPhone apps. Van Baker, an analyst from the Gartner Group, referred to Packager as an Adobe "end around" to Apple's Flash prohibition. An Adobe spokeswoman with the impressive name of Wiebke Lips said that the company is "aware of the new SDK language and are looking into it," adding that they will "continue to develop our Packager for iPhone OS technology, which we plan to debut in Flash CS5." Adobe will officially launch Creative Suite 5 - including Flash Professional CS5 - on Monday.

    Not just Flash is prohibited, however: the language specifically insists on "Objective-C, C, C++, or JavaScript as executed by the iPhone OS WebKit engine." The reason for this, according to "sources familiar with Apple's plans" told AppleInsider, is because the system will be doing runtime evaluations of apps to manage resources for what is being called "smart multitasking." According to their source, unless code is using a structure the operating system can understand, it "can't swap out resources, it can't pause some threads while allowing others to run, it can't selectively notify, etc."

    At the announcement yesterday, Steve Jobs made the case that the reason multitasking had been held up on the iPhone OS platform was due to the load it put on the system. If the whole edifice rests on a delicate operating system balancing act, then it makes sense that only code that has a predictable structure will work with the multitasking APIs.

    On the other hand, though… Steve Jobs really hates Flash.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: No "End-Around" For You: iPhone 4.0 SDK Bans Flash Runtimes started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 74 Comments
    1. dale1v's Avatar
      dale1v -
      Quote Originally Posted by unison999 View Post
      Reason why people revert to "'Apple want to lock down everything I'm leaving Apple" chorus?'" is because the ones that already did it would not be here, and new people that is sick of this will start saying it. Yes not everyone will drop Apple, but think that all people who say this stick around is deceiving yourself. The flash on other phone was just introduced, before that there was no other option.



      Yes I do use computer browsing mostly, but when I am out bored I may want to browse something and come up to a flash. I was out with people this Thursday and wanted to go to www.uamaiburger.com to use locate a store and I was not able to... That gets frustrating.



      Crap or not it is useful, I run into it all day long so I want to use it. Telling us that it is crap does not stop people from using it and need it.



      Ridicule nothing. Some of us want flash, some of us need flash. Ban it does not suddenly make everything ok, it just make people want it more.


      BTW why do people keep telling me what I want and don't want? By your telling me I don't want Flash would I suddenly change my mind about this? NO!
      Fair enough; you have very good points but:
      In my experience over the years, I've seen that many of the sites I browse use Flash less and less and my frustration with the lack of it has decreased proportionately. I don't know about the sites you use, but hopefully they will follow, and your frustration will wane a little bit...

      I can see where people might need Flash, but the bottom line is Apple are stubborn won't put it on their devices. HTML5 is coming up fast (whether it will fully replace the need for flash I do not know), and we can:
      • Suck it up, make do with what we have and hope/wait for our favourite sites to adapt (given the trend, I'm pretty sure they will)
      • find an alternative.
      Actually yes there is reason for complaining. If Apple care about their customer service and enough people voice opinion maybe Apple would change its mind. Nothing is hopeless when it is us that spend money to buy products Apple produce, Apple need this money and so does Jobes. Complaints backed by money speaks.
      Yes, even though Apple obviously do care about customer service (any company does), if their long term goal is to get rid of flash, and the small minority of users don't like it and complain/leave, I'm sure they can live with that loss. But I don't think a lot of people are. Hell I think there are a lot of users who don't know what Flash is.
    1. steve-z17's Avatar
      steve-z17 -
      Quote Originally Posted by unison999 View Post
      Actually yes there is reason for complaining. If Apple care about their customer service and enough people voice opinion maybe Apple would change its mind. Nothing is hopeless when it is us that spend money to buy products Apple produce, Apple need this money and so does Jobes. Complaints backed by money speaks.
      It's still not going to happen. Apple can choose not to listen and still make bank, they've already shown that. But it doesn't do you (or anyone else for that matter) any good to complain on this site, it's getting you nowhere. Complain to Apple if that's what you want, it's getting really old on here though.
    1. cpkirkley's Avatar
      cpkirkley -
      Saying they wouldnt support flash is not a surprise. But banning Silverlight and Java is a very shortsighted move. Basically they are saying that the entire internets belongs to Apple iDevices and everyone with a web page needs to change to Apple's standards. You know, because companies with miniscule global footprints can do such things.

      Personally, if I were Adobe, I would come out with a statement saying I was dropping support for MAC platforms from here on out. Chop a tree too much and it will come down on top of you.
    1. tekwiz's Avatar
      tekwiz -
      blah blah blah, all these diatribes and you miss the point entirely because you are all too busy talking about flash.

      The SDK restrictions concern many other tools that are currently used as well, this restricts them even further.

