Flash / HTML5 "non-issue" - Shantanu Narayan

Tiernan Ray reports for Tech Trader Daily on the Nvidia press conference yesterday at CES.

Nvidia’s CEO Jen-Hsun Huang claimed that there will soon be tens of millions of devices in the world (population not much more than six billion) and announced that the company "has teamed with Adobe (ADBE) to develop the world’s first fully accelerated Flash processor".

Yongseok Jang, VP for mobile devices with LG Electronics, announced the Optimus X2 - the first phone with the Tegra 2 chip. It has an 8megapixel camera and an HDMI output that for this demo plugged into a Panasonic television. What I gather from the report is that most of the demo worked out except for the bandwidth when web pages were slow to load. Later Manrique Brenes, VP of product development at Skype, was invited onstage as a planned video conference demo had some issues.

According to Tiernan Ray, "Huang feeds Narayan all sorts of softball questions, asking him to talk up the extreme important of Flash on the Web." Then there is a question about Flash versus HTML 5. All that is reported is this quote -“It’s really a non-issue.”

What could this mean? Presumably Adobe will never get into a situation where Creative Suite could not offer the technology designers require. So Adobe support for HTML5 is credible. But there could be a consequence on pricing for Creative Suite. HTML requires some way to edit text.

Also the interest in Flash and HTML5 clearly is an issue as it shows the Macromedia approach has taken over from Postscript and PDF. Previously I have objected to the lack of Adobe interest in the products many people are using, but the Flash emphasis makes more sense now.

Jen-Hsun Huang compared the new chip to the announcement of Windows 95 and DirectX at COMDEX. I think there could also be a comparison with the launch of the IBM PC in 1982. Later there was competiton with IBM as they used standard components but the PC sold well for several years. Apple went into one of their down phases.

According to the PC timeline for 1983

Market share of personal computers: Radio Shack 20%, Apple Computer 17%, IBM 1.9%.