Adobe MAX conference day 2: Cumby, Mobiles, and Winners

Today was the second day of the Adobe Max conference in Las Vegas. There was some big news for Flash developers looking to target mobile devices.

Today was the second day of the Adobe MAX conference in Las Vegas. While the keynote focused on mobile the show opened with a view of what's to come with Acrobat. Kevin Lynch from Adobe showed off some of the collaborative features of Acrobat 8 including how the product can manage all the routing to send PDFs to peers for review.

Lynch also used Acrobat to Web conference with John Warnock, the founder of Adobe. Once a feature of Breeze, now re-branded as Acrobat Connect Professional, users have many options to communicate with each other including video conferencing - all running via Adobe's Flash player.

Al Ramadan then took the stage to talk about the state of the Flash player in mobile devices. While he didn't have one on stage with him he mentioned the Chumby -- a small Linux powered device that uses Flash Lite for all it's display. It's fully customisable, down to how you choose to case it. I was lucky enough to play with one afterwards and will talk more about the Chumby in a future post.

Ramadan revealed that the Playstation 3 will have the Flash player embedded in it, some that it's predecessor also offered. He next talked about the Asian mobile ecosystem and how it's growing at a rapid rate.

While Japan is well known to have the Flash Lite player as part of the DoCoMo network, the Koreans are also doing some really interesting things using the Flash Lite player as the UI for mobile phones. Samsung's "living" phone's background changes to reflect the phone's state: blue skies when the reception is good; cloudy when the signal strength is poor.

The big announcement for the day is that Flash Lite 2.1 is available for the Brew mobile phone platform. With the majority
of mobile phones in the US running Brew the number of potential users for this is obviously huge.

John Stratton from Verizon Wireless spoke via a recording to announce that Verizon will be bundling Flash Lite for their
customers, think lots of users here. Peggy Johnson from Qualcomm, the folk behind Brew, spoke about developer success stories.

Bill Perry from Adobe then took to the stage to demonstrate just how easy it is to build content for mobile in Flash. Verizon will push the player to the users phone if they don't already have it installed when download new content.

Bill was using a new version of Photoshop to design the UI for a game, then tested it in from within Photoshop in a new emulator called Device Central that will also come with the next version of Flash.

Device Central appeared to offer a lot. You could zoom in on the emulated phone's screen and interact with in via a called down onscreen keyboard. One thing that impressed me was the ability to simulate environmental conditions including screen glare. Operating conditions like the phone's time, the battery condition and an impressive performance emulator were also accessible via Device Central.

The morning's show wrapped up with the MAX Awards, given each year for a variety of categories. Just before that commenced Kevin Lynch made special mention of the youngest attendee a 14 year old called coincidentally Max, Kevin got him up on the stage and presented him with some goodies.

Bruce Chizen, Adobe CEO, presented the MAX Awards. A People's Choice award was given out at the end - the voting for that was done live then and there by the attendees via SMS.

Tomorrow's morning session is all about sneak peeks - I'm looking forward to seeing what's to come from Adobe and I'll be digesting it on this blog for Builder AU. Stay tuned!