updated 01:55 pm EDT, Thu May 6, 2010
Opera says Flash relevancy soon to change
Opera involved itself in the debate over Flash today by criticizing Adobe for its long-term stance. Product analyst Phillip Grønvold said that browsers like Opera Mini still need to support Flash but that this will likely have to change. Flash is well-suited to "dynamic content" but is inefficient as a video wrapper because of the demands it puts on a device's resources.
"Flash as a video container makes very little sense for CPU, Wi-Fi battery usage et cetera -- you can cook an egg on [a handheld] once you start running Flash on them and there's a reason for that," Grønvold explained to TechRadar.
The Opera staffer also echoed Steve Jobs' views on openness, arguing that Flash isn't integrated with the "fabric of the web" and that Adobe needed to make Flash a genuine part of web standards if it expects to continue forward. It would still survive for about 1.5 years in its current state but wouldn't necessarily continue for much longer.
Most of Apple's arguments about web video on mobile devices have followed Grønvold's approach, as Jobs pointed out that depending too much on the software rendering of Flash versus the much more hardware-aware HTML5 affected performance and battery life; it also leaned heavily on a plugin that wouldn't be available on every platform. Adobe has noted, however, that Flash 10.1 should evade some of these problems when it's eventually released.