Apple and Adobe have been at each other’s necks for years now. The biggest point of contention between the two companies has been the inclusion – or, really, the exclusion – of Adobe’s Flash technology from Apple’s iPhone OS. Just this morning, Adobe announced that it will be giving up on all its Flash-on-iPhone aspirations – not just giving up on getting iPhone to run Flash technology, but also Adobe’s Flash Packager for iPhone, which compiles Flash apps into iPhone-compatible code. The announcement included a little quip from Adobe Product Manager Mike Chambers that Apple runs a restricted development ecosystem that limits developers. That glancing blow apparently didn’t sit too well with Apple, and prompted Apple PR team to fire back at Adobe with their own position on the whole “closed vs open” argument.
That shot in Adobe’s arm was prompted by this statement from Chambers:
As developers for the iPhone have learned, if you want to develop for the iPhone you have to be prepared for Apple to reject or restrict your development at any time, and for seemingly any reason. The primary goal of Flash has always been to enable cross browser, platform and device development. The cool Web game that you build can easily be targeted and deployed to multiple platforms and devices. However, this is the exact opposite of what Apple wants. They want to tie developers down to their platform, and restrict their options to make it difficult for developers to target other platforms.
Adobe was forced to give up on their Flash-to-iPhone application tool following Apple’s move to ban any sort of translation service that converts non-native iPhone apps into native code. The iPhone OS 4.0 included new language in their developer agreement that essentially locks Adobe out of the iPhone.
Apple’s statement today is almost comical. On the one side, Adobe is right in that Apple is forcing developers to fall in line with their restrictive development ecosystem. But, it’s a little ironic that one of the most closed tech companies in the world (dock connector, anyone?) is calling another company “closed and proprietary.” That’s not to say that Apple is wrong – they actually hit the nail right on the head – but this all just feels like the pot and the kettle ragging on each other for being made of iron.
What about porn on the iPhone, you ask? Flash would make it super easy to consume raunchy content on your iPhone or iPad. Apple is dismissing that market altogether. What about porn, indeed.