Since the launch of the first iPhone in 2007, the market for smart phones - and recently also tablets - has grown rapidly. More and more users now browse the web daily on these small, portable devices. As with everything else in this industry, us developers have to pay attention to this and keep up.
Steven Sinofsky at Microsoft has just announced that Internet Explorer 10 that comes with the next generation of Windows will be plug-in free. This only goes for the "Metro" styled version of the browser. The full on desktop browser will still support plug-ins. However, seeing as tablets are increasing in popularity, quite a lot of people will probably end up using this non-plugin-browser.
Apple has already done this with Safari on the iPad, which has been around for about one and a half years now. No plugins. No Flash, most importantly. And no Java applets. And no Silverlight. And Apple has already sold millions of iPads. So now Microsoft is trying to run up along Apple in this field, finally. No Flash, no Java applets and no Silverlight. And since Microsoft is a pretty big company with a huge impact on the world, this is such an opportunity to really clean up the web, once and for all. Having said that, it seems like Google is doing it the wrong way. Let's just pray for change in the future.
Microsoft says, at their own Build Windows conference, that Windows 8 will potentially reach more than 400 million people. Four hundred millions. And that's just potential Microsoft customers. In addition you've got iPad-users. And other devices. And all mobile phone users. I bet 50% of all browsing will happen on devices with no plug-in-support in just a year or two.
This is an opportunity to make change. Change to the better for all of us.
We now have a good reason to say no to including Flash-based content on client sites. And this reason will just grow more important with time. Better for them. Better for us. Simple.
Finally, lets clean up the web.