For this tutorial, we are going to discuss the basics of getting set up for developing on the iOS platform. While there are many 3rd party tools that allow you to develop a number of ways, I am only going to discuss the officially supported ones from Apple. That being said, let’s get started.
The first thing you are going to need is an Intel Based Apple Computer running OSX 10.6.6 or better. Hackintosh computers have been know to allow you to develop on them however, they are not recommended as they require quite a bit of configuration. So, your best best is to develop on the real thing.
Besides that, who wants to use a Windowz box anyway?
To become a bonafide iOS developer, you must sign up for Apple’s iOS Developer program. It’s free until you are ready to submit your applications to the App Store. So, if you are just tinkering with iOS development and want to give it a shot, there is no risk.
Once you sign up, you will have access to the latest SDK, developer articles, sample code, documentation, XCode, and more! What are you waiting for? Sign Up Now!
Once you are ready to deploy your first application, you will need to upgrade your account for the low low price of $99. Also, you must pay this fee when you are ready to test on your own device. The free account limits you to using only the simulator for testing.
One cool thing this gets you (besides the ability to submit applications to the App Store) is you get to download all of the early iOS releases. As I write this post, I’m running iOS 5 beta on my device which isn’t slated to come out for another couple months.
In order to develop for the iOS platform, you must have the iOS SDK installed. Apple has nicely bundled their SDK up along with some other great tools such as XCode in order to make it super easy for you to install and get coding.
With the download your get quite a bit (from Apple’s site)
“This is the complete Xcode developer toolset for Mac, iPhone, and iPad. It includes the Xcode IDE, iOS Simulator, and all required tools and frameworks for building Mac OS X and iOS apps.”
So even if you don’t have an iOS device (I didn’t when I first started developing AND BLOGGING on iCodeBlog), you can still develop and test your applications. One note on this however is, always test on a real device before submitting an application to the store. The simulator is a great tool to use while testing but is very misleading in terms of performance abd behavior.
Well, I hope that this post has found you well and you are now on your way to creating your first iPhone application. In the next tutorial in this series, I will be discussing the basics of XCode and setting up your iOS projects.
If you have any comments, questions, or things to add, feel free to post them in the comments section of this post.