No Flash on the iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad

After the iPad was announced, Adobe employees started complaining (again) that the iPhone family of products don't support Flash.

Quoting myself:  

Adobe (apparently) wants the iPad to be about Flash. 3 billion downloads from the app store suggests Flash doesn't matter on the iPhone. It'd probably take 10 minutes to find app store replacements for the games mom plays on the web. That doesn't mean Flash doesn't matter, but I think Adobe needs to pick a different fight.

Quoting John Gruber:

Adobe’s fear, of course, is that #4 (web sites provide alternatives to Flash) is what will happen. And with good reason, since I think it’s fair to say that we’re seeing this happen already. Flash evangelist Lee Brimelow made his little poster showing what a bunch of Flash-using web sites look like without Flash without actually looking to see how they render on MobileSafari. Ends up a bunch of them, including the porno site, already have iPhone-optimized versions with no blue boxes, and video that plays just fine as straight-up H.264. iPhone visitors to these sites have no idea they’re missing anything because, well, they’re not missing anything. For a few other of the sites Brimelow cited, like Disney and Spongebob Squarepants, there are dedicated native iPhone apps.

More on the iPhone 3.0 announcement

One of the new features coming in iPhone 3.0 is the capability for an app to have what I'll call sub-purchases. The example given was a game you'd buy and then, from within the game, you'd be able to buy additional levels. Currently you have to buy a different version of the game, or get an update - which so far have been free.

But one point about this new feature is that you can't buy add-ons from within a free application. A developer can't give away the razor and sell the blades.

Why is that interesting?  Well, Amazon gives away their iPhone Kindle app, but sells content.

If I were Amazon, I think I'd like to walk away from the whole idea of the AppStore. Amazon has a delivery mechanism. They can handle micro payments. They want to give away their iPhone Kindle app and have you buy books from within it.

But they won't. Why should they give Apple 30% of each book sale? Their current model (the iPhone Kindle book sees everything you've purchased from Amazon, but you have to do the purchasing via a web page or a 'real' Kindle) will likely continue.

The AppStore is problematic at best. The whole idea of a cadre of Apple employees passing qualitative judgement on apps is astonishing to me. How can Apple seriously reject an iPhone app for obscenities when I can buy, literally, the 7 words you can't say on television on the iTunes 'Music" store?

The AppStore is probably great for the one-person shops who are developing an app in their spare time. It's probably even helpful for an entity like the New York Times, which lacks a software distribution infrastructure. But Amazon doesn't need their help.