Best framework for iOS app development – In the last two decades, we have seen that mobile technology has the maximum penetration in our lives from the technology front. Today, we depend on mobile apps for many daily activities, like looking for a cab, scheduling an appointment, paying our everyday utility bills, or purchasing our favorite dress. As mobile technology evolves and advances daily, everything seems at our fingertips.

It is easy to find mobile apps as per our needs on popular app stores like Google Play Store and Apple App Store. In the Apple App Store, the apps were technically called iOS applications. As the iPhones have attained ever-growing popularity along with other Apple devices, the demand for these iOS apps is at its highest. It is worth noting that popular apps with great reputations are always built using the best iOS frameworks, and they have always stayed ahead of the competition. The apps built using the best iPhone app development frameworks have better speed, performance, usability, features, etc., in comparison to other apps serving the same purpose. For an iOS app development company like us, it is imperative to stay updated with the latest trends in mobile app development and the available frameworks that are best for iOS app development. This article will share the best iOS development frameworks for your subsequent iOS app development project.

What Are iOS App Development Frameworks?

There is a highly significant role of iPhone app development frameworks in defining the features, functionalities, and success of a mobile app. An iOS app development framework allows iOS application developers to develop apps with different sub-components. An iPhone app development framework comprises tools, code libraries, interfaces, and debuggers. It gives a structured way for the developers to develop iOS apps with a streamlined development process and smooth compatibility with iOS devices.

Top iOS App Development Frameworks

Here is our list of the best iOS app development frameworks that can smoothen the app development journey.

1. SwiftUI – Best iPhone App Development Framework

SwiftUI

Introduced by Apple in 2019, SwiftUI is among the latest iOS app development frameworks leading this list. This framework can be used to develop iOS applications for macOS, watchOS, tvOS, and iOS platforms. The principles of the Swift programming language and SwiftUI framework are the same, i.e., they are easy for the developers to learn and use. It offers a very precise UI for the developers, which makes it easy to understand even if the developers need to become more familiar with Swift or iOS development.

The declarative syntax of the SwiftUI framework is its USP. Developers can describe the UI and its behavior declaratively, i.e., they just need to define the desired UI state rather than mentioning a series of steps, and the framework will automatically update the UI to match that state. It also reduces the coding length; developers have to write a few lines in place of thousands of lines of code.

Major Benefits and Features

  • Highly efficient than its predecessor UIKit, i.e., faster and optimized for modern hardware
  • Offers 2-way data binding, i.e., creates a connection between UI elements and the underlying data
  • Promotes reusable components which can be further used to develop complex user interfaces
  • Create dynamic interfaces that get automatically updated when the code changes
  • The “Canvas” feature offered by Xcode 11 and later versions allows developers to see changes they make in real time.
React Native

React Native is a cross-platform framework highly renowned for developing apps for both Android & iOS platforms. In 2015, the social media giant Facebook released this platform as an open-source library. It uses the concepts of informative programming and JS libraries for developing mobile applications.

It is a popular choice among mobile app developers. The combination of JavaScript and React gives multiple advantages over other frameworks and streamlines the development process. Some of the popular apps that are built using React Native are Instagram, TikTok, Zomato, Netflix, etc.

Like SwiftUI, React Native has a feature called “Hot Reloading”, by which the developers can see the changes they make in real-time. They just need to inject the updated code within the running app without restarting it. Because of its framework’s component-based interface, developers may easily plug and experiment with the interface’s components to produce better apps.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Promotes the creation of reusable components
  • It comes with a huge set of development tools and debugging features
  • Large ecosystem of 3rd party plugins and libraries
  • A single codebase can be used for both Android and iOS apps
  • Flexibility to create highly customized user interfaces
  • Built-in support for accessibility features

Also Read: Build React Native App with Ultra-Intelligent Solutions

3. Flutter – Top Rated iPhone App Development Framework

Flutter

Trusted by more than 2 million developers, Flutter was released in 2018 for developing cross-mobile applications. Flutter developers can build apps of any scale, from customer needs to enterprise-level mobile applications. It is a portable UI toolkit that enables developers to develop native-like programs from a single codebase for desktop, mobile, and the web. It integrates Material Design and Cupertino widgets and uses the Dart programming language.

