Wow! It looks like Macromedia is getting close to launching Flash for Series 60 phones. In the upcoming Flash MX 2004, there's a new template for Series 60 devices (screen shot above). Once again Anil got the scoop:
Macromedia announced last year that Flash player lite would be available on all iMode 505i Series Phones and it seems that the same will happened for Nokia Series 60 phones. You can see (right image) that they have provided templates for the Nokia 7650 and 3650 along with others to help designers create content for mobile devices.
Flash lite is a scaled down version tailored for mobile phones :"Macromedia This profile is designed to require fewer device resources and to operate in most mass-market phones shipping this year. The Macromedia Flash Lite profile features Macromedia Flash 5 objects and Macromedia Flash 4 ActionScript. ."
Flash movies/apps COULD be a powerful way to enhance the mobile browsing experience, allowing for some interesting UI designs and expanding the multimedia experience. HOWEVER, I really hope that mobile browsers don't get bogged down with huge "CNET" type Flash advertising, that would chew up your GPRS/3G connection and hog your mobiles resources.
Now, why has Nokia not announced this for the N-Gage? It seems like a logical device to launch "Flash lite" on.
Macromedia's Flash MX 2004 PRO authoring package will be available shortly and costs US$699.
This looks cool, but there doesn't seem to be any word yet when the player will be generally available. It's been kicking around for *months* now and I've been waiting for it since at least February. Word was then that it'd be arriving "soon", but it has yet to appear!
There's a ton of questions in my mind about this technology. I want to *play*. I want to see how performant the Flash Lite player is, what its capabilities are, whether it'll have DoCoMo-style restrictions (you can't access the internet from Flash on DoCoMo phones unless its in a click event). In short will it be a Java killer and another way to create rich UIs for Web Services, or is it just a way to create long animations and annoy mobile phones users like many Flash movies annoy web surfers?
I guess I need to read up on the info that's available on Macromedia's site:
- Macromedia Mobile and Devices
- Mobile and Devices Developer Center
- Macromedia Flash Documentation
- Flash Lite Authoring Guidelines for the i-mode Service by NTT DoCoMo (pdf)
- Flash Lite Users Guide (pdf)
So now we just sit back and wait. I don't agree with Anil about the N-Gage though. Nokia won't put *anything* on the N-Gage that might take away from users buying the MMC-based games, that includes Flash. But on the 7650, 3650, 6600? That would be a great thing!
2 minutes Later: Anil just IMed me and pointed out This book called Flash Enabled. Very neat. Thanks Anil!