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The Disadvantages of Flash Web Sites

Ever tried accessing a Flash web site through a mobile browser? What you’ll get is a blank screen or just the background image of that site. Even the smartest mobile phones such as the iPhone, Blackberry, and Nokia are not capable of handling this application. According to several Internet sources, Apple is conspicuously not allowing a full range Flash experience due to the threats Flash applications pose to the business from the App and iTune stores. In addition, implementing Flash apps to iPhone would not be a simple task for Adobe given what is available through the iPhone’s SDK and TOS stipulations. Plans of Flash for Windows Mobile are under way; and rumours of Adobe-Apple collaboration are circulating. (Hmm…  I wonder if this will be Palm’s comeback.) In any case, the future is just around the corner–no doubt.

But for the time being, Internet marketers and site owners should be mindful of how inconvenient this would be for visitors attempting to look up information on your site through mobile web browsers if your entire site is done in flash. I’m not suggesting of not going flash at all, but to be cognizant of the drawbacks of flash sites. Such setbacks include SEO purposes, program and hardware requirements, increased bandwidth, higher development costs, and now incompatibility with mobile web browsers. Oh, I should mention that some visitors (particularly a mature audience) dislike flash sites? Let’s face it, it’s not necessary to be held up waiting for a flash intro page to load, or having to locate that “turn off sound” option in some random corner of the page. Don’t waste your client’s time! Don’t impose a tour each time they visit your site.

In return, a site owner will get an aesthetically appealing site that is dynamic and interactive. Artists and photographers are quick to integrate the latest and cutting edge technologies in their presentation. Static sites can be visually boring and even a simple flash banner can give it some life. But if you do have a flash site (or is developing one) consider incorporating some HTML in your site (especially in the intro page). Give your visitor the option of choosing either a flash or an HTML version of your site. If smart phones are incapable of reading flash, don’t forget the many low-end browser-enabled cell phones. Those phones are a pain in the neck to browse, especially when you’re on the road and you need to look up the business address and phone number again… Rats! The damn site is in flash!

No doubt, mobile phones will get smarter and Adobe is a key player in the Internet experience, but just don’t expect all this to happen by tomorrow. (Unless you’re reading this post 8 months to a year from now.)

HTML site on blackberry mobile browser

HTML/PHP site on blackberry mobile browser

Flash site on blackberry mobile browser

Flash site on blackberry mobile browser

Yahoo! mobile

Yahoo! mobile

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    June 10, 2009

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    June 12, 2009

    Hi, gr8 post thanks for posting. Information is useful!

  3. KattyBlackyard

    June 14, 2009

    Original post by Dmitri Gromov

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    July 6, 2009

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