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.
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.
Here’s what you‘ll need to do to achieve this:
- Install a virtualization app (e.g. VirtualBox) and create a virtual machine on your local computer.
- Install and set up a macOS in your VM.
- 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:
- Find the Apple Store application icon in the “Dock” and click it.
- Once the app starts, type “Xcode” into the search field at the top-right corner
- 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.
- 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.