So Microsoft licensed FlashLite from Adobe for use in their Windows Mobile software. Not sure when it will be available in a mobile release, likely later this year.
Some have speculated this was to buy time until their own Silverlight product is ready for mobile use (with a few sites actually using it).
Others have said Microsoft can’t ignore that millions of phones (mainly Symbian-based) are already running FlashLite, so they had to keep up.
Personally, I think it’s less either of those, and primarily a marketing game. MS is trying the same tactics they tried with the Zune vs. iPod. The iPod has no FM transmitter, we do! The iPod has no cool WiFi feature (well, not at the time), we do!
The flaw in this thinking is that the lack of an FM transmitter is no more a problem with the iPod than the lack of FlashLite is for the iPhone.
Doesn’t Microsoft, or any of the iPhone’s competitors, review the numbers? People are browsing the web on the iPhone like crazy! And they’re doing it despite the lack of Flash of any kind. Or Java for that matter.
I’m sure analysts will hail this, and think it’ll force Apple’s hand, but Apple’s hands are busy right now counting their money and finishing iPhone 2.0.
Oh well, the more clueless the iPhone’s competitors remain, the further ahead Apple will pull. It’s getting to the point that it seems like an unfair fight.