If you are just starting your career as a smartphone app developer, then you might be confused about the platform you should develop for. Android and iOS are two major players in the smartphone OS market and making a choice between them, can be a tough and daunting task. Both of them offer many numerous advantages, and there are areas where both of them fall flat on their faces. Both of them are in demand, and both of these platforms are only going to grow in coming times. While the paygrade for iOS app developers is slightly higher than Android app developers, it mainly comes down to your compatibility with the platform and your interest.
Now if you have decided that you want to develop apps for iOS, then there are certain things which you will need in order to get started. And below we have created a small list of things which will make sure that you start off on the right foot.
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1. A Mac System
If you have indeed decided to step into the iOS app development game, then you already know how insanely rigid Apple devices and software can be. So it is a necessity that the first thing you do before starting your journey as an iOS app developer is buying a Mac system. It can be a MacBook laptop, iMac or even a MacMini which is capable of running Xcode. The prime reason behind this ask is the fact that Windows systems don’t support Xcode. While it is entirely up to you which Mac system you purchase, it is a good idea to buy a system with at least 8GB Ram and an Inteli5 processor or higher.
Now if you are unable to buy a Mac system, then what? Well, all is not if that is the case too. You can download VMWare on your Windows system which will create a development environment for iOS apps. You can also make use of macincloud.com, which offers an online solution to create iOS apps. Though both of the options mentioned above allow you to develop apps, both of them have issues. Like if you develop an app using VMWare, then you face incredibly slow processing speed and lagging which takes all the fun out of the development process. Furthermore, you will, in the end, need a MacBook to publish your app. So it might be a good idea to invest in a MacBook instead of going through all that hassle.
Once you have taken care of acquiring the appropriate hardware, it is time to get your hands on a proper software. XCode is a free software developed by Apple to write and code iOS apps. This software allows you to create apps for all Apple devices, from iPhones to Mac books. Xcode comes with many pre-installed SDKs and inbuilt simulators which let you test your application in real-time.
There are two ways for you to get your hands on Xcode:
- The first option that you have is, to go on Apple App Store using your Mac system and type Xcode in the search bar. You will find the latest stable iteration of Xcode there ready for you to download. Due to the size of the software, you will need a stable internet connection as well.
- The second option that you have is, to head over to developer.apple.com. Once there, you will need to click on the “Develop” tab in the header. Once you do that, various options will appear on the page below. You will find the latest version of Xcode there as well.
The latest version of Xcode is Xcode-9.4.1. But at WWDC 2018, Apple launched Xcode 10 which still in its Beta stage.
You can not develop an app for iOS, without owning one yourself. Well, you can develop, but it won’t be any fun. Even though Xcode comes with many simulators, some functions, like those involving the use of a camera, will still need to be tested on an actual iPhone. Any iPhone from 5s to 10 will be able to serve you well. But if you want to learn about and work with AR, then you will need to buy an iPhone 6s or higher since Apple AR development environment ARKit requires Apple A9 Chip or above to render AR apps.
Apple VS Android, this battle between two giants will keep going on until a third player comes in the market who can compete with their products. We do not see that happening anytime soon. Choosing iOS over Android is a wiser move for youngsters because, first and foremost, they have a better pay scale and are always treated like royalty. Furthermore, since Apple App Store is one of the snootiest, strictest app stores on the planet which rejects most of the apps, it will help you in polishing your skills and put together better, more robust apps with beautiful themes and higher security which are worthy of existing on Apple Apps Store.
Apoorv Gehlot is the founder of Matellio LLC, a software engineering studio based in California, USA. Being an avid learner, he takes a keen interest in exploring various aspects of the digital realm, and ideate some of the finest solutions with his team of innovators. Apoorv believes in sharing his time-tested experience and deep-rooted knowledge with the readers across the world to enlighten the audience through concise and meaningful write-ups.