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Is Flash on Android Possible?

Posted by Charles | November 16, 2007 .

Read a headline, Symbian dismisses Google Android, on iContact Community and made me thinking. It seems to me, like it or not, Android will change how information technologies be deployed to people or business. I can compare this with when PC and DOS were introduced out of the mainframe age. Also, we all know that regardless how platform shifts, UI counts, and now connection counts too. So, how RIA, the representation of good UI with connection, fits into the new Android world?

Is there a place for Flash based UI on the Android platform?

Android is such as open platform where anyone can develop anything to extend it. Do you think Adobe will have a plan for it? I wish they do. There are limitation or challenges though. So far, Android won’t open up to C/C++ application, it only allow Java based application development, as far as I know. So, just from pure technical perspective, is Flash on Android possible?

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20 Comments so far
  1. Richard Leggett  November 16, 2007 12:21 pm

    If the OS runs on Linux (I think it does right?), and there’s a version of FP9 for Linux, there seems to be a good chance that it is possible. Google are doing the opposite to Apple here, they are not making the hardware, and they are making it as easy as possible to make third party software for this mobile OS, so with that said, Flash is an excellent platform for making that happen, as well as the other supported platforms Android supports “out of the box”.

  2. Erki Esken  November 16, 2007 2:08 pm

    I think the FlashHome platform showed at MAX keynote (or was it the sneek peeks?) would be a pretty good fit for Android.

  3. Saravanan  January 24, 2008 11:04 am

    Google should let flash to be used in Android to make it a big success within quick time .. and power of flash will make it easy to acheive..

  4. Miranda  March 6, 2008 4:36 am

    Google doesn’t control the applications on Android, but the default factory set up(what applications come bundled) is up to each manufacturer.
    JMF is capable of playing flash v2 so it will need a massive update(and it still can’t play MPEG4 and other common formats and standards), but there are products and projects that aim for flash inside java utilities.
    Hopefully, when Android takes off, a java implementation of a flash player will surface as demand increases.

  5. Anonymous  September 26, 2008 3:35 pm

    Flash may be something that can be implemented by offering an entirely alternative web browser, but knowing Google, they won’t be too keen to see a propitiatory format on their open phones too soon.

    Google are forever advocates of using JavaScript as opposed to a plugin of some sort, despite its graphical limitations (but then again, when were Google ever interested in overly-shiny user interfaces?)

  6. Jonathan  October 20, 2008 8:20 am

    I totally agree as well… either Android or the iPhone needs to adopt Flash Player (and I’m not talking about the laughable FlashLite Player… I’m talking about the entire cheese here: Flash Player 10).

  7. Peet  October 23, 2008 7:56 am

    I wonder too. I hope so.

    I have been living with the G1 for a couple of days now and have found myself stymied a number of times due to the lack of Flash being available.

    You would think that Adobe would get on this ASAP. And we know that it is within reach, since YouTube is available.

  8. Ramon  October 24, 2008 5:21 pm


    YouTube on the G1 has nothing to do with the potential for flash. The G1 actually downloads the video file and then plays it in the media player. It isn’t a stream.

  9. Anonymous  October 25, 2008 11:18 am

    @ raman. I don’t think the g1 has a video player =x

  10. scott  October 26, 2008 5:28 pm

    there is already a video player out there for android. check it out in the marketplace.

  11. caleb charles  October 30, 2008 12:59 pm

    I too have been a droid for a week now. The web is empty w/o flash. No games, no video porn, no access of artistic flash websites. It’s like half the web is missing. Patience. It’ll come soon enough. Ebaum can wait.

    And the video player available on the G1 is sad. Just sad.

  12. solid  November 7, 2008 10:40 pm

    Android does not limit you to only java apps. Android encourages java as the language of choice and even provides many tools to aid this. The reason java is being pushed is because the open nature of android. On the iphone, source is compiled to binary and the binaries run on one hardware platform only which is tightly controlled by a single company (thereby ensuring compatibility). Android however is designed to run on any hardware platform. Android doesn’t even need to tun on a phone. It could be a pc, a router, a phone or a toaster. An enormeous level of abstraction is required to make this level of portability possible. Linux is used as a bootloader for the java vm and then all the fancy stuff happens there where java ‘binaries’ are portable to any platform. This means if you want to run android on hardware other than what it has been tested on, you only need to recompile the linux env and test it which is minimal compared to the rest of the andreoid platform. This does not mean you can’t get to a linux environment from within android. In fact, just this week, 2 different terminal apps were released to make linux available in a shell on the android phone. There is nothing that would stop you from loading binaries onto your sd card and running them in the shell. The problem is that you would have to l build a java wrapper to have easy access within andreoid and worse yet you would have to recompile and test all native apps when moving among different platforms. It is acually easier to for devs to stick to playing in the android/java sandbox.

  13. Rob  November 18, 2008 11:24 pm

    In case you haven’t heard…. it is already written, just waiting for deployment from Adobe

  14. Anonymous  November 30, 2008 6:50 pm
  15. andrew pembroke  January 30, 2009 3:26 pm

    I completely agee, android will change the face off business. Already I have decided that the economic landscape for IT professionals is about to be leveled. Coding ought to be a traded skill among apprenticed guilds ~ not a haven for intellectual snobbery and educated aristocrats. I propose open source developers begin pooring their code onto Social networks like myspace and facebook. We can drive the wage down by saturating the market and re-valuing the product as a common knowledge commodity in this parlance.

    Kill the horses to holt the charriot. The dogs will eat the hand that deeds them. The oil industry could collapse if they have a dissenchanted workforce in a long protracted war for ineffient energy.

  16. rick74  February 17, 2009 6:17 pm

    I hope so, I just got my G1 fone today and id love flash on it.fingers crossed me thinks

  17. Anonymous  March 20, 2009 3:11 pm
  18. Anonymous  September 11, 2009 2:34 am


  19. veggiedude  January 29, 2010 10:24 am

    Everyone knows that Flash is very buggy on Mac OS X and Linux – these are the real obstacles that they have not shown up on iPhone and the reason hindering Android. If Adobe finally ports it to Android in the same buggy state that it is, many Android owners will be quickly uninstalling it.

  20. Craig Malcolm Petrou  March 30, 2010 11:39 am

    If Flash is going to become integrated into Google Chrome does that mean that the Google Android phones will eventually be able to play Web-based Flash applications, animations and videos?


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