Swift Programming Language as one of the most valued and popular languages for mobile app development. It is also a trend that has conquered the development world in 2017. I am just not saying it, it is quite a fact! If you know what has been making a buzz in iOS world, you must be well-aware about Swift and how it has already taken over Objective C. I can prove it to you. Here are the 10 reasons why you should choose Swift for mobile application development:
Unlike Objective-C that unfortunately suffers the shortcomings that a language built on C would have, Swift is much refined and easy-to-read. Here are few instances to prove how Swift is better than Objective-C. @ symbol introduced by Objective-C was a step to differentiate types and keywords from C. As Swift has not been built on C, it has the capability to unify all the keywords. The cherry on the cake is the fact that Swift does not use semicolons for ending lines or parenthesis for surrounding conditional expressions or method calls have no nesting that resulted in [[[ ]]]. Because of which Swift is cleaner language simplified syntax and grammar that closely resembles natural English
Objective-C as a language can never progress unless C evolves which would mean programmers maintaining two code files to enhance the efficiency and build time. On the contrary Swift does not require two-file maintenance. With Xcode and LLVM compiler, Swift can easily figure out dependencies and automatically perform incremental builds. Objective-C eventually imposes additional work on programmers whereas Swift reduces the workload on the programmer. With Swift, programmers give more time on creating app logic as Swift stunningly removes boilerplate work resulting in code-quality improvement.
Pointers in Objective-C are handled in a way that increases the chances of bugs, for instance no-operation (no-op). In Swift codes are clearer with optional types that generates a compiler error as soon as the developer writes bad code. This creates a short feedback loop and allows programmers to code with intention. Problems can be fixed as code is written, which greatly reduces the amount of time and money that you will spend on fixing bugs related to pointer logic from Objective-C.
- Automatic memory management
Swift effectively unifies the language. Like Objective-C where ARC is supported within Cocoa API and even the oriented code, Swift has complete support for ARC or Automatic Reference Counting across procedural as well as object-oriented code paths. But the point to be noted is that Objective-C unfortunately does not support ARC for procedural C code or APIs such as Core Graphics. Unlike Objective-C where memory leaks are common as the programmer has the responsibility to manage memory, Swift ensures automatic and high-performance memory management.
- Less code
Swift efficiently reduces the amount of code that a programmer needs to write for repetitive statements and even the string manipulation. Unlike Objective-C where programmers need to write many codes to combine two fragments of information, Swift has the features of modern programming language such as adding two strings with a “+” operator. Therefore, Therefore Swift reduces the complexity of code in programming.
With Mandelbrot algorithm, Swift is approaching the performance of C++ for compute-related tasks. The Xcode 6.3 Beta has also improved Swift’s performance with GEMM algorithm. GEMM is a memory-bound algorithm that has improved performance by a factor of 1.4. By applying best practices in Swift, a performance boost of 8.5-fold for FFT algorithm was observed. Swift is approximately on par with C++ for both Mandelbrot and the FFT algorithms.
- Fewer name collisions
There is a huge problem that has always hit Objective-C code. It lacks formal support for namespaces resulting in a linker error that stops the app from running. Although there are workarounds, but most of them have potential pitfalls. Swift offers implicit namespaces allowing the same code file to happen across multiple projects. There are no build failure disasters with Swift. Also, programmers can easily differentiate classes and values by simply using the namespace identifier facilitating incorporation in open source projects or frameworks or libraries into code.
- Dynamic libraries
The biggest change in Swift is the switch from static libraries to dynamic libraries. Dynamic libraries are executable portions of code that can easily be linked to an app allowing Swift apps to easily link against newer versions. Swift is evolving faster than iOS; it is a much-needed requirement for a modern programming language. As Swift supports dynamic libraries, the end performance of apps will improve. The ability to defer loading, make iOS ecosystem more responsive, on-the-fly loading, and much more can improve reliability and performance.
- Interactive coding
Swift has introduced Playgrounds that are a boon to app developers. The work of former Apple employee Brett Victor inspired the Playgrounds. Playgrounds allow programmers to examine a new algorithm, a graphics routine, 5 to 20 lines of code, and much more without having to worry about creating an entire app. With Playgrounds, programmers can create a mass of code, write an algorithm, and even get feedback throughout the process enabling data visualizations and creating more productive solutions to solve bigger problems.
- Swift is future
Objective-C isn’t leaving us any soon, but at the same time it isn’t going to change. Thanks to Swift, the development community is going to create innovative apps and embedded systems.
In conclusion, Swift is a better, approachable, and full-featured programming language that will let developers to not only create apps but also focus on embedded systems. With so many features that I have already discussed, you will get a clear picture why developers love this language.