Android users have long touted support of Adobe Flash as one of the many ways their mobile devices are superior to uppity Apple handsets. But with the release of Android 4.0 “Ice Cream Sandwhich,” they must put their boasting on hold: Adobe Flash is not yet available for Ice Cream Sandwich.
Fortunately for Flash fans, that’s not the end of the story. Google tells SlashGear that, while “Flash hasn’t been released for ICS yet,” the company is fairly certain that “Adobe will support Flash for ICS,” at some point in the future. For now, however, ICS users can install neither current nor older versions of Flash on their devices.
If Adobe does allow ICS to support Flash in the future, it would seem as though that doing so is simply delaying the inevitable. Earlier this month, Adobe announced that it will no longer develop flash for mobile browsers, instead shifting its focus to the emerging Web standard HTML5, which allows for the display of the same kind of vivid content that was once the exclusive domain of Flash, without the use of Adobe’s proprietary technology. In other words: Flash for mobile has a death sentence.
There appears to be mixed feelings about the impending demise of Flash. A group of software developers recently launched the “Occupy Flash” campaign, which seeks to convince people to uninstall Flash Player from their computers to expedite the Flash’s extinction, and more quickly usher in the HTML 5 era. Others, who mockingly call themselves “Occupy HTML,” argue that there is no reason that people should start uninstalling Flash Player because there is still a plethora of content that users will miss out on if they get rid of Flash Player altogether.
Agree with it or not, it would seem as though the writing’s on the wall for Flash, at least in its current form. Adobe says it plans to continue to develop Flash, especially for use with Adobe Air. But Flash for mobile is obviously on the way out, for better or worse.