AIR Passes 100 Million Installs

Today at Adobe MAX in Japan, we shared some great news about the expanding reach of the Flash Platform. We announced that Adobe AIR has been installed over 100 million times. Also, as of December, Flash Player 10 was installed on 55% of computers worldwide. Flash Player 10 is breaking all previous records for rate of adoption for Flash Player, and we expect greater than 80% penetration by the second quarter of 2009. The Milward Brown survey has details on the methodology used to determine the Flash Player penetration.

Adobe AIR is not included in the Milward Brown data yet, so I thought it might be helpful to explain our methodology. The number we announced is the count of successful initial installations of Adobe AIR -- this provides a minimum for the total install base of the AIR runtime.


Why does Adobe talk about installation numbers?

Our developers regularly ask about installation numbers because they are concerned about how quickly someone can install an application and begin using it. Having the runtime installed ahead of time makes that easier by making the download smaller and the download time faster. This the same reason that we focus on keeping the Flash Player very small, and why new versions are adopted so quickly.

What do we mean by "successful installation?"

Software installation can fail during download and also at installation time, so we only consider an installation to be successful when it can be confirmed by code running after the installation has been completed.

For example, the majority of AIR runtime installations occur at the time the first AIR application is installed by a user -- usually through the use of an "install badge" using AIR's seamless install feature. An install badge detects whether the runtime is installed on a user's system before attempting to install the application. If the runtime is not installed, it will be downloaded and installed before the application is installed. In most cases, a user usually launches the app once the installation process has been completed. Once the application is launched, the AIR runtime checks on start-up to see whether a new version of the runtime is available. This request confirms that the runtime was installed correctly and that an application has been launched.

One thing the number of successful installs does not tell us is where are all the installs are coming from. Some are coming from people who come to to download the runtime, but the vast majority are being driven by great, popular applications. Some of the most popular include:

Are there others? We'd love to know about it. If you don't mind sharing -- put a link to your application below and let us know how many people have installed it...

Update: We’ve gotten a few requests for more specifics around badge installations, so I did a little more digging into the data. Over 30 million installations have been of applications delivered via AIR badges. That means a lot of people are also downloading applications without using a badge. In some instances the runtime and application are offered separately -- such as Pandora Desktop and finetune. In other cases, the application and runtime are bundled within another application, such as Creative Suite 4, Adobe Reader, or raptr.


January 29

Jonnie writes:

DestroyFlickr ( has been installed 9,000 times and my latest app, DestroyTwitter (, has been installed 7,000 times in less than a month. Thanks for making AIR so usable and easy to install.

January 29

Peldi Guilizzoni writes:

Hi Adrian. I don't have an exact count, but I know over 2000 people have installed my little Mockups application: - not a big number compared to your list above I'm sure, but mine is not free, so I'm quite pleased. :)

January 29

Mark writes:

One of the most popular and highly rated AIR applications in the AIR marketplace is uvLayer an innovative, social, drag and drop, presentation layer for video and photos. Over 20,000 people have downloaded the AIR version of uvlayer.

Let your media break out of the constraints of a web page!

January 29

Marshall Kirkpatrick writes:

Come now, as others have pointed out - isn't AIR bundled with your PDF reader and CS4 software now? And if a couple of Twitter apps are among the most popular AIR downloads...that tells me that there aren't a lot of people actually using AIR apps. Looking forward to a response to this.

January 29

Adrian writes:

@Marshall -- There are AIR applications included with some versions of Adobe Reader and CS4. Unfortunately, we don't have any way to track usage of applications -- any insight you can provide on that would be great. We mentioned twitter specifically because those usage numbers are public :

January 29

Bala Nair writes:

Go AIR, from a .net developer view great job. A simple notepad build on AIR.

January 31

mark vernon writes:

I'm certainly betting on the success of AIR. I have 16 developers, 8 of whom are experienced Flex developers, and the others are learning as fast as they can. We've developed the VTC AIR player (with about 20,000 installs), flex wireframing and mockups site created in flex which will also have a desktop AIR app shortly, numerous internal intranet projects and working on a new elearning content creator called miskio. I love the speed we can create applications, without having to worry about cross platform issues.

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