Windows Mobile gets Flash compatibility

Microsoft's licensing of Flash Lite and Reader LE came as Adobe announced its rich web content software has shipped on over half a billion handsets

Microsoft has licensed Adobe's Flash Lite and Reader LE software for its Windows Mobile platform.

The addition of Flash Lite is intended to improve the compatibility of Internet Explorer Mobile with websites that use Flash technology for "rich and interactive web content", the companies said in a joint statement on Monday. Adobe Reader LE, on the other hand, will make it possible to view PDF files without the need for a third-party application.

"People want vibrant web experiences and access to entertainment and information anywhere, anytime," said Microsoft's general manager for mobile communications, John O'Rourke, on Monday. "Bringing Flash Lite and Reader LE to the Windows Mobile experience will give consumers more of their favourite websites on the go."

Also on Monday, Adobe announced that more than half a billion handsets have now been shipped with Flash Lite on them. In addition to Windows Mobile, the software works across most mobile platforms, including Symbian Series 60, Qualcomm Brew and various manufacturer-specific platforms.

Microsoft's licensing of the Flash Lite plug-in means that Windows Mobile phones will soon support both Adobe's software and Microsoft's own rival, Silverlight. Availability of Flash-compatible Windows Mobile handsets will be announced at a later date.

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