Ep 19 of 2010
May 10, 2010
Late last week Microsoft announced that it’s new IE9 browser will not support Adobe Flash either in what seems to be a major move to HTML 5, the newest incarnation of code that brings websites to your browser. Writing in Microsoft’s IEBlog, Dean Hachamovitch, general manager of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer arm, weighs in on the Flash debate echoing some of the arguments put forth by Apple CEO Steve Jobs in his much discussed “Thoughts of Flash” essay which also appeared on the Apple site in recent times.
In the past week Microsoft has clarified its stance on supporting Flash in Internet Explorer 9, explaining that it will continue to offer support for the software as a plug-in, as it has always done. IE general manager Dean Hachamovitch said in a blog post last week that "the future of the web is HTML5", and many assumed that Microsoft was dropping Flash support in the browser. However, the company has since noted that it had never natively supported Flash in IE9, but instead had done so through plug-ins. Hachamovitch published a follow-up blog post addressing numerous comments including those seeking reassurance over Microsoft's position on Flash.
He explained "Several comments asked about Microsoft's support for plug-ins (like Flash and Silverlight). Of course, IE9 will continue to support Flash and other plug-ins. Plug-ins are important for delivering innovation and functionality ahead of standards" "For web browsers, developers can continue to offer plug-ins so that web pages can play video using these codecs on Windows. For example, web pages will still play VC-1 (Microsoft WMV) files in IE9.
However, Hachamovitch added that uncertainty in the industry over web standards for video meant that Microsoft will stick with its plan to deliver video through HTML5. He went on to say that "The biggest obstacle to supporting more than H.264 is the uncertainty.
H.264 video offers a more certain path than other video formats, and does so in a way that delivers a great HTML5 experience for developers and end-users. Microsoft's refusal to support Flash as a native element of its browser will still be a sore point for Adobe as it tries to stamp its authority on the web video market.
In a turn for the better this week, Adobe has fought back at Apple's crusade against it by showing off what Flash can do on a rival to the iPad, an Android-based tablet from Google. While Apple has banned its customers from using Flash, Adobe was showing punters at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco what Flash looked like on upcoming Android-based tablets. Adobe's chief technical officer Kevin Lynch has slammed Apple's policy on Flash as anti-competitive and anti-internet.
So while flash may have pulled through a near death experience this week, there’s still going to be a rough road ahead as the Apple juggernaut rolls out 1 million iPads a month, as well as countless iPhones.
This week on TTR
Net filter circumvention: it's completely legal
Kevin Lynch (Adobe CTO) delivers harsh criticism at Web 2.0 Expo
Government claims NBN will pay itself off
iPad traffic is 10% non-US
Google Latitude actually proving popular
And we talk to Sandrina Branton, senior sales managers for BMC software about women in IT