Last year was big for mobile. Accord­ing to Adobe’s Dig­i­tal Index, con­sumers spent 4x as much time in mobile apps as they did on mobile web­sites. Apple intro­duced the iBea­con, paving the way for mar­keters to reach cus­tomers with ever­more tar­geted, location-based con­tent. And mobile apps con­tin­ued to rev­o­lu­tion­ize indus­tries. Uber changed the way we catch taxis, Waze lever­aged social and loca­tion data to pre­dict road con­ges­tion, and Nest enabled us to con­trol our home appli­ances remotely through our smartphone.

As tech­nol­ogy evolves, the oppor­tu­nity for mar­keters to drive cus­tomer loy­alty and engage­ment through mobile apps mul­ti­plies. Exist­ing app tools pri­mar­ily focus only on the devel­oper. We believe this high­lights a major gap, as mar­keters also need ways to directly update con­tent and per­son­al­ize their mobile app expe­ri­ences to bet­ter deliver value to cus­tomers and dif­fer­en­ti­ate from the competition.

That’s why we’re excited to announce a new mobile app devel­op­ment and man­age­ment offer­ing today – mar­keted as Adobe Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps for mar­keters and Phone­Gap Enter­prise for devel­op­ers. Now, entire teams, from devel­op­ers and mar­keters, can cre­ate engag­ing mobile apps that have a greater impact on the busi­ness.   Orga­ni­za­tions can deliver apps faster, mod­ify the app in response to user behav­ior (with­out IT resources), and ulti­mately improve app ROI.

With Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps, we’re enabling teams to:

Con­tin­u­ously improve the app expe­ri­ence. Released a great app but your cus­tomers aren’t com­ing back?  Need to change the expe­ri­ence to keep them engaged, but updates are tak­ing days, even weeks? With Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps, mar­keters can update the app expe­ri­ence with­out devel­oper resources using the easy to use drag-and-drop inter­face in Expe­ri­ence Man­ager. Updates are pub­lished instantly after desired review work­flows, with­out requir­ing the cus­tomer to man­u­ally update their app.

Reach all of your cus­tomer seg­ments, faster. The ques­tion we hear often from teams is “should I build for my iOS or Android users first?”  With Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps, you no longer have to choose. You can cre­ate one app and take advan­tage of that devel­op­ment work to deliver across chan­nels. You can also embed cross-platform con­tent in your native apps to speed updat­ing time.  Loyal cus­tomers are left out no more.

Reach across brands with­out break­ing the bank. App devel­op­ment is time con­sum­ing, and expen­sive.  Do you want to eas­ily cre­ate new apps for dif­fer­ent brands? Or per­haps cre­ate sev­eral cam­paign apps for dif­fer­ent regions?  We’re mak­ing this easy in Expe­ri­ence Man­ager. Develop one app, copy and tai­lor for var­i­ous chan­nels.  Bam – you’re up and run­ning everywhere.

Truly go omni-channel. Your cus­tomers move seam­lessly between chan­nels. Now, so can you. With Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps and the broader offer­ing, you can man­age con­tent for web and apps – for desk­tops, smart­phones, tablets, and even dig­i­tal dis­plays – using one skillset, from one easy to user inter­face. You can lever­age pre-set work­flows and approvals to effi­ciently man­age and update the expe­ri­ence everywhere.

In addi­tion to help­ing mar­keters tackle the entire app life­cy­cle, Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps also addresses the needs of the devel­oper with Adobe Phone­Gap Enter­prise, Adobe’s lead­ing cross-platform app devel­op­ment solution. Millions of devel­op­ers have used Phone­Gap to lever­age web devel­oper tal­ent to cre­ate apps that work across plat­forms, includ­ing iOS and Android. We are work­ing along­side the Phone­Gap team to deliver an enter­prise solu­tion that offers full Adobe sup­port, easy ways to incor­po­rate native device fea­tures (such as cam­era and geolo­ca­tion), fast inte­gra­tion with Adobe Mar­ket­ing Cloud solu­tions, and a sim­pli­fied way to test new apps amongst all stake­hold­ers.   Reap these ben­e­fits in both your native and hybrid apps – tech­nol­ogy choice is up to you.

