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Final iOS 9 Checklist For Your App
With all the excitement of new platforms and iOS features, it's easy to forget that there's apps to ship this week. The release date has been set for the 16th, but it's not possible to submit apps yet and let's not even talk about TestFlight anymore! It must happen over the next couple of days though so be ready. In the mean time, why not go through this checklist by Denys Zhadanov and make sure you've got everything covered.
tvOS SDK: An iOS Developer’s Initial Impressions
There have been loads of "getting started" posts published over the last day or so but I thought this one by Chris Wagner was the best overview of the new stuff you'll need to get to grips with. Even though there's a lot of familiar technology in tvOS there's still plenty of new APIs and this article gives a good overview of everything from TVML and TVJS to TVServices and the focus engine.
I linked to Sam Marshall's fantastic guide to xcconfig files back in Issue 200. This week it was followed up with this more general guide to Xcode covering everything from project and workspace files to dependencies and schemes.
Want to run tests on several iOS simulator versions at the same time? This new library by Facebook aims to make that possible. It supports iOS 7, 8 and 9 and should save you a load of time.
Developing tvOS Apps for Apple TV
If you want to dig into TVML a little further, Jameson Quave has put together a 2 part tutorial on getting the basics up and running. It's going to be interesting to see where the boundary lies between TVML and TV UIKit as we all get to grips with the platform.
I really liked this control from Danil Gontovnik which implements an incredibly clear and usable design for switches, inspired by Runkeeper. This would be useful both as a switch and also as a replacement for a segmented control.
Update: I had a quick note from Mike at Runkeeper saying the original inspiration was taken from NYSegmentedControl which is worth mentioning.
Swift Community Best Practices
Jonathan Wight with a document on some best practices for coding in Swift. I really like that this doesn't dip too deeply into "Style Guide" territory, and instead defers to the Apple documentation on that. There's some solid tips for creating readable, clear, consistent code here. He's also looking for contributions if you fancy chipping in.
Swift a Day
Linda Dong with a set of iOS UI experiments written in Swift. All of the code is available on GitHub and will make a good resource as it grows.
Apple TV Human Interface Guidelines
Another platform, another HIG and as always you should read this from beginning to end. There's also a few new tools available for creating tvOS resources, including a parallax icon previewer and a Photoshop plugin for exporting LCR files. I also liked this article by Joel Johnson on some of the new design features in tvOS.
Destroying Apple’s Legacy… or Saving It
Amy Hoy with some serious criticism of iOS 7 design. None of the complaints are particularly new but it's a ruthless deconstruction of some the design problems that iOS has and the trends they have started.
Business and Marketing
From Products to Platforms
Such a great article by Ben Thompson on the announcements and state of the iOS platforms this week. It's certainly true that it's harder than ever to make a living on iOS software alone. It's also potentially going to get more difficult in the future with the introduction of Universal SKUs with tvOS where there may be a completely different binary for tvOS but you can choose to make it available for the same purchased app. This will only increase the expectation of an app being a one time purchase across all platforms for life.
What drives the best click-to-install conversion?
There's many ways to drive users towards installing your app but which one works best? Mada Seghete analyzes the data with some surprising results. What I think is missing from this is a breakdown by App Store category as I have a feeling these figures are skewed significantly towards games.
iOS Applications Engineer - Nest, Palo Alto, CA
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They blew it...
Sums it up perfectly. 😎
Such a fantastic event this week. As predicted by all of the rumours, we got everything at once including the new iPad which was a little surprising. It was such a great keynote though, even the 3rd party demos felt slightly more bearable this time.
The biggest announcement for me was the TV and tvOS, finally! I've been speculating and wishing for a TV based platform for years and it didn't disappoint. From a first look, it's everything I was hoping for. It's also great news that it's not a huge departure from "standard" UIKit and I'm sure we'll see some fantastic apps moving across fairly quickly.
There are some interesting limitations of the platform though which were at least partially responsible for some of the features of iOS 9 announced at WWDC. For example, apps on the TV have no local storage and binaries are limited to 200Mb which makes technologies like App Thinning and On Demand Resources essential. There's also plenty of APIs missing from tvOS, including no support for WebKit which is really quite surprising.
Possibly the best announcement from the event was that Apple are going to be allowing developers to order and receive Apple TV hardware before the general public. 🎉 I'm sure you've already done so but if you haven't, you can register for a chance at a device here. I wonder if this is going to follow for more hardware launches in the future?
There's lots to learn of course and I'm sure there'll be plenty of links over the next weeks and months. But for now, as always, the best place to get started is the Apple tvOS Documentation. Off you go!Dave Verwer