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Flash on Android “Shockingly Bad” – Will BlackBerry Fare Better?

Flash mobile Since DevCon back in October of last year RIM has said that Flash is coming to the BlackBerry OS in the summer of 2010 and people have been waiting for it. There have been quite a few delays and Adobe split hairs nice and thin with excuses. I asked back in May if we really want Flash on our BlackBerrys considering how sluggish things already are with the 624mhz processors RIM has limited the BlackBerry OS to. Don’t get me wrong I would love to be able to watch videos from the hundreds of Flash video streaming sites out there but I doubt it will be as easy or simple as that.

Flash video for mobile devices got another nail in its coffin from a video review posted by NewTeeVee. They tested out the latest build of Flash for Android on a 1Ghz Snapdragon powered Nexus One and according to them the results were “shockingly bad.” Anybody surprised? I would describe the performance of Flash on my 2.8Ghz laptop as “shockingly bad” so how does a mobile device stand a chance.

I will be quick to point out that these video streams tested out were designed for desktops and not optimized for mobile viewing. The thing is that the whole point was to bring the desktop Flash experience to mobile devices. If you have to optimize it for mobile devices then you have cut away much of its appeal.

So I thought I would ask again. Are you excited about Flash for BlackBerry support? Alternatively I think it would be better if they found a way to stream directly to mobile phones like YouTube does…

7 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. It works fine for a lot of content on an original Moto droid( Goog has been giving it out to developers). Its not as bad as the folks over at NewTeeVee would like us to believe.

  2. The whole point of flash is that web content will not be optimized for mobile, in almost every single case… If it’s optimized you might as well just convert video using mobile-friendly codecs or for games make an app or resort to HTML5 down the road anyways…

    But yeah, I was never excited about flash on mobile. I had it on my Symbian devices and I had it on Skyfire on WM. Both were terrible (granted 10.1 is newer). But I think flash in general is just too resource wasteful and will degrade the experience on any mobile rather than enhance it.

  3. I have flash on my EVO and it is definitely a godsend. Coming from a BlackBerry, I couldn’t even view non video content on certain sites. Yes, its not perfect, but I’d rather be given the option of “non-perfect flash” than none at all.

    Another thing too is that the long loading can be attributed to the “downloading and installing” of the flash player. This is usually dependent on what flashplayer the site is using. For example, uses a different flash player than

    I can go to a site like and watch a family guy episode in hq which I think is pretty cool. Only takes about 15 secs to buffer and load (if the player was already downloaded). If not, can take an extra 30 secs.

    • The flash player is not re-downloaded on every site based on what version they use though… If some site is using flash 9, it does not download flash 9 to your phone because there is no flash 9 player for mobile. Everything has to play through the native 10.1 flash player regardless.

  4. Not at all excited for Flash on a BlackBerry. I hope once it does hit it can be disabled in the BlackBerry browser options. Any resolution higher than the lowest youtube offers is essentially unwatchable over cellular and pointless for the low res screens on a BlackBerry anyway.

  5. Not excited about Flash, but AIR, yes.
    There are many ways to stream videos to a Blackberry device, but it’s more complicated to deliver apps for the platform.
    Granted, widgets are getting better, but since BB6 is not WebOS2.0, it’s much easier to build an AIR app that you can deliver to many mobile platforms than it is to build a Java app for Blackberry and another for Android, etc.

  6. Flash on the N900 is pretty much ok and was fine on my old i8910 HD. This is simply FUD being spread by crApple fanbois.

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