How many of you out there remember and enjoyed the series of ads featuring Apple vs. PC? I must confess, even as an avid PC user, I found most of them amusing enough to actually put down the DVR remote and watch, much to my the annoyance of my significant other. As of late though, Apple has found an entirely new corporate enemy, Adobe and its product, Flash. And sadly no cute ad campaign has emerged yet in this new competition. At the end of April Steve Jobs posted an extensive letter entitled “Thoughts on Flash”, in which he detailed 6 reasons for Apple’s lack of supporting Adobe Flash on iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad devices. On the surface I found that many of his arguments (save for the first one, “Open”) were actually fairly solid. Many have already analyzed and responded to his points, so I’m not going to attempt to refute or defend Jobs’ words. From my perspective there is more going on than meets the eye in his letter. Apple does not want you to directly use the Internet, via Safari, on its mobile devices. They prefer that instead you use applications developed specifically for these devices. Ask yourself, what corporation largely benefits from your browsing web (aside from your ISP or mobile network carrier)? Google, with their AdWords and AdSense. Interestingly Jobs points out that the best “discovery and viewing experience” of YouTube content cannot be had via web browser but rather via the YouTube application that comes bundled on the iPad. Aside from the fact the he has disparaging Abode Flash, this is also an indirect swipe at Google. “Hey Google, we do YouTube better than YouTube!” Secondly, it’s all about the ads, and Apples new mobile advertising platform, iAd. Google AdSense and AdWords aside, how are most web based ads delivered? Via Adobe Flash. So again Apple wants to keep you the user in a device application, not on the web, it will do more benefit for them and their advertisers, and at the end of the day for the user too. And finally, for Apple, user experience is and always has been a high priority. Given that flash is a lowest common denominator and runs across many platforms, from mobile to desktop and laptop, it cannot provide the best experience possible on Apple’s devices relative to device native applications. I for one am interested to see how this continues to unfold as the mobile device market continues to grow. Google’s next Andriod operating system release, Froyo, supports and fully integrates Flash 10.1. And Apple’s mobile device market share is slowly loosely ground, while Google’s Android gains quarter after quarter. Might we someday see a change of rhetoric and technology from Apple regarding Adobe Flash? Only time will tell.