updated 11:55 am EDT, Wed March 28, 2012
Adobe Flash and AIR udpate with 3D focus
Adobe updated Flash and its offline parallel AIR with a heavy emphasis on gaming, but also with new payment rules. Flash 11.2 on the desktop will now have "premium features" to both get hardware-boosted graphics along with domain memory, but these won't be automatically free, Adobe said. Starting August 1, any Flash app that uses these "console quality" features and earns over $50,000 in app revenues will have to pay a royalty to Adobe.
As part of the move, game developers would have the option of producing games running the Unity 3D graphics engine in web form using the higher-end Flash features. Games such as Shadowgun were cited as examples.
AIR 3.2 would in turn hope to close the gap in performance by bringing Flash's existing Stage3D acceleration to apps compiled into native Android and iOS form. The technique purportedly improves native graphics rendering by a thousand times over earlier versions. Games can still use other native hardware and software, such as iOS' Game Center and Android's NFC recognition.
All of the premium performance features from Flash 11.2 will be free to use in AIR 3.2, regardless of how much money the app makes.
The release of Flash 11.2 is the first since Adobe dropped mobile Flash and won't ever be brought to Android or other mobile devices. Adobe mostly sided with Apple in deciding that HTML5 was better for cross-platform, standards-based web support.