Since last week’s news of Adobe stopping further development of Flash Player for mobile and embracing HTML5, as is typical in this day and age, some fellas have been screaming, “Flash is dead!”
I don’t get it: is it that we have become so numb and lack basic use of English or we have become so numb and don’t want to think?
First, the development work that was stopped was specifically mobile. Work goes on with Flash on the web.
Second, even if all development work on Flash were stopped today, hundreds of thousands of developers will still continue to churn out Flash products for a significant time.
similarly, we hear people scream, “Symbian is dead”; yet that platform sells tens of millions of devices quarterly, and has new apps being developed for it daily.
Yes; Symbian may be on its way out, but that’s a long journey.
People should just stop being shallow. Its not dead until its dead. Flash is not dead. Not by a long shot.
Rant over. Now on to HTML5.
What Is HTML5?
We can say that HTML5 is version 5 of HTML.
HTML wasn’t good at making interactive websites, so developers had to use Flash and a host of other tools for those. HTML5 brings HTML up to speed in terms of rich web content and interactivity.
With HTML5, we can include multimedia and graphical content in web pages and applications without the need for proprietary plugins and APIs. With HTML5, we can do not just video for mobile browsers, but rich web-based applications that do not need an internet connection to run.
HTML5 – Mobile Friendly
Flash had to be optimised for mobile, and even at that you have to throw really powerful processors at it for the best experience. But HTML5 has been built ground up so that it is able to run on mobile phones.
HTML5 – Ready to Replace Flash and Native Apps?
Not yet. HTML5 is not fully developed yet, so many of the functionality that currently obtains in Flash and native apps on your mobile are not available yet.
But once complete, HTML5 will be hard to beat. The need to develop native apps for each different platform will be mostly gone. One HTML5 app simply runs across multiple devices that support the standard.
HTML5 – Current Mobile Browser Ratings
Modern mobile browsers are all being built to support HTML5, some more so than others.
Among desktop browsers, the current HTML5 browser test top dog is Chrome with 340 points. Bearing that in mind, take a look at the table of mobile browser scores below:
- Firefox Mobile 10.0a1 – 314*
- iOS – 296
- MeeGo/Harmattan – 272
- Opera Mobile 11.10 – 269
- BlackBerry OS 7 – 260
- Firefox Mobile 6 – 254
- BlackBerry OS 6 – 252
- Android 2.2/2.3 – 177
- WebOS 2.1 – 155
- Windows Phone 7.5 (Mango) – 140
- Symbian Belle (Unofficial) – 96**
*Firefox Mobile 10.0a1 on my Nokia N9 scores 314, but its not a public release yet, it hasn’t been scored on the test page.
**Symbian Belle on my Nokia N8 scores 96. Not sure why no Symbian scores are included on the HTML5 test site.
I hope that this article helps the non-tech person understand HTML5 better. Feel free to request any further clarification in the comments section below.