Why do I link to Alexandre Colucci’s articles reporting on Apple’s internal use of various technologies every time he publishes them? Because they’re fascinating!

His latest post covers IOS 16, and the results start predictably. The number of Apple’s apps using Swift and SwiftUI continues to rise exponentially, and several existing apps have included SwiftUI code for the first time this year. That said, Objective-C still dominates the iOS codebase, with it being a part of over 65% of all binaries, which should answer the question of how close Apple is to deprecating it. So far, so good.

The statistic that made me pause was that only four Apple apps use the SwiftUI app lifecycle. That’s less than 2% of all their apps that use SwiftUI.

Should we read into this that the SwiftUI lifecycle is bad? Is SwiftUI doomed because of how few of Apple’s apps are using it? Of course not! I think it’s like this for a couple of perfectly reasonable reasons. Replacing the heart of any app is never trivial unless the app is tiny, and The SwiftUI app lifecycle is still new and far from feature complete. It’s still early days for it.

It’s important to remember that going “all in” on SwiftUI isn’t necessary. Despite the famous message from this year’s keynote, the fastest and best way to write an iOS app today is with a mixture of technologies, and it appears that’s exactly what Apple is doing internally. 🚀

Note: I know I’ve used/misused this image several times. It’s worth saying that I don’t mean to ridicule it, and I don’t disagree with the message given the context in which Josh presented it. The SotU (where I believe this came from) is a perfect place for broad statements and to set direction. That direction is clear and correct, but the reality of any company, whether it be yours or Apple themselves is much more complex. It’s all fine. 👍

Dave Verwer  





Senior iOS Engineer @ DuckDuckGo – Our app is now downloaded more than 50M times a year, and our private search engine packaged with it has become the #2 search engine on mobile in the U.S., Canada, Australia and the Netherlands. Oh, and we've been profitable since 2014 with revenue currently exceeding $100 million a year! – Remote (Anywhere)

Mac & iOS Software Engineer @ Flexibits Inc. – We make Fantastical and Cardhop, award-winning calendar and contacts apps for Mac and iOS. We were honored to win Apple's Mac App of the Year in 2020 and we're looking to make our apps even better! Our team is a 18 person, fully-remote company spread across the US and Europe. – Remote (within US or European timezones)

Head of Apple Development @ Doist – Doists’ mission is to build the future of work. Come help us lead our Apple team and create some of the best productivity apps in the world. – Remote (within US, European, or Asia-Pacific timezones)

Senior iOS Engineer @ Sendwave – We currently have a 4.6-star rating on Trustpilot — people put their faith in us to deliver their money quickly, securely, and affordably. And we’re pretty darn proud of that. – Remote (within US or European timezones)

Mobile Full Stack Engineer @ Expensify – Join our passionate team of top-notch engineers to solve a real-world problem, and help people spend less time managing expenses and more time pursuing their real goals. – Remote (Anywhere) with some on-site work (Australia, United Kingdom, or United States in CA, MI, NY, or OR)


And finally...

It has been a while since Objective-C got a mention in the newsletter. Does that make it a good time to link to this well-researched history of nil messaging? I think it does! 🙇