How to Become iOS Developer The Complete Guide

  • By Neha Siddhwani
  • 20 March 2023
become ios developer

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To become an iOS developer, you need a firm foundational grasp of several hard skills like market research, conceptualisation, basic design, and, most importantly, coding. Additionally, skills like user testing and compliance also play a part in the process that leads to you finally submitting your application to the app store. 

The path to learning these hard skills is straightforward, but they will require dedicated effort on your part. Furthermore, iOS developers combine several soft skills with their technical expertise. As a result, these soft skills can take more time to hone. 

[Also Read: Become Mobile App Developer]

What Is An iOS Developer?

An iOS developer is someone that understands the iOS ecosystem and has in-depth knowledge of how this ecosystem works on different apple devices. In short, they are professionals who create and develop apps meant to work on different apple devices. 

Most students who want to pursue a career in tech or IT pursue an MCA degree for their postgraduate studies to hone their skills further. An MCA course is a two-year postgraduate program with further specialisations, like cyber security and forensics, machine learning and AI, full stack development, and cloud computing. 

Of these, the full-stack developer specialisation is prevalent among people who want to go into mobile app development. So if you're wondering how to become an Apple iOS developer, consider a full-stack development specialisation for your postgraduate degree. 

How To Become An iOS Developer From Scratch

One of the main reasons many IT or MCA graduates go into iOS development is the lucrative career path it presents. An iOS developer's salary in India ranges between ₹2.0 Lakhs to ₹11.9 Lakhs, significantly higher than the average annual salary compared to other fields. 

Suppose you want to know the path to becoming an iOS developer or how to become a good iOS developer. In that case, you have a long path ahead of you. 

There are two main types of iOS developer skills you'll need:

  • Technical Skills
  • Soft Skills 

Technical Skills That You Need To Become An iOS Developer 

Suppose you want to become an iOS developer. In that case, you need to start with the fundamentals, especially if you're entirely new to this field. However, if you've been coding or working in software development for a while, you can skip this and head straight into the programming languages. 

Remember, iOS development is a speciality, not a bubble. The same software concepts that bring other applications and products from ideas to the market still apply here. Taking a beginner's course or even talking to other iOS developers can help get you started.

Here is what you need to do to master the technical skills to become an iOS developer:

Get Familiar With The Primary Programming Languages

There are three key programming languages all iOS developers need to know to work in this field: 

  • Swift
  • Objective-C  
  • Xcode (Apple's Integrated Development Environment (IDE))

Once you have a firm grasp of these three things, you can begin using your knowledge and further expanding your knowledge in the development field. The number of skills you can learn is virtually limitless. 

Some other tools iOS developers use to streamline their workflow and process are:

  • Cocoapods: To manage external libraries and scale projects.
  • Dash: For API documentation and code snippet management.
  • Firebase: For database, user authentication and hosting.
  • Parse: For back-end implementation.

Apps can carry out many activities, and developers use one or more tools to support all these activities. It's up to the developer to decide what tools to use to support each action. Most apps only need a small number of tools. The specific tools required will depend on the nature and intended purpose of the app.    


Learn Networking Concepts

After grasping the basics, your knowledge should extend to networks and data exchange. You must learn how to use tools like: 

  • JavaScript Object Notation.
  • Core Data: A framework for persistent data stored on the device, as opposed to data being exchanged with the network.
  • Grand Central Dispatch: An API that allows an app to run multiple operations concurrently.

Front-End Skills You’ll Need As An iOS Developer

Developers should at least have basic, working knowledge of front-end skills, as these will affect how the app looks and how users interact with it. Here are some front-end concepts and subjects you should familiarise yourself with:

  • Layout Design
  • Information Hierarchy And Organisation
  • UI / UX Design

You should also be informed of Apple's design and human interaction guidelines. These are just as important since all iOS apps are expected to adhere to them or risk being dropped from the App store. 

Technical Skills For Senior iOS Developers 

As you progress into senior positions, your skillset will also be expected to grow alongside you. Some additional technical skills you'll be expected to know in later designations as a senior iOS developer include: 

  • Software Architecture 
  • Concurrency
  • Reactive Programming
  • How To Deploy Animations
  • User Testing

Soft Skills That Teach You How To Become A Better iOS Developer

Soft skills are another set of skills you'll need to develop in any career, not just as an iOS developer. Since development has always been a deadline-driven job, you will need skills like, 

  • Organisation
  • Exceptional Time Management
  • Ability To Work Well Under Pressure 

These skills will help you lead a team and perform other additional duties. For example, in more senior designations, you will be responsible for guiding and educating other developers on your team. This takes patience, clear messaging, diplomacy and teamwork - all of which need to be developed and improved as you progress in your career. 

Furthermore, as a senior ios developer, you will also be expected to further exemplify the company's ethos: "Big-Picture Thinking" and an "Apple Mindset", which should include a deep knowledge of Apple's digital landscape. 

Learning how to build an app is just the first step. Understanding how to make that app compatible with users and other devices will teach you how to become a better iOS developer.


There is no end to the number of routes you can take to becoming an iOS developer. You can pursue formal education through a bachelor's or master's degree, like an MCA degree. You can even take certification courses or attend coding boot camps to learn the necessary technical skills. 

So when pursuing specialisations like full stack development that will invariably help you become an iOS developer, consider colleges powered by Sunstone. Sunstone is a higher education service provider with a presence in over 50 institutions across India. 

If you enrol in a Sunstone-powered college to get your MCA degree, you will receive dedicated placement support after course completion. In addition to that, registering with Sunstone can get you internship opportunities, which may help you get closer to getting your dream job after graduation. 

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