In a move that could spell a clear competition with Adobe’s Flash suite of products, Microsoft has released the beta version of Microsoft Expression Blend, the design tool that leverages MS’s .Net platform.
Adobe’s Flash is clearly the market leader and the product reaches 97.3% of desktop internet users [link]
And MSFT is smartly luring the designers to use the Expression Suite of products and is also promoting its .Net platform and Visual Studio (and hence otherwise dead C# and VB language).
Dan Rayburn of Streamingmedia.com says
“As the debate over the Flash and Windows Media formats continues to rage on in the industry, so does the battle between Adobe and Microsoft over which platform will reign supreme. Adobe is hard at work on Flash 9 and the Apollo project while Microsoft, not to be outdone, has announced it is working on a competing product, now called Microsoft Expression Interactive Designer, the release of which would coincide with that of their next-generation Windows operating system, Windows Vista.Although the target audiences of Expression Interactive Designer and Flash overlap somewhat, Microsoft is targeting its product towards creating user interfaces for Windows Presentation Foundation programs, while Flash focuses on user interfaces that run on many platforms, primarily over the web. It’s exciting to see that Microsoft is once again going to get back into this game and push its video format.”
Try the beta version here. | Read ZDNet’s version of the story (Pretty interesting)