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Steve Jobs To Flash: Drop Dead

Andrew R. Hickey

The rumor mill is swirling with reports that Apple's top dog disparaged Adobe Flash during a meeting with Wall Street Journal brass to pitch the Apple iPad.

According to a Valleywag report, Jobs met with newspaper officials about digitizing The Journal on the Apple iPad. When asked about the iPad's lack of Flash, Jobs snapped that Adobe Flash is "old technology."

This is just Jobs' latest lash against Flash, which is missing from the Apple iPad and has also been left off of the now-iconic Apple iPhone. Previous reports indicate that during a recent Apple town hall Jobs called Flash a "CPU hog" and said it is full of "security holes."

"We reportedly don't spend a lot of energy on old technology," the Apple chief said.

Jobs' most recent tirade against Flash continued with Jobs claiming the iPad's battery performance would drop from 10 hours to 1.5 hours if it had to spend CPU cycles decoding Flash. He also suggested that ditching flash would be "trivial," Valleywag noted.

Jobs continued, supposedly comparing Flash to out-dated and defunct technologies like floppy drives, the compact disc and archaic data ports like FireWire 400.

Jobs' dislike of Flash stems from a long-standing feud between Apple and Adobe over the use of Flash on the Web. The dispute started with the Apple iPhone's Flash-less debut in 2007 and continued with Apple not offering support for the oft used Web animation software in future iPhone and iPod touch generations, as well as the Apple iPad.

In order to offer up an iPad-based subscription, The Journal would have to lose Flash. Jobs reportedly suggested that The Journal adopt a different video codec, such as H.264 video compression.

While it's unclear where The Journal would side in the Flash debate, but in order to get an iPad foothold it may have to take Jobs' Flash bashing to heart.

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