Adobe looks to push Flash through Open Screen Project

Adobe said Thursday it is looking to provide developers with a consistent runtime environment across multiple platforms, which allows for simpler and quicker development.

Adobe has lined up an impressive list of supporters to back the project, including ARM, Cisco, Intel, LG, Motorola, Qualcomm, Toshiba, and Verizon Wireless, among others. It has also gotten the blessing of several content providers including the BBC, MTV, and NBC.

The company claims 98 percent of Internet-enabled desktops can access Flash content, and that 1 billion handsets and mobile devices will ship with Flash technology built in by 2009.

Standards and open source chief Dave McAllister told BetaNews that initially the restrictions on use of the SWF and FLV/F4V specifications will occur. In the near future, it will also publish APIs for the device porting layer of the Adobe Flash player.

In the next generation of the project, McAllister said that the company will remove all licensing fees for both Adobe AIR and Flash Player. This will essentially make the multimedia format the least expensive for which to develop.

Through this, the company appears to be aiming to increase its share of the market by opening up its signature multimedia platform. This shouldn't be confused with open source, however.

"Open source is a contractually loaded term," McAllister said. Instead, the company is opening up the formats to be used more freely, rather than the actual code itself. That appears to still be protected under Adobe copyrights. "We're not open sourcing anything at this point."

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