Adobe-Led Open Screen Project Gains Momentum with Mobile App Developers

Close to 50 major mobile technology and content development companies are working with the Adobe-led Open Screen Project (OSP) to provide a consistent runtime environment across mobile phones, desktops and other consumer electronic devices. The project has expanded to include major new members such as Google and RIM, an enhanced OSP partnership with Nokia and a host of new applicants seeking cash support from the Open Screen Project Fund.

Adobe has announced the expansion of the Open Screen Project (OSP) to include major new members such as Google and RIM, an enhanced partnership with Nokia in support of OSP, and a host of new applicants for funding by the Open Screen Project Fund.

In an interview with eWEEK, Adrian Ludwig, Adobe's group product marketing manager for the Flash Platform, said the Open Screen Project started with 16 partners in May of 2008. However, at its Adobe MAX 2009 conference in Los Angeles on Oct. 5, Adobe is talking up the momentum OSP has gained.

The Open Screen Project, led by Adobe, includes close to 50 industry leaders working together to provide a consistent runtime environment across mobile phones, desktops and other consumer electronic devices. The initiative addresses the challenges of Web browsing and standalone applications on a broad range of devices, and removes the barriers to publishing content and applications seamlessly across screens.

Participants in the OSP initiative include Antena 3, Atlantic Records, ARM, BBC, Burda, Cell, Chungwha Telecom, Cisco, Comcast, Conde Nast, Daum, Disney Interactive, Fox Mobile, Google, HTC, Intel, LG Electronics, Lionsgate, Marvell, Motorola, MTV Networks, NBC Universal, Nokia, NTT DoCoMo, NVIDIA, OpenTV, Palm, Paramount, QNX Software Systems, Qualcomm,, RIM, RTL, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Texas Instruments, The New York Times, Toshiba, Verizon Wireless, Ziilabs and many others.

Adobe and RIM announced that they are working together to bring Adobe Flash Player support to the BlackBerry platform. In addition, RIM is joining the Open Screen Project. And the collaboration is expected to bring the full Flash Player browser runtime to BlackBerry smartphones.

"As an industry leader for innovative smartphones and wireless solutions, RIM delivers superior mobile user experiences to customers around the world," said David Wadhwani, general manager and vice president, Flash Platform Business Unit at Adobe, in a statement. "It's a natural fit for both companies to work together to bring Flash technology-based video and Web content to BlackBerry smartphone users."

"As part of the Open Screen Project, RIM will be working with Adobe to deliver a great Flash technology experience on BlackBerry smartphones and to enable users to enjoy the exciting content and services that Flash technology developers and content creators are bringing to the Web," said Alan Brenner, senior vice president at Research In Motion, also in a statement.

Google also has joined the Open Screen Project and Adobe has announced its intent to put full Flash Player support on Google's Android operating system.

"We are excited to join Adobe and other industry leaders in the Open Screen Project," said Sundar Pichai, vice president of Product Management at Google, in a statement. "This initiative supports our common goal to move the Web forward as a platform and to spur innovation in the industry through technology such as Adobe Flash."

Also at Adobe MAX on Oct. 5, Nokia and Adobe announced more than 35 funded multi-screen applications as part of the joint Open Screen Project Fund. Both companies also introduced new Nokia Web Runtime (WRT) extensions for Adobe Dreamweaver CS4 software making the creation of mobile WRT widgets for supported Nokia devices easier than ever. Together with the Ovi Store by Nokia, developers and designers have an easy way to engage, build and publish their content to Nokia mobile device customers around the world.

Meanwhile, the $10 million Open Screen Project Fund, announced in February 2009, is actively accepting new submissions until the end of 2010. Developers can apply via or During the Adobe MAX conference, Adobe and Nokia will demonstrate several of the applications. They include:

- Twittle, Flash Widgets, LLC - Twittle is a robust twitter client.

- MyFestival Guide, Little Big Ideas - The MyFestival Guide is an interactive moving map and guide to the second largest music festival in Europe, the Roskilde Festival.

- SmartGrooves, Storer Communications Ltd. - SmartGrooves is a creative entertainment application using Flash technology to deliver interactive multimedia.

- MileBlaster, CTM Holdings - MileBlaster tracks your frequent flyer miles against award goals.

- UvLayer, Unknown Vector - UvLayer lets users curate their digital media through an immersive multi-screen interface.

- LiveTalkBack, Greys Mead Ltd - LiveTalkBack collects real-time audience feedback to content publishers and broadcasters.

- TckTckTck Campaign, Moterosa - The Tck Tck Tck Campaign hopes to engage and inspire millions of people around the world to join a growing movement against global warming.

In addition, for developers, the Nokia WRT Extensions for Dreamweaver CS4 software include the Web Developer's Library, widget import capabilities, widget wizard, widget preview, debugging and deployment features. And the updated tools support touch screens; "Home screen" publishing functionality on the Nokia N97 and the recently announced Nokia N97 mini; and Platform Services which enable the simulation of contacts, location, calendar, contacts and other APIs in applications.

Moreover, Ludwig said about 40 percent of all new phones in 2008 shipped with Flash technology and Nokia has shipped more than 400 million devices with Flash technology to date. Developers and designers can take advantage of this global reach by publishing their content to Ovi Store and the Adobe AIR Marketplace for consumers to download and experience, the companies said. With content ranging from applications, games, videos, podcasts, productivity tools and Web, to location-based services and much more, Ovi Store offers Flash developers a unique opportunity to target customers and monetize their content.

"The Open Screen Project Fund has received developer submissions from over 60 countries," said Purnima Kochikar, vice president of Forum Nokia. "With the Open Screen Project Fund, easy to use development tools and distribution through Ovi Store, times have never been better for Flash technology developers."