Flash-playing Skyfire browser coming to iPhone this Thursday

Skyfire Logo

After 2 months of waiting in review with Apple, the new Skyfire mobile browser will be approved and available in the App Store for iPhone and iPad at 9 a.m. ET on Thursday for just $2.99. From CNN Money:

To get around Apple's restriction, Skyfire came up with an innovative solution: When users click on a page that contains Flash video, Skyfire's servers download, render and translate the video into HTML 5, which is a Web standard that iOS devices support. Skyfire then displays a thumbnail that users can click on to stream the video from its servers.

"We will attack those pesky blue Flash error messages," said Jeffrey Glueck, Skyfire's CEO.

We've previously heard that Microsoft worked with Apple to do server-side Silverlight transcoding and streaming to iPhone but this is the first we've seen anyone using the same approach for Flash. It should help users who want to see the 46% of web video not already available in HTML 5, though it still won't give you Hulu -- Hollywood blocks mobile access to online, Flash-based Hulu video. One step forward, half a step (and a kick in the shins) back.

Will you be grabbing this Flash-converting browser once it hits the App Store on Thursday morning? Let us know in the comments below!

[CNN Money]

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Andrew Wray

Andrew Wray is a Salt Lake City, Utah based writer who focuses on news, how-tos, and jailbreak. Andrew also enjoys running, spending time with his daughter, and jamming out on his guitar. He works in a management position for Unisys Technical Services, a subsidiary of Unisys Corporation.

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Reader comments

Flash-playing Skyfire browser coming to iPhone this Thursday

40 Comments

I hope we can watch tipb live with this. Its about the only reason I even pick up my laptop anymore.

It is a let bitchy that they want to charge people for the app but I think that I will download it I hope they do not drop the charge after I download it.
I wonder why they are charging for it

I wonder if the Jailbreak community will come up with some work around to get hulu to work on skyfire?! Maybe somehow trick their servers to thinking your not on a mobile device. Wishful thinking.

For all those wondering why they are charging for it, Development Time = $$$, Testing = $$$, Apple Developer Program to release to the public = $$$.
Of course the could go the Cydia route, but they want everyone to use it.

Have y'all uber douches seen the demo...I'm surprised apple hasn't tried to buy them or implement some of these features quietly in the 4.2 update.

@Robert Najafabadi. That's already available on cydia for sbsettings, it's called UAFaker.

$2.99?? That's not a bad price however I'm not necessarily that desperate for flash. They also should release a lite version, with some sort of time limit. I guarantee this app isn't going to work for all users. Especially version 1.0.
I predict a lot of dissatisfied customers initially.

I've been dying to try this F'n browser out so I had my blackberry storm 9530 !! So psyched for it. Main reason really for me is TSN and other sports websites that only show Flash, I agree with Renee that alot of the web has gone HTML5 however there is still some important sites that haven't . To answer some people's questions in this thread ... this will only play Flash VIDEOS, no games or interaction of any sort , if it did no way it would have been approved for app store.

another quick note , I'm down with the 2.99$ price and the fact that it's not free because as an end user, the system would have been overwhelmed and conversion would be slow , At least like this they recoup some R&D cost and it limits the amount of people using it

If this will allow me to watch The Daily Show on my iPad, I'll definitely pick it up. As far as I know, there's no other way to watch full TDS episodes on an iOS device (and it's not on Hulu anymore).

I'll be buying it. Just wonder how well their back-end is set up. Hate to see it become popular and start failing because of the load on their servers.

"I hope we can watch tipb live with this. Its about the only reason I even pick up my laptop anymore."
That brings up an interesting question, when does TiPb leave that "46% of web video not already available in HTML 5"?

If it's anywhere near as good as it was on WinMo back in the day, I'll be lined up to pay for it on Thursday.

This will cause quite a few Android fanboys to break down in tears... Useless for me though, I'm not addicted to porn!

@Erik, good question. I doubt you'll get an answer. TiPB being in Flash and unviewable on an iPhone has always struck me as ridiculously lame.

Is it just the flash going through their proxy or is all your content going through? Are they tracking browsing habits and selling the info?

@Richard Walsh That makes no sense. Is it all of a sudden costing money to make it for the iPhone and it was money free when on the others??? Think about that.
@Frog Why would Android fanboys be weeping? They had Skyfire for awhile now. They actually have the option for Flash in their stock browser. I don't see the reason for weeping.

Suck it up people. It's only $3. That is NOT a lot of money.
Anyway, I wonder if this will play nice with Airplay. That would be pretty great. (Don't own an Apple TV but plan on it)

Adroid fanboys will weep cause " we have flash and you don't , bull sh*t " and ya webvex I asked the same ? And no answers????

@Ken. I have a Droid (Not a android fanboy) and I'm not embarrassed to say that flash does indeed suck. I use skyfire whenever I want to see something. The only problem I have with it is that one cannot control the video, meaning no fast forward nor rewind but you can briefly pause

Its about time....what are your thoughts about how competitive the Android market is and itunes apps I feel like Apple's restrictions are holding them back.

Skyfire got pulled down on Thursday. Apparently too many people downloaded it and the traffic bogged down their servers. They didn't want to give a less than optimal experience to their customers so they capped the number of apps sold. It sounds like it will be back, but they're not sure when.