Ever since Apple released the first iPhone, the App Store has become a booming market for many who make a career off developing iOS applications - but what's the incentive?
It isn't a hard one to guess. Money. iOS applications, or any micro-purchase applications to the matter, are ideal for creating a long-term revenue for you as a developer and to the company who may want an app developing. Not only this, but as I will outline in more detail below, the average salary for an iOS Developer far exceeds that of a Web Developer.
Of course any salary depends on a persons skill set and the length they've been working in that given field, and, a Web Developer is, by all account and purposes, entirely different from a Web Designer who may have a lower average salary.
However put this in contrast against an iOS Developer who has a fairly standalone skillset of being able to design an application and then convert it through Objective-C. Yes, you'll need an expensive Mac to actually be able to run XCode and an Apple Developer's account to test your application and the new iOS7 beta released to make sure your application is ready - but once you've got the fundamentals, clients will pay a hefty price to get their own application up and running.
I recently learnt Objective-C as it was always something I personally wanted to be able to program and provide to clients. I used it in an STV project creating a fully compliant OAuth API client for iOS; it wasn't too much learning and Objective-C was easy to pick up. But I never realised the salary differences until I stumbled across them after doing some research into the new iOS 7. Using numbers from Total Jobs again, an iOS Developer can expect from as low as £42,500 up to a maximum of £72,500 - averagining at £52,500. Quite the difference, eh? There are job listings on LinkedIn that I get notifications about that are on starting salaries of $110,000+.
It is fair to say that employers will look for the length of time somebody has been developing applications so you can't take it for granted you'll get a higher salary, but, given time if you keep learning and picking up the latest developer tweaks that iOS and XCode offer - you could end yourself in a high paid job that you enjoy.
I think iOS applications are a fantastic service that more companies should take advantage of. Not only do micro-payments offer a lot of advantages over standalone high-summed payments in terms of what a user is willing to spend, but it's a unique selling point that not many companies can say they have.. even though there are over 900,000 iPhone applications (375,000 of them are native for the iPad) - Source: about.com.
So if you're stuck deciding whether or not you should invest in some Apple hardware and learn Objective-C, I strongly suggest you do. I personally love developing iOS applications and I will continue to do so providing them to a variety of clients I work with who are always impressed that they can now carry there own 'personal application' around with them.
Are you an iOS or Web Developer? Would you want to learn Objective-C and start creating your own iOS applications? Get in touch with us by mentioning #ALJTMedia on Twitter, leaving a comment on our Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn page, or writing a comment below.
Image Courtesy: XCode Closeup by Michael Flarup