Adobe Welcomes PHP Developers with New Flash Builder Support

Adobe and Zend Technologies team up to deliver integration between PHP and Adobe's Flash Builder for mobile app development across, Android, BlackBerry Tablet OS and iOS.

Bringing PHP developers closer to the Flash Platform, Adobe Systems and Zend Technologies, the PHP company, announced Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP software, a new integrated product helping PHP developers create rich Internet applications for mobile, Web and desktop.

Adobe officials said that for the first time developers now have the benefit of an integrated development environment (IDE) that combines the capabilities of Flash Builder and Zend Studio for rapidly creating Flex and PHP applications. And with a single code base, developers can deliver applications for Android, BlackBerry Tablet OS and iOS while sharing code from Web applications, reducing the time and cost of application creation and maintenance.

"With the rapid growth of PHP adoption in the enterprise, delivering superior user experiences for Web, mobile and desktop PHP applications has become critical for today's developers," said Ed Rowe, vice president of development tooling at Adobe, in a statement. "The integration of Zend Studio 8 with Flash Builder 4.5 brings together leading technologies for server-side and client-side development, enabling developers to efficiently and cost-effectively create incredible applications across desktops, Web and mobile platforms, including Android, BlackBerry Tablet OS and iOS."

This April 11 news complements the same-day release of Flash Builder 4.5, Flex 4.5 and the Adobe Creative Suite 5.5 family, further demonstrating the strategic alliance between Adobe and Zend and underscoring the companies' strong commitment to the developer and designer community.

"Building mobile applications is top of mind for many of our enterprise customers," said Andi Gutmans, CEO at Zend. "The long-standing partnership between Zend and Adobe continues to produce exciting results, this time with Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP, which brings together best-of-breed technologies for rapid and seamless development of mobile applications based on PHP, Flash technology and Flex. With this new solution, customers can deliver high-quality applications faster to the market."

Al Hilwa, an analyst with IDC, said: "Adobe has found that the combination of Flash/Flex at the front end and PHP at the back end is the single most popular combination outside of probably HTML and PHP, so they teamed up with Zend and created some nifty integration between the two Eclipse-based IDEs: Flash Builder and Zend Studio. The combination is a bargain for folks who have to use both of these premium tools, but also productivity win."

Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP is an Eclipse-based tool for rapidly building expressive mobile, Web and desktop applications using PHP, ActionScript and the open-source Flex Framework. Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP includes an integrated copy of Zend Studio 8, enabling developers to code and debug within a single environment, for the delivery of scalable, high-performance and secure PHP-based mobile applications on Android, BlackBerry Tablet OS and iOS. Using these newly integrated tools, developers will find it easier to differentiate their PHP applications by providing superior user experiences, Adobe officials said.

New features in Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP integrated with Zend Studio 8 include:

  • Combined Installer: Get the development process up and running quickly with seamless installation of the integrated products within Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP.
  • Flex and PHP Project Wizards: Use a single UI framework; create Flex and PHP projects for desktop and mobile devices with a streamlined, optimal workflow.
  • Data Centric Development Wizard for PHP: Connect to PHP services and generate ActionScript value objects in fewer steps.
  • Integrated Debugging: Initiate both Flex and PHP debug sessions simultaneously, set breakpoints in Flex/ActionScript and PHP and accelerate through both front-end and back-end code in the same debugging session.

The launch of Creative Suite 5.5 comes at a time when mobile devices are exploding in terms of sales and capabilities, fundamentally changing the way content and applications are developed and consumed. With the launch of Adobe Flash Builder 4.5-available stand-alone or as part of Creative Suite 5.5 Web Premium-and the Flex 4.5 framework, developers can easily develop and deploy mobile applications to more than 200 million Android, BlackBerry PlayBook and iOS devices by the end of 2011, Adobe said.

Adobe Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP is scheduled to ship within 30 days, with availability through both Adobe and Zend's authorized resellers, online stores and direct sales teams. Estimated street prices for Flash Builder 4.5 for PHP Premium and Flash Builder for PHP Standard editions are expected to be $799 and $399, respectively. Adobe will offer upgrade pricing from Flash Builder 3 or 4. Zend will offer upgrade pricing from Zend Studio.