â??HTML5 will eclipse Flash in three yearsâ??

â??HTML5 will eclipse Flash in three yearsâ??

By Rob Crossley

August 31st 2010 at 5:31PM

Spil Games boss believes the days are numbered for Adobeâ??s platform in the mobile space

Apple’s preferred HTML5 standard will inevitably overtake Flash as the web game platform of choice, says the boss of a popular web games portal.

Spil Games CEO Peter Driessen said Apple boss Steve Jobs “was right when he said Flash isn’t working on mobile systems – that’s what I hear from developers as well.”

Driessen announced today that Spil’s group of 47 game websites – which together draw in some 130 million users per month – are now all based on the HTML5 standard, ensuring they play on the iPhone and iPad as well as a string of other devices.

And as a further sign of intent, Spil is also launching a $50,000 contest for developers to make new games in HTML5.

“I believe HTML5 will rise above Flash on mobile,” Driessen told Develop.

“In fact I think in three years the majority of web games will be in HTML5. It’s inevitable that it will become the programming standard of the future.”

Driessen confessed that the key reason why Spil has moved away from Flash is because of Apple’s reluctance to incorporate it into its glossy mobile devices.

Asked whether there’s a danger in placing faith in a nascent format which Apple could easily abandon just as swiftly as it did Flash, Driessen insisted Adobe's alternative is not future-proof in any event.

“Flash on PC is great, but it’s the mobile devices – especially those with touch screens – where the standard begins to suffer. Flash on the Android operating system is not very efficient, it hasn’t been a success so far, and we see future problems there.

“I don’t think Apple will back off from using HTML5; it really is the next big thing, and I think Apple will continue to support until it becomes the standard.

“It will become the big game changer, and our move to HTML5 will be the beginning of a revolution where more developers will move away from Flash and produce great content.”

It is not known whether the executive arm of Apple sees Spil’s move as complementary to its own business priorities.

The internet and mobile devices giant currently controls the flow of iPad and iPhone games through its own App Store. Spil’s web portal will remove some of that control.

But Driessen remains positive: “Steve Jobs said he’s a big supporter of HTML5, so I think he’ll be happy with our decision. But of course for Apple, this enables a platform that comes via the App Store.”