Looking to build your next app for Apple’s iOS platform? Trio is staffed with a full-time roster of highly experienced developers who specialize in developing mobile apps on iOS. We can help take your mobile-minded dreams to reality by taking into account what kind of app you are looking to build and what time frame you are looking to build it in. By understanding what you are trying to build on iOS, we can appropriately assign which of our developers fits your criteria to lend support in building your project.
What is iOS?
iOS is a mobile operating system created and developed by Apple Inc. It exists as part of a larger ecosystem of operating systems such as macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. iOS is exclusive to the iPhone and iPad hardware.
What is an iOS developer?
An iOS developer is a developer that is able to build native iOS applications using Apple’s proprietary IDE XCode as well as leveraging the power of programming languages like Swift and/or Objective-C.
Swift is the primary programming language that is supported by Apple for developing iOS applications. It’s predecessor Objective-C is currently on it’s way out, however, it’s still used to maintain legacy systems both within Apple’s codebases as well as other companies who have yet to re-write their applications using Swift.
In today’s world, iOS developers are expected to know Swift as well as have a comprehensive understanding of Apple’s iOS frameworks. In a sense, they can be considered full-stack developers because they will be responsible for designing both the frontend and backend of a mobile application. Only rarely, such as the case for large teams and agencies, will you see frontend and backend roles be separated.
There is little to be known outside of Apple’s technology ecosystem when it comes to iOS development, save for when dealing with databases. Apple does not support cloud databases and therefore a developer will have knowledge in one or more, such as Google’s Firebase.
Popular Mobile App Databases
There are many databases to choose from when building a mobile app. Here are some popular databases to build iPhone apps. You can select the best database for your mobile app based on your requirements.
MySQL: An open-source, multi-threaded, and easy to use SQL database. Perhaps one of the older database options around.
PostgreSQL: A powerful, open-source object-based, relational-database that is highly customizable. This is a popular option to use for web applications as well and can integrate well for iOS.
Redis: An open-source, low maintenance, key/value store that is used for data caching in mobile applications. It’s a more simplistic option that eliminates the need to access data with SQL.
MongoDB: A schemaless, JSON document database which is known for its flexibility and scalability. This is another popular option among many web applications.
Memcached: A general-purpose distributed memory caching system that has multi-threaded capabilities. It’s used primarily for caching objects to speed up applications by alleviating database load.
MariaDB: A popular open-source relational database that was created by the original developers of MySQL. Apparently it’s capable of completing INSERT statements up to 24% faster than MySQL thanks to its index/cache system.
Cassandra: A free and open-source, NoSQL database which is designed to handle a large amount of unstructured data across many different servers. It boasts high availability with no single point of failure.
SQLite: Embedded database, common usage is to provide local data storage capabilities on mobile phones. For many web and mobile applications, this is a default option that works best for smaller-scale projects without too much complexity.
InfluxDB: An open-source, time-series database. Influx is written in Go which makes it extremely fast thanks to Go’s low-level nature.
RethinkDB: An open-source, document-oriented database that stores data in JSON format. RethinkDB is capable of syncing in real-time with applications.
Riak DB: A distributed NoSQL database that offers high availability, fault tolerance, and data resiliency. It’s also open-source with enterprise and cloud versions.
CouchbaseA NoSQL document-oriented database that is able to serve concurrent users.
ArangoDB: An open-source, NoSQL database that supports three database models. It only uses one database at its core along with AQL query language.
Why build your app on iOS?
It makes sense to build your app to take advantage of this profitable mobile ecosystem, but it’s also an excellent candidate due to how versatile it is with a wide range of devices it supports. iOS is available on iPhone and iPad devices, allowing apps to be accessed on both phones and tablets.
The iOS platform offers Apple’s App Store to connect mobile users with your app through search functions, categories and promotional content from Apple such as “Editors Choice” awards. If you create a quality app that has real demand and takes the effort to distribute it and market it in the App Store, it’s fair to say you are on your way to getting customers using your app.
Apple goes out of its way to make In-App purchases seamless in its App Store ecosystem, allowing users to purchase in-app content at the push of a button. All of this combines together to create a mobile ecosystem that facilitates distributing and monetizing your mobile app, making iOS a great choice for a development platform.
iOS Alternatives & Comparisons
Not exactly an alternative, but more so another channel, Android accounts for the rest of the world’s smartphone population. To make an iPhone app with no Android app is essentially turning your back on a percentage of the market. If your strategy can afford to neglect the Android market, then iOS is likely the better option in the western world.
Finally, there is no guarantee that React Native will be around in the future as there is no long-term commitment to the framework. Furthermore, React Native still enjoys constant updates and while this might seem like a good thing, it creates more work for a developer to do as they will have to constantly go back and update their codebase to function properly. Native development, on the other hand, is more mature.
