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Google's Swiffy project offers Flash support on Apple products - Smartphone Development

This article takes a look inside iPhone 5 rumors and Google's new Swiffy Project, which offers Flash support to Apple products such as the iPad, iPod, and iPhone.

  1. iPhone 5 Rumors and Google's Swiffy Project
  2. Google's Swiffy project offers Flash support on Apple products
By: wubayou
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July 01, 2011

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Google's Swiffy project offers Flash support on Apple products

If the lack of Flash support on your favorite Apple product has you down, help is on the way, and it comes in the form of Google's new Swiffy tool.  Swiffy converts files in the widely used Flash format to HTML5, which is supported on Apple products such as the iPad, iPod, and iPhone.  Apple CEO Steve Jobs cited a dislike for the Flash platform in the past, noting security issues and a lack of reliability.  The lack of Flash support on Apple devices has been an item of contention for many users, so the introduction of Swiffy is likely to be welcomed with open arms.

Product manager Marcel Gordon announced Swiffy's arrival in a post on the Google Code blog: "Today we’re making the first version of Swiffy available on Google Labs. You can upload a SWF file, and Swiffy will produce an HTML5 version which will run in modern browsers with a high level of SVG support such as Chrome and Safari.  Swiffy is a great example of how far the web platform has come. Swiffy animations benefit from the recent advancements in JavaScript execution speed and hardware accelerated 2D graphics in the browser. Viva la Web!" 

Swiffy works by rendering a compact JSON representation of an animation via SVG, HTML5, and CSS3.  The JSON object is interpreted in JavaScript in the browser and also contains ActionScript 2.0.  In terms of size, the Swiffy animations are similar to the original SWF files.
According to Gordon, Swiffy is not a complete solution to Apple's lack of Flash support.  The tool does handle advertisements and animations successfully, but it may not convert all Flash content.  Still, Swiffy is impressive, especially when you consider that it came about from a hacking project.  Pieter Senster, an engineering intern, experimented with trying to display animations on devices that did not support Flash.  Senster was successful in his efforts, and Google hired him to a full-time position.  In addition, Senster was given a team to help work on the project, until Swiffy was officially born.

For more on this topic, visit http://www.gmanews.tv/story/224894/technology/google-makes-flash-video-on-apple-possible

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