By Chad Upton – Senior Consultant
The Flash Player has always let us develop rich applications with a single code base that run on Windows, Mac and Linux computers. That tradition continued with the introduction of Adobe AIR, which gave us new benefits that only desktop applications should be afforded.
The introduction of AIR 2.5 brings new frontiers in platform dominance: mobile and living room.
The same code base that runs beautifully on desktops now extends to Android, Blackberry Tablet OS and iOS devices. While many organizations have developed native applications for one platform, then found success and developed native apps for the other platforms, AIR 2.5 allows you to develop for all major desktop operating systems and most major mobile platforms all at once — it’s the smartest and most efficient way to build cross platform applications.
Samsung also announced that their next generation of televisions will have AIR embedded in the OS for big screen apps in your living room.
New features of AIR 2.5 include:
- Android OS Support
- Generate APK files
- Upload to Android App Store
- BlackBerry Tablet OS Support
- Publish to BlackBerry Tablet OS App Store
- iOS (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad) Support
- Use Packager for iPhone to publish Flash and Flex apps to iPhone and iPad
- Television Support
- Samsung will be the first to offer TVs with an AIR supported App Store
- Flash Access 2.0 Encrypted Content Protection Scheme
- Additional AIR Desktop Features
- CSS @font-face support
- CSS shadow support
- GPU Accelerated H.264 decoding (Windows only for now)
AIR also supports these features for mobile platforms:
- Screen keyboard
- Geo Location (GPS)
- Camera and Video
- Multitouch and gestures
- Screen dimming
- Screen rotation / orientation
- Embed web browser in apps
Television platform features:
- Remote control (access common controls like play, pause, ffw…etc)
- Hardware acceleration
- Blu-ray quality H.264 hardware decoding at 1080p
There is no doubt that Adobe sees mobile as the next frontier. There are more than twice as many mobile phones in use as there are computers; as the number of smart phones climbs, mobile apps will likely be more important than desktop applications some day.
If you’re looking to get started developing AIR applications for these platforms, check out the new downloads at Adobe Labs and some of these other resources: