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theEweekly Wrap: Google+ Pages, Flash and Angry Birds

Google+5 months= Pages Almost five months after the beta launch of its new social network, Google has finally got round to introducing Google+ Pages. No-one’s quite sure what took them so long, but what is certain is that businesses are at last able to set up official accounts on Google+. It wasn’t that long ago that Google was actively deleting profiles that had been set up by companies to gain a foothold on the platform, so this is certainly a step in the right direction.

Predictably, there have already been a number of complaints about how the Google+ Pages have been implemented. These range from simple things such as the lack of multi-user functionality and the inability to create user-friendly URLs (you can find Google’s page at https://plus.google.com/116899029375914044550/posts) to more fundamental questions such as what companies should actually be posting on there in the first place.

Flash in the pan Adobe has conceded defeat in its bid to make Flash the dominant platform for watching videos on mobiles. In an official Adobe blog post, the company revealed that it would no longer develop Flash Player to be compatible with new mobile device configurations, such as those with the latest chipsets, browsers or operating systems. Explaining the u-turn, Adobe stated that because HTML5 is now universally compatible with the major mobile devices, it has become “the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms”.

Arguably, the company never recovered from its very public spat with Apple. Flash has always been barred from iPhones and iPads, with late CEO Steve Jobs famously writing an open letter criticising Flash as unreliable and an unnecessary drain on battery life. When Microsoft then followed suit, overlooking the platform for its browser on the new Windows 8, the writing was on the wall.

Angry Birds on Fire Angry Birds will be one of thousands of apps available on the new Kindle Fire. Amazon has unveiled a long list of launch partners for its flagship tablet, including Angry Birds maker Rovio Mobile, EA, Zynga, Gameloft and PopCap. The tablet will also feature a range of social apps (Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) and media streaming apps (Netflix, Rhapsody and Pandora).

The Kindle Fire is widely seen as Amazon’s attempt to tackle the iPad head-on. Whereas previous Kindles have been marketed primarily as e-book readers, the Kindle Fire is being promoted as a device for enjoying videos, songs and games. Given all that, the addition of the most celebrated gaming app of all time may turn out to be a shrewd move.

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