iOS development is changing very quickly. Not a long time ago, nobody knew about Swift and size classes. Today, they are essential tools and techniques every iOS developer should know. So learning regularly is very important for every iOS developer. However, it is not easy to stay up-to-date. In this article we discuss the best methods to do so.
Reading blogs is very useful to stay up-to-date. There are a lot of very good and well respected blogs. I have already posted a list of interesting blogs on my article The Best iOS Development Resources. Here’s another list:
- Ray Wenderlich: A blog focused on high quality programming tutorials.
- NSHipster: A blog founded by @mattt. Weekly posts about Objective-C, Swift and Cocoa.
- Ole Begemann: Long existing blog by the German iOS and Mac OS developer @olebegemann.
- NatashaTheRobot: Posts about iOS and watchOS development by @NatashaTheRobot.
- Simple Programmer: Very interesting blog by @jsonmez about soft skills and programming in general.
- Airspeed Velocity Blog focused on Swift by @AirspeedSwift
- Erica Sadun: Very interesting iOS development blog by @ericasadun.
- iOS Developer Tips: This blogs collects links to interesting iOS development articles.
- AppCoda: Another very good iOS development blog with lots of tutorials.
- FlexMonkey: Blog about iOS development by @FlexMonkey. There are some really awesome posts about Metal.
- Little Bites of Cocoa: Posts a “small, bite-sized” tip every (!) weekday. By @lilbitesofcocoa.
This is just a small list, there are much more awesome blogs out there.
Books are still a very good resource to learn things. I recommend the following books:
- iOS Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide: Very good introduction to iOS development. Some programming experience is required. If you don’t have any programming experience at all, you should start with the following book:
- Swift Programming: The Big Nerd Ranch Guide: Excellent book for beginners.
- Core Data: All you need to know about Core Data.
- Soft Skills by John Sonmez. This book is not about iOS development. But if you want to improve your career, you should read it.
It’s very important that you not just read cover to cover. Practice is the most important step in learning new things.
Although blogs are very useful, it is very time consuming to look regularly at all of your favourite blogs. Instead, you can subscribe to some newsletters that put together the best blog posts for you. Here is a list of very good iOS development newsletters:
I also have a newsletter. It keeps you informed about both the latest blog posts and the best iOS development links of the month.
Social media is another good way to stay up-to-date on iOS development. The most important social media channel for this topic is Twitter. Many of the iOS development blogs and developers have their own Twitter channel. It is really worth looking into it.
Facebook and Google+ are not as important as Twitter in my opinion. However, there are also some very good groups on these platforms:
- iOS Developers, Facebook
- Swift iOS Development, Facebook
- iOS Developers, Google+
- iOS Development, Google+
On LinkedIn there are some interesting groups about iOS development:
On reddit, there are two very popular subreddits:
But don’t forget that social media tends to be very time consuming…
Some people prefer to watch a video course rather than reading tutorials. There are a some places where you can find video courses:
For some of them you have to pay. However, it is always a good choice to spend your money on education.
The WWDC is Apple’s yearly developer conference in San Francisco. All of the new development stuff is announced and presented there. Unfortunately, it is both expensive and difficult to get a ticket. But Apple is hosting videos of all talks every year on its website and on its app. It is a lot of stuff, so that it is perhaps to much to watch all of them every year. But you should choose those talks that look most interesting to you.
Unfortunately, I have the impression that there is not going on so much on Youtube regarding iOS development, so I have just two recommendations:
- Archetype by @
- Simpe Programmer: Not specific about iOS development but about programming in general. By @jsonmez.
If you are aware of any other good Youtube channel, please let me know.
If you more are more the kind of person that likes to listen to something rather than reading or watching, then podcasts can be the right thing for you. Fortunately, there are some very good podcasts for iOS developers:
Podcasts have the big advantage that you can listen to them while you are doing other things.
Besides the WWDC, there are a lot of conferences about iOS development all over the world. Very interesting conferences are:
Going to a conference is not only good for learning new things, but also to get in contact to other developers. Furthermore, it is also a lot of fun.
Although all mentioned methods are very important and useful, there is one thing that is much more important: Practice. To stay up-to-date, you have to work on apps and experiment with the newest development tools. You can read all the theory there is, but if you never try to do it on your own, there will be no real learning process.
However, it is not sufficient to do just practise. If you are only programming for yourself without any external input, you will get very soon to a point where your learning process gets very slow. You tend to do things always in the same way. But if you are looking at blogs, newsletters and all the other stuff, you will be able to question your methods and behaviour and eventually become better.
Image: @ YuryZap / shutterstock.com