Mobile app creation involves a deep understanding of many aspects like features, technology, and more. At the core, the best iOS developers focus on meeting user needs. Of the various swaying factors, the software design you use is significant. In iOS, there are two chief contenders, namely Objective-C and Swift. 

When Swift stepped into the field, users faced the dilemma of determining which would suit their project the best. In the most commonly used software design list, Swift shows 5.1% while Objective-C is favored by 2.8%. Each has its specific upsides and downsides, so creators find it daunting to pick the right one. This article gives a detailed assessment of Swift vs Objective-C to aid users in making an informed decision on which is ideal. 

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A synopsis of Objective-C

Formed by the Stepstone company in 1984, this system was first designed as a proprietary tool. Since then, the method has been widely adopted, making it popular. 

After being applied extensively for over three decades, iOS developers find the system familiar to use. Its runtime and object-centric features make it advantageous. Objects form a key component for creating OS X and iOS applications. It employs plenty of aspects of the C language, like its syntax, primitive types, etc. 

Why is Objective-C popular?

Writing codes using this system is a breeze as it results in efficient automation and management of Meta class formation. 

Objective-C enables operating using dynamic typing, which ensures easy relation of a variable to an object. Without this characteristic, it is hard to identify the objects used during operation. However, if a coder is certain about the objects, it is possible to opt for the static mode too. Thus, a dual characteristic is present that attracts many developers to this format.

The system employs a Smalltalk type of messaging. This format is less complicated and makes learning quick and simple. For users who know C, this language is a cakewalk. As per the Tiobe index rating shown below, it is still a preferred option for users.


Key feature highlights

Objective-C is a safe system that is attributed to the data hiding aspect in it. User data is fully protected from illegal access. Making changes intentionally or by accident is avoided by the safeguard.

The value of every variable object has restricted access due to encapsulation. With this process, data masking is easier. Changing as per new requirements and setting up variables as read or write-only are done seamlessly. 

The inheritance characteristic is handy for forming classes other than the current entities. Reusing code and introducing edits without disturbing the current aspects are the perks of this characteristic.

Quick work is what every user dreams of, and this is aided by Objective-C. Its design is such that a user can complete the work fast.

A user can employ multiple objects via a single interface which is termed polymorphism. This characteristic is one of the crucial characteristics of the design.

Objective-C Performance

In terms of pace, the software design is below par when assessing Swift vs Objective-C. The software structure is a fresh C superset. But it differs in the late method binding as it relies on compiler-created function pointer tables. 

The tables are traversed at runtime, and owing to the active nature and its promotion of the id superclass, the format is slower. The library quality is another issue to contend with in the design. 

Since the main role is in Apple app design, it works in conjunction with Cocoa. Since Cocoa has superior quality libraries, it will take care of the heavy task ensuring there is no slowing down. 


The pointers used render it susceptible to security and bug attacks. When there are bug attacks, it is hard to spot and amend them.


  •  Objective-C is a proven system employed in several applications for several years. The documentation and third-party guides help in enhancing usage efficiency.
  • Dynamic tapping feature ensures flexible coding. Users can include any edits at any developmental phase.
  • The design has been proven effective and stable for over thirty years.
  • Being a superset of C language,  Objective-C  supports C and C++
  • Because of its stability, there is no hassle of converting a system structured in one format to another.


  • Users should contend with a steep learning process. Its money management feature is very complicated. 
  • Because of the learning complexity, newbies prefer Swift. 
  • It is vulnerable to hacking and hence is susceptible to attacks.
  • The complex syntax and dynamic pattern make debugging a daunting task.

Synopsis of Swift

First introduced in 2014, Swift is a static and powerfully formatted system. It helps develop the various OS methods used by Apple. It boasts compatibility with other OS like Free BSD, Linux, etc. The language complements many of the integral design of Objective-C.

Its usability is the chief factors that tip the scales in favor of this system. Reading and writing it is hassle-free and quick. Its potent error-countering method, easy generics, and quick and short iteration are of particular mention. 

Why is Swift popular?


The popularity is attributed to multiple factors. As per a 2022 survey, it is highly prevalent. Here are the key reasons for the entity being preferred by many.

  • Swift is safe when evaluating Swift vs Objective-C. The static typing and usage of optional chaining and optionals are attributed to its protective capability.
  • The succinct arrangement, candid mutability, and namespaces compatibility are key influencing aspects.
  • Mastering it is a breeze, especially with the useful Apple guide.
  • The playgrounds feature enables interactive progress. 
  • Works well in many server-based situations due to its superior performance and minimal memory footprint.
  • The system has a steady module format and ABI (Application Binary Interface) locked-down structure.

Key feature highlights

  • Swift has ARC (Automatic Reference Counting) that aids in programmed memory supervision. Minimal time and energy are a must owing to this aspect.
  • It is a beginner-friendly system.
  • Employs optimized compiling for rapid code generation and minimizes bookkeeping.
  • Faults are minimal in this format. It activates a shutdown during runtime in case of bugs forcing users to amend the fault at once. 
  • It is open-source with a large community. 

Swift Performance

Swift aims to turn into a perfect substitute for C languages. It emerges superior because of its high performance. It is constant and predictable. The system remains immune to speed for a brief period. This avoids the necessity for spending time and energy on a clean-up. 


