5 Timeless iOS Development Topics You Should Learn as a Beginner

Know the five timeless topics that every beginner should know to future-proof their SwiftUI knowledge.
Written by

J.C. Yee

Last Updated on

Oct 06 2023

Anyone who wants to start learning iOS Development will always feel overwhelmed by the hundreds of principles, concepts, and frameworks that you need to learn, one way or another. This is the crux of a constantly-evolving area in the tech industry, especially one that’s being controlled by Apple. Any knowledge that you’ll learn now, might be obsolete in a few years.

Fear not, however, as there are still timeless concepts that every beginner iOS developer should know before diving into the more complex aspects of building apps.

But first, why SwiftUI?

All the things that we’ll discuss in this article are SwiftUI-related because this is where Apple wants to focus on moving forward. During the recently concluded WWDC 2023 and Platforms State of the Union, most if not all announcements made heavily referenced developments in SwiftUI. So it’s safe to say that it is the iOS app building of the future. Master them all, and you’ll be in it for the long haul.

Top 5 Timeless iOS Development Topics You Need to Learn as a Beginner

1. The Swift Language

Before diving into SwiftUI, it’s important to have a solid understanding of the Swift programming language, which is also designed by Apple. Swift is a powerful and intuitive language for all of Apple’s platforms such as iOS, macOS, iPadOS, and so on.

As you learn more about the Swift language and build knowledge around data types, optionals, control flow, loops, and functions in Swift, you’ll be able to write efficient code and effectively debug when issues arise.

To get started in Swift, you can read Apple’s official Swift Programming Language Guide, or watch our free masterclass on Swift Programming for Beginners.

2. Basics of SwiftUI

Once you know your way around the Swift programming language, the next step is to understand the fundamentals of SwiftUI, which is a declarative framework for building user interfaces.

Unlike UIKit, SwiftUI allows you to build interfaces by declaring what you want in your UI, not how to create it. Our advice for beginners is to learn views like Text, Image, Button and then figure out how to modify them using view modifiers.

Related Video: SwiftUI Tutorial for Beginners (3.5 Hour Masterclass)

3. Data Flow

In SwiftUI, your user interface is structured into a hierarchy of views, where data flow is managed with a clear top-down approach using property wrappers like @State and @Binding.

By understanding data flow, you can better understand how to manage state and how to make your user interface update appropriately when the state changes. This is especially important in SwiftUI because it does not use a traditional, imperative programming model. Instead, your app’s views are updated automatically when the state changes.

4. Navigation and View Composition

As a beginner, you’ll also have to understand how to use SwiftUI Navigation to let people move around different parts of your app. For example, since the release of iOS16, Apple introduced NavigationStack, which lets people move forward and back through a stack of views.

There’s quite a lot to unpack when it comes to SwiftUI navigation as it’s one of the pillars to making an app usable in the first place. Understanding them will help you create an app that is easy to navigate for your users. If you want to learn more, you can visit Apple’s own documentation on how to use various Navigation functions.

For a more comprehensive tutorial, you can watch our own YouTube video about Navigation in SwiftUI and iOS 16.

5. Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines

Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines (HIG) is the rule book for iOS app design. Learning these guidelines is super important for any iOS developer, beginner or advanced. Think of it as the blueprint for designing apps that users will love and is more likely to fare well in the App Store.

The tech world changes fast, but Apple’s emphasis on a great user experience doesn’t. These guidelines are at the heart of that, so they’re definitely not going anywhere. So, by getting to grips with them early on and throughout your career, you’re building a strong foundation that can adapt to whatever iOS might look like in the future.

In summary, if you’re a beginner iOS developer, understanding the HIG isn’t optional, it’s necessary. It’s like your secret weapon to creating apps that both users and Apple will appreciate, giving you a strong start in this competitive field. Plus, it’s future-proof because it keeps you ahead of the game and ready for any changes that might come your way.

The best part? You’ll be able to design apps that not only work well but look and feel great too. That’s a definite win for us.

Need guidance? You can always visit CodeWithChris YouTube channel and our CodeCrew Forum to get some help.

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