In this post, I’m going to quickly highlight a few requirements before we officially get going with the Bluemix iOS Push Notification Tutorial Series.
1. Mac OSX and Xcode
For those out there new to iOS Development, you cannot test and deploy iOS Applications to devices unless you do it via an Apple Operating System. While you can follow this tutorial using Mountain Lion (OSX 10.8), I’ll be using and recommend Mavericks (OSX 10.9).
Then, you will need to download Xcode. Xcode is Apple’s IDE for developing Mac and iOS Applications. The latest release of Xcode is 5, which is required for this Tutorial as we’ll be deploying an iOS7 Mobile App to test Push Notifications.
Both Mavericks and Xcode 5 are free to download and are available via the Mac App Store. Simply launch the App Store App from your Apple Operating System and search for “mavericks” and “xcode“. You will need an Apple ID to connect to the App Store.
2. Apple Device and iOS
Unfortunately, you cannot test Push Notifications on an iOS Simulator, which would’ve been awesome. So, you’ll need an Apple Device like an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. I would recommend anything from an iPad 2 and up, or an iPhone 4 and up. This will allow us to deploy our app as an iOS7 Application.
So, as mentioned above, your Apple device will need to run iOS7. iOS7 is free from the App Store and definitely worth the upgrade if you haven’t done so yet. The reason I stress using iOS7 is because I haven’t had the opportunity to test the Bluemix SDKs on iOS6. I also don’t plan to as iOS8 is already around the corner.
3. Apple Developer Account
This is sadly where some money comes in. You’ll need an Apple iOS Developer License, which goes for $99/year. Setting up the license is fairly straightforward, but could take a few days to be activated depending.
If you don’t have an Apple Developer Account as yet, but want one to follow with this tutorial series, I suggest you get it registered sooner rather than later. If we were only developing to test on an iOS Simulator, this wouldn’t be required, but because we need to test on an actual Apple Device, this is compulsory. You can either use your existing Apple ID or create a new one for the iOS Developer Account. It doesn’t matter really.
4. IBM Bluemix Account
We’re almost done. What we’re going to need next is an IBM Bluemix account. This is free and is quick to set up. If you already have an existing IBM Id, then great for you. You can log into Bluemix with that ID and you’re good to go. Alternatively, click here to sign up.
With everything above set up and configured, we are ready to start developing iOS Applications, deploy them to Apple Devices and integrating them with the Bluemix Cloud.
The most difficult of all of this is setting up the iOS Developer Program. I did mine years ago and back then it required some documentation, phonecalls, etc. I’m not sure if it’s that complicated still.
In the next tutorial, I’ll be moving to video Media. I’ll be showing you step by step how to set up the necessary Apple Certificates which we’ll need for deploying to an Apple device and sending Push Notifications.
If you find yourself getting stuck with any of the above-mentioned, leave a comment and I’ll try to assist you.Till next time 🙂 John