Flash's challenges: Microsoft, mobile phones and markups

Adobe claims that 70 percent of Web video today is in the Flash (.flv) format.

A market up for grabs

One design firm that is a longtime 100 percent Adobe shop said it recently met with Microsoft about adding Silverlight to its repertoire.

"I told Adobe we had to listen, because we are beholden to what technologies our clients want to use," said the executive, who declined to be identified.

Adobe isn't standing still. In the video realm, Adobe plans to match Microsoft when it releases the "Moviestar" update to Flash Player 9 in the next few weeks.

To improve Flash's DRM, Adobe is releasing a new desktop application called Adobe Media Player. The player is similar to Windows Media Player, QuickTime or Real's RealPlayer, except that it only plays streamed or downloaded Flash videos.

The Player can also ensure that ads embedded into the beginning, middle or end of Flash video clip will always play.

Adobe claims that restricting its Media Player to playing only Flash video was a technical decision.

"Every time you add a new codec, you add more code to the player," said Kevin Lynch, Adobe's chief software architect. "We only add codecs with great care because once you do, you can never take them out."

But according to Chris Swenson, an analyst at NPD Group, Adobe "is definitely not playing the neutral Switzerland. ... Web video is an up-for-grabs market, and Adobe is going for share."

On the price gap with Microsoft, Adobe said it will cut prices, but only if enough customers defect.

"If the cost of Flash Media Server comes in the way of Flash adoption, we will adjust that," said Shentanu Narayan, Adobe's president.

But "are we going to give Flash Media Server away for free? No, because we believe what we do is unique." Chizen said. Flash's market share today "is a clear indication that our pricing is competitive now."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Eric Lai

Computerworld
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?