MAX 2009: Adobe AIR 2.0 and iPhone support

My team has been working on a couple of cool products that we’re unveiling at the MAX 2009 conference today. We have some related sessions I’m detailing below.

AIR 2.0

At MAX this week we’re showing a preview of AIR 2.0, codenamed Athena. We’ve added tons of cool new features, but first, we’ve worked on reducing the memory and CPU usage for a lot of AIR applications. We’ve also listened to what our developers were asking for and we’re adding some of the most popular features:

  • native code integration: you can invoke native code from your AIR application
  • native installers will give you the option to package and distribute your AIR app as a native installer
  • gesture recognition on Mac OS and Windows (multi-touch on Windows 7),
  • much improved printing APIs (you can skip the printing dialog, you can set tons of printing options programatically)
  • support to open documents with their native applications
  • detection of drive mounting and unmounting so you can tell when a USB mass storage device is connected for example
  • much improved networking APIs, including support for UDP, TLS (encrypted binary sockets), DNS lookups, IPv6 and more
  • raw microphone APIs so you can record from the microphone and process the data or store it locally without going through a server
  • improved accessibility support, including support for screen readers
  • finally, a small feature that will be popular with developers: we’re adding support for a global error handler so you can more easily catch and report problems in your application

You can find out more about AIR 2.0 at the following sessions:

Explore Deployment and Distribution Options for Adobe AIR Applications

by Oliver Goldman — Monday 10/5, 2pm, #adobemax51, Room 501A
Oliver will talk about how we continue to improve your options to deploy and distribute your AIR applications.

What’s Coming in Adobe AIR 2.0

by Christian Cantrell — Monday 10/5, 5pm, #adobemax335, Room 515A
Christian will give an overview of some of the new features in AIR 2.0, including some cool demos using some of the new APIs.

Meet the AIR and Flash Player Team

Monday 10/5, 8pm & 9pm, Room 512
Come to this session to ask your questions about AIR, Flash Player and the iPhone support.

What’s Coming in Adobe AIR 2

by Christian Cantrell — Tuesday 10/6, 4:30pm, #adobemax198, Room 411
Repeat of Christian’s session on Monday.

iPhone support

For the past 6 months we’ve been quietly working on a surprise: Flash Pro CS5 can now build native application for the iPhone and iPod touch. This opens these devices to Flash developers and allows them to use Actionscript and the tools they are already familiar with to build native applications for the iPhone. The applications are compiled to native ARM machine code: there is no interpreter involved. You get access to many of the APIs available in Flash Player and AIR, plus a few extra ones. We have also added support in Actionscript for multi-touch, gestures, accelerometer, geolocation, etc…

We have been working with a few developers and they have built some really cool apps that are now available in the iTunes App Store for you to download and play with.

Those apps are:

  • Chroma Circuit by Josh Tynjala of Bowler Hat Games
  • Trading Stuff by Ben Garney of PushButton Labs
  • Fickleblox by BlueskyNorth
  • That Roach by Break Design
  • Red Hood by Differences Games
  • Just Letters by muchosmedia
  • Word Zen by Greg Burch
  • Southpark Avatar Maker, by Southpark Studios

Deep thanks to all our pre-release developers for working with us and for their patience as we were working out the kinks.

To find out more: or come to one of the sessions below, including my session Tuesday at 3pm.

Building Mobile Applications with Flash Pro

by Aditya Bansod — Monday 10/5, 2pm, #adobemax315, Room 402A
Aditya will present an overview of the tooling support and explain how you will be able to use Flash Pro CS5 to build applications for the iPhone. This will be a good introduction to how everything works.

Meet the AIR and Flash Player Team

Monday 10/5, 8pm & 9pm, Room 512,
Come to this session to ask your questions about AIR, Flash Player and the iPhone support.

Optimizing Flash Content for iPhone Applications

by Scott Petersen and Chris Brichford — Tuesday 10/6, 1:30pm, #adobemax402, Room TBD
Scott and Chris will describe in details how building applications for the iPhone using Flash Pro is different, and how you can optimize both your Actionscript to make sure the compiler produces the best possible result, as well as how to take advantage of hardware acceleration to make sure your app flies. This is an advanced session.

Designing Applications for Desktops and Mobile Devices with Adobe AIR

by Arno Gourdol — Tuesday 10/6, 3pm, #adobemax351, Room 515B
There’s a lot of things to consider when building apps for the iPhone. Applications on mobile devices are used differently than on a desktop. New modes of interaction and new features are available that open up new possibilities, such as geolocation or accelerometer. I’ll cover these points and give you tips on how you can start developing applications today on the desktop to make them available on the iPhone soon. I will focus mostly on the design aspects, with a few tips on how to optimize for performance.

Building applications for the iPhone using Flash – Q&A

Wednesday 10/7, 9:30am, #adobemax159, Room 511C
Come join me and members of my team and ask us your questions about how we’re opening the iPhone to Flash developers

Building Mobile Applications with Flash Pro

by Aditya Bansod — Wednesday 10/7, 11am, #adobemax72, Room 501A
Repeat of Monday’s presentation

Optimizing Flash Content for iPhone Applications

by Scott Petersen and Chris Brichford — Wednesday 10/7, 11am, #adobemax402, Room TBD
Repeat of Tuesday’s presentation

We’re very excited to bring you these cool products and we’re looking forward to your feedback.

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