Opera’s product analyst Phillip Grønvold told TechRadar UK that he believes support for Flash is critical at this time, but that Flash needs to up the ante now that HTML5 is approaching.
He delivered a rather strong message to Apple by saying: “Today’s internet content is dependant on Flash. If you remove Flash you do not have today’s internet.” He may need to reiterate that to Jobs, however, who thinks Flash is old hat.
Opera slumps behind Firefox, Chrome, and IE as a desktop browser, but it is one of the most popular browsers on the iPhone, making this recent statement an unusual step to take with a company it is largely dependant on to expand its user base.
Grønvold said that they are trying to give the best internet experience for users, therefore it needs Flash – “there is no way to beat around that bush.”
He balanced these comments, however, with a message for Flash that it needs to become an open web standards technology if it is to avoid further criticism by the likes of Jobs in the future. He said that while he cannot see Flash going away within the next 18 months Flash video “makes very little sense for CPU, WiFi battery useage etcetera”.
It seems that while the cavalry has indeed arrived, it’s not quite keen on bringing weapons to the battle.
This support may be small comfort for Adobe, however, as Scribd, the online document website, has just announced that it will be ditching Flash for HTML5. It has used Flash for the past 3 years to develop its browser application that allows you to upload, edit, and download various documents.
Scribd’s chief CTO Jared Friedman said his company is “scrapping three years of Flash development and betting the company on HTML5 because we believe HTML5 is a dramatically better reading experience than Flash. Now any document can become a Web page.”
He added that there was no political reasoning for this move.