Adobe announced the release of Flash Player 11.2 and Air 3.2 today, as the firm continues their push to help developers deliver media rich applications and console-quality games that run in web browsers. Alongside the two releases the firm has also announced a set of premium APIs for PC and mobile gaming and a new plan to make the plug-in a direct source of income for the company.
The new Flash Player release will automatically update itself in the background on Windows from this release onwards. It also brings additional mouse-based support, including relative mouse co-ordinates, mouse lock, right and middle mouse events, multi-threaded video decoding and the capability to use hardware accelerated 2D and 3D graphics allowing for gameplay at up to 60 frames per second.
Their cross-platform web app production tool, AIR 3.2 also receives an update and now comes with Stage3D for mobile, which was originally released on desktops in October last year. Adobe says the inclusion of Stage3D will offer "jaw-dropping visuals with efficient, 1000x faster native GPU rendering performance in your pocket."
The real change however is to the price structure for their Flash Player software. Until now Adobe has charged customers for the purchase of development tools such as Flash Pro, but from August 1 onwards the firm will be changing the way it charges for so called "premium" features.
"There is no charge to use premium features in applications that generate less than $50,000 in application revenue. For each application that has net revenue up to $50,000, the fee to use premium features will be a 9% revenue share on application net revenue above $50,000. Net revenue is calculated as revenue after taxes, payment processing fees, and social network platform fees are subtracted. Revenues subject to the revenue share include application sales, in-app purchases, subscription fees, sponsorship, and advertising fees received for advertising in, or related to the application," said Adobe.
Once the new policy comes into effect on August 1, developers will be required to get a license in order to use them. It appears this new price plan only applies when you use both of the following APIs together:
- ApplicationDomain.domainMemory, which provides access to domain memory
- Stage3D.request3DContext, if using hardware acceleration
Adobe says the new premium features will encourage developers to use the Flash platform for their projects, especially given that these are free until you exceed the $50,000 revenue point. Those using the premium features included with AIR will not be charged anything, regardless of the revenues they receive.