This Week on iPhone-Developers…
Surely, you have seen the birth of our sister site iphone-developers.com in the recent weeks. Starting this week, we will feature an article from their homepage as a means to allow users on XDA who have some Apple experience or who simply like their products, to be up to date with the latest developments in this new and growing community.
It wasn’t until recently that Apple even allowed competing browsers to be accepted into the App Store, but not only has SkyFire managed to gain approval, they have done so with the incredible ability to play flash video. It’s been two months of waiting for the Skyfire team (and the rest of us) but the application is now available for download in the App Store for the price of $2.99.
This feat of flash-playback trickery is accomplished by sending web pages first to Skyfire’s own servers, where they are then rendered and converted into a format that is acceptable to the iPhone browser. Flash video is converted into HTML5 and compressed (by about 75%) so that it can easily be played by the native webkit browser without flash support.
Unfortunately this leaves us in the dust for certain flash applications that are more than just video, and it also reduces playback quality by a considerable amount. The final painful truth is that one of the top benefits of this browser, the ability to access Hulu videos, has been blocked altogether. With YouTube and most of the other video services natively supporting HTML5, this makes us wonder if the need for flash video playback is still as great as it once was.
Update: Skyfire has halted sales because their servers are unable to keep up with demand. It is not known when sales will resume.
Thanks Arbre for the article.