Choosing a proper mobile development technology stack is integral to app success, and there is a reason for it. Different tech combinations provide various development ecosystem features. This means that your tech stack choice can both hurt and boost your iOS application development.
Let’s discover the most efficient iOS app development stacks and figure out which is the best one for your iPhone app development.
iOS App Development Tech Stacks: Fundamental Development Approach
Now, before we jump right into specific toolkits, SDKs and programming languages for your iPhone or iPad app development, let’s establish an understanding of 3 dev approaches you can choose from:
- Native development. The native approach implies using platform-specific development tools;
- Cross-platform development. Cross-platform development provides software for multiple mobile platforms while relying on a single code base;
- Hybrid development. This is when you create a native wrapper and render a web markup (HTML, CSS, JS) in it.
Let us consider these iOS app development approaches and find out which dev tools are the most suitable for each one.
Native IOS Development: Conventional Doesn’t Mean Outdated
Native mobile development is often a guarantee you will be able to implement platform-specific features you wish. The thing is, native development exposes all features platform vendors offer. The downside of this approach is time consumption and reduced flexibility. You cannot use your native codebase for other mobile platforms.
You can lean towards iOS development with Swift or opt for Objective-C. Both options are solid. Objective-C is a C language superset. It provides a dynamic and highly performant runtime environment, as well as powerful OOP approaches implementation. On the other hand, iOS development with Swift brings extended functionality. The platform uploads dynamic Swift libraries directly to memory, so it significantly cuts the app size and improves performance. What is more important, worldwide developer community considers Swift as a handier dev option compared to Objective-C.
As far as dev toolkit is concerned, Apple Xcode is a solid choice. Here are its features worth mentioning:
- Git repositories support;
- Graphical editor for UI development;
- Integrated documentation and debugging tools.
Software Development Kit
Default iOS SDK comes with an API enhanced by countless libraries. For instance, native iPhone app development comes with touchscreen interface tools.
On balance, here are the most significant native approach aspects:
- Decent user experience;
- Best performance;
- Advanced security;
- Tie to a single platform;
- High cost compared to other alternatives.
Cross-Platform IOS App Development: Build Once, Use Everywhere
You can develop mobile apps for multiple platforms. It is called cross-platform development. While narrowing your arsenal of platform-specific features, this approach greatly decreases the development time and costs.
Languages And Frameworks
There are two reliable tech stacks for cross-platform iOS application development: Xamarin + C# and React Native + JS/TS.
Xamarin is a C#-powered framework by Microsoft. It brings all strengths of C# into your mobile app development:
- High sustainability;
- Outstanding code reuse. Nearly 90% of Xamarin code is shared across mobile platforms;
- A broad range of iOS features. Xamarin has access to native iOS API.
If you are looking for a Xamarin competitiveness proof, Pinterest and Slack are Xamarin-powered.
On the whole cross-platform development exposes the following development features:
- Reusable code;
- No need for platform-specific technologies knowledge.
Hybrid iOS App Development: A Native Website
Hybrid mobile apps are basically web apps that run inside a native wrapper. This is an outstanding opportunity for web developers to jump into mobile development.
When it comes to Ionic, it is Angular-driven. This implies an enormous set of powerful Angular features and performance advantages. The Ionic edges include but are not limited to the following:
- MVC pattern;
- DOM elements reuse (performance boost);
- Native TypeScript support;
- Countless SDKs and node packages.
All in all, hybrid iOS application development is:
- Universal mobile platform coverage;
- High maintainability;
- Simplified development process;
- Low cost;
- Shortage of native features;
- Decreased performance and user experience.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, different approaches aim to address different development objectives. If you need a sophisticated feature-rich app, opt for native development with Objective-C or Swift. If you want to save your budget and reduce time to market, look into cross-platform or hybrid development opportunities.
Our Gravum mobile development experts are ready to implement various development models based on your project requirements. Drop us a line, use Gravum development expertise as your competitive advantage.