Mobile

SkyFire browser pulls in $1M, proves iPhone users really want Flash video

The mobile SkyFire browser for the iPhone sells itself: It lets you play Flash video on the iPhone. Who wouldn’t want that? So it’s no surprise to learn that the browser has already raked in $1 million since it hit the App Store last Thursday, TechCrunch reports.

The browser sells for $2.99, and the company says that its download numbers were over 300,000 for the weekend. After Apple’s 30 percent cut of the pie, that leaves SkyFire with over $700,000. The browser is also available for Android, Windows Mobile, and Nokia phones — and notably, it’s free on those platforms.

SkyFire’s journey to success on the iPhone has been a storied one. The company submitted the app for Apple’s approval in early September, and at the time we argued that Apple would have very little reason not to accept the browser. SkyFire announced the app was approved earlier this month and that it would be hitting the App Store on Thursday, November 4. But due to popular demand, SkyFire pulled the app after its servers — which encode the Flash video into an iPhone-ready format — got overwhelmed. The company proceeded to accept purchases in batches as it strengthened its servers for the onslaught of iPhone users.

While SkyFire’s technology lets iPhone users view most Flash video on the web, it doesn’t offer access to other Flash elements like games or animations. Hulu is also blocking the app from converting its Flash videos — so iPhone users remain stuck with Hulu’s official app. It’ll be interesting to see how long SkyFire’s sales remain strong, as it’s an accurate depiction of how many users are fed up with Apple’s anti-Flash policy.


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