Should You Still Learn Objective-C?
Since the introduction of Swift there are two important languages in the Apple ecosystem. Swift has become quiet popular in the meantime, so that it’s a good question whether you should still learn Objective-C or not.
This post is inspired by a reader’s question:
I’m just starting out in programming so I’m hoping I can get your insight on one question. Is it worth learning Objective-C for iOS development or just go straight into Swift and don’t look back?
This is a very good question, so let’s dive into it!
Swift should be your priority…
I’ve spoken already about that “Swift vs Objective-C” topic a few times:
- Should You Use Objective-C Or Swift?
- Should You Migrate Objective-C Code To Swift?
- How To Use Both Swift And Objective-C In One Project?
To make it short: In my opinion Swift will become much more important than Objective-C, and in some regards it already is – so every iOS developer should learn Swift. And since Swift is easier to learn than Objective-C, the same holds true for beginners.
…but Objective-C is still important
But nevertheless it would be a big mistake not to learn Objective-C. There are several reasons why Objective-C is still important:
- There are a lot of projects that are written in Objective-C. In fact, there are much more Objective-C projects in the App Store than Swift projects. And as a serious iOS developer you have to be able to maintain these projects – especially because it doesn’t make a lot of sense to migrate an Objective-C project to Swift – unless you want to rewrite your app anyway.
- A lot of libraries and frameworks are written in Objective-C. And of course you want to use them and you also want to adjust the code.
- Last but not least Objective-C is still a very interesting and great language!
So in fact, you should really learn Objective-C.
How to handle it?
If you are new to iOS development, it is of course very difficult to learn two languages at the same time. And it would also disturb your learning process because it’s very confusing to deal with two languages at the beginning.
So I think you should definitely start with Swift. But there will be a point where you feel comfortable in using Swift and the iOS development framework. And I think that’s the perfect point of time to look into Objective-C.
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Title Image: @ Anton Watman / shutterstock.com