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Adobe Strikes Back With 'We Heart Apple' Ad

The war between Adobe and Apple was starting to calm down. Though it's unlikely either side was ready to make up, it had been a few days since we'd heard anything from either side. However, that was probably more because Adobe was busy loading the canons with a new ad campaign and not because it was tired of the extremely public feud.

Yesterday, Adobe launched a new, passive aggressive ad campaign that takes a shot at Apple while remaining nice as pie. "Who us? We're just concerned about the users here, ma'am."

Along with these, Adobe's co-founders, Chuck Geschke and John Warnock, published an open letter detailing the company's thoughts on open markets. It's all pretty predictable stuff about not blocking innovation by fragmenting the Web into closed systems.

"Freedom of choice on the web has unleashed an explosion of content and transformed how we work, learn, communicate, and, ultimately, express ourselves," the letter reads. "We believe that consumers should be able to freely access their favorite content and applications, regardless of what computer they have, what browser they like, or what device suits their needs. No company — no matter how big or how creative — should dictate what you can create, how you create it, or what you can experience on the web."

Towards the end of the letter, Geschke and Warnock mention Apple specifically:

"We believe that Apple, by taking the opposite approach, has taken a step that could undermine this next chapter of the web — the chapter in which mobile devices outnumber computers, any individualcan be a publisher, and content is accessed anywhere and at any time."

Full letter is pasted below for those interested in reading the full, unabridged version.

The genius of the Internet is its almost infinite openness to innovation. New hardware. New software. New applications. New ideas. They all get their chance.As the founders of Adobe, we believe open markets are in the best interest of developers, content owners, and consumers. Freedom of choice on the web has unleashed an explosion of content and transformed how we work, learn, communicate, and, ultimately, express ourselves.If the web fragments into closed systems, if companies put content and applications behind walls, some indeed may thrive — but their success will come at the expense of the very creativity and innovation that has made the Internet a revolutionary force.We believe that consumers should be able to freely access their favorite content and applications, regardless of what computer they have, what browser they like, or what device suits their needs. No company — no matter how big or how creative — should dictate what you can create, how you create it, or what you can experience on the web.When markets are open, anyone with a great idea has a chance to drive innovation and find new customers. Adobe's business philosophy is based on a premise that, in an open market, the best products will win in the end — and the best way to compete is to create the best technology and innovate faster than your competitors.That, certainly, was what we learned as we launched PostScript® and PDF, two early and powerful software solutions that work across platforms. We openly published the specifications for both, thus inviting both use and competition. In the early days, PostScript attracted 72 clone makers, but we held onto our market leadership by out-innovating the pack. More recently, we've done the same thing with Adobe® Flash® technology. We publish the specifications for Flash — meaning anyone can make their own Flash player. Yet, Adobe Flash technology remains the market leader because of the constant creativity and technical innovation of our employees.We believe that Apple, by taking the opposite approach, has taken a step that could undermine this next chapter of the web — the chapter in which mobile devices outnumber computers, any individual can be a publisher, and content is accessed anywhere and at any time.In the end, we believe the question is really this: Who controls the World Wide Web? And we believe the answer is: nobody — and everybody, but certainly not a single company.Chuck Geschke, John Warnock Cofounders Chairmen, Adobe Board of Directors

  • rf88he102
    Adobe is just acting childish. I hate not having flash on my iPhone, but I think thats not the way they are going to get to apple. Apple also has a point by saying that they want the user to have the best experience out of their products. If an iPhone app or safari running flash crash, Adobe is not going to be the one blamed, Apple is. I think more than half of the people out there don't know what objective C language is, and how their apps are written.
    They need to improve themselves and not just go where the money is at. If the android market was bigger than the app store, I bet they wouldn't be so concerned about their products running on the iPhone.
    Reply
  • fitzergerald
    Agree with the second part of the ad but "we *heart* apple is (G) - (A) - (Y)
    Reply
  • Miharu
    Feel like Adobe doesn't want to be see as the bad guy in that problem.
    But this disappoint me a bit... Someone should really oppose to Apple business "way". Adobe could change his rule like Apple do with lastest OS. He could completely stop support on Mac OS and trade of PC cd-key and do a trade-up program for trade Mac to PC (or give them Windows 7 key). If you have 40% business in Apple OS, this should be easy change it for 100% PC business. At the end, Apple doesn't have create anything... they think they're gods but Mac hardware is a PC, iPod/iPad is someone else technology (HTC perhaps). If you use their SDK, you give them your source code. :pt1cable:

    No freedom on Apple SDK so they should stop right there.
    Reply
  • schmich
    SimonettiAdobe is not thinking of us...Of course not. If Adobe was they wouldn't be abusing the users by removing Photoshop and all other suites from the Mac...oh wait. They already said they weren't as bad Apple and won't mix their users in all of this.