It is the only framework that doesn’t use a JavaScript bridge yet provides a responsive style with a mobile SDK. Flutter follows a widget-based technology, i.e., the application of Object Oriented Programming concept to any element. The widgets are easy to customize and modify with Flutter. Some popular apps built using Flutter are Google Ads, Google Pay, SpaceX app, etc.

Major Features & Benefits

  • Extensive set of customizable widgets for building user interfaces
  • Deliver high-performance and smooth animations
  • Employs Dart programming language, which is highly efficient for mobile apps
  • Offers built-in internationalization support, i.e., an easy way to develop apps for global audiences
  • Hot reload allows one to see the changes in real time, and there is no need to reload the app for every single change

4. Sencha Ext JS – Best Framework for Enterprise Eleven iOS App Development

Sencha Ext JS

Popularly known as Sencha, Sencha Ext JS got this new name after its combination with Ext JS. If you want to develop a highly data-intensive and enterprise-level iOS mobile app, then Sencha Ext JS should be your choice. Earlier, the Sensa Touch was used for developing only mobile apps, and Ext JS was capable of developing only web apps, but Sencha Ext JS is favorable for developing cross-platform with highly advanced features and functionalities.

There is a huge range of widgets in this framework, like toolbars, forms, menus, lists, etc. The Sencha Test lets you do the QA on platforms as well as on browsers. There are data models, data stores, and data binding, which help in data handling. There are also powerful data visualization tools with intuitive dashboards, charts, and graphics to display data meaningfully. The Sencha Architect, a visual development tool of Sencha Ext JS, has a drag-and-drop interface to help designers & developers create applications.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Extensive documentation, tutorials, and community support for helping developers build iOS applications
  • Developers can create modular apps with huge control over dependencies
  • Sencha CMD helps in project generation, building, testing, and deploying apps
  • Offer limitless options for theming and styling, allowing customized look & feel of apps
  • Flexible layout system for developers to create responsive and adaptive iOS apps
Xamarin

Microsoft introduced this framework for developing cross-platform mobile applications, including iOS apps. It employs the .NET code and C# language and various libraries for building iOS, Android, watchOS, macOS, Tizen, and Windows apps.

While business logic, database access, and network communication code can be shared across all platforms, Xamarin lets you construct a platform-specific user interface code layer. As a result, Xamarin cross-platform apps appear 100% native on any device, giving a superior user experience than generic hybrid apps.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Access to platform-specific SDKs by using a simple syntax of C#
  • Use C# to build native MacOS apps by using Xamarin.Mac
  • It results in better performance with the compilation of C# code with native ARM assembly code
  • Easy to add 3rd party libraries and components with NuGet integration
  • Automated testing of apps on a huge number of real devices in the cloud

Also Read:  Xamarin Mobile App Development Cost & Key Features

Ionic

Released in 2013, Ionic is a highly popular app development framework primarily used for developing cross-platform apps. It is an open-source framework that employs web development technologies such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to build native-like iOS mobile apps. Its architecture is based on Angular and Apache Cordova. Since it offers a plethora of UI design components like filters, action sheets, forms, tab bars, list views, and navigation menus within the design, iOS app developers highly praise this framework. They don’t need to worry about the UI elements of the app and can focus on core functionality.

It has become more accessible for ionic app developers with proficiency in web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to develop iOS apps vis a vis native iOS app development frameworks. It is amongst the top iOS app development frameworks because it offers a huge range of features and benefits.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Allows to develop apps that run on both iOS and Android system
  • A library of pre-designed UI elements is available.
  • Ionic apps can access native device features such as camera, GPS, contacts, etc.
  • Ionic CLI (Command Line Interface) makes it easier to set up projects, code generation, testing, and other phases of iOS app development.
  • Easy theming and styling of the app
  • Support for Progressive Web Applications (PWAs)
  • Easy integration with popular frameworks such as Angular, React, or Vue.js
Phonegap

Initially known as Apache Cordova, Phonegap has gained a tremendous reputation as a cross-development framework for mobile applications. Adobe developed this framework for developers who have knowledge of only web-based technologies such as JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. Using PhoneGap, you can build applications for every mobile, whether it is an iPhone, an Android Smartphone, or a Windows device.

