Three Alternatives to Objective C for iOS Development

Are you interested in building an iOS app, but not eager to learn Objective-C? You’re not alone! Objective-C is chained by the bonds of C compatibility, and when compared to dynamic languages and their frameworks, such as Ruby and Rails, it is not the most pleasant thing to jump into. Although the power C based languages offer can be extremely useful, it seems that in the modern age of software development, iOS development could be made more pleasurable.

Thankfully, iOS software developers have choices!

1. RubyMotionRuby Motion

If you are a Rubyist, then Ruby Motion may be your ideal choice for iOS development. It offers a robust toolkit that runs on top of Objective-C, which means Ruby Motion apps have the same performance as Objective-C built apps. And if you’re a Rubyist, the learning curve should be negligible. The one downside is that it comes at a price, $199.99 at the time of this writing.


PhoneGap2. PhoneGap

Do you want to stick with good old HTML, Javascript and CSS while writing your iOS app? Then PhoneGap might be the solution for you. It is the open source distribution of Cordova, which is maintained by Apache. Both PhoneGap and Cordova are free to use, and are well documented.



Swift3. Swift

Today, at the Apple WWDC, the company announced the release of a new programming language for iOS and OS X app development – Swift.

Swift  is said to remove some of the cumbersome nature of C that was in Objective-C and attempts to make programming for iOS and easier and more enjoyable experience. It can run side by side with Objective-C, allowing for a seamless transition for those apps built by its predecessor. Although there are understandably not many resources available for the language, Apple has release a free eBook to help developers get started with Swift. So if you are more of a purist, ie. Objective-C advocate, Swift should be a great language for you.

Please comment if you’d like to add any other languages or tools that make iOS development fun for you!

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