For some absolutely shocking reason some people wonder why the Apple iPad comes without Java and Flash support. Personally I wonder why these people are still employed in the technology sector, but why not write down all the reasons before I get too arrogant and annoying.
- HTML5 and open standards might be seen as a reason, but it's not. Apple will always use closed Apple API's if they believe this will give the best result. Apple loves the web because it gives them access to millions of potential users who just browse Facebook and GMail all day long. Safari is an easy sell. Also, Safari is based on open source and Apple hand is more or less forced.
- Cocoa Touch is not the same thing as Snow Leopard. Carbon support, several subsystems and the older Cocoa stuff is not there. So porting a desktop plugin system becomes harder and may result in a less stable platform. Adobe has a terrible track record when it comes to plugins. Acrobat and Flash are hated by millions of people. Acrobat startup time is terrible and Flash 10 is horrendously bad on PPC. And moving Photoshop to Cocoa took so long that Apple lost all faith in Adobe's ability to deliver a good experience on Cocoa Touch.
- Flash and Java are not known for their lightweight CPU usage. Even if Cocoa Touch had stellar implementations installed these plugins would eat a lot of battery time. On my single core machine I can either surf two websites with Flash advertising or 50 websites without Flash. Just install FlashBlock if you don't believe me.
- Adobe/Macromedia shot themselves in the foot many years ago by adding advertising templates to Flash Professional. And because of this every moronic graphic designer wannabe in the world started producing Flash advertising running at 99 percent CPU. Because 60FPS is better than 30FPS right ?
- Flash cookies are pure deep evil and in use every single day. Several websites refuse to show video without them because they are selling your ass to advertisers. Flash trackers steal CPU every single time you visit major websites and would pollute the 3G network with trillions of worthless HTTP connections. Install FlashBlock to see them on top of websites everywhere.
- Free Flash games directly compete with the iTunes App Store. Apple could loose thousands of paying iPhone developers, with Apple hardware, if they added Flash support. And suddenly the exclusivity is lost since the Flash game runs everywhere else as well.
- The codec nightmare continues. Steve may bitch about Bluray all he wants, but it's all a BIG FAT LIE. Apple doesn't want to support Bluray yet because HDCP will make Apple users feel like complete fraking retards for choosing Apple hardware. Oh, your $3000 screen or projector doesn't support this film and/or YouTube clip ! How sad.
- But what about JavaFX ! Yeah, right. There is no multi-touch API and the JavaFX developers are trying to EOL all the Swing developers by fire-walling the dependencies with Web Start. Windows 7 already has multi-touch support and Sun/Oracle and Adobe are still playing the waiting game. Either support Windows 7 multi-touch or shut up.
Apple iPad is the first complete, general purpose, computer DRM platform and all people bitch about is plugins. Music DRM went away because it was stupid. Idiot users pirate everything not bolted down and you end up with Bluray, Xbox, Playstation, Kindle, iPhone and now the Apple iPad. There has never been more DRM and people think they are winning. No, because Internet piracy and hardware piracy has given birth to yet another locked down platform. Because companies need to make money and do what is required.
The iPad exists because you wanted it. Blame yourself if you don't like it. Personally, I might buy one for my mom. Because it's probably a great piece of web surfing, picture browsing, hardware. And OMG do I need one of those.