    I don't get why people don't understand that Flash and HTML5 are not mutually exclusive. Some people like one more than the other. Just because you like one of them doesn't make anything about the others who don't. Some people talk about Flash being dead now. You often hear after some type of news "last nail in the coffin for Flash!". First of all, how unrealistic is that statement. Secondly, if Flash somehow were to die (don't ask how) right now...how would close to 40% of the web users view video?

    Browsers aren't even agreeing on the encoding! So you'd have 2/3rds of movies in H.264 and Firefox users cannot even play it. The so called war isn't "HTML5 vs Flash", it's "HTML5 people vs people who like choice" or "HTML5 vs HTML5+Flash".

    Don't forget that I didn't get started on the DRM on Flash that HTML5 doesn't do yet. DRM at the end of a product, eg. what we saw on A.Creed 2, but it is need for online services as Hulu stated.

    And calling Adobe childish for using love and/or humor against hate? Please. If anything, Apple is being the stubborn, inconsistent and lying child. The only time Apple embraces innovation is when it benefits them. Note: "them", not you. That can be perfectly seen today when the Wireless Sync app for the iPhone was rejected for no reason.

    Badly programmed Flash is bad but it doesn't mean Flash itself is buggy. Is the Flash plugin on Mac perfect? Far from it. Do you have it installed? Yes? I thought you were against Flash. Would Flash on mobile be perfect? Nope, especially not if you prevent itself from developing and improving. Adobe is not a saint but it doesn't ....... over users and the only thing it tells you is to have options.
    Reply
  • oren
    SimonettiSo, all this war has nothing to do with us, the users, freedom, expression, etc, etc, etc. It has to do with sales.
    If you were a business and other business (whom you are not a direct competitor with even) did something that has the possibility of hurting your bottom line, wouldn't you be upset?

    The real point is making sure the consumer decides what they want, not one person/company. Remember we want industries to adapt to markets, not forcing markets to adapt to them.
    Reply
  • tyko
    I'm kind of surprised that no one mentioned the "canon" instead of "cannon" typo.
    Reply
  • mforce2
    Having worked with ( programmed in ) Flex and used the Flash Player for so long I have to say that Steve Jobs is right about Flash.
    I'm not fan of Stevie and Apple but this time he is right. Apple have done a lot for open source and open standards even though they have proprietary products.
    One thing I can mention in Webkit used in so many browsers and mobiles today. Another is CUPS , the Unix printing system used by all Linux distros. Also they make contributions to the gcc and other things probably.
    Meanwhile Adobe has done pretty much nothing to open up and clean up their act. The Flash player should have been made open source a long time ago , Sun did it with the JVM . Also the porting to X64 should have been made sooner , the bugs that exist especially on the OS X and Linux versions of the Flash Player are pretty serious.
    I'm not expecting open source Photoshop ( would be nice though ) but I'd rather have something open like HTML 5 than something that's probably going to stay proprietary forever like Flash.
    Reply
  • nawat
    orenThe real point is making sure the consumer decides what they want, not one person/company. Remember we want industries to adapt to markets, not forcing markets to adapt to them.I agree. However, no one is responsible for making sure that people decide. It will still be the big companies trying to persuade the people to believe what they want them to believe. And now Apple is denying Flash and trying to convince people to move on to HTML5 and abandon Flash altogether.
    Reply
  • ravicai
    Pitting flash against HTML5 is like pitting DivX against Xvid. In the end, it doesn't matter. As long as I have both codecs installed I can view videos in both format and I still win!

    The poor saps who own an iPad/Phone/etc however won't be viewing flash ever cause Big Brother Steve says "No! No flash! Bad dog!". So while you apple zealots are mocking flash cause 'Steve said so', I'll be enjoying both flash and HTML5 on my unrestricted browser.
    Reply
  • goatsword
    Adobe's products are way too expensive anyways. They'll be long gone soon enough.
    Reply