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Apple on Flash: Hey Steve, "C'mon Man"

Steven P. Jobs posted a 1,700-word letter on Apple’s Web site on Thursday

Remember Hamlet and the quoteThe lady doth protest too much, methinks"? While in this case it isn't a lady, the question still applies to Apple's CEO.

Steven P. Jobs posted a 1,700-word letter on Apple’s Web site on Thursday, explaining the company’s decision not to allow the multimedia software Adobe Flash on Apple’s mobile devices, including the iPhone and iPad. The letter titled "Thoughts on Flash" ran the gamut from philosophical issues about the nature of closed platforms to complaints about performance and crashes.Why would Steve go to the trouble of sharing his "diatribe"? Think back to the Hamlet quote.

Let me say this: I enjoy Apple products. I own an iPhone, iPad and a MacBook. I have great respect for the innovations Apple has created. But give me a break Steve - why go to the trouble of writing a long letter of half truths? The reason you don't want Flash to run on your devices is as self serving to your business model as it is in the interest of "open source" philosophies (of all the reasons this was one you should not have mentioned Jobs). Do you think Apple is open source Steve ? "C'mon Man".

In response Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch posted an entry to Adobe's website titled "Moving Forward," in which he underscored the passion people feel about both Apple and Adobe technologies. "We feel confident that were Apple and Adobe to work together as we are with a number of other partners, we could provide a terrific experience with Flash on the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch," Lynch wrote.

He also sided with Adobe Flash evangelist Lee Brimelow, who had registered his disgust with Apple earlier in the month. Brimlow was upset about a developer agreement from Apple that makes it a violation of terms to use a non-sanctioned development language.

So why the protestation ? Here it is - Jobs is fighting for the survival of Apple and Charlie Stross got it right in his recent post on the "The Real Reason Why Steve Jobs Hates Flash". I strongly suggest you read his post. As Charlie explains, The PC World is coming to an end and Jobs knows this. The App Store and the iTunes Store have taught Steve Jobs that ownership of the sales channel is vital. Even if he's reduced to giving the machines away, as long as he can charge rent for access to data or apps he's got a business model. As hardware commoditizes and margins evaporate, the only way for Apple to remain viable is to own a completely closed system. Adobe threatens that system, hence Steve's protestation.

Next time you see Steve lecturing about open source philosophies, wether you love him or not, you gotta say, "Hey Steve, "C'mon Man".

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More Stories By Bryan O'Rourke

Bryan O’Rourke is a health club industry expert, technologist, financier, shareholder and executive in several fitness companies. He consults with global brands, serves as a member of the GGFA Think Tank, is President of the Fitness Industry Technology Council and a partner in FitmarcIntegerusFitsomo and the Flywheel Group. To learn more contact Bryan here today .