This Flash-or-no-Flash-on-Android is getting rather hard to keep track of. Somedays it looks like Android is getting Flash right around the corner, while other days it looks so far off in the future for Android to ever receive Flash. Today, it's kind of in the middle of that. Adobe told Engadget:  

Support for full Flash Player 10.1 requires some enhancements to existing versions of Android. These enhancements are expected to be available as an upgrade to existing devices and for new devices starting in Q2 2010.

What's confusing is that the statement is unclear. Does that mean when all Android devices hit Android 2.1, then everyone can have Flash? Or does it mean that we're going to have to wait past 2.1, to get every device capable of Flash. If it's the former, why not release Flash 10.1 on the Nexus One already? And if it's the latter, can all the manufacturers speed up the Android 2.1 upgrade, please? More clarification should be forthcoming.

[via engadget]

 
There are 23 comments

chris says:

One of the selling points on moto droid was its flash ready. Guess it was a lie. It goes for browsers also opera and firefox just messing with us. While small mom n pop developers can build browsers for android.

lyka says:

I gotta say that flash as a whole is definately not stable and alot of websites problems come from poorly written flash scripts so I would have to agree with him on that and there is no way a Android phone will ever be able to compete with the Iphone I have had both and trust me the android OS has alot of improvement especially with being open source but the ability of the newest versions of Android doesn’t even compare to what the iphone can do now. And there is no flash support for Android either so yah I do believe that Adobe is lazy.

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Anonymous says:

"And there is no flash support for Android either so yah I do believe that Adobe is lazy."

If the OS isn't set up to accept it, then it's not their fault.

Idiot.

Anonymous says:

I used to think that it would be hard to find people so stupid, and then the iPhone came out and now they're easy to spot.

For example does anybody actually believe that Apples' problem with flash on the iPhone is because it isn't stable? I suspect that's just like 3G - before Apple had it they swore on the bible that it would be no use to anyone but as soon as they had it it was the indispensable feature that meant you HAD to upgrade your phone right now - sheesh!

Maybe Apples' problem with flash is that it supplies a credible execution environment (for almost and app except a intensive 3d game) that doesn't give Steve control and doesn't involve Apple getting a cut via the app store?

In other words how long will the silly, pointless 99c apps last if flash was available?

As for flash on Android - relax. Adobe has as much interest in getting it to you as you have in getting it. They realize they need a huge and increasing market share to keep flash alive as HTML5 progresses. HTML5 cant do everything but it could take a lot of the flash market very quickly.

Aion Kinah says:

Just one more reason that buying a phone directly from Google from now on is the only way to go. Not a fan of service providers deciding what is best.

MacCarron says:

The latter option would also cut off a great number of Android devices too "old" to get an update to a hypothetical 2.2 (2.5? 3.0?) Android version..

Anonymous says:

I read this as 2.1 is not capable of flash support. 'New devices starting in Q2' means none of the existing devices supports it (including the 2.1 Nexus One)

Anonymous says:

I just wish flash would die and be fully replaced by HTML5 or even silverlight, all I keep hearing from adobe is 'yeah your all going to get flash' but then 'no you cant have flash' nothing is ever their fault just shows how useless flash is

Anonymous says:

Seems clear as could be even if you don't like the message. It says android 2.1 won't run flash and that a version coming out 2q will.

rufflez says:

Flash lite works great in cupcake (hero)... how much of a difference is 10.1 to flash like, really? I'm not a programmer, tech isn't even a focus of my life. But what will be supported by 10.1, that flash lite doesn't.

Furret says:

I'm kinda afraid, that they've got it all twisted in Adobe. It's actually the flash, what's not ready for android...

p4trickh#IM says:

It's kind've pathetic that Adobe keeps blaming companies around them for their own shortcomings when it comes to delivering a bug free version of flash. Flash sucks on Mac OS X? Oh well that's Apple's fault! Apple says Flash is to buggy for the iPhone? Oh well that is also Apple's fault. Android isn't ready for flash and we're probably missing our release date an entire quarter or more? Oh that's probably Google's fault but who knows it could be Apple's as well.

Adobe:
Your products suck and make other products suck as well, please die, the web can and will survive without your shitty drawing kit. Thanks!

Shamus says:

Does anyone really care? Flash is junk. html5 will finally kill that retarded bloatware for good.

ps hi

Ya in maybe 3 years from now. For now GIVE ME FLASH! And NO HTML5 will not kill flash for a long time. Maybe by the time the DROID 3 comes out....Maybe. Everyone that says html5 will kill flash , just shut the hell up already! It will be at least 3 years.

p4trickh#IM says:

HTML5 probably will never kill off flash completely but there really is a place for flash and place for HTML5 and probably other standards / technologies. For one I hope video sites such as Youtube and such switch to using the video tag and get away from flash. I can't stand hearing my laptop fans kick into high gear just because I want to watch a cat play with a ball or someone getting kicked int he balls. For these retarded games that everyone loves playing, well I don't see any other type of technology to replace it, maybe Silverlight but thats just a different horse in the same race. Personally I'd love it if Adobe would just open up as much of flash as they can and let the community / other minds take a whack at it because while the windows version works okay, the Linux and Mac OS versions are just PITA! Since I've started using flashblock I haven't had a single browser crash or lock up unless I briefly enable it for a site to watch a video or whatever.

