Adobe this week confirmed it continues work to bring its Flash multimedia technology to the iPhone – though it still has a long way to go.

Way back in March, Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen confirmed his company to be working to support Flash on the iPhone, saying his engineers were developing such a solution to work as a native iPhone application using Appe’s SDKs.

In the latest update delivered during Adobe’s conference call this week, Narayen said: "With respect to the iPhone, we are working on it," adding that the company has, "a version that’s working on the emulation. This is still on the computer and you know, we have to continue to move it from a test environment onto the device and continue to make it work."

While that’s quite a way from being a tired and tested market-ready product when you consider the prevalence of Flash content, the CEO said he was on the whole, "pleased with the internal progress" made so far.

 

 

The fate of Flash on the iPhone may not be so easy to predict. Apple and Adobe now both compete in the video markets, with Adobe’s solution seeing increasing use as a solution for streaming television shows from broadcasters including the BBC. 

As Narayen observed in March, "To bring the full capabilities of Flash to the iPhone Web-browsing experience, we do need to work with Apple beyond and above what is available through the SDK and the current license around it," the company said. 

While the Adobe CEO says he is pleased, his deliberate move to understate progress – characterising it as "still on the computer", may hint Apple and Adobe haven’t quite found a way forward yet.

Speculation at the depth of competition between the two old allies was also sparked by recent reports suggesting Apple to be deploying a new web technology called SproutCore to create experiences and web applications. SproutCore is a JavaScript framework designed to make web applications that work a lot like desktop apps, while also being widely compatible as a result of being built with JavaScript’s open standards. Applications will run inside a browser, rather than requiring a plug-in.

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