Silverlight, Nokia and Apple

Microsoft Silverlight logo Well things seem to be picking up for Microsoft’s Silverlight technology. I enjoyed Silverlight 1.0 but detest JavaScript so my attention immediately turned to the Silverlight 1.1 Alpha build that came out last year at MIX’07. Awesome stuff, managed code in the browser with a lightweight multi-platform plug-in that doesn’t require much skill-up for the developer.

In the interim I’ve noted some interesting stirrings on the web, namely that Nokia has announced support for Silverlight on its Series 60, Series 40 and Internet tablets. This is a totally awesome thing, finally a managed code execution environment built on the .NET Compact Framework for mobile devices other than Windows CE powered devices.

Espoo, Finland – Nokia today announced plans to make Microsoft Silverlight available for S60 on Symbian OS, the world’s leading smartphone software(1), as well as for Series 40 devices and Nokia Internet tablets.  Adding support for Silverlight will extend opportunities for developers to create rich, interactive applications that run on multiple platforms in a consistent and reliable way.

Next in the way of news is an article quoting Apple’s Steve Jobs where he proclaims that the hugely popular iPhone mobile device won’t be getting Flash or Flash Lite technologies as they don’t perform well enough even on the desktop never mind the mobile device. I could agree more.

Turning back to the iPhone, don’t expect support for Adobe’s Flash technology anytime soon. The full-blown PC Flash version “performs too slow to be useful” on the iPhone, and a mobile version called Flash Lite “is not capable of being used with the Web,” Jobs said. Without an option that falls in between, it sounds like Flash is not going to be supported on the iPhone until the performance of the underlying hardware improves.

So the big question on everyone’s lips is when are we going to be getting the recently announced Silverlight 2.0 Beta 1 build. Most people are expecting it later today during the MIX’08 keynote in Las Vegas. Personally I’m chomping on the bit waiting for the announcements. It really does mean a completely new era for application development.


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