It's not easy to launch a new product category, especially if devices don't have a magically-delicious hook, but that's not why ARM thinks it's taken so long to deliver the smartbook. In an interview with ZDNet UK, VP Ian Drew said Adobe's blame was undeniable -- Flash didn't deliver ARM optimization in time for subnetbooks to be viable. Compounding the issue, the tablet craze has manufacturers all atwitter, he said, diverting smartbook resources to the iPad party instead. As far as netbooks are concerned, Drew cited poor adoption of Linux; he reminded us ARM smartbooks can't do x86. Asked if Atom (which can) might be the real reason for delay, he said absolutely, positively no way. The executive said manufacturers apparently hadn't brought up that idea even once. Guess we'll have to take his word on that one.