Build Ios App In Macos Write

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Is it possible to create apps for iOS devices on a Windows PC? How to develop iOS apps on Windows is, probably, one of the most common questions asked by those who want to develop applications for Apple platforms but have no Mac at their disposal. In this article, we'll tell you about the simple solution that will help you with iOS development on Windows and write apps for iPhone /iPad without using a Mac.

Contents

Develop iOS apps on Windows


If you are going to build iOS apps on Windows, you should know that macOS is the only platform able to work with the iOS SDK. That means Xcode, the Integrated Development Environment (IDE) that contains everything you need for building and publishing iOS applications, will run only on this platform.

As long as you don't have a Mac but still need to use macOS to write iOS apps, virtualization software is the simplest solution. Installed on your Windows PC, a virtual machine (VirtualBox, VMware, etc.) will provide you with the access to macOS, this way making it possible for you to develop iOS apps on Windows.

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Here’s what you‘ll need to do to achieve this:

  1. Install a virtualization app (e.g. VirtualBox) and create a virtual machine on your local computer.
  2. Install and set up a macOS in your VM.
  3. Install XCode on macOS.

Never forget when configuring a macOS to enter a VALID Apple ID. A valid Apple Account is required for your future Xcode download.

Select the desired outcome and settings in your “System Preferences” toward the end of your macOS configuration.

After that, installing XCode is simple:

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  1. Find the Apple Store application icon in the “Dock” and click it.
  2. Once the app starts, type “Xcode” into the search field at the top-right corner
  3. Click the “Install” button below the “Xcode” icon

    Note: users must provide valid Apple IDs if they didn’t during macOS configuration. Even if you did, re-enter the Apple ID anyway.

  4. After Xcode is downloaded and installed, it’ll run on a Guest OS as though it was Xcode for Windows.

After macOS and Xcode installation is complete, coding and iOS Simulator capabilities are available. Allowing you to test apps with the same efficiency you would expect from a real Mac computer.

Lastly, remember using macOS on anything other than official Apple hardware is in violation of Apple’s EULA.

Once macOS and XCode are installed, you can start coding and using the iOS Simulator to test the apps as if you were using a real Mac machine.

Redirect iOS devices to VM and cloud platforms


Despite its multiple advantages, running a macOS as a guest operating system may have one major disadvantage. As is known, it's not an easy matter to access local peripherals from a virtual machine.

USB Network Gate is an advanced program designed to redirect USB peripherals over the internet. With this software, you'll be able to forward your iOS devices not only to a virtual environment but to any cloud infrastructure (which is especially convenient in case you decide to rent a Mac in the Cloud).

Software tool for remote debugging iPhone: 'How to' guide

Build Ios App In Macos Write

USB Network Gate is an efficient solution for low-cost iPhone app development. You can just connect your iPhone via USB to your Windows/Mac workstation and the software will share this USB connection among multiple computers over any distance. That means you can upload your new apps to iPhone without having it physically attached to your Windows machine.

Here’s how to forward iPhone to a virtual machine with the software:

  1. First, connect your iOS device to your Windows host via USB.
  2. Next, install the app on both your host and guest operating systems.
  3. On the host computer, share iPhone in the software interface.
  4. Start the app on your virtual machine and connect to the shared device.

That’s it! Now, iPhone is available for access from the guest OS as though it were physically attached to the virtual machine.

USB Network Gate

Requirements for Windows (32-bit and 64-bit): XP/Vista/7/8/10, Windows Server 2003/2008/2012/2016/2019
Also available on macOS, Linux OS and Android , 5.4MB size
Version 9.0.2236 (8 May, 2020) Release notes
Category: Network Software
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Nothing is better than building apps with JavaScript. Unless you are building mobile apps. JavaScript is for building web apps, and using it to build native mobile app used to not be possible. It was hard for any web developer to dive into building native mobile apps. They have to learn Java, or Objective-C …or any programming language that was used for this purpose.

That is, until Facebook’s React Native broke this barrier. React Native comes with great advantages like building cross-platform apps for both Android and IOS. Before React Native, you had to write your code twice — one for Android and one for IOS. That’s no longer the case.

This article is an intro to the world of React Native, so get ready ?.

Why React Native?

Right, so why React native and not any other technology?

It gives us many solutions that other technologies can not afford. Here is what you can do with React Native:

Building native mobile apps

React Native allows us to write native apps in JavaScript for both iOS and Android. It gives us the ability to use all the native components like gestures, push notifications, camera, and location. There are some other JavaScript libraries for building mobile apps like ionic or PhoneGap. But those libraries use Webview, and the apps built with those technologies are not native.

Building cross platform mobile apps (iOS and Android)

Yeah, with React Native you can build mobile apps that can run on iOS and Android. This is one of the great benefits of React Native. Before Facebook created it, you had to build your app twice and with different code: one for iOS using Swift or Objective-C and one for Android using Java or Kotlin. React Native solved this problem so you can build your React Native app and it will work in iOS and Android. Awesome! ?

Write your code all in JavaScript and React

While you are building React Native apps, you will actually write JavaScript. Reactjs code allows us to build great UI and user experience components.

