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Friday
Jun042010

If Your Site Has Flash...

We've designed a few websites here and there, and they range from the simple and informative to sites with flash and video.  We try our best to make sure that the sites we design are specifically purposed for our clients, so they aren't paying for features they don't need and their site visitors won't use.  We also try to steer our clients clear of site elements that may be a detriment to their optimization or simply an annoyance for users (hello, splash pages!! If you've still got a splash page on your site, get rid of it.  Like, now...)

There's been an ongoing debate in the development world for the last 3-4 weeks revolving around Apple technology and Adobe software.  You can read a few articles about the issues here, and also see the letter that Apple CEO Steve Jobs penned in April regarding Adobe software.

Here's the long and short of it:  Flash, an Adobe product, doesn't function on iPhones, iPods and iPads.  Rather, it might function fine, but Apple doesn't allow Flash on these products. 

So, if you have a website, you need to be aware that when your website is accessed with an iPhone, iPod or iPad, any Flash elements will not be visible to these users.  This means that you have a decision to make. 

  • You could remove all Flash elements so that your site is functional for all users (but this is undesireable to a lot of site owners since most paid a pretty penny for the Flash functionality.)
  • You could do nothing.  If Flash is just an aesthetic part of your site and doesn't affect functionality, a user accessing your site with an iPod, iPad or iPhone won't really notice that the Flash is 'missing'. 
  • If you're running a huge site, some organizations have opted to create alternate pages that appear when an iPod, iPad or iPhone operating system is detected.
  • Or, as Steve Jobs suggests, you could utilize HTML5, CSS and JavaScript for your site programming.  Jobs says:

HTML5, the new web standard that has been adopted by Apple, Google and many others, lets web developers create advanced graphics, typography, animations and transitions without relying on third party browser plug-ins (like Flash).

If your site functionality relys heavily on Flash, now is the time to start thinking about a game plan.  If you have Google Analytics installed on your site, you can actually dig down and determine how much of your site traffic is accessing your site via iPad, iPod or iPhone.  For assistance in finding this information within your analytics reports, shoot us an email or give us a call.

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