Expe­ri­ence Man­ager apps, with Phone­Gap Enter­prise capa­bil­i­ties, com­bines one of the rich­est mobile appli­ca­tion devel­op­ment plat­forms with a robust set of tools for mar­keters, to improve the man­age­ment of mobile apps from devel­op­ment and deploy­ment to ongo­ing man­age­ment and engagement.

Right now, we’re busy work­ing with some great brands and look for­ward to shar­ing their suc­cess sto­ries in the near future. We hope you’ll stay tuned and in touch.

115 comments
alisnikol
alisnikol

Moving towards AIR is a great idea but I am interested in commercial entity that are pushing your technology. I know many Air developers who pays yearly license just to work with Air, like other cross-platform tools get optimize.

PhoneGap Developers

RobertRicci
RobertRicci

Ok Adobe Managers understood. I have only one request. Consider selling it.    


-- "Put a brand here" Flash -- is an unborn baby that will change the game again.


Thank you.

liquidate
liquidate

For those interested in what's been going on with the Flash Runtime lately and what we've got planned in the future, please take a look at our latest blog post:  http://adobe.ly/1i1BO7E


Zwick
Zwick

This is so sad... Watching as Adobe is *****ng with a community they were creating last 15 years. Guess what - I will never learn anything new from your company and you can guess why. I will never ever risk "Thougts on PhoneGap" thing again. 

PierB
PierB

Adobe, don't waste our precious time. If it's time to move to Objective C, Java, Haxe, Xamarin or Unity let us know as soon as possible.

XIDA_de
XIDA_de

Please Adobe, liste to the developers and push Air. By the way, way isn't there a Flash Builder CC yet?

MarcusDobler
MarcusDobler

I think one problem is. Adobe still follows the words of Steve Jobs, a person I admire just to mention this. But also Steve Jobs was not always right. And while Apple sometimes changing their opinion like delivering a smaller iPad against the opinion of Steve Jobs. Adobe still believes in the letter „Thoughts on Flash“


I just can not understand why no one at Adobe can see what a great technology Adobe Air is! It is by far the best cross platform development tool out there. While Phone Gap is one of the worst! 

Chrippe
Chrippe

Hey Loni!

There are lots of unanswered questions in the comments.

I find the silence from you and Adobe quite disrespectful.

sellt
sellt

I have been a developer and an educator whose has worked in the Flash Platform for 14 years. I use AIR for large scale projects, both games and otherwise, for companies and education partners. Even with the lack of support from Adobe I have been very happy with AIR's performance. I have also used Phone Gap (in fact I tried very hard to put it into my work flow), and my feelings are the same as others. If you are going to do mobile dev with HTML5/JS Phone Gap is not a stellar tool for that type of work. I would advise looking to Titanium or Sencha. Both of those companies are extremely motivated and show a sense of the market and their dev communities.

I am afraid that the Macromedia DNA has now all but gone from Adobe. What is left is a company in search of its soul making promises that it can't keep. It has been mildly profitable through promotion and hype, but it's developer base is leaving. A company about tools no longer really makes them.

MattBadley
MattBadley

AIR now feel's like Unity's younger and less capable younger brother. They are essentially very similar pieces of software - both proprietary, both able to handle 3D and 2D, both cross compile and both use plugins for the web.


The difference is the love and attention that Unity gets. Just look at all those new features and releases constantly coming to Unity. How about all the SDKs being written for Unity to handle things like Facebook integration and ad networks.  All that support online, the asset store, the games, the tutorials... the buzz! 


Flash used to have all this back in the day but it started to trickle away after the whole 'Steve Jobs killed Flash' debacle.  Flash has a tainted past and it can't seem to shake it off, and now it feels like it's all just slipping away into nothingness.


This really saddens me, because - IT IS SUCH A GREAT TOOL! Obviously based on all the posts in this forum there is still a large, active and passionate community who are still successfully using AIR in their projects, and who love using it.  


Imagine how much greater AIR could be if Adobe started to actively turn things around and really give it the attention it deserves. Adobe needs to drop PhoneGap and build on the product they already have and that people already love. They need to rekindle the fire and push AIR as their, wait for it... "leading cross-platform app development solution".


