RIM plans to stick with Adobe Flash support for its PlayBook tablet, despite Adobe announcing plans to stop investing in Flash for mobile browsing.
Motion is sticking with Flash for its PlayBook tablet, despite Adobe announcing
plans to end future development of the plug-in, which is used by many Websites
to deliver rich content.
today, Adobe announced plans to stop investing in Flash for mobile browsing,
and focus more efforts on HTML5," Dan Dodge, president and CEO of QNX, wrote in
a Nov. 9 statement posted on RIM's corporate blog. "As an Adobe source-code
licensee, we will continue to work on and release our own implementations, and
are looking forward to including Flash 11.1 for the BlackBerry PlayBook."
relies on a QNX-based operating system. The 7-inch device has attracted anemic
sales in the eight months since its release, although RIM executives keep
insisting they will continue to support the platform.
browser supports both Flash and HTML5, Dodge added. "We are pleased that Adobe
will focus its efforts on next-generation Flash-based apps delivered via AIR
and BlackBerry App World as well as the great opportunities that HTML5 presents
for our developers."
RIM and other tablet makers touted their devices' Flash support as a key
differentiator from Apple's iPad, which does not support the plug-in. Now that
Adobe has pulled an abrupt about-face, however, it remains to be seen whether
those tablets' marketing campaigns will continue to emphasize Flash.
RIM plans on
delivering a long-awaited software update to the PlayBook in February 2012.
According to the company, it will include integrated email, a "new video
store," calendar and contact applications, and better tethering between the
tablet and a user's BlackBerry. RIM is also tweaking the device's manageability
options and enterprise application deployment, with plans for a separate area
within BlackBerry App World for enterprise applications. However, a BlackBerry
Messenger application native to the PlayBook is apparently not forthcoming in
the near future.
question is whether the PlayBook software update will coincide with RIM's
planned release of BBX, the QNX-based operating system designed to replace the
long-running BlackBerry OS. RIM hopes an upcoming generation of "superphones"
running BBX will help the company regain traction as a viable competitor to
Apple's iOS, Google Android and Windows Phone.
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Nicholas Kolakowski is a staff editor at eWEEK, covering Microsoft and other companies in the enterprise space, as well as evolving technology such as tablet PCs. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, Playboy, WebMD, AARP the Magazine, AutoWeek, Washington City Paper, Trader Monthly, and Private Air. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.