AIR for Android
Sunday, 10 October 2010

Will AIR for Android mean a flood of new apps? Will it be a breakthrough for Android or will it do more good for Adobe's Flash platform?

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Adobe has made available the AIR runtime for Android. What his means is that you can now publish ActionScript 3 projects as native Android apps and submit them to app markets. Adobe claims that you can take an existing AIR desktop or a web app and transfer it to Android in a few minutes.  You can use Flash Builder or CS5 to work with your apps.

The only problem is that currently it only runs on Android version 2.2,. which not all phones have upgraded to, and some phones can't run it.

 

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To get started with AIR for Android you have to visit Adobe Labs and sign up to the pre-release program - the registration  page isn't working a the time of writing but you can view some video demos and see some AIR applications running on an Android phone.

As ActionScript 3 - a Javascript like language - is relatively easy to write compared to full Java we can expect a flood of new Android apps to make their way to market. However if the quality of the apps takes a hit because of the inexperience of the programmer creating them, users might decide that Apple was right to keep Flash off the iPhone.  On the other hand AIR being an easy way to create Android applications might just be the boost the platform needs to go mainstream on the desktop.

Further reading:

Introduction to Android 2 application development

Adobe AIR 1.5 Cookbook (Book review)

Adobe AIR in Action (Book review)

Teach Yourself Adobe AIR Programming in 24 Hours (Book review)

 

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