I'll say it again... a positive step in the right direction would be to simply re-brand AIR as PhoneGap 2.0 ;)

pCAmpos
pCAmpos

Couldn't care less of what Adobe is doing now. Flex has been donated to Apache among the Falcon Compiler. That means that we are able now to cross compile AS3 to other languages. Soon we will be able to continue to program with MXML/AS3 and output to SWF and HTLM/JS/CSS. take a look here.


https://cwiki.apache.org/confluence/display/FLEX/FlexJS

Adi Nugroho
Adi Nugroho

Dear Adobe... If you need money for Adobe AIR platform development, just make it into paid/subscription license product. Many if not most developers would be gladly to pay. If you're not serious about AIR development, just sell it, please!

David Komer
David Komer

Like many others here, I make my day-to-day living coding in Flash/AIR. I actually *agree* with the direction Adobe is taking but with a caveat.


The trick is, AIR is absolutely awesome when it comes to making interactive audiovisual things- whether it's a business charts app, game, or video library.. doesn't really matter. It's much better or as good as any other technology when it comes to that sort of thing.


But what Flash/AIR has always been annoyingly terrible at is handling text. TLFText framework has been dropped from Flash Pro CC. In order to use it in a pure actionscript project you need to include the flex framework and then good luck sorting out the extremely convoluted documentation. Then toss all that out the window on mobile where you use StageText. In short- text is an absolute mess in Flash/AIR. Yes, it is in fact much better in HTML.


So it makes sense for boxy text-based business apps to have a technology that's focused on dealing with that properly, and it makes sense for Adobe to provide the technology to empower it. I assume Experience Manager does that.


My problem is- these days I'm building lots of educational apps which are half traditional games and half learning. The hoops I've had to jump through with text are ridiculous. Stage3d/Starling, StageText, TLFText, do *not* inherently play well together. As an experienced developer I've been able to work around most problems and create a proprietary library that handles it well enough, but I pity any programmer starting out who needs to do such basic things.


With that in mind, I would also encourage Adobe to recognize that AIR is hands-down one of the best cross-platform development environments out there, but it *does* need proper attention- especially in the text department, in order to build business-focused (or education-focused) text-based apps. If not, then I understand their need to offer an alternative. But I'm really hoping they can get their head around text issues on AIR. It's been a *long* time coming.

tmalicet
tmalicet

Long live Haxe and OpenFL ... I switched to those 2 a year ago and when I see articles like these, I realise how a smart move it was!

shamruk
shamruk

Come on! What's the point to create a new tool when you own a 10+ years rich media platform - Flash (AIR). 


Make a casual app-builder using AIR: cheeper and same profit. You can give it a new name. Also use new extra money on AIR development.

NeuKoelnerVonDd
NeuKoelnerVonDd

@lonistark hey loni, you really should have informed yourself about what is going on in the community. It is totally amazing to me how differentiated the mobile app developers react on this. If someone would what shown me this article and ask me what the reaction might be I would have bet for a really angry and mean shitstorm. It's really frustrating. Please learn from it and think first before posting that pseudo pr crap.

Learn from the experienced community, support them and enforce its power.

stevewarren
stevewarren

I wish Adobe would do the same with Flash and AIR as they did with Flex - transfer the ownership to a respectable Open Source foundation. I understand that the revenue from Photoshop dwarfs the revenue generated from Adobe AIR products, and that Adobe just isn't interested in supporting AIR in the way it deserves. Please Adobe, allow AIR to have a new life with the people who love it and will continue to care for it. This is important to us, and is not just about a technology product - it's a way of life, a culture, and an ethos.

GPaluk
GPaluk

@liquidate  Thank you Chris. Your response seems a message of your intent to address these developer issues, so I present some real questions from the developer community in the follow up to my open letter to you. Best Regards. http://plugin.io/response-from-adobe/

Zwick
Zwick

@liquidate  "what we've got planned in the future" ... Am I blind or what? I don't see any future plans in your blog post...Maybe I see one - workers for iOS... Lately this year? ... So... Plans for 2014 are workers for iOS? This is not even funny. You blog post is like half year old FP/AIR release notes.


Community is missing Android x86 & Windows phone support. Wake up Adobe.

ronson49
ronson49

Speed tax failed, they rushed out flash cc which was re-engineered in 64 bit but when unreal laughed, they tried to get back cash from "scum" like us. Half assed.

jeff__ward
jeff__ward

@Chrippe  FYI, Loni has a (canned feeling) reply below, but Bill Howard has indicated on Twitter that Adobe is working on a response.

DanielFreeman
DanielFreeman

@MattBadley  I realise that you intended your comment in support of AIR.  Thanks.  But I just wanted to add some comments to your comparison between AIR and Unity3D.


