Today, we have a guest speaker, James Eberhardt, giving a presentation on “Flash Lite on Mobile Technologies”.
The speaker also explained the use of Java in mobile technology. Java applications are mostly games which do not require a web browser. They generally have a longer development timeline and cost more money to build because of type of human resources required. A more technical background is required for developing Java applications and the salaries for these developers are generally higher. Therefore, the cost for developing a Java application is elevated accordingly. Another disadvantage of Java on mobile technology is that multiple java applications need to be built for each target device. A Java application cannot be adapted peacefully by every mobile device, which is a bit of a pain in turns of developing a game across different devices.
We also discussed about GPS (Global Positioning System), it was said that it is possible to link GPS information to a Java application on a user’s GPS enabled device. In fact, it has been done by a group of students. They developed a Java program which can display information on mobile devices according to user’s position within a certain geographical area.
The speaker continued with the history of Flash Lite, which is a scaled down version of Flash Player designed to run on devices with slow processors and limited memory. Flash Lite 1.0 is Flash 4 codebase (1999), which does not even have actionscript 1.0. No HTTP access was allowed for the version 1.0. But Flash Lite 1.1 introduced HTTP access.
Flash Lite 2.0 was then introduced in Jan. 2006. It has video playback (device specific), shared local objects, XML processing support and updated code-base (based on Flash 7, AS 2.0). Even though it still can’t use Flash components nor can’t it play FLV videos, the jump from Flash Lite 1.1 to 2.0 has a huge impact on the development of Flash applications for mobile devices. The latest Flash Lite 2.1 can even be installed “OTA”- over-the-air on supported phones on the Verizon network.
James concludes the presentation with “Why Flash will win”. He explained that it is easier to make interfaces with Flash and many Flash designers had already started working on websites for desktops. The transition is easier and eventually Flash will take over the mobile industry. I think the future of mobile devices will be filled with the rich dynamical interactivity that Flash will provide. So let’s wait and see…