Companies who use iOS
Hire an iOS Developer
Finding a good iOS developer is slightly more difficult than finding a web developer. iOS is in a very different lane than web development in the sense that when dealing with mobile applications, you are forced to become more conscious about resources (CPU). Furthermore, Apple has many frameworks that the developer must become proficient at in order to make decent applications on top of learning how to deal with layouts both visually and programmatically.
Even so, there are still many iOS developers around. However, finding a good developer is not as easy as it seems. With all of the freelance marketplaces and job boards around, you’d think it would be easy to find your rockstar and get started. How do you go about deciding if a developer joins your team?
We have a great resource for you to check out that addresses that topic in much greater detail.
Why hire a Trio iOS developer
Trio iOS developers are pre-vetted, interviewed and then trained further to become true software professionals, capable of adapting to situations that are both within and outside of the scope of their general expertise.
At Trio, we hold our developers to a higher standard. Much like how elite special forces units recruit only the best from main branches of the military, we recruit developers who either show amazing potential or demonstrate exceptional skill. We then take their talents and sharpen them even further.
Another benefit of hiring a Trio developer is that you won’t incur the costs of hiring, which can add up to be around 30% of a developer’s salary on average, as well as overhead costs associated with full-time employment. By working with Trio, you can enjoy a highly experienced full-time developer for a fraction of the cost, along with the added project management assistance.
To learn more, hit us up and tell us about your project so that we can get you started.
How to hire iOS developers
For those who wish to take the high road and hire iOS developers on your own, we’re still here to help. Hiring a developer on your own is a very focused and hands-on process that requires considerable knowledge about software development in general. The last thing you want to do is trust your hiring process to someone with no technical ability. If you are a non-technical manager looking to learn a thing or two, we have a great resource here for you to learn more about the hiring process in detail. Otherwise, we’d recommend you contact Trio for consulting and developer allocation.
What to look for in an iOS developer
At a high level, iOS developers should be able to:
- Work with Swift
- High-level proficiency in the basic iOS frameworks
- Experience with using AutoLayout
- Experience with programmatic user interface design
- Is learning SwiftUI to provide an alternative to using UIKIT
- Can set up a database and interact with its APIs
- Is competent and unafraid of testing driven development
- Has knowledge of MVC design pattern
- Is capable of writing clean code
- Is able to learn new technologies and read iOS documentation to build out new functionality and features
How much do iOS developers cost in the U.S?
According to ZipRecruiter and other sources, as of March 2020, the average annual pay for a Senior iOS Developer in the United States is between $73,500 and $133,772 a year.
Here’s a chart that visualizes the salary ranges within the United States for a Senior Software Developer. Last updated - March 2020.
How much do iOS cost in South America?
Due to economic differences between the United States and South America as a whole, the cost of offshoring software development is significantly lower than hiring full-time with U.S talent. For Senior iOS Developers in South America, the average salary is currently around $100,000 whereas a mid-level developer costs around $76,000.
How much do iOS Developers cost in Ukraine / Eastern Europe?
Eastern Europe shares very similar rates to South America, again due to the economic differences. When looking at salaries in Eastern Europe, data shows that a Senior iOS Developer costs around $100,000 on average.
Hourly rates for iOS Developers
Another way to look at developer costs is through hourly rates. While salaries are good to understand for hiring developers for full-time and long-term, you might just need a developer for a period of 3-6 months or 6-12 months. In these types of situations, it’s best to calculate your costs based on the hourly rates of a developer.
Below is a table that lists the various hourly rates of developers in different locations based on their job title.
Maintaining iOS Apps
If only having an iOS app was as simple as publishing it to the App Store and letting your profits roll in, sadly most of us know that isn’t the case. Building a mobile-based business requires maintenance and consistent development in order to stay relevant. Whether you are looking to have bugs fixed, optimize performance, or push feature updates in order to stay ahead of the competition, maintaining your iOS app is a constant process. The fact of the matter is, you have to maintain the support of your app to adapt to new versions of iOS and ensure old versions still work. The resources this requires add up - in fact, initial development of an app-only makes up 35% of the cost of having a mobile app.
Constant improvements are something that consumers come to expect, it’s vital that you ensure your iOS app doesn’t remain stagnant. Tracking performance, and measuring what features align with the priorities of your customer’s needs allow you to craft a development roadmap that yields the most success. Balancing user expectations with your ability to meet them through a refined app is key here, it’s a large undertaking that is necessary to build a profitable mobile app that delivers real value to your customers.
Get started sooner rather than later
Now that we’ve covered the general landscape of developing for iOS, why not get your project started with the help of Trio? Utilize our team
of full-time iOS, developers to take care of your mobile app needs. By keeping our staff full-time, we can have developers ready for your project in days, not months. With portfolios that cover all aspects of developing for iOS, our developers can help you build and launch your app, provide performance audits, build features, or lend a hand to your development team. It’s worth getting the conversation started today, we can help you ensure you are proud of your iOS app.
Relevant iOS Tools