WebOS Gaming: Flash, Palm's Secret Weapon | webOS Nation
 
 

WebOS Gaming: Flash, Palm's Secret Weapon

by Jason Robitaille Fri, 20 Mar 2009 11:23 am EDT

The day Adobe Flash was announced to be coming to the Palm Pre, there was a collective rejoicing from the community.  Not since the old Sony Clie days had we seen flash running on Palm device.  Interestingly, it was day before the official Adobe announcement that we, here at PreCentral, were discussing flash as a potential means of gaming on the WebOS.  Now, after we've has some time to let "flash on the Pre" sink in, it only seems fitting to come back to the issue.

Back on February 15th, I posed that Adobe Flash on the Palm webOS could be a saving grace for game development on the Pre.  It certainly seems like Palm realized this too. And while I do believe we may someday see native C applications for the Pre, I don't see it happening until next year at earliest. Flash can help fill that gap.

Palm has been stressing how much of an online, connected device the Pre is.  In that sense, having flash support was inevitable.  If Palm is able to integrate flash support as deeply into the OS as they've done with HTML5, CSS, and javascript, then I have high hopes.  Adobe Flash provides an optimal platform to create some pretty nice games.  Full integration of flash support, not only in the browser but the OS as a whole, would be huge, allowing for flash applications to be shown directly in the launcher, and possibly allowing third party developers to integrate flash elements into their own HTML-based applications.  Plus, as it stands, there are potentially many thousands of existing flash games that could then run on the WebOS. Quite a boost to the Pre's software catalog.

The only thing left in question is when we will see this flash player released.  At first, I was worried, as lately it seems Adobe Flash on the iPhone is on a TBA-schedule. For flash on the iPhone, Apple appears to be putting the onus on Adobe to deliver.  This doesn't seem to be the case with Palm.  During a PCMagazine article, it was noted:

"Palm is doing the work themselves with help from us, to make it happen as quickly as possible," Muraka said.

That speaks volumes of Palm's strategy with flash support. I wouldn't be surprise if Flash Mobile is released for the WebOS right on time, in Q4 2009, if not slightly earlier.  One thing that seems to support this theory is a brief twitter communication between myself and Palm regarding flash support that seems to imply Palm has at least known there'd be flash support on the Pre since way back at CES.  Yet another secret Palm has been able to keep quite well.  I wonder what else Palm has up its sleeve.

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