I am going back to school in the fall and I contacted the school to see which laptop or tablet I should be using. They replied I would need the Adobe Flash Player to run the lectures. While I love Apple, I understand the newest Apple laptops and the iPad do not support Flash. Is this correct? If so, what should I buy?
There’s a lot of confusion about this, so here’s the story. Apple’s Mac laptops and desktops do indeed run the Adobe Flash Player, and thus Flash videos and websites, just like Windows PCs. While they no longer ship with the Flash software pre-installed, you can quickly and easily download and install it free of charge. Once you do, Flash videos and websites will work on your Mac.
By contrast, the iPad won’t accept the Flash Player in its built-in browser and thus cannot run Flash videos or websites. There are some third-party browsers for Apple’s tablet, such as Skyfire and Puffin, that do run Flash on Web pages, albeit clumsily at times. The latter are available in the iPad app store. If you want a tablet that runs Flash natively, you could buy one of the newer Android models, or the HP TouchPad, but be aware that some Flash videos and websites don’t run properly on the current generation of Flash-enabled tablets.
The tablet-computer race is heating up. The latest entrant, Acer Inc.’s Iconia Tab A500, is the first to offer compelling competition to Apple’s dominant iPad in one crucial area: price.
The Iconia Tab has been keenly anticipated, if only because Acer, a Taiwanese company that made its mark by offering sharp but inexpensive laptops and netbooks, is the world’s second-largest PC maker after Hewlett-Packard Co. The Iconia Tab is Acer’s first to run Google’s Android operating system, and joins an increasingly crowded tablet field that features the PlayBook by Research in Motion Ltd., Motorola Inc.’s Xoom, LG Electronics Inc.’s G-Slate and Apple’s own iPad2, which went on sale in March.
A WiFi-only version of the Iconia Tab went on sale on April 24 for $449.99. A new model that works on AT&T Inc.’s 4G wireless network is slated for release this summer for an as-yet-undisclosed price.
We heard earlier that AT&T was making calls to Japan free until between March 11 and March 31, in the wake of the devasting earthquake and tsunami in the region. Verizon is also joining in this effort and will be making calls to Japan free for most wireless and residential customers through April 10.
According to the release, all Verizon Wireless post-paid customers will receive free calling to Japan from March 11 through April 10 and will receive free text and multimedia messaging to Japan for the same time period. And Verizon Prepaid Phone Card charges for all long-distance calls placed to Japan from the United States will also be waived from March 11 until April 10. Verizon will also be providing FiOS TV customers who are not subscribed to the channel free access to TV Japan through March 17.
Moving from iPad 1 to iPad 2 has been an exercise in confusion followed by fear followed by despair and now acceptance. I have no idea what I’ll be left with, given that I’ve attempted to move from one Mac Book Pro to another, back up iTunes to DVD, upgrade to 4.3 of iOS on 2 iPhones and the old iPad 1, and finally move everything that’s left to the new iPad 2. At this point I really don’t care what happens, just that it does.
Apple haters can jump in anytime with comments (oh, wait, they can’t anymore on the new Facebook Connect what-is-your-real-name gateway) about how iTunes should go away. Maybe, but who can say if this insanity would be improved by making it wireless. So while I’m waiting to be dismayed by the elimination of music, Mad Men 4th season files, family photos, contacts, my grandfathered unlimited AT&T account, and other arcana I don’t realize I’m going to miss, I’ll talk about something else.