30 Apr 2010
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Jobs: Flash is why Macs crash

By Contributor

Apple boss Steve Jobs has posted an open letter about his thoughts on Adobe's Flash products.

In an open letter posted to the internet, Jobs said that he wanted to jot down some of his thoughts on Adobe's Flash products so that customers and critics may better understand why Apple does not allow Flash on iPhones, iPods and iPads.

"Adobe has characterised our decision as being primarily business driven – they say we want to protect our App Store – but in reality it is based on technology issues," he said. "Adobe claims that we are a closed system, and that Flash is open, but in fact the opposite is true. Let me explain."

The Apple boss went on to list six main points that included being an open platform, touch and security.

 “Symantec recently highlighted Flash for having one of the worst security records in 2009. We also know first hand that Flash is the number one reason Macs crash. We have been working with Adobe to fix these problems, but they have persisted for several years now. We don’t want to reduce the reliability and security of our iPhones, iPods and iPads by adding Flash.”

Jobs said that besides the fact that Flash is closed and proprietary, has major technical drawbacks, and doesn’t support touch based devices, there is an even more important reason Apple doesn’t allow Flash on iPhones, iPods and iPads.

“We have discussed the downsides of using Flash to play video and interactive content from websites, but Adobe also wants developers to adopt Flash to create apps that run on our mobile devices,” he said.

“We know from painful experience that letting a third party layer of software come between the platform and the developer ultimately results in sub-standard apps and hinders the enhancement and progress of the platform. If developers grow dependent on third party development libraries and tools, they can only take advantage of platform enhancements if and when the third party chooses to adopt the new features.

“We cannot be at the mercy of a third party deciding if and when they will make our enhancements available to our developers,” he concluded.

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