Apple managed to keep everything under wraps regarding it Apple Watch till it was introduced to the world alongside the iPhone in September. Now it has come out with the WatchKit SDK for developers so that apps for the wearable can be created. So what does the SDK include? It is a detailed software development kit that suggests several hints about the company’s first watch that includes resolutions, screen sizes and about the overall experience that is received while using the Watch. During the launch although there was a lot of fanfare but details about the gadget were not provided. With the introduction of the SDK everyone can have access to certain information about them. Continue reading WatchKit SDK – Some features that developers should know
Apple has spent several years in making of Swift. Apple put down the foundation for Swift in order to improve the current compiler, debugger, and also framework structure. The memory management has been made easier with Automatic Reference Counting (ARC). The framework stack, designed on the strong base of Foundation and Cocoa, and also been modernised and standardised all around. Objective-C alone has developed to support blocks, collection literals, as well as modules, allowing framework adopting of latest language technologies with no interruption. Continue reading Promising future for app developers with Apple’s Swift
The new products of Apple are generally released around the fall; thus those who are fans of their products wait with bated breath for the next releases around this time. In this context, the next releases from the Apple stable are supposed to be iOS 8 and iPhone 6 which will be released sometime around September. The news about iOS 8 release was publicized on June. Now, with just a few days left for the release, people are growing increasingly curious about the new additions or changes that might be introduced in it. Here is a sneak peek at some of the features which are expected to be seen in the new release.
In the previous 7th version, the operating system had seen vast changes in the design aspect; there was a total overhauling. So as per some reports, there will not be major changes in the design aspect. The focus would rather be on incorporation of new apps as well as features in this version.
Apple has completely revamped the look and feel of iOS7. So developers, nowadays, find it a daunting challenge to fit their iPhone and iPad apps with Apple’s new design guidelines. Many developers are further starting from the scratch to avail fresh features and functionalities like Maps, AirPlay and Siri. At the same time, each iOS programmer also needs understand the similarity and differences between iPhone and iPad application development.
Both iPod and iPhone apps use the same mobile operating system, i.e., iOS. These apps are also developed using the same iOS SDK and development language. So at the surface level, you may not note any significant difference between building apps for these two Apple devices. But a close observation will make you notice a number of differences in terms of components and functionality.
Significant Differences between iPhone and iPad App Development
Difference in User Interface
The wide difference in the screen sizes of iPhone and iPad makes it essential for programmers to create different user interfaces. When the user interface complements the screen size of the mobile device, the application can deliver richer user experience. The developers also need to use distinct techniques to maintain the user interface properly. While creating the user interface, the developers can use synchronization tools as per the designing guidelines provided by Apple under the Human Interface Guidelines (HIGs). Also, they can use cross-platform tools to create different user interfaces for iPad and iPhone.
Quality of Resolution
Most iOS applications are compatible with both iPhone and iPad. But the larger screen size of iPad allows the apps to take advantage of additional screen space. But the quality of the resolution is affected as the application is stretched to fill the screen. So the developer must remember that an iPhone app may not run on iPad with high resolution. Further, the tablet users expect the screen to be split into separate panes for content and navigation.
Sense of Immediacy
Unlike tablets, smartphones can be carried by users in a flexible and hassle-free way. So the smartphones often create a sense of immediacy among the users. Each user expects the smartphone apps to fetch information or perform certain tasks in a time-driven and spontaneous manner. The sense of immediacy makes it essential for the iPhone apps to deliver user experience that is both time-driven and spontaneous. The requirement further makes iPhone app development different for iPod development.
Required Mobile Bandwidth
The larger screen size of iPad enables programmers to create robust and dynamic user interfaces with streaming rich media content. Many users even rely on Internet cloud to access data at their own pace. But functioning of dynamic interface varies based on the available mobile bandwidth. As many reports have highlighted, iPhone users can access and use more mobile bandwidth in comparison to the iPad users. Often iPad users access internet through Wi-Fi. So they have to compete with other users to get more bandwidth. That is why; the developers must design iPad apps that perform smoothly without consuming additional mobile bandwidth.
Target Audience for the App
The iOS developers also need to consider the target audience for the application, in addition to the technical aspects. The larger screen size of iPad makes it more suitable for apps that are designed mainly to display information. For instance, the kids love to see large graphics, while swiping and taping the device to change view. So iPad apps will be more appropriate for visually oriented tasks. Similarly, the iPod apps can also be use by retail stores to display and catalogue their products. On the other hand, the iPhone apps are more effective in targeting the professionals and business people. As they have to work on the go, the iPhone app will make it easier for the business people to access information anytime and anywhere.
The version of iOS will also have an impact on the differences between iPhone and iPad app development. But the developers can always build apps by targeting the most recent version of iOS to overcome these differences.
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User demands as well as requirements have to be deeply considered when developing mobile applications or iPhone apps. Apple has a high standard set for its apps and as such a lot of thought along with planning has to be invested to ensure the success of the apps. To make the design process successful, the app building must be properly planned as well as wireframed. Proper wireframing helps save money regarding development as well as design, build functionality along with structure, gather effectively invaluable early feedback and expand basic initial ideas. Given below are some ideas that will help you in this process. However, the very first thing that needs to be done here is downloading the iPhone Wireframe UI Kit which is available in dark blue, beige and blueprint varieties.
