When it comes to Swift, the new language was announced at WWDC 2014 with contributions from both Apple engineers and the open-source community. Ever since, Swift has witnessed constant updates and gained phenomenally in terms of popularity.
Dubbed as a significant leap ahead, Apple has finally released its Swift 5 programming language. This new version is considered as a significant leap ahead in the evolution of language. It will come with a stable application binary interface (ABI) and binary compatibility. This will result in the development of smaller applications. Interoperability with other languages is improved as well.
With this upgrade, the ABI is now stable on Apple platforms, so Swift libraries are now incorporated into every future release of Apple’s platform operating systems mainly MacOS, iOS, WatchOS, and TVOS. In order to leverage these features, it is important to partner with a reliable Swift app development company.
Swift 5 also introduces new capabilities which pave way for future versions:
- Reimplementation of String with UTF-8 encoding for faster code
- Enforcement of exclusive access to memory during runtime
- New data types
- Support for dynamically callable types to improve interoperability
- Performance improvements to Dictionary and Set
Swift opens up a whole new world of coding. It was designed for safety and ease of use as a first programming language. For different industries, Apple has created free curriculum to teach Swift both in and beyond the walls of conventional classroom. First-time coders can download Swift Playgrounds—an app for iPad which allows getting started with Swift code very interactive and immersive.
With this new version, Swift completely eliminates entire classes of unsafe code.
- Variables are initialized before use
- Arrays and integers are checked for overflow
- Auto management of memory
- Enforcement of exclusive access to memory guards to avoid programming mistakes.
Syntax is refined specifically to make it easy to define your intent. Swift leverages value types for commonly used types like Arrays and Dictionaries. This ensures that when you make a copy of something with that type, it can’t be modified.
Fast and High on Performance
Swift is all about speed. Ever since its inception, Swift was built to be fast. With high-performance LLVM compiler technology, Swift code is transformed into optimized native code to leverage maximum benefits of the hardware. The syntax and standard library make the most ensure high performance of your code irrespective of whether it runs on smart watch or across servers.
Source and Binary Compatibility
With Swift 5, there is no need to modify Swift 4 code to use the new version. Instead get on with the new compiler and migrate. Take advantage of new Swift 5 features, one module at a time. Swift 5 new binary compatibility for apps means there is no need to include Swift libraries in apps for both current and future OS releases. This will be mainly to include Swift in every OS release going forward. Your apps will be able to gain advantages of the latest version of the library in the OS, and your code will continue to run without recompiling. This makes developing app simpler and reduce the size of your app and time to delivery.
A single cross-platform tool, Swift Package Manager lets to build, run, test and package your Swift libraries and executables. Swift packages are the most effective way to distribute libraries and source code to the Swift community. Swift run command includes the ability to import libraries in a REPL without building an executable. Swift Package Manager is actually built with Swift and included in the Swift open source project as a package.
You can create an entirely new application with Swift or begin using Swift code to implement new features and functionality in your app. Swift code co-exists alongside your existing Objective-C files in the same project, with full access to your Objective-C API, making it easy to adopt.
Swift is a successor to both languages C and Objective-C languages including primitives such as types, flow control, and operators, as well as object-oriented features such as classes, protocols, and generics. This gives developers the robust performance and power they need.
When decades of experience working on Apple’s platform are combined with the latest research on programming languages, Swift is born. Named parameters are expressed in a clean syntax that makes APIs in Swift even easier to read and maintain. Even better, you don’t even need to type semi-colons. Inferred types make code cleaner and less prone to mistakes, while modules eliminate headers and provide namespaces.
Swift 5 offers exciting new and long awaited features, bringing ABI stability and improving the language. It combines the best in modern language, allowing complex ideas to be expressed in a clear and concise manner.