Ultimate Guide To Learning iOS Development6 mins - Introduction
Originally known as the iPhone Operating System, iOS is a mobile operating system for Apple-manufactured gadgets (exclusively on the part of hardware) such as iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch. It was first unveiled in 2007 and much of it has changed since then. iOS was extended to back up other Apple devices; the iPod Touch in September 2007 and the iPad in January 2010. iOS is popularly known for its underlying user interface that enables users to use multi-touch gestures such as swiping to move to the next page, pinching your fingers to zoom in and out, or tapping.
What is iOS application development?
The iOS App Store was launched on July 10, 2008, with only 500 applications available initially. By January 2017, these apps have grown to an amount of 2.2 million. These apps have been unanimously downloaded more than 130 billion times.
Before iOS was brought in the market, Steve Jobs was determined not to let third-party developers design native apps for iOS. However, harsh responses from developers forced the Apple Company to reconsider their decision. Therefore, Steve Jobs announced in October 2007 that the company is going to introduce a software development kit (SDK) by February 2008 for commoners.
There are several companies located all over the world that provide complete services in iOS app development covering the entire development cycle, from contemplation to distribution. Also, many people choose it as a career; iOS app developers have always been in a lot of demand. It’s a hot skill that is sought after by major app developing companies that pay you a handsome salary. This article will cover all the details about how to make an iOS app.
How to make an iOS app?
The first step is to devise an idea; sketch it out with pen and paper. Do good enough thinking about the app and how will it work or what features would it have. It’s convenient to categorize the app features, on a notepad, into ‘must-haves’ and ‘optional’. This ensures that your app is going to be considered a Minimum Viable Product (MVP), which will have a shorter development duration and more flexibility. Also, focus on a single main purpose for your app to succeed. As tempting as it is, several features in a single app will only make it confusing for the users.
The second step requires you to do market research so one can plan on implementing a missing link that needs to be developed into an app. You should be asking questions like:
— What alternative apps and competitors exist in the market?
— What are the requirements and needs of potential customers according to recent times and their demands?
— What must be the cost of a new app and what kind of graphic designs should I use?
This will give you an insight into what customers desire and whether your app would be attractive to them or not. Also, the loopholes that competitors are making will give you an advantage over them. Getting answers to all these questions would require extensive market research. Moreover, get done with mockups, app design and a landing website for your app’s marketing.
The third step is to initiate a professional building of your app. Either you hire an iOS app developer or learn to do it yourself. For an iPhone OS application, the developer needs to have an Apple-manufactured device or Macintosh laptops/personal computers. These devices must be running the latest version of macOS as it is certainly not possible to work on iOS applications with Microsoft Windows PCs.
The most important stage is to learn to code and learning a programming language owned by Apple Inc. called Swift 3.0 can do this. It is a universal language that is commonly used for all iOS mobile app developments. In the beginning, you just have to gain know-how of its functionalities such as:
— Basic Syntax
— Classes, Inheritance, and Initialization
— Control Flow
— Error Handling
Swift Programming is an easy and powerful language and a lot of fun with tons of features that help in productive coding. Besides, it’s easier than Objective-C, which is another programming language, used for iOS development.
You would also need a Mac Xcode IDE (the integrated development environment) for macOS. It is the Mac app used to create apps that offer a magnificent user experience. It contains code editor, compiler, debugger, project organizer, testing engine, asset catalog and many more important tools to make an excellent app. Apple’s Xcode IDE is highly integrated with Cocoa and Cocoa Touch frameworks which makes it a primary app-building environment for devices such as Apple TV and Watch, iPhone and iPad. Build a user interface (UI), which is made up of buttons, navigation, labels, views, images, controls and much more. Draw application architecture for a better foundation.
iPhones come with in-built memory which is sufficient enough to store most data that you consume on a daily basis. But for high-end tasks that require extreme loading, it is recommended to store your data to a cloud. You simply need to connect the app to your favorite cloud service and all major functions of yours will be managed successfully. You can throw huge amounts of GBs to your cloud as storage, you can use it to manage your database and you can even use it for app caching of yours.
To build iOS apps, highly recommended tools would be the following:
— You can use the Parse Platform or Firebase for efficient storage. A few other good platforms could be added to this list but I have kept the number short to avoid any confusion for you.
— Xcode would be the best tool for iOS development.
— For beta testing of your app, TestFlight will be your default platform.
— If you wish to gain insights on multiple iOS components, ADD would be the best source of information for you. ADD would be short for Apple Developer Documentation.
— Use Sketch for User Interface and even Graphic Designing.