1. The Flash Plug-in is still installed on many more desktop/laptop browsers than the Unity3D plug-in.


2. Unity3D's 2D performance sucks compared with Stage3D and powerful frameworks such as Genome2D.  It might even be worse than not-so-good frameworks like Starling ;).


3. The Flash Platform is much more versatile than Unity3D.  Employing a powerfulUI framework like MadComponents allows you to build general-purpose and enterprise apps using AIR that would be impossible in Unity3D.  

cuentapruebas01
cuentapruebas01

@pCAmpos It seems you are missing part of the picture, you can compile to SWF, but what if Adobe completely drops the Flash Player and the AIR Runtime? Also, I'm not that confident about the Falcon Compiler, there is still a long way to go, and it's been a lot of time since it was donated.

jeff__ward
jeff__ward

@pCAmpos  I can't say I'm a fan of the idea of cross-compiling to a different VM - especially JavaScript.  Sounds like the worst of both worlds.


The only "couldn't care less" that I feel is that Haxe/OpenFL wouldn't be a difficult transition.

ZAcharyInitialZ
ZAcharyInitialZ

@Adi Nugroho  OR... throw the Entire Flash Platform to  Apache, if they have no interest anymore in Flash, 

haha,.. Flash CC update is now capable on JS Canvas {or exactly } I would say it as 'HTML5 Canvas Editor',... what??? 
Adobe stupid decision is making effort for Flash CC to be "HTML5 Canvas/WebGL Editor", but go away from AS3 ,that , yeah we are all know, greater than Canvas or WebGL itself,



Zwick
Zwick

@Adi Nugroho  I think we still can't understand, that Adobe is one of that companies pushed forward with hypes and hipsters. It's not about quality of product or amount of profit. It's about how cool is that product and how cool are users while using it. :)


Edit: yes and I'm willin' to pay as well...

Ben_Dev
Ben_Dev

I would pay for that as well. Just adding another voice to the chorus.
ADOBE-- there are so many of us who would be willing to pay a subscription for continued AIR development, for new features, and to keep it competitive-- are you listening??

crooksy88
crooksy88

…or an option could be to make it part of the CC subscription offering.

FlexMonkey
FlexMonkey

@Adi Nugroho  I would certainly pay. Adobe, if you do some work work on Flash Builder, you might get some revenue that way too. I know as Flash Builder is left to fester lots of developers are moving to IntelliJ and other IDEs.

cuentapruebas01
cuentapruebas01

@David Komer  I've done a lot of work with text in the past and never had problems, or could be worked around without much problem, but of course, text needs can vary greatly between apps. What I always miss is better html text support. Which sort of feature does your library add? I agree text support could be improved tho, I miss having some built-in features in several areas (like having some graphics drawString with a border width argument), and performance is also way behind HTML when it comes to text.

stevewarren
stevewarren

@tmalicet Can you elaborate please? What IDE are you using (if any)? I was disappointed to see an old Eclipse plugin project that seems to have been abandoned. What type of projects are you working on with it? What targets are you compiling to? What have been some obstacles you've faced, and how have you overcome them? Are these technologies that you believe will have support 5 years down the road?

codeandvisual
codeandvisual

@stevewarren  I like the idea of this but there are also some benefits to having a motivated commercial entity pushing your technology. In that light I'd just also mention that I know of a lot of Air developers who would happily pay a (reasonable) yearly licence to work with Air - similar to how other cross platform tools have monetized. 


We'd just expect a prioritized product with great developer engagement as part of the transaction.

ElliotGeno
ElliotGeno

@jeff__ward @Chrippe  It would be great if that response included moving development back to the states instead of India. Bringing back evangelists into the fold. AND stepping up their PR to match the fervor of the fans on this thread!


But we all know Adobe sucks at communicating effectively.


They could have avoided a bunch of backlash of the Flex debacle by announcing it a couple weeks earlier at MAX. They could have said a few sentences about how big a gift it was to the open source community, but instead it was tied to the canceling of Flash for Android. This compounded the whole problem!


And with Flash on Android... I was getting spectacular performance before they canned it. Processors are only getting faster too. IF they would have held on for a few more months, they could have persuaded everyone they were in it for the long haul.


Every bit of news coming from Adobe sounds like bad news. I would rather they didn't say anything!

