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Adobe offloads unwanted Linux AIR onto OEMs

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Adobe Software is putting the future of Linux AIR in the hands of OEMs, admitting its own attempts to promote the Flash-based media runtime on Linux have had very little impact.

The company has said it plans no new versions of the AIR runtime or development tools for Linux.

Adobe seems to believe AIR stands a better chance getting on devices like smartphones and TVs if development is left to those already in these markets. Adobe's own attempts to promote AIR for Linux have sparked relatively few downloads.

"By focusing on the porting kit and support of partner implementations, we expect to provide broader support for AIR across Linux-based PCs and devices, whereas our own desktop Linux releases have accounted for less than 0.5% of lifetime AIR downloads," Adobe said here.

Instead, Adobe is "prioritizing" a porting kit for AIR on Linux that lets members of the Flash-happy Open Screen Project (OSP) build AIR for Linux for PCs, mobile phones, TVs, and TV-connected devices. AIR 2.6, released in March, will be the last AIR for Linux from Adobe.

If you've already got an AIR app running on Linux, it will work with AIR 2.6 or below, but you won't be able to install applications or apply updates – including security updates – that require a later version of AIR "unless and until such later versions are released by an OSP partner," Adobe said.

OSP members include ARM, Intel, Google, HTC, LG, Nvidia, Motorola, and Texas Instruments among other tech companies, with a number of media companies thrown in too. OSP was formed by Adobe in 2008 to put Flash on even more devices. ®

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