Adobe is throwing down $100 million in venture funding to companies developing tools with Apollo. Or more specifically the “Engagement Platform” Is Adobe serious about making Apollo successful? I would say yes. It is both an excellent PR move and it shows their dedication to making desktop as proliferated at Flash on the web.
Microsoft is already using companies to push the Silverlight technology who are known partners and to direct competition with Flash and Apollo with WPF/Silverlight. Although Apollo is a cross platform desktop application wrapper for Flash its more than Microsoft currently has and blows away widget libraries of today.
Here’s a snippet from Niall Kennedy
Adobe has allocated $100 million towards investing in companies that enhance its engagement platform and is especially interested in funding Apollo companies. As of last month Adobe had invested in 6 companies, including word processing company Virtual Ubiquity. Companies might develop for Apollo to take advantage a strategic investment from Adobe at reasonable terms.
Apollo in its current form seems overhyped, but the cross platform development space will definitely look different in a year as we see new toolkits from big companies executed inside and outside of the browser. It’s not too difficult for a web application to pop out of the web browser and into a standalone web technology, and the marketing and investment dollars being spent by large companies such as Adobe and Microsoft should help boost the visibility of cutting edge web apps.
This was announced at MAX the Apollo/Flash9/AS3 funding effort. There were lots of interesting things going on in the vector app space and direct to browser desktop apps. Ray Ozzie added his points about the future of desktop apps in that winforms apps are dead…