Focusing on user experience- Make the wireframe as bare as you possibly can since it is the user experience that should be judged, instead of the look. If you are confident then use real grids and dimensions. Try to determine realistically the amount of content that can be fitted in a single screen as that makes or even breaks the concept. If there is time constraint, then it is best to be as close to the actual product as possible. High fidelity mockups can have a huge influence on other decisions like content fitness, navigation complexity, overall value, usability, etc.
App views planning- Any design may have various kinds of views. Content, photo gallery, table listing, numerical dial pad, etc may be included in the app. While designing, think what will be needed; it may be a good idea to actually make a list of the things which must be included in it. Start from root view, or in other words, the very first view that is seen by users after they have downloaded the application. Remember that the list of views needed by the app should feature only unique interfaces.
Colors- Efficient wireframes generally favor the use of subtle tones like soft blues or gray. Idealistically speaking, the shades should be consistent as well as neutral so that the strong colors do not distract and the structure is the main point of focus. Determining the varying use of colors may be difficult, so use it at your own discretion, and at your own risk. Create a color structure and according to that change or alter the hues so that they suit your taste.
User interface- There is no need of interactivity for creation of good iPhone app but majority of them include that. So plan out how to provide it. The very few elements needed are keyboard and popup modal messages. Plan about the different kinds of submit buttons as well as e-mail fields, password, username. Use appropriate labels as well to explain users the kind of information to be inlcuded. The design often includes icons; you can choose standard icons for representation of key actions. Also you should have a clear idea about the actual dimensions for the buttons.
Fonts- The kind of font to be used is also a decision to be taken. Generally Helvetica Neue is used on iOS. In fact, by default it is available on Mac. Android users can use Roboto as well. The typography is not a section for you to worry about; Blokk font may be used with irregular blocks representing text. To stop it from looking strange, the perfect line-height and font size must be set.
Some of the tools which may help you in this endeavor are Wireframe.CC, Fluid UI, Balsamiq, HotGloo, MockApp, Proto.IO and Framer. All of these help you out, making the wireframe designing an incredible as well as fulfilling process. It also makes the entire process simple. You get a chance to realize how the creation will actually look and feel but without any restrictions related to finer-detail elements, paving the way for an easy development cycle, by understanding the required elements for good programming.
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Developers often find it a daunting challenge to rapidly build iPhone apps that meet the choices and expectations of users. They also look for advanced and innovative tools to build the applications on time and on schedule. Nowadays, Unreal Development Kit (UDK) is used widely by iOS developers across the world to build a huge variety of custom 3D games and applications.
The kit further uses a powerful object oriented language along with the UnrealScript programming language. Along with facilitating code development in UDK, these programming languages further offer special features required for building iPhone apps and games. Despite providing the features of Unreal Engine 3, UDK is still available as a free download for noncommercial usage.
What Makes UDK for iOS Essential for iPhone App Development?
Complements Development of a Huge Variety of Apps and Games
The nature and requirements of individual iPhone app varies. Many enterprises, nowadays, prefer building custom 3D applications and games to get higher ROI. The Unreal Development Kit provides the tools required to develop complex iOS applications. A user can simply have a look at the apps and games already developed using UDK to decide what makes it the perfect solution to build complex and robust applications for Apple devices.
Options to Create Executable for iOS and Windows PC
Most developers use Mac hardware to create the perfect environment to create iPhone apps. The UDK allows them to build the applications without investing the Mac hardware. However, Mac hardware is required to submit the applications to the Apple App Store. Also, the UDK development environment runs seamlessly on Windows PC. So the developers can use the kit to create executable for both iOS and Windows PC. The feature further contributes towards creating the development environment without investing in new hardware and tools.
Comes with Features of Unreal Engine 3
The UDK is the free version of Unreal Engine 3. So it supports all features of Unreal Engine 3. Epic has designed the innovative game engine technology to complement the development of next generation of mobile applications and games. In addition to operating across ten platforms, Unreal Engine 3 also comes with a set of advanced content creation tools and core technologies. The programmers can use these tools and technologies to create the environment and infrastructure build high quality iPhone apps and games.
Supports Multiple Apple Devices
Along with iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4, the tools provided by UDK can also be used to create applications for iPad and the 3rd and 4th generation of iPod touch. However, a developer must install iOS 3.2 or later to run Unreal Engine 3 smoothly. Also, the kit is not compatible with the older versions of iOS. So the programmers must upgrade to the latest version of iOS to build robust apps by targeting multiple Apple devices.
Free for Noncommercial Use
As noted earlier, the Unreal Development Kit is the free version of the Unreal Engine 3. Thus, developers can use UDK for noncommercial purposes without paying any charges. The features make UDK just like any other open source mobile application development framework. Epic further updates the UDK at frequent intervals to complement the latest trends in mobile application development. At the same time, the developers also have option to get a Commercial UDK License to build commercial applications for iPhone. Also, a single commercial license allows developers to build several commercial apps and games using the UDK.
In February 2014, UDK 2014-02 – version 12097 was released with a set of additional features and functionality. These features will make it easier for developers to build robust iPhone apps without writing lengthy and complex code. Also, the updated version of UDK will help them in meeting the ongoing trends in iOS application development.
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