iOS Development Basics – Getting Set Up for Your First App

iOS Development tutorial getting set

In this series of iOS development tutorial for beginners, we are going to discuss the very basics of getting set up for creating your first iOS app. While there are many 3rd party tools that allow you to develop in a number of ways, I am only going to discuss the officially supported ones from Apple. That being said, let’s get started.

Recommended for you Building Your First App | iOS Development for Beginners

The Hardware

The first thing you are going to need is an Intel Based Apple Computer running OSX 10.10 or better. For starters, a 1.4GHz processor and 4GB of RAM will be enough. But you should keep in mind that the performance gets better with a more powerful configuration. If you are going to use SWIFT as development language then I recommend 16GB of RAM and a 2.5GHz processor.

Hackintosh computers have been known to allow you to develop on them however, they are not recommended as they require quite a bit of configuration. So, your best bet is to develop on the real thing.

Besides that, who wants to use a Windowz box anyway?

You might be interested in: 10 development tools every iOS Developer should use

The Account

ios development tutorial account

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. When 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 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 11 beta on my device which isn’t slated to come out for another couple months.

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The Software

ios development tutorial software

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 macOS and iOS apps.”

So even if you don’t have an iOS device, 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 and 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 iOS development tutorial in this series, I will be discussing iOS Development Basics – What Software You Need to Become an iOS Developer.

If you have any comments, questions, or things to add, feel free to post them in the comments section of this post.

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