How to Write Your Own iPhone Apps

in iPhone Apps


Steve DemeterSteve Demeter comes across as just another techie and perfect role model for how to write iPhone apps.

Originally a web developer, his world changed for good when he launched the Trism iPhone app and earned over $250,000 in just two months. Since then, Trism has achieved numerous accolades – the best casual game award, Gold award from PocketGamer and several others.

Steve is an inspiration for individuals and businesses aspiring to develop iPhone and iPad apps. People wanting to learn writing iPhone apps need to know which skills and tools are relevant. However, not everybody has the required knowledge and aptitude to be able to write iPhone apps. In such cases, should one hire an iPhone developer or consider outsourcing to a contractor?

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If you want to learn how to write iPhone apps, the first obvious step is to know more about the platform and what it takes to be an Apple developer. Though Apple originally mandated developers to use iOS SDK for iPhone app development and disallowed the use of third party Windows-based development tools, it removed this limitation in September last year. Ever since then, programmers have used several third-party SDKs and web technologies to write iPhone and iPad apps.

In terms of skills, it’s fair to say that writing iPhone apps requires at least some level of design knowledge and a programming background, whether it’s Objective-C of web programming languages such as HTML, JavaScript and CSS.

Further, the benefit of learning iOS app development is that you can write apps for both iPhone and iPad. Apple created a new business segment for tablets when it launched the iPad and now there’s an amazing demand for quality iPad apps in the enterprise. In fact, a large number of programmers these days start off with iPhone app development and then move on to iPad app development for good.

From a skill perspective, iPhone and iPad app development are similar. The only major difference is that the programmer needs to account for the larger iPad screen size.


Apple App Store has grown exponentially in the last two years so it’s understandable that iPhone app development is all the rage these days. If you want to learn how to make an iPhone app, you need certain tools to do so.

If you want to go the conventional route, use a Mac, iPhone SDK and Xcode – that’s what Apple recommends as the preferred toolchain for iOS development. However, if you do not have a Mac, the best solution is to look for a Windows-based iPhone development environment. Windows-based iPhone development tools (such as PhoneGap, Appcelerator Titanium) provide a cross-platform experience so developers write the code once and it can be run on multiple platforms such as Android, iPhone and BlackBerry.

The best part is most of these Windows-based development tools are either free or cost a fraction of the Mac development costs. Some of the most popular iPhone development tools include:

Corona SDK – Corona offers a drag and drop interface so it’s a good starting point for non-developers to begin iPhone development.

Appcelerator Titanium – Appcelerator Titanium uses web technologies such as HTML, JavaScript etc. for iPhone app development.

PhoneGap – An open source HTML5 based Windows development framework that allows building apps for iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Palm webOS, Symbian and Windows Phone 7.


While iPhone app development is no rocket science and anyone with basic computer skills know-how can create a simple application however writing a great app with with elegant design and efficient usability is still a fairly specialized area. Unless you are sure that you can pull it off, it’s better to outsource your app development project to a professional iPhone developer.

So, how do you find an iPhone developer for your needs? How much would it cost? How does the outsourcing model work? For a start, you should consider using a freelancing portal such as Elance or oDesk. Elance, in particular, has a strong iPhone developer community which you can tap for your needs. As for costing, there’s no fixed rule. You’ll find developers who work at $10/hour and going as high as $100/ hour. You may choose a fixed cost or hourly rate model based on mutual agreement.

The benefit of outsourcing iPhone app development is that professional programmers are aware of the nitty-gritty involved in designing the app UI, improving performance, testing it and eventually submitting it on Apple App Store.

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