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Devices Flash Flash Lite Mobile & Devices

I’m in – Flash Lite 2.0 & Flash Player SDK 7

Not your regular Flash Lite. No more Flash 4 syntax. These are totally new versions of Flash for mobile devices that is going to change the way developers work. In fact, what’s more important is they are changing the whole mobile experience for end-users.

Flash Lite 2.0 is a completely new platform for non-PC devices, including mobile phones and consumer electronics. For example, the latest Nokia S60 platform is well supported.

According to this Adobe press release, the number of mobile devices running Flash now reaches 45 million units – a huge jump from twelve months ago. Some of the largest manufacturers such as Nokia, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, and Kodak are now shipping Flash-enabled devices. Flash Lite 2.0 devices are expected to be available later this year.

This is the moment to start developing in Flash Lite 2.0 ready for the upcoming market. Of course, there is still a large number of devices with Flash Lite 1.1, such as the iRiver U10 and many Nokia S60 phones. However, developing for Flash Lite 1.1 is really not very pleasant, because it uses the obsolete Flash 4 syntax and is quite limiting compared to this new release.

For those who came to my presentation on Flash Lite and mobile development, I showed a Nokia 6680 smartphone and a O2 XDA IIs Windows Mobile PDA phone. Today’s announcements provide new players for these devices and more, and let developers use ActionScript 2.0 (or 1.0). Many device manufacturers are bundling the new Flash Lite player in upcoming devices. However, until there is a wide distribution of the new Flash Lite 2.0 player, some developers may have to find a balance between ease of development and market penetration. For me, there is no going back to Flash 4 syntax!

The other announcement today is the Flash Player SDK 7. It is targeted for device manufacturers such as Pocket PCs, consumer electronics, system integrators, and browser companies. As the name implies, this is a software development kit based on Flash Player 7; so ActionScript 2.0 is fully supported. Imagine a Linux-based device running a custom browser that supports Flash content, or a game console that has native Flash support (without hacking). These are just some of the scenarios where the SDK can be useful.

What does all this mean for developers? Well, I guess that depends on what kind of developers we’re talking about. For J2ME developers, there is now another choice to rapidly development rich-UI content (that has the added benefit of looking much better than standard Java-based software). For Flash developers, this is another market where their skills can be applied, without learning something totally new.

To get started, get the Flash Lite 2.0 update for Flash Professional 8, and download the free (for a limited time only) Flash Lite 2.0 player for a supported mobile phone.

Don’t forget to check out the datasheet for Flash Lite 2.0 and Flash Player SDK 7 on the Flash Lite page, I’m in it (page 2, top right)! Macromedia quoted what I said from a developer’s perspective.

7 replies on “I’m in – Flash Lite 2.0 & Flash Player SDK 7”

Ciao Dave,

I would suggest to begin playing around with Flash Lite 2.0 but do not leave Flash Lite 1.1 since it will stay for long time. Also there are not a reseanable number of phones shipping with Flash Lite 1.1 so I would not jump directly into Flash Lite 2.0. Also using 1.1 gives you a prospective on your mobile development which is totally different from the web. If FL2 will go to phones later 2006, means 2007 for some phones.

Alessandro

Hi Alessandro,

Yes, your view is a safe bet for those who don’t mind developing in Flash 4 syntax. However, I think one of the reasons why many developers stayed away from developing for mobile devices is they can’t use a modern programming language such as ActionScript 2.0.

I’m sure you’ve heard the argument to allow developers bundle the runtime player with their application installers. With all licensing issues aside, it’d solve this problem of limited distribution, but unfortunately this doesn’t seem to be the business model for Adobe.

I was going to download Flash Lite 2.0 for my 6670, but I see they require your IMEI number. That’s kind of sensitive information, but I can’t find anything on the site about what they might do with this information beyond the Adobe privacy policy (plus the link to the download isn’t even the secure one!). Just a little reassurance they aren’t going to share it with anyone would be good.

Hi all,

itï½´s good to remember that there is a huge market in Japan/Korea, where allegedly are approximately 40 million Flash enabled devices, most of them with Flash Lite 1.0 or 1.1. (and none with Flash Lite 2.0).

Although Japanese market is one of the toughest in the world, one canï½´t ignore this opportunity.

All the best,
Miikka Lyytikainen

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