What is necessary for iOS dev?

I read I would need a Mac on the network to be able to develop for iOS. Since I don’t own products from Apple :green_apple:, what is recommended to buy? And what about OpenGL support? Does it still make sense to support this platform for mobile? I am asking because I consider adding iOS as a target platform since MG does support it.

Oh man… the struggle I had with this haha. The bottom line is that you need a “current” Apple desktop device (not an iPhone) that can run XCode on your network and visible to Visual Studio. I tried this about 3 years ago and, at the time, you needed to have the Apple Developer License set up as well, but that may have changed.

For me, it was difficult to get the hardware. I was doing these tests in around 2017/2018, and a friend loaned me his old device he wasn’t using anymore from around 2012. Unfortunately, this was considered out of date by Apple and I wasn’t able to install the latest version of the OS, which was required to install XCode (as it wasn’t already installed). I did some digging around on Kijiji and the best I could find was around $200 for a device that was around the 2014 mark.

Ultimately, I decided to abandon iOS support. For a $200 minimum investment for a device that was going to go out of date in a couple of years anyway and I’d have the same struggle, it just wasn’t worth it. Considering I made like $20 bucks (lulz) on my game, I think it was the right choice. I figure, if you have access to the hardware, either you own it or can borrow from a friend/family member, iOS support is totally worth doing. It’s just a wider audience for your game. If you don’t… maybe consider seeing how things go on Android first. If the title is successful, reinvest some of your earnings into an Apple device and launch on the App Store.

There are… other… routes you can go in order to work around this problem. For myself, I didn’t really want to utilize them long-term, though I did briefly experiment just to see if I could get a build working. It was unable to get them working, but I lacked experience in setting such things up.

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I thought about it and supporting iOS is not interesting enough at the moment. Sure I could get a device and pay for the license etc but this I can also do later if I want to. I am wondering what is the reason that Apple decided to have these hardware requirements. I mean is it a technical reason or why is it that you must have a device running xcode to develop for Apple?
Anyway thanks for sharing the experience!

A bucket where your tears would go.

Seriously, tho, it’s simpler to just forget that apple platforms exist and focus on the good ones – like Windows and consoles.

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Honestly, I think it all comes down to money. Apple has always been about promoting their platform, making it exclusive and “elite”. It’s been their vibe for ages and what kept them out of the desktop market. To be honest with you, I’m not entirely sure how their mobile platform has become so successful!

From a marketing perspective setting an end of life date on your hardware kind of forces consumers to upgrade if they want to get the latest support. It keeps your revenue stream going. From a developer perspective, ensuring everybody is on reasonably modern hardware means you’re less likely to have weird niche support issues. It sucks, but I understand where they’re coming from. I used to work for a company that made software for controlling large pipelines and power infrastructures. Getting support tickets on the version that was released 15+ years ago suuuuuuuucked. It was so difficult to stage, investigate, and god forbid, hotfix.

For why they require XCode just to compile though… that one baffles me. You already pay a developer license fee and Apple takes a 30% cut of anything you sell on their store. The additional gateway of requiring an Apple device just to compile seems unnecessary. If I had to guess, I’d say it could be related to their strict store policies.

Perhaps they think that requiring an Apple device will cut down on the number of poor quality submissions to the app store, and that only developers serious about their app will be willing to invest in the hardware to ship it. This might make sense if people making poor quality apps weren’t so willing to use the workarounds I alluded to above.

So yea, like I said, it’s kind of an odd choice. Unfortunately for us, it doesn’t look like it’s having any negative impact on them as a business, so we’re probably outta luck :wink:

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Apple is not shouting it from the rooftops exactly but it is possible to log in and download older versions of xcode so you can install it even if you don’t have the latest OS.

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I did some googling and it looks like you can, but it sounds like you maybe need the latest in order to actually deploy. Still, that would at least be a good way to get everything tested and working before you sink the funds into an updated machine to actually submit to the app store.

I didn’t come across this in my travels at the time, but it certainly would have been good to know! I think I still would have passed on apple because, even to deploy, it wouldn’t have been worth the cost. Good to know for the future though :slight_smile:

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I use MacInCloud, 20 dollars a month to have access to a Mac through the web. It comes with visual studio, Xcode, emulators and so on. You can ask them to install whatever you want or pay more to have root access. You also need an Apple developer account, which is 99,00 per year. This account requires 2 factor verification, which means you need an iPhone, it can be a friend’s one. An Apple device also needs to be linked to your developer account on Apple Connect.

If it’s a new Apple ID they might deny your payment and ask you to buy other things first.

It’s doable if your have at least an iPhone. Without one it will be a pain.

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Welcome to the community!

No you dont, you can test on one device at a time witout an account… it is a bit of pain to set up but it is possible.

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