From the cheapest viable option to the best value Mac for iOS Developers.
I see people asking questions about which hardware to get for iOS development quite often, especially beginners just starting out but also sometimes more experienced developers who start running into performance issues with their current Mac. As a former iOS Team lead in two companies where I had to make informed decisions about which hardware to get for what level of developer and where I could test out different Macs on differently sized projects, here are my current recommendations.
In the end, I also answer some frequently asked questions:
- Apple Silicon or Intel?
- How much disk space do I need?
- How much RAM do I need?
- What about the Mac Studio?
This article was last updated in May 2023. If more than half a year has passed since then when you read this, ping me on Twitter & remind me to update.
The Cheapest Mac for Developers ($750+)
- Fast build times with future-proof M2 Apple Silicon processor
- Fast SSD for opening Xcode projects quickly (many small files)
- Cheapest overall option with a total price (including periphery) of ~$750
- Built-in ports, no adapter needed (2x USB-A, 2x USB-C, HDMI, LAN)
- Immobile (not a Laptop)
- Requires additional periphery (mouse, keyboard, monitor)
- 256 GB SSD is just enough for development, no space for other media
- 8GB RAM limits concurrent simulators & tooling running in background
- Get 512GB SSD if you plan to use it for…