Everyone wants to be able to run Flash applications on the iPhone. Or wait, scratch that: Every major software vendor named after a Native American earth-based building material wants to be able to run Flash applications on the iPhone. And if its latest plan comes to fruition, it looks like Adobe might finally get its wish -- albeit not in quite the way it had hoped.
So far, Adobe has been stymied by the same thing that has prevented Sun Microsystems from porting the JVM to the iPhone. According to Apple's iPhone SDK license agreement, "No interpreted code may be downloaded and used in an Application except for code that is interpreted and run by Apple's Published APIs and built-in interpreter(s)." That means Java is out, as is the runtime for Flash's built-in ActionScript language -- ergo no Flash Player for iPhone.
[ iPhone apps are all the rage, but Apple makes it hard on developers. Read about one developer's torturous iPhone app dev journey. ]
But Adobe thinks it has found a way around Apple's requirements. Flash Professional CS5, the forthcoming version of the company's authoring environment, will allow developers to take existing Flash applications and compile them into native binaries for the iPhone. The resulting apps will be completely stand-alone, with no runtimes and no Flash Player required -- if Apple lets Adobe get away with it, that is.
Is Adobe pulling a fast one on Apple?