Why Future Favors Swift Over Objective-C

November 24th, 2017

Ever stuck in the dilemma while making a choice between Swift and Objective-C during iOS development?
Probably your answer will be yes as both these programming languages are strong competitors to each other.

Wonder why developers are raving about Swift?

Swift is getting popular because of its world class features and easy code structure. Swift opened gates for iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS app developers, allowing them to build interactive, fast and easy to code mobile apps.

In 2014, when Apple launched Swift, iOS developers got an oppoion of a Fractionrtunity to shift their code from Objective-C to a new and advanced platform that was an impeccable combination of Apple’s engineering study and the best open source communities.

While Objective C has been the base for iOS development till date, this object oriented superset for C is incomparable in terms of the improved features and ease to code.

This is why Swift is taking over the iOS development and is replacing Objective C.

If you want to know how Swift is slowly taking over the iOS world, here are few reasons to ponder upon:

1. Swift is easy to read

A big difference between Objective C and Swift is that Swift uses all the industry standards where the list is separated with comma along with parameters within the parentheses. This results in a clean, expressive language that has a simple syntax.

The Swift code has a close resemblance to basic English, with the features of modern programming languages.

The code is better readable, making the software development easy for JavaScript, Java and Python developers.

Swift reduces the complexity of the code by removing semicolons that were used to end lines or parentheses to cover conditional expressions in the inside if/else statements.

When compared with Swift, Objective C can be considered as the ugly duckling with its hap hazard code structure.

Code in Objective-C

// A simple implementation of a Fraction

#import <Foundation/Foundation.h>

int main (int argc, const char * argv[]) {

NSAutoreleasePool *pool = [[NSAutoreleasePool alloc] init];

int numerator = 2;

int denominator = 5;

NSLog(@”This is a fraction with a value of %d/%d”, numerator, denominator);

[pool drain];

return 0;

}

Code in Swift:

extension String {
var banana : String {
let shortName = self.dropFirst()
return “\(self) \(self) Bo B\(shortName) Banana Fana Fo F\(shortName)”
}
}

let bananaName = “Jimmy”.banana // “Jimmy Jimmy Bo Bimmy Banana Fana Fo Fimmy”

2. Swift increases the productivity of the developer

Finding a good iOS developer can be a tedious task.

Moreover, you need to make sure that you draw the right productivity out of them.

Swift helps the developer to streamline their work and make the code clean.

It is a suitable platform for fast paced app development as it lays of the baggage of a 30 year old language C.

Most of the technological features of OS X operating system dates back to Apple’s beginnings and the new incorporated features are all based on Objective C. This also included the mobile apps.

The thing about Objective C is that its strength lies in the graphical user interface but this strength also turns into a disadvantage when the code built is clunky and heavy to write.

3. Swift’s Compatibility with Cocoa Touch & Objective-C

Each framework is a library of code module that makes app development faster and more streamlined. Both frameworks like Cocoa (for OS X) and Cocoa Touch (iOS) have been popularly associated with Apple Operating System. The Cocoa Touch for iOS is specifically built for touch based devices like iPad and iPhone.

Since all these modules are written in Objective-C, Swift’s compatibility with Objective-C plays a huge role in developing apps in Cocoa Touch. This also allows developers to build mixed language apps and utilize the perks of both Cocoa Touch with Swift and Swift classes with Objective-C. Developers can now take advantage of the interchangeable classes and design patterns.

Also, the process of migrating the Swift code to Objective-C code is simple.

You can easily write code in Swift and migrate it to a chunkier form of Objective-C.

By building a Swift development environment in Xcode you can also take advantage of the compatibility of Swift with Cocoa Touch framework.

Advantages of Swift

1. Swift is the actual code that you write in Xcode and the newest version of Xcode is faster than C++.

2. It is easier to learn and work on Swift as compared to Objective-C. It has been over 30 years since Objective-C was first introduced as a framework for Apple Operating System.

This is why the syntax of Objective-C is much more clunky.

Swift on the other hand is more like natural English language and is easily readable syntax similar to C#, C++, JavaScript, Java, and Python.

The best part is- Swift requires less code as compared to Objective-C.

Swift deploys string interpolation without placeholders or tokens, whereas Objective-C is wordy when it comes to string manipulation.

3. Swift is built with fast and smart compiler– Low Level Virtual Machine (LLVM). This compiler is usually used for languages like Scala, Ruby, Python, C# and Go. Better are the compilers, better is the coding experience for programmers. A good compiler shifts the workload from the developer to the compiler and Xcode.

4. Swift is safer. With the absence of pointers, Swift is much safer to use for programmers. The thing with pointers is that they create vulnerability in the code security. They also act as the barrier in allocating and fixing bugs.

However, with Swift, if you miss out on a pointer in the code, supposedly a nil value, the app automatically crashes. This allows you to find and fix bugs immediately. You are left with a cleaner code that is readable and easy to understand.

5. Better memory management also makes Swift a preferred option.

Memory leaks in object oriented programming decrease the memory for an application, resulting in crash. Swift supports the Automatic Reference Counting for all APIs that offers a streamlined way for memory management similar to Cocoa Touch.

However, Cocoa Touch fails in context of core graphics API as ARC is not available for the framework. Swift plays an essential role in such scenarios as it frees up the developer’s time worrying about memory management.

With all these pointers in mind, one can surely say that Swift is talking over the world and giving mobile application development a new meaning. Though Objective-C won’t obsolete soon, the talks are phasing out for mobile application development.

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  • Yeah, dear colleagues, we support this point of view! Our team successfully combined two languages while we still can, but we are for the Swift future, since it clearly more suitable tool than Obj.C. We even did a comparison chart for these two – http://bit.ly/2AoV3ep