Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen says that Android tablets will soon overtake the iPad, just as Android smartphones now outnumber the iPhone. Speaking on stage at the D9 conference hosted by All Things Digital, the executive nudged aside notions that Apple's iPad will continue to dominate the market for the foreseeable future, claiming another 20 tablets will come out by the end of the year and that will push the industry in different directions.
Other non-Android devices like HP's TouchPad and RIM's PlayBook stand to make big inroads in the enterprise market, according to Narayen, and they are thrilled to be working with the software on all these devices.
When asked about the much-publicized feud between Adobe and Apple over running Flash on iOS devices, Narayen that said the argument was never really about the technology itself but rather about having control over the platform and App Store. He continued by saying they create tools for developers to author programs once and get them to as many devices as possible, and noted that applications compiled in Adobe AIR can be easily converted for iOS.
The issue of performance seemed to catch Adobe's CEO off guard, however. When All Things Digital's Walt Mossberg claimed that he had yet to see Flash performing well on an Android device, Narayen didn't really have an answer and instead pointed to the BlackBerry PlayBook as an example of the progress that Flash has made. Mossberg conceded that the PlayBook offers the best Flash experience, but of course BlackBerry's tablet doesn't run Android.
Apple has long maintained that the reason for not allowing Flash on iOS was that it caused the device to crash too much and compromised both security and battery life. Instead, the company argues that developing apps natively for the platform results in a better performing app.