Adobe’s Flash fallout with Apple delays launch of ABC’s iView app on the iPad

The ABC will not be able to offer its popular catch-up TV service iView on the iPad until much later this year, following Apple’s decision not to use Adobe’s Flash in its devices.  

At a Senate Estimates hearing this week, ABC managing director Mark Scott, said that it would have to “recreate” the iView app because it had been built in Flash. The transcript of the hearing was published today.

He added: “In coming months, we will have the iView app ready to go.” When quizzed further for a date, he added “a couple of months”.

Instead of the iView app, the public broadcaster will more immediately launch an iPad app similar to what is currently available on the  iPhone – containing general ABC content and news from its websites and radio stations.

Scott said that ABC app for the iPad is likely to be released “within a week or two of the launch of the iPad” which goes on sale in Australia on Friday.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs last month wrote an open letter discussing its decision not to allow Flash on iPhones, iPods and iPads.

In it he wrote:

… the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short.

The avalanche of media outlets offering their content for Apple’s mobile devices demonstrates that Flash is no longer necessary to watch video or consume any kind of web content.”

Meanwhile, the iView has been a strong growth area for the ABC, with Scott claiming it has had over two million visitors during April.

That same month, the first episode of the new series of  Doctor Who was made available on iView almost 48 hours before it aired on ABC1. The public broadcaster said more than 100,000 viewers streamed the program.


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