The Adobe Flash Player debate continues to rage on. Apple Steve Jobs has never shown much love for Flash and went so far as to say in an open letter that "Adobe should focus more on creating great HTML5 tools for the future, and less on criticizing Apple for leaving the past behind." Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen just couldn't let those comments slide and responded to Jobs' tirade.
After that showdown, Microsoft made it clear that it sees HTML5 as the future of the internet and is firmly behind H.264 to deliver video in Internet Explorer 9.0. Dean Hachamovitch, General Manager for Internet Explorer, noted still Flash still "some issues, particularly around reliability, security, and performance." He's also made it clear that Flash is important for "today's web".
Now, however, Opera Software is throwing its hat in the ring with regards to the whole Flash vs HTML5 debate according to Tech Radar. Opera may be an also-ran in the notebook/desktop market, but its browser commands a respectable share of the mobile market. Opera product analyst Phillip Grønvold agrees with Hachamovitch's assertion that while Flash is critical to maintain the balance of video on the web today, HTML5 is definitely the future.
"For some reason it's not part of the fabric of the web currently and Flash either needs to include itself in the future of the web and open web standards or its technology is going to be consistently under attack from all sides as the open web standard movement grows further and further," noted Grønvold.
Grønvold also feels that Opera sees "the future of the web is [in] open web standards and Flash is not an open web standards technology." He also backed up Jobs' assertion that Flash is a battery hog, stating, "Flash as a video container makes very little sense for CPU, WiFi battery usage etcetera – you can cook an egg on [devices] once you start running Flash on them and there's a reason for that."
It seems as though the writing is on the wall for Flash. Two of the big titans in the the world -- Apple and Microsoft -- are throwing their support behind HTML5, and now we have the little guy, Opera, throwing in its two cents.
With this in mind, maybe Jobs' plea to Adobe has some merit: "Flash is a successful business for Adobe, and we can understand why they want to push it beyond PCs. But the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short."