In the world of software development, the Mac and PC platforms have stood out at the forefront for decades. Technology-wise, both PC development along with macOS-based development has made great strides within their demographics, each having its strengths and weaknesses.
Over the years, mainstream development on the PC platform has outrun that of the macOS; however, the macOS maintains a very loyal chunk of the desktop market.
Digital transformation has also forced technology companies to ensure that both PC and Mac users have been covered with due importance and weightage. All sorts and types of customers with different hardware and operating systems would need to be catered for in the future as well.
Mainstream education and training do not include macOS development. Getting trained software developers for macOS is difficult compared to PC-based Windows or Linux programmers. The macOS itself has several development platforms, which makes it even more difficult to get access to programmers on each platform. The question is not whether programmers know scripting or coding in C++; the issue of expertise arises as the whole architecture and environment of macOS is different from that of mainstream PC programming on Windows.
The strategy for hiring programmers and then training them specifically for the macOS is also adopted by enterprises, but retention issues usually crop up. So far, the easiest and most practical solution for development teams has been to outsource macOS development to specialists who already have teams and expertise in the same said technologies.
The purchase of hardware, software, subscriptions, development tools, testing environments, and infrastructure for macOS development is far more expensive than that for Windows development on the PC. AMCs are far more complicated and premium as compared to PC environments. Besides, the cost of acquisition, infrastructure management, configuration onboarding, networking, etc., for a macOS software development center is far more as compared to Windows and the PC platform.
That's precisely why enterprises are partnering with experts offering macOS development capabilities to expand their portfolio of technology service offerings while keeping cost overheads under control.
Enterprises cannot deploy apps as and when required. Routine deployment is done via the Apple App Store. There has to be dedicated expertise to plan the deployment of a macOS app. The App Store review process is a statutory review process for any build that needs to be deployed.
The App Store is external to the company and controlled by Apple. Its review process is to ensure the quality and security of all the apps uploaded to the App Store; however, it is a time-consuming process. A review process with Apple has to be done every time the enterprise requires to deploy an app. Guidelines have to be adhered to for every deployment.
Releases that have to be planned only for App Store compliances can be human resource hungry and expensive. It is easier to partner with a professional who will develop as well as undertake the entire App Store review, reject or accept criteria.
Though most macOS apps are distributed via the App Store, enterprises are also beginning to distribute their apps outside the App Store. For external distribution, Apple has laid down a notarization norm that includes strict compliance, guidelines, security checks, and protocols that need to be followed before the app can be distributed from outside the Mac store.
A dedicated Mac admin will need to be assigned just for this entire process. The admin, in this case, also needs to be a developer with knowledge of Xcode. Partnerships with Mac OS developers can be used to assist, aid, and accelerate the process of deployment with due notarization.
To run a professional software development team developing apps that are going to be distributed across enterprises and users, organizations need to enroll for various categories of Apple developer accounts, IDs, and certifications. These various enrollments and registrations have to be maintained, organized, and renewed at regular intervals, along with their associated fees.
This additional administrative load over and above other routine development activities can, at times, be cumbersome, time-consuming, and expensive. To bypass these administrative overheads, enterprises often use the services of macOS professionals who undertake turnkey projects which include such administrative tasks as well.
Kernel extensions are complicated pieces of code that allow apps to communicate with the OS and various devices directly. With the advent of Apple Silicon hardware, developers are now developing system extensions that will replace kernel extensions and reduce security vulnerabilities.
Apps often require the services of system extensions to complete the functionality of the app being developed. These extensions need extensive knowledge of system internals and other low-level programming techniques. This expertise is difficult to develop and maintain in-house. Companies requiring system extensions to be coded have found it more profitable and practical to use the services of macOS outsourced units instead.
The creation of a dedicated macOS team in-house is a specialized effort for an enterprise. The team requires skills, expertise, and experience which are not easily available and difficult to retain. Besides, the cost of acquisition and infrastructure upgrade is a very expensive proposition. Strategic-level decisions at the highest level of management have to be made to weigh the pros and cons of undertaking such development.
Using partners for such endeavors can be considered a favorable option. Connect with us to learn more.