      Stop talking about how flash runs on mobile devices when every example on other devices that you speak of are running in the browser and what you have here is flash outputting to native c code...NOT THE SAME. There's already something like 100 iphone apps IN the app store already created with CS5, I don't hear a huge load of complaints and you damn well know Apple would make a stink about it.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Quote Originally Posted by steve-z17 View Post
      It's still not going to happen. Apple can choose not to listen and still make bank, they've already shown that. But it doesn't do you (or anyone else for that matter) any good to complain on this site, it's getting you nowhere. Complain to Apple if that's what you want, it's getting really old on here though.
      Well I hope when people switch to other devices from Apple and hit Apple in their pocketbook, they may reconsider. Nothing is a lost cause, when you do not speak out that is when it become a lost cause.
      What is getting old is iPhone switching to Verizon, yet somehow it keeps resurfacing. Seems like demand may have caught Apple's attention, hopefully Apple hears this.

      BTW people who bring up Flash not running well or much on other devices, guess what it just got on there so there will be updates sooner or later. People will modify their website to work on mobile flash to cash in on the market, easier to convert than to rewrite to another. Besides having something > nothing.
    1. Evilsaint's Avatar
      Evilsaint -
      I just don't see the point of complaining hear Steve jobs doesn't visit mmi every morning to survey the wants of his consumers so what's
      the point..... If he did we'd have multitasking when os 3.0 was out if nt atleast put a
      custom springboard background.... It what
      they want us to have and what they don't.But if u look at it the other way it's
      their platform and they can do whatever they want with it so here's an advice instead of complaining go buy another device........or whatever suits u best. Is it me or does any one else think that apple has a superiority complex?
    1. steve-z17's Avatar
      steve-z17 -
      Quote Originally Posted by unison999 View Post
      Well I hope when people switch to other devices from Apple and hit Apple in their pocketbook, they may reconsider. Nothing is a lost cause, when you do not speak out that is when it become a lost cause.
      What is getting old is iPhone switching to Verizon, yet somehow it keeps resurfacing. Seems like demand may have caught Apple's attention, hopefully Apple hears this.

      BTW people who bring up Flash not running well or much on other devices, guess what it just got on there so there will be updates sooner or later. People will modify their website to work on mobile flash to cash in on the market, easier to convert than to rewrite to another. Besides having something > nothing.
      You're missing my point. I'll say it again, "It doesn't do you (or anyone else for that matter) any good to complain on THIS site, it's getting you nowhere." That's all I'm trying to say.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      you really do not think Apple monitors all prominent sites that relates to their products? Probably dedicate more people to monitor other sites than their own. Besides I can be sure my voice is heard here while in Apple's forum (if it has one) it may be censored, we all know how Jobes hates negativity on his baby.

      Quote Originally Posted by thisisasticup View Post
      Why not just do a google search? It will give you the locations

      I wanted to have an alternative store to go to, was waiting in line in the one I am at. With google it brings up the umamiburger.com and 1 or 2 other restaurant address, not all. I was at the La Brea store, wanted to find the next closest one. It would be more convenient to go to Santa Monica one, but it would not pop up in google. So I chose umamiburger.com (store link) to use their store location to find Santa Monica address, and guess what it does not work. So basically I got pissed and shut the phone down and waited for my turn to be seated.
    1. iphone8130hak's Avatar
      iphone8130hak -
      Owned
    1. reanimationxp's Avatar
      reanimationxp -
      Quote Originally Posted by sLevin1fo View Post
      Im tired of noobs telling the facts.
      says the guy with "USELESS 3.1.3 3GS" in his sig?

      Quote Originally Posted by €hR!$ View Post
      Someone introduce Steve to Hulu. He'll change his mind about Flash real fast.
      Hulu won't even run on my netbook on Flash. How the **** is it gonna run on the iPhone? It took me a while to come around, but Jobs is right on this one. Hulu needs to l2 HTML5.
    1. Success.Is.Sweet's Avatar
      Success.Is.Sweet -
      Quote Originally Posted by reanimationxp View Post
      Hulu won't even run on my netbook on Flash.
      Runs fine on my old 1.6GHz Atom netbook with a 9" screen, WTF are you doing wrong?
    1. mofolo's Avatar
      mofolo -
      Objective C is such a slut to learn.

      Errh (hits the books).
    1. reanimationxp's Avatar
      reanimationxp -
      Quote Originally Posted by Success.Is.Sweet View Post
      Runs fine on my old 1.6GHz Atom netbook with a 9" screen, WTF are you doing wrong?
      No, no it doesn't. Esp fullscreen.
    1. Success.Is.Sweet's Avatar
      Success.Is.Sweet -
      Quote Originally Posted by reanimationxp View Post
      No, no it doesn't. Esp fullscreen.
      If it isn't you're definitely doing it wrong.