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Learn iOS development with online courses

iPhone apps are an effective medium businesses use to interact with their customers. iOS developers are the skilled programmers responsible for building the functionality of those apps. Learn iOS development with online courses delivered through edX.

What is iOS?

iOS is the operating system that runs on Apple iPhones. iOS and other Apple operating systems, including iPadOS and macOS, are built on Unix, an operating system that’s been in continuous development since the 1960s. iOS 16.2 was released in 2022 and has been installed on more than one billion phones worldwide. 

As the technology powering iPhones and other Apple devices continues to improve, iOS developers will need to maintain the apps that run on them. Advances in technology could open opportunities for new features, updated design elements, and better overall performance.Footnote 1

Learning skills for iOS development can give aspiring developers a foundation in general programming and design. iOS app developers typically write their code in Swift or Objective-C, both of which are general-purpose programming languages. iOS developers may also find it helpful to learn about data structures, algorithms, version control, and debugging. These skills are crucial to an iOS app development career.Footnote 2

Additional skills needed will vary depending on the organization you work for. Developing an app for banking will require cybersecurity knowledge, whereas developing a messaging app will rely on encryption skills. Creating a secure messenger application that also allows for the transfer of funds will require both. An iOS development course can provide you with the knowledge and experience needed to work as an iOS app developer.

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iOS development course curriculum

Hands-on practice is often the focus of an iOS development tutorial course. The curriculum can include an overview of Apple’s developer tools, Xcode, coding basics, and the Swift programming language. As a primary language used in iOS development, Swift is also referred to as intuitive. This means that those first learning to code may find it more approachable than other languages.Footnote 3

For learners with prior programming experience who want to learn iOS development, a certificate course can help. Programs may instruct learners on the entire development process, including the steps to launch an app in the Apple App Store. This may include storyboarding, UI design, databases, and management of iOS features such as the camera and memory.

edX offers a range of educational options to get started learning iOS development. If you’re just getting started, an introductory class can teach general principles for use beyond app development. You may discover that you enjoy building for the iOS platform, or you may find that you want to explore other programming topics.

 Explore iOS developer jobs

While iOS developers work in a variety of fields, they share general responsibilities. A typical day for an iOS developer may involve:

  • Writing and debugging code

  • Reviewing app performance

  • Fixing any issues that have arisen

  • Supporting the application lifecycle from concept to design

  • Conceptualizing and implementing new features and updates

  • Collaborating and communicating with team members and stakeholders

Throughout the app development process, iOS developers often work closely with a team of fellow developers, UI/UX designers, and product managers. Working as an iOS developer requires a strong foundation in software development and knowledge of specialized iOS app development tools. 

Depending on your previous coding experience, earning a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, or a certificate from a boot camp may suit your path toward becoming an iOS developer.

How to become an iOS developer online 

When applying for iOS developer roles, it’s helpful to have a strong portfolio of relevant work. This should contain past projects you developed that demonstrate your understanding and mastery of iOS app development. As you look into an iOS developer career, you may see that some employers want candidates who possess a bachelor’s or master’s degree in software development or a related field. If you don’t meet these requirements, don’t be discouraged. Every employer is different. Some may be satisfied with an iOS developer certificate from a coding boot camp, supplemented by knowledge of how to build an iOS app and a portfolio of work to prove your capabilities.Footnote 4 The skills and degree requirements will vary depending on the job and organization.

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