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What iOS 7 Will Mean for iPhone App Development

iOS 7, currently in beta, will be available for Apple’s mobile devices this coming fall. It turns out to be a fairly bold update and is a statement from the manufacturer that it is not willing to let its brand go stale. Furthermore, it has been referred to Matt Thompson of Heroku as a “$100 million check to agencies and contractors." It happens to offer many opportunities for application upgrades, provides new tools that can help developers entering the market, and includes features that can make iPhone app development a greater fixture within enterprise.

The system features a significant UI redesign: radical enough to call for retrofitting of existing applications. Interface issues are not merely cosmetic or frivolous. If applications do not provide a consistently strong user experience between different operating systems, or if an update causes an unfortunate error such as accidental cropping, a business may suffer.

Fortunately, iOS 7 brings valuable tools such as a 2D sprite kit, an improved map API, and, perhaps most importantly, true application multitasking. In addition, Apple has released version 5 of Xcode to coincide with iOS 7. Thus developers have an expanded set of resources to help them easily create and push applications to the new platform.

Also, iOS 7 perhaps marks a transition in which Apple is acknowledging the value of mobility in the enterprise environment. It is rounding out the system with features valuable to business. In terms of fitting in with the bring-your-own-device philosophy (BYOD), iOS 7 includes streamlined MDM enrollment and activation lock. As far as business security, it introduces enterprise single sign-on and default application data protection. It also offers per-app VPN, which will assist in remote connectivity with the office environment while easing the load on corporate VPN servers.

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