On the Edge: Adobe Edge and Flash

Adobe Edge logo

To everyone saying that Adobe Edge is a flash killer, i have this to say:

No, it is not a flash killer. Let us first remember what Edge does, and is targeted for. Edge is targeted mainly at advertisers on the web. You open edge, create a new document, and the default format is that of a banner ad. Perhaps, it may cause the downfall of Flash as an advertising platform. In my opinion, that would be a great thing. For no reason should a tiny little banner ad on a website use 50% of my CPU when i'm visiting that site. There's no reason for that. It's not because of flash per se, it's because of terrible flash developers trying to run non-optimized content and deliver it to the user. But i digress.

Also, all Edge can do is create animations and basic interactivity. It is not built to make RIA's or mobile applications in the same way that flash is. It is built for creating ads.

It wouldn't be such a bad thing if HTML5 and CSS replaced Flash in the advertising market. Advertisers would be able to reach people on mobile and devices much easier, without the dependency of flash. That makes sense to me. But, to say that Edge and HTML5 will *kill* flash is a complete falsity.

Flash (AIR) is currently, in my opinion, the best mobile app platform that allows users to build one app on one code base and target just about every major mobile platform out there. One cannot do that with HTML5, no sir. You have to use Flash, or Appcelerator or something. But, out of all of the mobile development platforms that i've tried, Flash is by far the easiest. You can create a beautiful mobile app that  functions with speeds sometimes greater than that of a native app, and you get to avoid all of the Java or Objective-C headaches that might come from native development. Plus, with the advent of AIR 3, developers can build native extensions to give their flash apps the exact same functionality of a native app on any platform they choose. 

In short, no, Edge will not kill flash, nor is adobe trying to kill flash with Edge. Flash will live on for a long time, both on the web and on mobile devices. Edge and HTML5 can never fully replace all of the functionality that Flash has built over the years, and it will never equal it's performance or ease of development.

All for now!

Arthur Rosa is an engineering manager based in Sunnyvale, California.