MattBadley
MattBadley

@DanielFreeman Thanks for the feedback.  


The intentions of my original post were indeed in support of AIR (and I still use AIR on a daily basis), but I've felt lately that other tools out there, Unity in particular, have done a much better job on the PR and new features front.  As discussed in this whole thread, Adobe isn't very good at communicating to it's developer base. 


In response to your points on Unity -


1. Obviously Flash has much more market penetration on the web compared to Unity, but for mobile app development this is irrelevant.  It also feels like Flash on the general web is dying anyway now, with the exception of games on Facebook...


2. I didn't realise Unity's 2D performance was poor.  What are you basing this on and how have you tested it?  My understanding is that Unity's 2D performance is in fact better than AIR on mobiles (obviously it depends how you choose to optimise your code - for both AIR and Unity).


3. I agree that Flash is more versatile - at the moment at least.  Unity's new 2D features are a step in the right direction towards being able to build decent UI's in Unity.  At the rate Unity is growing though I wouldn't be surprised if they have a Flash comparable solution within a couple of years.


I'd like to stick with AIR but like everyone else on this forum I need more assurance from Adobe that they are actively keeping it alive.  The new features that were mentioned by @liquidate don't feel like enough to keep the platform moving full steam ahead.

pCAmpos
pCAmpos

@cuentapruebas01

The big advantage for me with FlexJS approach is that you can continue to use your favorite set of tools and language that you mastered over the years. Also depending on your current projects, you can theoretically port it to this new framework with minimum effort. In the limit you would just have to replace the 'old spark' components with a new namespace for the components, Is my belief that if someday Adobe drops Flash/AIR completely, we AS3 developers will have a new and better framework to continue thriving, with different outputs (like Haxe) powered by the community. No longer we will be tied to this company which i no longer recognize as developer friendly.

XIDA_de
XIDA_de

It is already part of cc, but it's still called 4.7

David Komer
David Komer

@cuentapruebas01 @David Komer  Right now I'm working on an app which requires selecting from a library of bi-directional text (Hebrew with vowels),allow the user to edit it, and then to manipulate it as gpu-powered graphics like it was a regular texture. Needs to continue functioning as screen scales and for different sized screens right off the bat and work both on mobile (native soft keyboard) and desktop. Possible and doable within AIR? Yes. Easy? Not so much... ;)

Ben_Dev
Ben_Dev

@stevewarren FlashDevelop is the preferred Haxe IDE ... it's really wonderful, and open source.

jpcote
jpcote

@codeandvisual @stevewarren "there are also some benefits to having a motivated commercial entity pushing your technology".

The operative word here is "motivated".  I'd rather have a "motivated" community-driven open source spin-off than the blatant lack of interest Adobe is showing for AIR.

PierB
PierB

@MattBadley @DanielFreeman  Here are some benchmarks from a year ago http://blog.juiceboxmobile.com/2013/03/06/2d-gaming-mobile-performance-starling-air-vs-unity-3d/

Those are old benchmarks, and some commenters said the Unity code isn't optimized, but it's clear that for pure GPU stuff there's not such great difference. Once you start using the CPU (which is closer to a real world scenario) Unity is the clear winner.

I suspect that considering how fast Unity is releasing new features and versions as compared to turtle speed of Air development, those benchmarks using latest versions should be even more dramatic.

ElliotGeno
ElliotGeno

@David Komer @cuentapruebas01  Funny I just heard about a technique yesterday, that maybe can be of some use to you! Have you ever heard of Distance Field Font rendering? I hadn't. But it looks pretty sweet as it will automatically use a threshold shader on a blurry texture to produce a glyph. This allows the texture to scale infinitely and the shader just renders the font as it should look at that size.


Looks like there are some people trying to get it to work on Starling too. Search their forums!


Here is an example of how it works:

https://code.google.com/p/libgdx/wiki/DistanceFieldFonts

stevewarren
stevewarren

@Ben_Dev @stevewarrenOh, I'm sorry I wasn't clear - I'm on a Mac. I keep hearing about how great FlashDevelop is :-/


I see people recommending IntelliJ and Monodevelop for OSX.

stevewarren
stevewarren

I haven't kept up with Flex, but I wonder how Apache has been doing maintaining it as an Open Source project. I still install the Flex SDK into Flash Builder, and have recently seen the installer go from version 10 to 11 to 12. This indicates to me that something positive is happening there.