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Swift is no longer a new concept. Apple announced it first during its World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) in 2014. Ever since then, Swift has gained huge hype and fanfare due to its extreme simplicity and high performance among other programming languages. It unleashes many constraints faced with Objective-C and proves its efficiency by hopping on the top 20 in RedMonk.
With Objective-C fading, Stephen O'Grady, a RedMonk analyst, has stated that, “Swift's explosive growth has been primarily fuelled by Apple's decision to anoint it as the successor to Objective C.” This clearly indicates how Apple will influence the programming world, leaving behind a legacy in yet another key phase of technology.
The extraordinary Swift features
- One of the most relieving features was the simplification of the memory management system with Automatic Reference Counting (ARC). In Objective-C, ARC is supported within the Cocoa APIs. Hence, the toughest task of handling memory management is on the developer. But with Swift, it’s possible to avoid the large memory leaks. This is a huge relief to the developers as ARC will handle all memory management tasks during the compile time, thus increasing their productivity.
- Reduction in code and code statement complexities are other major highlights of Swift. Due to its inline support for manipulating text and data, coding is now easier, shorter and has less error.
- Swift’s bug fixing process is quite interesting. Unlike in Objective-C, Swift generates a compiler error when you write a wrong code. This means instant error fixing, saving a lot of time for the developers.
- Because of its close resemblance to English, it makes it easier for any one new to Swift. It’s cleaner with simplified syntax and allows easy readability to new programmers thanks to its extreme expressive nature.
- Swift playgrounds are interactive sessions where developers can run their Swift codes live and make edits and updates to any snippets of code. It’s an amazing platform for developers as they can experiment with new APIs, try out new syntax and tests and, above all, save a LOT of time.
These are just few handpicked features to quickly tell you how and why Swift will be the future of programming language. An elaborated Swift tour will help you understand better.
Apps Creation – Now Easier and Better
With Swift, app creation has become simpler and easier. Mobile apps play a major role in our day to day lives. In fact, Swift was created with the purpose of increasing speed and the app market creation. Tim Cook referred to Swift as the, “the next big programming language,” stressing that developers will still be building apps in, “the next 20 years.” While apps will be the next hype in the technology, creating them seamlessly and bringing out more contextual apps will now be an easier task, thanks to Swift.
Open Sourcing Swift
On December 3rd, 2015, Apple announced the much awaited good news that it’s open sourcing Swift. Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering has rightly said that,“By making Swift open source, the entire developer community can contribute to the programming language and help bring it to even more platforms.” With Apple’s decision to loosen its grip, it’s a huge opportunity for the developers to try and experiment with Swift in various other platforms. To top it all off, Apple has launched an exclusive website dedicated to Swift. You will find tons of Swift repositories, each loaded with documentations and all necessary materials to get started.
With all these elements, the biggest advantage is for the developers. Developers LOVE Swift! That’s why in Stack Overflow’s Developer survey, Swift is the most beloved programming language. This doesn’t mean Apple is ruling out Objective-C. After all, it was the base which secretly gave rise to an awesome language. Swift’s simplicity, efficiency, and speed are foremost reasons for it to create such hype and prove that it’s the future.