So, what do you need for Apple app development on Windows? What if you could use a single IDE instead of combining different IDE software or tools from different vendors that will take more space and resources from your workstation, potentially all working in different ways which will add massively to your learning curve? What you need is a cross-platform development like Delphi which can create applications for Windows, macOS, Android, iOS and Linux, all from the same single codebase and in the same IDE.
Delphi offers a native development environment that works efficiently on the Windows OS and can deploy apps to Android, iOS, macOS, Linux, and of course, Windows. Including Delphi what you need is a macOS device—either you get a real one or rent it in the cloud. And if you are using a Windows device, you will have to go with the latter. Alternatively, you can use one of the VM solutions like Parallels to run Windows and Delphi on a macOS device.
What is Delphi, really?
Delphi is one of the fastest ways to write, compile, package and deploy cross-platform native applications on Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Linux. In our case, we are working with Windows, so Delphi harnesses the power of its cross-platform FireMonkey framework to allow you to write Apple software on Windows hardware.
The commonplace argument on similar IDEs being inefficient or not as ‘smart’ as other Windows tools for developers may cross your mind. However, note that comparing Delphi with others is like calling a ‘c’ function in a java programming—Delphi is 5 times faster in building native apps with one codebase for Windows, Android, Linux and Apple Operating systems (iOS, macOS). And its latest version, Delphi 11.1 has newer, better features.
What are the features of Delphi and what are the “7 steps to cross platform development success”?
1. Design an alluring desktop and mobile app user interface
- Use Delphi’s award-winning VCL framework for Windows and the FireMonkey (FMX) visual framework for cross-platform responsive UIs.
- Enjoy the new high-DPI compatible IDE on 4k+ screens.
- Use VCL Styles at design time! Prototype stylish UIs even faster by seeing immediately at design time how your styled forms and controls will look when running.
- FireMonkey design-time guidelines: Prototype faster with visual lines and enhanced margin and padding support.
- Multi-monitor and multi-window improvements: design and edit code for the same form at the same time in multiple windows.
- Rapidly design your master responsive UI layout once, then easily customize it. platform-and-device-specific views without duplicating design effort.
- Use the visual design menu to easily drag and drop visual and non-visual components from the palette.
- Connect user interface elements to data sources using the LiveBindings Designer.
2. Code smarter and faster
- Utilize the powerful, versatile, and easy-to-learn Object Pascal language and customize the IDE to meet your coding style.
- Use Code Insight™ for code completion via a modern Language Server Protocol based on your code while libraries help you code quickly and accurately.
- Get hints and tips from inline documentation as you code.
- Keep development agile with the VCL designer, Agile refactoring, and Live Templates.
- Integrate with version control systems including Git, Subversion, and Mercurial.
3. Debugging is made easier and faster using the right IDE software
- Add conditional breakpoints to quickly pause program execution at a specified location or when a particular condition occurs.
- Explore the entire call stack to trace the route the executing code took to reach its location.
- Inspect the current value of variables while your program pauses during debugging.
- Keep Code Insight™ code completion running while debugging.
- Debug on any device! Deploy your app to any iOS, Android, macOS, or Linux device and debug as if it were running locally.
- Use breakpoints, stack exploration, tooltips, and expression evaluation on local and remote machines with live debugging across all deployment platforms.
4. Run and compile high-performance native apps
- Provision your apps for Windows 11 with integrated MSIX support! Be ready for Microsoft’s new release.
- Support for Microsoft’s WebView 2 control (Edge Chromium) in the web browser component.
- Go from Ad Hoc to App Store fast. Rapidly produce application bundles that can be deployed to Windows Store, Apple App Store, and Google Play Store.
- Compile for macOS (M-series Apple Silicon) and use the new universal package for AppStore submission. You can now compile for both existing Intel and the new M-series macOS processors (Apple Silicon).
- Compile for Android API 30! Android API and Libraries updated – API 30, Google Play V3, Android X. Keep current with the latest requirements for Android as the platform evolves. – This includes the latest billing API.
- Define files to deploy by platform and build configuration. Identify within each project the files to deploy based on the target platform (Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux) and build configurations for Debug or Release.
- Easily deploy files directly to Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, and Linux from the Delphi IDE.
5. Improve the quality of your code
- Find coding errors automatically and solve them with Fast Error Insight.
- RTL Quality focus: TZipFile, 64bit improvements for large data structures, Bluetooth LE Record Helper for TDateTime in System.DateUtils.
- Use built-in refactoring to streamline, simplify and improve both the performance and readability of your application code.
- Leverage well-tested and highly-optimized cross-platform libraries to build better code fast.
- Build unit tests for all of your code using the integrated DUnit and DUnitX frameworks.
- Dive into your project without interrupting the application flow by adding live log-in with CodeSite Logging.
- Use Visual Studio Code to edit the Delphi source with full code completion.
- LSP awareness of includes files and auto-restart of LSP server.
- Auto code completion with Tab key.
6. Better remote and teamwork
- Use enhanced Remote Desktop support (for VCL and IDE) to collaborate remotely with your team.
- Track and manage changes quickly using version control systems including Subversion, Git, and Mercurial repositories.
- Easily navigate changes and history using the history tab in the code viewer with the built-in difference viewer.
- Use RAD Studio command-line compilers ideal for quickly integrating into continuous build configurations using our support for MSBuild.
7. Better extension of IDE components
- Use GetIt Package Manager to rapidly improve the functionality of your applications by downloading and integrating new components.
- Extend the IDE with tools and components from Embarcadero Technology Partners.
- Employ powerful integrated tools and components like Beyond Compare, FastReport, TeeChart, InterBase, IP*Works, and CodeSight!
- Extend the IDE even further with add-ons and plugins from dozens of third parties and customize the IDE to work your way.
Are you ready to begin your journey of building Apple apps on Windows?
You can develop Apple applications on a Windows machine with RAD Studio Delphi from Embarcadero. Note that you need an iOS developer account and a macOS machine to actually publish such software due to Apple’s insistence that all packages are signed using Apple hardware.