Mobile app development has completely altered the way businesses operate and gain customer attention. The digital platforms support a seamless, eye-catching, and long-term marketing and branding strategies as mobile apps are accessible for anyone with a smartphone at any time. In 2020, most downloaded apps on app stores are about photo and video editing.
Within the mobile app development industry, iOS and Android are two of the primary targets for entrepreneurs looking to invest in the mobile platform. For developers and enterprises, both operating systems have their pros and cons.
Where Android offers a broader audience and freedom of design, iOS provides a higher monetary return on investment and security.
Apple is known for its unbreachable security and closed ecosystem that restricts developers from deviating from the app design guidelines. Meaning, it’s better to know what’s allowed and what’s not before you begin coding.
That said, iOS development is not as challenging as it might seem. Many tutorials and documentations exist for developers to learn and refine their skills to build better, world-class apps for Apple’s devices.
So, if you’re looking to design exceptional apps for iPhones, here are some tools you are going to need in your arsenal.
Best iOS Development Tools for Coding
Apple’s App Store is known for its strict analysis and review of apps coming through to be published for average users. With its rigid guidelines, it only accepts those apps that comply with all security and design regulations. It is also what gives iOS its authenticity and a loyal customer base.
That said, here are some of the best development tools you can use to code your iOS apps and ensure they pass the gatekeeper without a hassle:
Developed by Apple, XCode is an integrated development environment (IDE) for Apple’s operating systems, including iOS, MacOS, iPad, smartwatch, and smart TV. Since its release in 2003, Apple has launched many versions with updates that support custom visualization and fast and seamless operation.
Plus, it comes with a code checker that scans and highlights any errors in your code as you type. So, not only can you minimize errors in your codebase, but it also offers suggestions to help you fix them. Furthermore, it comes with an auto-complete functionality, which, coupled with its real-time environment, ensures ios app developers don’t spend most time coding.
Code Runner is a feature-rich tool that supports various programming languages, including Swift, Objective-C, and C++. It is lightweight and easy to use, with advanced code compilation, and flexibility.
It not only helps you write code effortlessly but also works as an editor, allowing you to test snippets for bugs and errors, without tampering with the actual codebase.
Fabric is one of the best development tools that support real-time coding of iOS apps. It can be securely integrated within the software development environment, and not only helps with report app crashes but also automates beta distribution and deployment processes.
It offers various modular kits that you can mix and match as you see fit to build intuitive and user-centric iOS apps.
Best iOS Tools for App Design & Wireframing
Apart from writing codes, app development also involves wireframing to determine how an app will appear when completed. It tests its UI and UX to ensure the final version offers an intuitive interface and exceptional experience.
That said, here are a few app designs, and wireframing tools to help you build a flawless app for the iOS platform:
Flawless helps developers compare the expected and implemented design layouts in real-time. Integrated with XCode, it allows developers to see how the new design contrasts with the old one, within an iOS simulator. It highlights the differences and enables you to fix them in real-time over the screen.
With Flawless, you can ensure the design complies with UI/UX guidelines of iOS apps before you progress to the development stage.
Many experienced developers use Mockingbird in the early stages of development to create clickable wireframes for iOS apps. It also enables you to develop interactive and intuitive prototypes to ensure the app meets the design and UX guidelines.
Furthermore, Mockingbird comes with many built-in features that support a variety of functions like changing font size and color or linking pages.
As one of the best in-app design review tools, developers prefer Hyperion for app design testing when needed. It comes in three plugins, including View inspector, Measure plugin, and slow animation plugin.
Best iOS Tools for Debugging & Testing
Bugs and errors in your code can disrupt app performance, which influences the user experience and usability of the app. So, from design to coding, the next step is testing your app to ensure it functions efficiently with no lag, app crashes, or other performance glitches.
That said, here are some of the best tools you can use to debug your app:
TestFlight is a debugging tool for the beta testing stage of development. It supports the testing of all digital products for Apple devices. It is not only an IDE but also allows developers to invite up to 10,000 users for beta testing the app before launching the final product.
When you want a candid analysis of your app’s user experience, Raygun is the online debugging tool to use. It not only works seamlessly with other testing and debugging software, but also provides an error diagnostics and app crash report, with notifications, and smart grouping.
It works by detecting any errors in the app and displaying them on the dashboard with a detailed crash report, which enables developers to keep track of all issues and fix them.
Parse is an incredibly convenient tool for developers with several built-in features designed to limit backend development. It is an open-source platform that supports building, hosting, and managing apps. Plus, it offers automated scaling and backup, as well as query optimizers.
You can save their projects over the cloud, which enables you to access them from anywhere at any time.
Build & Publish Your First iOS App
The android platform may offer access to a global audience, but the iOS platform has a loyal user base with a stronghold on the enterprise market. Meaning, for entrepreneurs looking for a substantial monetary return on investment with other marketing and branding benefits, iOS app development is the best choice.
That said, these development tools can help you meet all the needs of iOS app development to ensure you can serve your clients with world-class apps for Apple devices.
If you’ve got other development tools in mind, share them in the comments and have fun developing your first iOS app.