People with media jobs in mobile advertising can probably remember 2007, when HTML5 was seen as a young pretender to the throne occupied by Flash. But San Francisco-based multiscreen advertising company Flite (which also has offices in New York and Chicago) intends to capitalise on the growing momentum toward HTML5.
CEO and founder Will Price believes that momentum has now reached the tipping point. It might have taken a tad longer than HTML5 enthusiasts anticipated, but it’s definitely underway. According to price, by 2014, advertisers, mobile advertising agencies and publishers will “get off Flash completely.” Tablet and mobile traffic has frankly exploded this year, to the extent that Flite recorded an 80 percent increase in mobile traffic in October this year compared to the same month in 2012, with a big slice of that attributable to the HTML5-using iPhone. Adobe’s Flash platform has taken a potentially fatal blow from the iPhone’s rise, it would seem.
That’s why Flite has just launched a revamped version of its design studio which is now built for HTML5. Price’s aim, as he puts it, is to “put a shot across the bow to Google and Adobe as major brands and publishers move to HTML5 and to multiscreen advertising.”
Competition, what competition?
Ok, so Google has recently released Web Designer which on the face of it looks like a close rival. But according to Price, initial appearances are deceptive: users have to download software to construct their HTML5 ads and websites with Web Developer, whereas Flite’s Design Studio dispenses with that laborious step. It’s totally based in the web browser. And that, Price says, boils down to the fact that Flite possesses “all the web-based collaboration of a Google Doc versus a Microsoft Word doc.”
Users also don’t need to do any coding with Design Studio, so designers can go on using the tools they’re already familiar with because they can simply import from Adobe’s Illustrator and Photoshop. Creatives in mobile advertising agencies can also get a preview of exactly what an ad will look like on a smartphone or tablet screen (and updating an ad is a walk in the park, too – there’s no need for constant new file exports)
And it’s free: Flite intends to make money by serving the ads that users have built.