Through thick and thin, patches and updates, Apple has indeed written a new success story for the iPhone. Taking advantage of the iPhone’s success, business organizations are adding their own value added services to its customers, by creating innovative and new iPhone applications. These third party applications have seamlessly integrated with the iPhone OS. In a nutshell, iPhone applications are taking the market by a storm. What is in for you? Well, to answer that, let’s start!
iPhone Dev Center is the place to get started if you are thinking to build your app for the iPhone. Well this news will dishearten you a bit if you have been developing applications on the windows environment. Yes, iPhone elegantly points you out during registration that the iPhone SDK would require an Intel-based Mac running Mac OS X Leopard as a primary technical requirement. So if you have addressed that technical feasibility, I guess the iPhone SDK is all yours for the taking!
Registration will be over after four easy steps. Well, easy almost. After the process is over and that you have logged in, the Dev Center will present you with the iPhone SDK for iPhone OS 2.2.1 (well, that was there when I last accessed. Don’t be surprised if you stumble upon a newer release!). The SDK includes the Xcode IDE (the integrated development environment to code and test your app), an iPhone simulator, including a set of exclusive tools to develop apps for the iPhone and the iPod touch.
The iPhone simulator is quite a handy tool for testing your iPhone app. The software emulates the iPhone on your Mac. Thus you can get a WYSIWYG visualization of the overall look and feel of the app. As far as getting started with developing your first iPhone app is concerned, the Dev Center boasts of a lot of organized resources and featured content that will help you get a hands-on on the coding guidelines to get your app live.
“…and there is nothing called free lunch!” Yes, if you want what Apple has coined as, “a complete process for developing and distributing iPhone or iPod touch applications”, or more commonly, the iPhone developer program, then you might land up paying $99 for a standard program and $299 for an enterprise program.
Power packed with end to end tools for complete development and deployment of applications on the iPhone, the iPhone developer program provides you with the iPhone SDK 3.0 and the iPhone OS 3.0 Beta, but at a price. So when you pay, you get a direct access to over 1000 new APIs that you can use to enhance the functionality of your applications.
Right through development, testing and distribution, the developer program is the right choice for you if you are more inclined towards building robust enterprise apps for the iPhone. If you are more into developing casual apps or widget like mid sized applications, the SDK would be more than sufficient. With the plethora of information already made available by Apple on the official website, you’ll develop your app within no time. Interested? Get started!