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Oddly Enough, iPhone Users Want Flash

Even though Steve Jobs has done his best to convince the world that Flash on a mobile device is the wrong thing to do, iPhone users apparently think otherwise. The new SkyFire browser, which allows Flash video to play on the iPhone, has been a wildly successful download since its release a few days ago.

Ed Hansberry

November 11, 2010

1 Min Read

Even though Steve Jobs has done his best to convince the world that Flash on a mobile device is the wrong thing to do, iPhone users apparently think otherwise. The new SkyFire browser, which allows Flash video to play on the iPhone, has been a wildly successful download since its release a few days ago.Based on SkyFire's November 9th blog entry, there have been over 300,000 downloads of the browser over the weekend. Normally SkyFire is a free browser, but I guess they anticipated he hardware investment to support iPhone users would be huge, and they were right. They sell it for $2.99, which would net them some $600,000 after Apple takes their cut from apps sold in the App Store.

SkyFire works by putting a shell of a browser on the user's device. When the user enters an address, the server's at SkyFire load and render the data and then send the visual and audio content to the mobile device. That means as long as the SkyFire server's support it, the end user can see it, and that includes Flash video.

The downloads were so successful, SkyFire had to temporarily disable sales while they added server and bandwidth to support the content. Further downloads were allowed in batches while they scaled up their backend support to match the additional bandwidth each new batch of users required.

Of course, this still isn't a full Flash experience. Running apps this way may be tricky at best. This is best reserved for video, of which there is a ton of on the web that prior to now wasn't available for iPhone users.

SkyFire also supports Android, Symbian and Windows Mobile.

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