The Native APIs are accessible by the mobile app developers to make use of the native mobile hardware & capabilities such as Cameras, Contacts, accelerometers, GPS, etc. It has a hidden technology named Hydration, which reduces the development time and makes the update procedure simpler.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Developers can leverage their web development skills
  • No need to maintain separate code databases for different platforms
  • Vast ecosystem of plugins and extensions available
  • Great choice for quick prototyping app ideas

8. UIKit

Released in 2008 as an iOS SDK part, UIKit is a part of CocoaTouch. It was a foundational framework for developing iOS applications and provided building blocks of the UI and app’s overall behavior. It is based on the Objective-C language, which played a leading role in the resurgence and launch of the iPhone by Apple.

UIKit offers a huge range of tools and components for building native iOS applications and developing highly captivating iOS apps.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Huge collection of UI components to create the visual elements of an iOS app’s interface
  • Comes with gesture recognizers to detect and respond to various touch and motion gestures
  • Offers different types of views to create apps, such as Table views for settings screens & contacts lists and collection views for creating dynamic, scrollable layouts.
  • Text and typography features like text views, labels, and attributed strings

9. ARKit – iPhone app Development Framework

ARKit

If you want to leverage the latest technology of Augmented Reality in your iOS mobile application, then you can use the ARKit framework offered by Apple. The ARKit framework is mostly used for 3D games or any other app that requires AR.

ARKit is able to do face tracking, location anchoring, recognition of plane, scene geometry, and other 3D-related measures. It can use the Camera and Sensors to give the 3D experience.

Major Benefits and Features

  • Capable of tracking & recognizing 3-D objects and building AR experiences that interact with physical objects
  • Supports realistic lighting and shadows
  • Advanced facial tracking capabilities
  • Easy integration with other technologies such as CoreML, Metal, and SceneKit

10. CoreML – Framework to develop iOS apps powered with ML technology

CoreML

As the name indicates, the CoreML framework is based on machine learning (ML).

Apple developed this framework to develop smart apps with ML technology for iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. Using this framework, iOS developers can integrate machine learning capabilities and add different forms of AI and data-driven functionality.

Major Benefits & Features

  • Developers can build intelligent and data-driven features into the app
  • Can employ use cases like NLP, speech recognition, recommendation systems, etc.
  • Designed for real-time inference

11. SpriteKit and SceneKit

SpriteKit and SceneKit

These two frameworks are dedicated to developing mobile app games for both 2D and 3D interfaces and simulations. Both are part of Apple’s SDK (Software Development Kit) and include a variety of tools for developing visually beautiful and engaging experiences.

Major Benefits and Features

  • SpriteKit comes with a robust set of tools for creating 2D graphics, animations, and effects.
  • SceneKit can be used to create 3D visualizations and employ 3D model formats like COLLADA, FBX, etc.
  • Simplifies the creation of animations and actions

Also Read: Mobile cross-platform frameworks

How to Choose the Right iOS App Development Framework?

There is a plethora of considerations to ponder while selecting the appropriate iPhone app development framework for the development of your next iOS app. These are

1. User-friendly: It is always good to select a framework that is highly user-friendly, and developers find it easy to learn and use.

2. Performance & Speed: Speed plays an integral role in determining the success of an iOS app. You must select a framework that should be reliable in delivering consistent speed & performance.

3. UI Design: If you want a highly captivating app that should be visually appealing for the users, you can use a framework whose core specialization is in UI, such as SwiftUI.

4. Development Time & Budget: You have to examine your budget and timeline that you can dedicate to the iOS app development. If there are constraints, then you must choose a framework that allows for code reusability.

5. Access to native features: Is your app required to access native features such as Camera, Call, GPS, etc? If yes, then choose a framework that has support for these native APIs.

6. Security: If the app involves the usage of users’ sensitive data, then its security must be high. The chosen framework should support secure coding practices and encryption.

7. Community & Support: The chosen framework should be backed by a huge community of developers who tend to receive frequent updates and fixes. If you get stuck in any issue, the community may help to fix it.

Wrapping It Up!

These are some of the most popular iPhone app development frameworks and their advantages that our mobile app developers have discussed in the blog. Our experts can build solutions on these frameworks or if you want to use some other technology, we can do that too.

Connect with one of the best iOS / iPhone app development companies and see how our team can help your business grow.

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THE AUTHOR
Managing Director
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Arun Goyal is a passionate technology enthusiast and a seasoned writer with a deep understanding of the ever-evolving world of tech. With years of experience in the tech industry, Arun has established himself as a prominent figure in the field, sharing his expertise and insights through his engaging and informative blog posts.

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