3 Ways to Develop an iOS app on a Windows PC

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On Mar 13, 2018
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3 Ways to Develop an iOS app on a Windows PC

Are you a PC person that wants to be able to develop mobile apps for both Android and iOS devices? Do you refuse to drink the “Kool-Aid” and give in to purchasing a Mac, but still want to create dynamic apps for iOS devices?

Well, there are a few ways you can use a Windows PC to code iOS apps. Obviously, this is not an optimal way to create the best application, especially when considering the overall QA process.

But for those of you who like to challenge what can and can’t be done when it comes to mobile app development, here are a few hacks that will allow you to develop iOS apps on a Windows PC.

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1. Use a cloud Mac

The easiest way to develop iOS on a Windows machine is to rent-a-Mac using a service like MacinCloud. For around $20 a month, you can login to a Mac server from anywhere in the world using a remote desktop connection and create iOS apps on any PC with internet access.

While this is a simple solution, keep in mind that you will not be able to connect your iPhone to the PC in order to test your application. You can certainly create the app on a Windows machine, but you’ll need to do all of your QA on an actual Mac.

2. Create a virtual environment

Another way to develop iOS on a PC is to create a virtual environment. You can do this using Oracle’s VM Virtual Box. Then you’ll need to install Mac OS X. You can only create iOS apps with XCode, which includes the Swift compiler and Interface Builder. XCode only runs on OS X.

Once you’ve created the virtual environment, you’ll be able to develop your app using XCode and the iPhone simulator. However, as mentioned in the previous point, you’ll still need to test your mobile app on an actual Mac in order to achieve optimal results.

3. Use cross-platform tools

This is the easiest “hack-free” way to develop an iOS app on a PC is to choose one of the cross-platform development tools.

There are many advantages to using a cross-platform tool, especially if you are developing a somewhat simple app without a ton of features. You only have to do one set of coding and then it’s ready for both iOS and Android use.

Some of the top cross-platform development tools include Appcelerator, PhoneGap, and AppInstitute.

In conclusion, the only time you should really be creating iOS apps using a PC is if you’re developing a cross-platform solution using cross-platform tools. It’s always better to use the native platform in order to create the most efficient, user-friendly, and bug-free apps.

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