All that said if someone invented a time machine, went back in time, bought flash from the inventor, deleted all copies and the world never got to see it well, let's just say I wouldn't shed a tear.

anonymous says:

All I want to do is play online games on my phone. What's so hard about that?

p4trickh#IM says:

Well Adobe can barely get a modern PC to play said games without hogging up resources so yeah it's not exactly easy for them to get something with 1/4 or less the resources run as well.

Anonymous says:

HTML 5 will definitely challenge Flash on some levels. I was surfing YouTube in Chrome today and it offered me the ability to view the HTML 5 version of the site. With that new ability in script, Adobe has a real challenger in the video department. Unfortunately HTML 5 is unable to make dynamic websites like Flash does...at least so far.

Mariano says:

For dynamic websites, AJAX is a better way to go than Flash and is ready now in your Droid or iPhone browser.

Steve Jobs is all right, Adobe is lazy...

CDE says:

Jesus Christ, and people are mad that Flash isn't on the iPhone and other platforms! Android is fully willing to get Flash, and they can't do it in any reasonable amount of time! That stuff must be near impossible to load on a phone...

The best thing Adobe and other platforms could do to show up the iPhone is get Flash... It's taking forever!

I want my flash so I can go right into the Settings and turn it off! :-)

cyber4444 says:

Well people,the point of Andriod devices are very unstable. I mean,come on,1.5,1.6,2.0,2.1. These are software updates that is so unstable in different developers.For Adobe to come up with FLASH 10.1 to be compatible,they need it to be on all ANDROID devices.It's business nothing personal.They just want to release it one-shot,on all devices,instead of just 2.0,or 2.1.In second quarter,with more updated software,& everyone catching up,than ADOBE can just release to all ANDROID masses.In the end,everybody happy.Now,i have an HTC HERO,& PALMPRE from SPRINT,& yes with the next update on monday,PALMPRE,PIXI,PALMPRE PLUS,are all gonna have ADOBE 10.1 FLASH,on all webOS system.Your see,PALM in control of all their hardware,&software,so it's very easy for ADOBE to released the FLASH on all webOS systems.So,if your want ADOBE 10.1 FLASH now,i suggest go& get yourself a PALMPRE,PALMPRE PLUS,OR PIXI.Think about? we gonna be the only OS with FLASH.(webOS)!

iPaladin says:

For what it is worth, CPU utilization is much better on 10.1 Beta 2 for my iMac, so I'm guessing that Adobe is very close to releasing a version of Flash that will be much better on ARM platforms like the iPhone OS and Android 2.1. I'm thinking that if Flash gets widespread on Android and CPU utilization is no longer an issue that Apple will probably work out some sort of compromise where Flash would be able to get installed on the iPhone if users want it.

I'd much rather see HTML5 as well, but Flash is still ahead on implementation for now. It would be nice if Flash became an open standard but they cannot because of their membership in MPEG-LA, the H.264 standardization body.

white_cloud says:

Repeating delays in releasing any Flash 10.1 player for mobile devices (even developer or alpha version) are very frustrating (there were many promises for the end of 2009, then beginning of 2010 and they just silently slipped), start reminding me on Microsoft never fulfilled promises about Silverlight and DotNet ("it will run everywhere, it will offer features X, Y, Z"...)

If we just look at Android OS phones, it doesn't seem that any version is that old so it can't run Flash, as it already runs lot of sophisticated apps and these devices generally have more power than some older Windows and Linux machines that run Flash perfectly well. This is just a poor excuse...

It does make sense that it is hard to deliver product that would run on variety of platforms and hardware dependent OS (with many internal hardware dependencies, SDKs, drivers etc.), but the beauty of Android is that it is OPEN SOURCE!

It should be Adobe's flagship for mobile Flash, or even better, if Adobe doesn't have enough resources to complete work as promised, why not just release Flash Player SDK as some kind of open source and let the developer community help. Flex SDK is free anyway and player is given for free too. Nobody can misuse such a large code base, as nobody can for any continually growing Open Source systems. There are lot of services and products they can sell around free core...

This is a great opportunity for Adobe and Google and Open Source.
Microsoft already stumbled due to closeness of their Windows Mobile and Apple would eventually too, unless they open more and not try to force the whole world into their C flavors...

There are no comparison of HTML5 and Flash, unless you count some Ajax and Javascript (which have own problems), HTML5 video tags just
refer to static video files, with no interactivity, live play etc. by itself.