iOS Dev Weekly

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9th January 2015

Issue 180


So last night saw the adjustment to non-US App Store prices that was announced earlier this week. The new prices take into account the new VAT rules and various changes to adjust for fluctuating exchange rates. However, the rollout was a bit rocky with weird prices showing up all over the place, apps being unavailable for purchase (even free apps, weirdly) and updates not installing for several hours... Oops!

Dave Verwer


Apple’s Software Quality, Continued

Lots more words written this week about the state of Apple's software quality. As usual, the best summary of the situation comes from Michael Tsai.
68 Percent

This is more like it, significantly slower than iOS 7 adoption still but at 68%, iOS 8 only has to be a safer bet than it was a couple of months ago. Just try and ignore the fact that the numbers in the pie chart add up to 101% 😬.
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The WATCH simulator is functional, but it doesn't really look much like the device. Troy Gaul has the answer with this app that grabs the output from the simulator and projects it onto a rendering of the watch. Once that's done, it's xScope to the rescue to mirror it onto your phone so you can see it at actual size!


Finite States of America

Soroush Khanlou presents a very good case for considering a state machine early in the development of a new class rather than at the point where you are juggling a bunch of state. There are many benefits pointed out in the article but I think the best being one single method where all your state transition logic is encapsulated. This provides easy logging and debugging when things go wrong.

Marcelo Fabri with a library to automatically start and stop the network activity spinner based on the state of a NSURLSession. This library also allows directly managing the activity count (which leads to the spinner being active) if parts of your app don't use NSURLSession for network requests.

Arthur Ariel Sabintsev and Aaron Brager with a Swift port of their Objective-C library Harpy that I mentioned in Issue 78. This library allows notifying users and directing them to the store when a new version of your app is available. It's very configurable regarding if the update is forced or not and how often the user will be prompted.



I've linked to the Capptivate web site before and I still use it all the time for inspiration. Alli Dryer has now turned it into a native app and what better way to look at these animations than in place, on your phone! Fantastic work.

What happens to a design file after it's finished? Usually it gets handed to a developer and they struggle around trying to extract images, colours, fonts, etc... I like this idea instead, Zeplin takes a Sketch file and extracts all the useful information in a clear, readable format. Even generating UIColor categories with the extracted colours. It's in closed beta right now but I'll be keeping an eye on this.


An introduction to 3D Graphics with Metal in Swift

A great introduction to the Metal framework from Warren Moore (who runs Metal By Example). The first part of the video recaps on 3D graphics programming so it's worth a watch even if you haven't got much experience. The rest of the video goes in depth with example code in Swift to show what can be accomplished with this framework.


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