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Adobe rewriting Wired iPad app to work around Apple

updated 01:15 am EDT, Sun May 2, 2010

Adobe may use native code to clear Wired app

Adobe is rewriting the Wired app for the iPad itself to make sure it can get into the App Store, a leak this weekend may have revealed. Although Conde Nast previously insisted it would keep using Flash to develop the magazine reader in spite of Apple's new ban on cross-compiling tools, AllThingsD now understands Adobe is simply coding the app directly in Objective C. The rework would also have the side benefit of helping other magazines with their own apps.

Neither Adobe nor Conde Nast has commented so far on the rumor.

The publisher had originally counted on using Flash to enable a write once, publish everywhere app for tablets and similar devices, as it would have let a magazine quickly release new digital issues with only slight modification at most. Apple has explicitly discouraged outside tools partly for this reason, as they produce "lowest common denominator" apps that don't take advantage of iPad and iPhone features. Concern also exists that developers could become overly dependent on outside tools that could lock them out if new OS revisions render them obsolete.

It's presumed that Android and other platforms will still use Flash.

by MacNN Staff



  1. rvhernandez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    How about HTML5?

    Seems to me like Adobe should be working on making InDesign export HTML5 content vs Flash.

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969


    re: HTML5

    You can't make iPad apps with HTML5, only webcontent that eventually will be able to run locally. Apparently Adobe is now coding a template magazine app in native Objective C, not a bad move at all. Licensing the template could make it a standard tool that they control.

    Another smart move would be to make a HTML5 developer tool coupled to a online appstore, apps in HTML5 can run on compatible devices without a network connection. HTML5 apps could be embedded in a special appstore-app from Adobe or saved as a shortcut on the homescreen. HTML5 could be the technology that unites all portable devices.

  1. coffeetime

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Good Move

    If you can't beat them, join them. It will benefit Adobe anyway if they do decide to sell the template under a new application title that can utilize it. Right now the App SDK is for the hardcore programmer. Adobe should work with Apple to develop a designer's version that's easy for designer to use to implement media contents. That's what Adobe is good at, creating a designer software.

  1. chas_m



    Coding in Obj-C

    is precisely what Apple has been trying to get Adobe to do FOR TEN YEARS NOW.

    Glad to see they are starting to see the light.

    I've been thinking about "write-once, run-anywhere" languages (like Flash and Java), and while I once thought they were the future of app writing, I must reluctantly admit Steve is right: you DO get lowest-common-denominator apps out of that ... and if they DO have a model to base the code on, it's always gonna be Windows.

    From the perspective of a Mac user, "write once run anywhere" is ALWAYS going to leave us as second-class citizens. But even from the perspective of a non-Mac user, you're going to get apps that don't perform to their potential. For certain kinds of apps, that's not particularly important, but for most it is.

    I still find the efficiency very desirable, but in recently working with a company that tried that approach before and failed MISERABLY in the Mac market (and who have now learned that lesson), I have to concede Apple's point in blocking cross-developement code out of the App Store is valid. Maybe someday we'll get a better class of compilers that can help programmers do a minimum of "custom writing" for different platforms, but till then I think we're stuck writing an app up to six times over (iPhone, Windows Mobile, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux).

    Comment buried. Show
  1. petsounds

    Joined: Dec 1969



    HTML5 is not ready to replace Flash on mobile devices.

    Check out the Canvas and Video demos on an iPad:

    Slow as molasses, when they even work.

  1. chefpastry

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It must be eating Shantanu alive.

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    It was so simple for Adobe...

    All they have to do is what Steve Jobs asks them to do and everything will go smoothly. I think Adobe is just trying to cut corners (being lazy) and doesn't want to expend extra resources. I don't believe that Apple is out to destroy Adobe at all. My only desire is to get all video and photo content to the iPad without a Flash plug-in. It doesn't have to be some fancy HTML5 solution that tries to mimic everything that Flash has. Just something clean and simple that won't take up a lot of bandwidth or CPU cycles. That's not asking for too much, is it?

    Of course, there's no benefit if HTML5 is just as slow as Flash on mobile devices. That doesn't make much sense to me to replace one slow technology with another.

  1. DeepDish

    Joined: Dec 1969


    comment title

    Adobe should keep improving Flash across all platforms.


    Adobe should create new, great HTML5 tools. They should be interested in and investing in both. I really hope Adobe creates some new export features for InDesign to create iPad ready magazines.

    Adobe sided with Windows awhile back and dropped the ball on supporting the Mac. Big mistake, learn from it and make the necessary changes internally to fix this mistake. Stop making excuses and blaming others.

  1. WaltFrench

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Adobe Gets It, Is Now in the Race

    Adobe has a strong suite of tools for their core business: helping publishers, designers and artists. One of those tools, Flash, doesn't fit onto smartphones very well. (Actually, not at all— there's not a single Blackberry, WinMobile, Palm, Android, Symbian or Apple phone that is running it today.) OK, it's still great, but something better is needed.

    So, if this report is correct, they've back up and seen that they can easily enough follow Apple's guidelines and still stick to what they do best, and not try to jam Flash onto the iProducts. If they do a decent job (seems they'd be capable), the resultant Flashless Reader might out-perform the alternative, and they'll put it onto Android, whatever HP offers to replace the aborted FrankenSlate, Windows & Mac OSX. The economics are pretty good for them controlling the publication business that way. Apple may have done them a favor (well disguised).

    But they'd better hustle. You'd think Apple wouldn't have knowingly cut off all the big magazine publishers they've courted without some sort of a Plan B. Nor can Apple hope to get ad agencies into the HTML5 game without some decent tools. Wouldn't surprise me to see Pages Pro from Apple.

  1. James Katt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Google gets it, why doesn't Adobe?

    Google's apps run without Flash.
    They're pretty sophisticated - such as its Latitude web app.

    Adobe should create an application that would output web apps in HTML5, CSS, and Javascript.

    Flash is dying. Adobe should see the light.

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