Apple Asks: Is Your Website iPad Ready?

The ongoing drama between Apple and Adobe over the Flash plug-in just took another turn, with Apple revealing a new page titled "iPad Ready." The addition to Apple's iPad web pages provides a list of websites that are HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript compliant (read: non-Flash) and invites others to submit their iPad-ready URL for inclusion on the list.

Apple iPad Safari HTML5 Flash

Besides listing popular web portals such as CNN, NY Times, Vimeo, Flickr, MLB, People Magazine, and others, Apple provides a link to Technical Note TN2262, "Preparing your Web Content for iPad." This document provides a checklist of items for site developers that will ensure the user experience with Safari on iPad is optimized.

The checklist includes:

1. Website testing on iPad, updating the user agent detection code, how to simulate Safari on iPad HTTP requests in Safari on the desktop
2. Using W3C standard web technologies instead of plug-ins, how to test your site without plug-ins in Safari on the desktop
3. Checking viewport tag settings
4. Modifying code that relies on CSS fixed positioning
5. Preparing for the iPad touch interface
6. Using textareas instead of "contenteditable" elements

Some believe the document is a slap in the face to Adobe, whose employees have been critical of Apple's decision to release the iPad without Flash support. Steve Jobs has been quoted complaining that Flash is outdated, inefficient, and a security risk.

Adobe has countered that Apple is merely looking out for its own wallet, as Flash apps could threaten the App Store. Others have claimed Apple is pushing for open standards only where it benefits them, and in other cases is happy to go with its own proprietary work.

In any case, with the release of this new iPad Ready webpage and the technical notes it's clear that Apple will not change course. Precedent was already set when Apple refused to include Flash support on the iPhone. The number of major sites ditching Flash for full iPad compatibility is bound to increase as the device penetrates markets around the world.

Add new comment