First thing first, I don’t think that Adobe AIR will totally replace the usage of the browser, but I do believe that as the next couple years past, more and more websites, web applications, and web widgets will be built as browser and AIR based or just AIR based.
That said, for all of you developers who have not yet dabbled in the art of Adobe AIR, I highly suggest you do soon, as it will become a standard skill in the not-to-far future. I had some time last weekend to download the runtime environment and the flash and dreamweaver extensions and now am working on my own AIR app.
I gotta tell you that I’m quite impressed…not only does it allow you to create the same high-level applications, but now your web-applications can be deployed to any desktop so you are sure everyone will use, view, and experience your application the way you had envisioned. No more worrying if the user has the latest plug-ins or if their browser is up to date.
With all that power and control in your fingertips, why would you ever again want to develop rich internet application without AIR? Browsers will still hold their position as a place to serve data and other general information, but for the really cool stuff, I don’t see a way in which the browsers can keep AIR out of the market, or even inhibit its progress.
If you want to learn more about Adobe AIR, please go to the official AIR site at www.adobe.com