updated 04:05 pm EST, Mon November 8, 2010
Content 'blockade' in effect
Many of the current attacks against Flash are unwarranted, claims Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch. Testing recently suggested that an 11-inch MacBook Air with Flash active can potentially lose up to two hours of battery life, although the constant cycling of Flash ads is believed to have been an aggravating factor in benchmarks. "It's a false argument to make, of the power usage," says Lynch in a new interview. "When you're displaying content, any technology will use more power to display, versus not displaying content. If you used HTML5, for example, to display advertisements, that would use as much or more processing power than what Flash uses."
Lynch argues that HTML5 has less reliable playback, and that several studies have confirmed better battery life for Flash. The executive is said to have a bigger problem, however, with Apple's active stance against Flash, which has only loosened slightly in recent months.
"I just think there's this negative campaigning going on, and, for whatever reason, Apple is really choosing to incite it, and condone it," Lynch remarks. "I think that's unfortunate. We don't think it's good for the web to have aspects closed off -- a blockade of certain types of expression. There's a decade of content out there that you just can't view on Apple's device, and I think that's not only hurtful to Adobe, but hurtful to everyone that created that content.
"That's what upsets me the most," he continues. "That people put energy into making this stuff, and now some percentage of viewers can't see it anymore because one company chooses so. That's just totally counter to our values."
Lynch insists that Adobe is happy about the spread of HTML5, which can substitute for Flash in some cases. Apple began pushing the standard heavily when the iPad was introduced; like other iOS devices, the iPad is incapable of running Flash content. "We support HTML," says Lynch. We're making tools for HTML5. It's a great opportunity for us. Flash and HTML have co-existed, and they're going to continue to to co-exist."