Can I Download Flash to the iPad?

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Apple does not support Adobe Flash on iPads or iPhones. To access Flash-enabled content on an iPad, use an alternative method.

Use an App

The App Store features several apps that support Flash-enabled content.

Puffin Web Browser

The Puffin Web Browser supports fast content loading, a full-screen theater mode for Flash movies and a virtual trackpad to engage with Flash controls on your iPad's touchscreen. The App Store features two versions -- a free app that works from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., and a paid app for $3.99 with no time restrictions or ads.

Photon Flash Player

The Photon player, available for $4.99 from the App Store, is billed as a full-service replacement for Safari. It includes tabbed views, bookmarks and other features consistent with modern Web browsers. Within the app, Flash content runs when you press a special lightning-bolt icon.

Try a Remote Session

Although it's overkill to install a remote-desktop viewer for the iPad just to run a Flash object on a connected Mac or PC, use a tool like Splashtop 2, Parallels Access or Remote Desktop to take control of a remote computer's desktop through your iPad so you can view a Flash-enabled site or run a Flash game in a remote browser. This solution -- which entails a separate program to access a remote machine -- requires setup and robust network speed, but it bypasses the need to run Flash in any form on your iPad.

Why Not Flash?

Apple's decision to bar Adobe Flash from iOS follows from former Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs who, in a lengthy 2010 blog post, argued that Flash isn't optimized for iOS, claiming that "the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short." Apple's strategic decision to bar Flash has remained in place despite user requests to enable Flash natively within iOS.

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