Document startups in chaos as Adobe's Flashpaper discontinues

A number of European startups – and many others globally – will be thrown into chaos today with the news that Adobe is discontinuing development of its Flashpaper product.

Adobe will continue to sell and support the current FlashPaper 2 version, but won’t be updating the technology to support Microsoft Windows Vista and IE7, which will make it virtually worthless.

The news will hit US sites like Scribd and Docstoc, and European sites like the UK’s edocr and Germany’s Twidox which only recently won funding. edocr currently bases all its document sharing on Flashpaper.

Twidox CEO Nicholas MacGowan von Holstein contacted TechCrunch UK today to say the move would have a major impact: “What about all the websites that have been storing all their documents with Flashpaper? It will be a major job having to transfer all those documents to a new solution.” Twidox will not be badly hit as they have alternatives planned, he said. He said he only found out about the move from Adobe “after writing to them three times directly.”

Adobe’s site says:

“After careful consideration and analysis of both the marketplace and customer feedback, Adobe plans to discontinue new feature development for FlashPaper. The demand has continually declined to where it is no longer economically viable for Adobe to continue development support for FlashPaper.”