Every new challenge accompanies equal opportunities, and this old saying is never felt more precise and befitting than with the breathtaking changes and challenges that are taking place for Phone app developers. Ever since the Apple’s big event WWDC, quite a few major changes surfaced that developers of the platform need to pay more attention than ever before.
The new iOS 12 which has mostly attracted attention has just been the tip of the iceberg, and there are several other important changes. From the all new Xcode 10 to the push of Apple for a truly passwordless future to the new UI design norms keeping iPhone X in prime consideration, we are experiencing iOS to pave the way for more futuristic development parameters now. Nevertheless, these changes are equally challenges and opportunities to excel.
Improved and powerful Xcode 10
The new range of development frameworks and SDKs that Apple has made more powerful requires a detailed analysis. Most notable enhancement that has taken place is with the Xcode and the tools that come with it. Some of the key improvements that the new Xcode offers include multi-cursor editing capability to allow editing several lines of codes concurrently.
While Xcode 9 was first included in the GitHub repository, Xcode 10 took this further by introducing it to two more repositories, namely, GitLab and Bitbucket. This will provide the developers with even more ways to share and collaborate across code repository platforms. The best part is, all the changes made in these repositories are now highlighted to discover all the changes made just with a glance.
Now when you look at the chain of tools new Xcode 10 comes with, it delivers a lot of new things to boost performance and speed. You have test parallelization feature to help you conducting multiple tests of the same app concurrently. Apart from the unit testing, developers across several iPhone and iOS devices can run multiple tests for integration. This will tremendously help in speeding up the testing process and time to market for every single app.
Lastly, Xcode 10 also comes with custom templates ready to help developers make use of their custom tools and instruments for data analysis and visualization. These instruments customized by developers can further be shared with other developers and team members as well.
Apple’s push for a Password-Less future
Any app today making users spend a lot of time on signup process risks to be dumped and forgotten forever. It seems most developers know this and these days they often tend to address this issue with social login. Well, but even faster login and signup processes like the social media login could not fully avoid the delay and annoyance related to the process of authentication.
With the introduction of more individualized features such as Fingerprint scanner and Face ID, Apple to the delight of many iPhone app developers has pushed for a truly passwordless future of mobile authentication. Keychain and Autofill are two other iOS features that helped iPhone and iPad users to be always in touch with their passwords without the effort of remembering them.
At the recent phase, Apple is pushing for new capabilities to share the password across all devices. The keyboard of Apple devices in the near future are supposed to come with the ability to pick passwords. Apart from the role of Keychain in keeping all the user passwords in one place, the new iOS 12 will help to keep the apps in sync across user-operated devices by automatically authenticating the user with the password used once in a device. This means the already authenticated user will continue to be in sync with multiple apps across iOS devices. A truly passwordless future for the iOS users is looming large.
UX design pushed by iPhone X
Since the futuristic looking Phone X was launched last year during September, the developers were all in a hurry to create apps that justify the device capabilities and display attributes of this phone. But Apple just told iPhone app developers to build apps for Super Retina display of iPhone X only recently.
This means the push for building apps specifically designed to fit the iPhone X is still a new contesting zone and opportunities are still huge. Since it is very likely that all the future iPhones will be more equipped and advanced than this iPhone X, this new push can mean getting ready for a new breed of super-advanced iPhones. Meeting the challenges of iPhone X can unlock a lot of future opportunities for the developers.
Let us have a look at the key UX design challenges that developers need to face while building apps for iPhone X.
Larger screen size with Super Retina display: The display of the iPhone X is 145 pt taller, and the size of the screen is around 20% bigger than the significant iPhone predecessors. The Super Retina display packed with 1125×2436 pixels will support more true-to-life visuals than any other iPhones.
For the apps extending the app layout to fit the screen will be the first challenge. The developers also need to address the thumb navigation problems with a taller device. As for the sharper display, the developers need to give priority to the visual elements for optimum utilization of true colors. The utilization of creative assets will play a key role in engaging users. Moreover, always mind the aspect ratio to make a video fill the taller screen perfectly.
A different Status Bar with iPhone X: The status bar of the new iPhone X comes divided into two parts that are separated by a notch. The height of status bar with iPhone X is 44pt compared to the 22pt of iPhone 8. Apart from this Apple strongly recommends not hiding the status bar as it would allow a lot of ease in using device functions. This is important for the UI designers to plan app UI layout keeping this different and bigger status bar of iPhone X.
FaceID UI considerations: iPhone X comes loaded with the first ever most powerful authentication feature in any iPhone, and it is FaceID. For the designers, this translates as the necessity of allowing Face ID for authentication instead of TouchID. But besides implementing Face Id designers also have to make sure that the feature works to the optimum satisfaction of its users and without any glitches.
Making use of new gestures: iPhone X comes with a lot of new gesture that allows a lot of freedom of interaction compared to the earlier ones. The UI designers can also allow users to customize gestures for using various app functionalities.
A wider range of display colors with P3 Color Space: The new iPhone X has come with more advanced Display P3 Color Space which is loaded with a wider range of more vibrant and dynamic colors. This is a creative asset of iPhone X that offers UI/UX designers and developers lot of room to deliver a visually appealing app.
iPhone as a platform has come of age and went from strength to strength in all these years. With the most quality focused ecosystem of apps in the App Store, it leads the mobile app scene. While new challenges and opportunities will continue to add value and make the user experience evolve, developers need to stay alert and responsive to utilize them.
Juned Ghanchi is CMO and proud co-founder of IndianAppDevelopers.com, a place to hire experience team of iPhone app developers for Gaming and enterprise application development. Juned develops and manages lead generating positive inbound marketing campaigns.