Getting Into iOS App Development

Programming

If you want to get into iOS development you have to begin with learning the programming language. iOS devices are programmed using Apple`s Swift programming language. Before Swift, there was Objective-C. However, the wiz-geeks at Apple developed Swift which allowed developers to concentrate on solving a problem rather than finding out how a program worked. Swift 3 was recently released as the stable version of the Swift programming Language. For those that are completely new to iOS development, check out the resources here and get your hands dirty with code.

Buy That Mac

Once you are conversant with Swift 3, the next thing is to get a Mac computer. You are probably asking yourself why you can`t use your Windows or Linux machine right? Well…it so happens that xCode is only available on Mac devices. xCode is Apple`s Software Development Kit, referred to as SDK. xCode allows you to design and program you program. It comes with tools such as a Code Editor and Emulators. So if you don`t have a Mac device what are you waiting for? Bookmark this site, get up and run to your nearest Apple Store or Dealership and buy yourself one (With MacOS X or higher). Check out this post(Coming soon) for more on choosing the right Mac device for you.

But maybe there are some of you that are into in App development but are not interested in programming. You are probably just into design. Then you will need to get an iOS developer to code your programs for you. It should be noted that iOS programmers do not come cheap. In fact, no programmer comes cheap so be prepared to fork out a hefty sum of money.

It`s Not All About Code

So you now know how to program in Swift and you followed my advice and got yourself a Mac, what next? Well program development is not only about coding. You also have to learn some designing skills. Furthermore, Apple has some very strict guidelines on how an iOS application should look like. Visit their design development page to get more information on their design guidelines. Start sketching insatiately to develop your designing skills or else your app will not get to the market.

Apple Developer Program

When you are developing your App, you need to sign up for Apple`s Developer Program. This program will enable you to use an iOS device as an emulator as well as get you many other developer benefits. Summarized below:

Advanced App Capabilities

Get access to cutting-edge Apple technologies that help you create compelling and engaging user experiences.

  • CloudKit
  • Game Center
  • Wallet
  • Apple Pay
  • In-App Purchase
  • Maps
  • Keychain Sharing
  • App Groups
  • Data Protection
  • HomeKit
  • HealthKit
  • Wireless Accessory Configuration
  • Personal VPN
  • Inter-App Audio
  • Background Modes
  • Associated Domains

Testing and Support

Make sure your apps provide a great user experience and are ready to submit to the App Store.

TestFlight Beta Testing

With a Developer account you will be able to invite up to 2,000 external testers via email. These testers can test your iOS, watchOS, and tvOS apps to ensure they are fine before you release them on the App Store. This will increase the chances of your application for approval going through. For more click here.

Invite users to test your iOS, watchOS, and tvOS apps before you release them on the App Store. You can invite up to 2,000 external testers using just their email address. Learn more

Technical Support

Request code-level support from our Technical Support Engineers who can help troubleshoot your code or provide solutions that will fast-track your development. Two incidents per membership year are included.

Distribution

Distribute your apps and extensions to over a billion customers around the world.

App Store

The App Store will allow your prospective App users to download your App.

Apple usually takes 30% of your App sales. But if your App is free then they take nothing. Using App Store is very advantageous because Apple handle worldwide payment processing, you can create custom Business-2-Business, you can offer volume purchase and student purchase ,and the best part is that unlike many other market places, App Store does not charge hosting fees.

Ad Hoc Distribution

This basically means that a number of devices can directly download your App without using the internet, though the number of devices is limited.

  • iPhone (100 per membership year)
  • iPad (100 per membership year)
  • iPod touch (100 per membership year)
  • Apple Watch (100 per membership year)
  • Apple TV (100 per membership year)

Developer ID for MacOS

You can distribute your Mac applications outside of the Mac App Store by using Developer ID. Signing your Mac applications, plug-ins, and installer packages with a Developer ID certificate lets Gatekeeper verify that apps are not created by malware developers and haven’t been tampered with since they were signed. For more about the Developer ID, click here.

Safari Extensions

Enhance and customize the browsing experience with Safari Extensions, and distribute them on the Safari Extensions Gallery. Learn more

Beta OS Releases

Download the latest beta OS releases and install them on your development Apple devices. That`s right. You can even download the OSs below and perform Beta tests for Apple.

  • iOS 10 watchOS
  • tvOS
  • macOS Sierra

Membership to this program is not free. It costs USD 99 through a subscription that is renewed yearly at the same price.

Submit and cross your fingers

By now you have already finished you App, tested it severally on the emulator, your device and through friends and family and you are ready to launch. But the work is not over yet. It is now time to submit your application to the wiz-geeks at apple. If they look through it and find it fit for their marketplace, then they approve it for launch. If not, then you have to go back to the drawing board. Check out this post to find out what might lead to your approval request being turned down. In order to prevent the advent of a denial, ensure you adhere to Apple`s development guidelines.

Celebrate…Not!

So Apple approved your App and you just launched it. Your website probably has the icon below:

appstore

It`s time to pop that champagne bottle and celebrate, right…wrong! You are only getting started. You should know that no one will download an App they know nothing about. So save that champagne dough and use it to get the word out. Publicize like your life depends on it. Statistics has shown that more than 50,000 Apps are downloaded from the Apple Play Store and you want yours to be amongst these don`t you? Then you should also realize that more than 60% of developers don`t break even. Check out these marketing guidelines from Apple.

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