Getting started with react-native

Starting with react-native can be exciting, but at the same can be a bit confusing. The first step is to install it, and there are several ways to do it:

Using expo-cli:

expo-cli is a command line tool. It downloads and installs the React Native boilerplate for you, integrated with expo API (check here for installation guide). It’s an easy way to build a React Native app, and it’s the recommended way if you’ve just started with React Native.

Build Ios App In Macos Write 8

expo-cli gives you many options. You can run and test your application on a mobile device without any configuration. Scan a QR code and your app will open up with expo mobile app. You can explore other mobile applications built with React Native on the browser over a web interface called appertize!

Using react-native-cli

The react-native-cli does the same job as expo-cli, but with a different approach and extra advantages. The apps that are installed with react-native-cli provide us the option and the ability to create our own native modules in our app. You don’t need to eject your application to be able to make native modules. Ejecting makes you able to use native modules and write you own (we will explore how to write native modules in another part).

Developing React Native apps on different platforms is a different process. Some times we need some specific configuration for a specific platform. For example to build for Android, you need to use the Android SDK, so let’s explore how this works!

Building mobile apps for Android

There are some requirements you need to install to start developing for Android. First, you have to download and configure both Android SDK and Android Studio. You can download them with this link here.

After downloading Android Studio you need to install some APIs as well. To do that open Android Studio, then click settings tab this window will open up:

First, check ✔️the platform you want your react-native to support in the SDK Platforms tab (for example Android 6.0 Marshmallow). Then switch to SDK tools.

And check Android SDK Build-Tools, Android SDK tools, and google play service. Under Android SDK Build-Tools select all the platforms:

  • Starting from 19.0.0 to 20.0.0
  • From 22.0.0 to 24.0.0
  • And 25.0.2 , 26.0.1 to 26.0.3
  • 27.0.3 and 28.0.1 to 28.02

Now we are done with SDK and Android Studio. The next step is the emulator. The emulator (or the simulator) is where we have to run and test our app. There are many different choices.

You can use Android Studio emulators. You check here how to create an emulator to use on Android Studio. Honestly I never used them. I prefer Genymotion or a real device instead.

Genymotion

Genymotion is a desktop application that provides a virtual emulator to test your application. I like to use it a lot because it’s fast. ? It gives you options to create a customized phone with the features that you can find in any real device. For example enable Wifi, Location, and Camera. I highly recommend you use Genymotion over Android Studio emulators or any other emulator.

Using real devices

Nothing is better that using real devices to run and test your app. This is because it lets you knows how you application looks like on a real device. It makes you feel the reality of your work in a way the virtual device doesn’t give. So if you have the ability to use a device, don’t hesitate.

Up to this point, we’re ok with Android — but what about iOS?

Building react-native apps for IOS

Running React Native for iOS doesn’t look much different from Android. The same React Native app that runs in Android can run on iOS as well, with some exceptions.

For example if you want to run on an iOS device, you need to have a MacOS. Talking about MacOS and iOS, you don’t need to download any extra dependencies such as the SDK for Android to run React Native on iOS.

Regarding Emulators, Xcode has nice emulators that you can use to test your React Native app. You can check this post that shows some tricks to use with Emulators.

In MacOS you can run both iOS and Android. You can definitely install Android Studio and Genymotion on MacOS. This possibility doesn’t exist on a PC where you can only run the Android emulator but not an iOS emulator. So you are lucky ?if you have a MacOS — enjoy ?.

Build Ios App In Macos Write 10

So now we have the environment to build a React Native app and we’ve installed everything, but how is the React Native code written? It’s so simple: you will actually write Reactjs code.

You can check the official guide to get some practice with React Native. I recommend this great article to start “React Native YouTube Replica.” It will guide you step by step to create your first React Native app.

Wow! Up until now you are fine and you are coding with react-native. ? But you need to check and debug your errors and see the logs of your code. Yeah the logs!! So we need a debugger! How do you debug with React Native?

Debugging react-native

Debugging your code is very important, not just with React Native but with any other programming language. So in your React Native code, you need to know what’s going on. There are many different ways to debug a React Native app like:

Debug with Chrome devtools

React Native gives you the option to use Chrome devtools to see the logs of your app. To debug with Chrome and enable debugging mode in your emulator, on the keyboard just click Ctrl+ m.

This screen will pop-up:

And then choose Debug Js Remotely. This will open a tab in Google Chrome with this address http://localhost:8081/debugger-ui/. That’s for using Chrome devtools, what about other options?

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Using React-native-debugger

Build Ios App In Macos Write 2

React-native-debugger is a great tool to debug React Native code. It’s a desktop application that gives you many advantages. It comes with Redux devtools and React-devtools integration. You can debug the style as well. It’s actually the best debugger for React Native and it’s the one that I use. Usually it’s available on MacOS, Windows, and Linux. Check out the installation and integration guide.

Macos App Store

I think it’s enough at this point. This is the first part of the absolute guide for building mobile apps with React Native. In the next part we are going to dive into more technical tips and issues like how we can use native components, the React native API, integration with other libraries, Redux , GraphQL and stuff like that. So subscribe to this mail-list to stay tuned when the next part comes out. Thank you for your time. ?

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