Adobe streamlines Flash workflow

Flash Media Server 4.5 unveiled, but content still out of reach on iOS devices


Adobe hasn't brought Flash to iOS, but content providers can more easily serve video to iOS devices

The moral of this tale is that you should never believe everything you read, or you should at least read the original source very carefully, to fully understand what it says.

This weekend, chunks of the internet were in rapture about Adobe bringing Flash to iOS devices, and BGR was one of many sites to run such a story. In Adobe finally brings Flash to iPhone and iPad, the site announced that Adobe had, during the IBC trade show on Friday, taken the wraps off of Adobe Flash Media Server 4.5 and Adobe Flash Access 3.0, which would "allow iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users to access Adobe Flash content". Arguments erupted about whether this was good or bad for Adobe and Apple, and whether the App Store might finally be under threat or respond by loosening entry requirements.

However, digging deeper (i.e. actually reading) Adobe's press release shows what's really going on here. The new software is simply a solution that outputs content to suit target devices, in real-time; devices that support Flash get Flash, and those that don't get HTML5 video. It's a smart move by Adobe, not least when you consider the ongoing squabbles about web video that have left Flash in a strong position, and yet nowhere on iOS. That said, John Gruber for Daring Fireball nonetheless argues that the solution is the "wrong approach for video publishers to take"; he says content providers should be sending "HTML5/H.264 video to any user agent that supports it, and only falling back to Flash Player for user agents that don't support HTML5 and H.264".

What are your thoughts about Flash Media Server 4.5? What's your approach to web video? Let us know in the comments.