The former emerges as a benign alternative when assessing Swift vs Objective-C or other C languages. It does not use hazardous codes. For stronger safety, variables are initialized, and verification of an overflow is triggered to integers and arrays. Memory is automatically handled, and defining purpose is effortless with an optimized syntax. 

The foremost cause of runtime faults is mistakes in the design that stem from using nil objects. With Swift, no nil objects exist, so a user can expect a neat and benign code. For circumstances that necessitate the presence of nil, options ensure a safe function.


  • Swift comprises a diverse array of characteristics, like optional, generics, etc., that safeguard from faults and shutdowns.
  • Effortless and fault-free work is achievable.
  • It uses ARC, unlike the manual tracking employed by conventional languages.
  • It has rapid speed and functionality owing to its improved money management and object-focused pattern that avoids garbage collection.
  • Strong support is present from Apple to the community making it a big success.
  • Users prefer Swift over Objective-C.


  • Deviations and relocation are downsides of Swift. Although the difficulty has been reduced now thanks to ABI integration. 
  • Continual relocation and variations turned out to be expensive and consumed too much time.
  • Incompatibility with C++ libraries

Swift vs Objective-C comparison

As they are considered a crucial component of iOS formation, evaluating Swift vs Objective-C will reveal a better format. Here is a table showing the key features that differ in the Swift vs Objective-C assessment.

Created in 2014 to form Apple OS
Created with Smalltalk messaging as an object-centric system
States type level systems to define activated functionalities
Uses messages for functionality activation due to the Smalltalk message usage
Multiple inheritances are possible
Not possible
An open-source program with an Apache license
Has GPL (General Public License)
No structs are present. Only classes exist here
Classes and structs possess different usage
Uses static and powerful typing
Dynamic type
Memory management
Use ARC that works with all APIs (Application Programming Interface)
ARC is backed by Cocoa API
Fast growing with high potential for expansion
Has Apple’s funding and the backing of its huge community

Swift vs Objective-C: Characteristic comparison

Let us evaluate the facets of the entities concerning functionality, protection, and other aspects.


Apple fashioned Swift to deliver a system that is quicker than Objective-C. Swift is 2.6 times quicker. While there is enhancement in RC (Reference Count) optimization, the high pace of the system is not fully proven. Some aspects that impact the efficacy of the entities are:

  • Employing runtime code results in Objective-C exhibiting a slow pace. The sluggishness is owing to the additional activity involved in coding. 
  • While Swift has a rapid pace, it is not fully developed. It needs more input to reach industry-set parameters. However, due to its tremendous growth rate, its efficacy will certainly improve in the coming years.

Is Swift or Objective-C faster?

As per Apple data, Swift is 2.6 times quicker when equated to Objective-C. Hassle-free grammar and arrangement are key details ensuring quick and active use. A concise and candid outcome is ensured as the code needed is minimal. Automated tracking and memory supervision aid in the necessity for minimal energy and time.

Is Swift more popular than Objective-C? 

When assessing Swift vs Objective-C, the latter is prevalent as users conversant with it are numerous. The former is not as prevalent owing to its recent and innovative addition. But its rapid pace of growth gives it the potential to be the prominent one because of its easy learning and protective capacities.

Safety aspect

In the evaluation of Swift vs Objective-C, the former aimed to enlarge the security aspect, which is a contentious aspect of Objective-C. Type and memory protection are present. In the former, an integrated error-prevention system is present. In the latter, users do not contend with weaknesses caused by floppy pointers. Users have a hard spell identifying the mistakes. The minimal error setup in Swift ensures a benign and hassle-free process.

Objective-C has null pointers for safe coding. The add-ons trigger plenty of vulnerabilities. Many complicated issues arise for users due to them. Although an error indication is not present, a possible potential of a fault is present that is tough to identify and rectify.  

While Swift does not have pointers, if a user misses it while coding, a crash occurs. The protection mechanism guarantees that the faults are fixed before proceeding further. Scanning a brief and spotless code for issues is easier. Moreover, the presence of aspects like type interface and optionals ensure less susceptibility to faults.


When assessing Swift vs Objective-C, the two differ in file management. With the latter, many files make the method laborious, while the former is reasonably upgraded to manage.  

Further, in Objective-C, introducing alterations in the code restricts its operability. To avoid this, users have individual documents for proper upkeep and to generate a briefer growth cycle.

The harmonization of comments and names of methods is manual in Objective-C. In contrast, Xmind and LLVM(Low-Level Virtual Machine) compiler allow automated processes in Swift. Dual document upkeep or manual operations are not required. 

User-friendly arrangement

For the usability or convenience aspect in the assessment of Swift vs Objective-C, the former emerges as the winner. Despite the fact that the latter was used for a few decades, it is tough to work on and needs a long spell to concentrate on for learning and implementation. But users accustomed to Python or JavaScript will grasp the nuances fast and use it easily. 

For instance, Objective-C has numerous symbols to distinguish the keywords and C types. It uses parentheses conditionals for ‘if’ and ‘else’ codes. This does not occur in Swift. It employs a list parted with commas for convenience. The minimal code strings in this format minimize errors and ensure spotless coding. 

Are Objective-C and Swift the same?

Although the two entities are planned with a general purpose, comparing Swift vs Objective-C reveals they are unalike in quite a few aspects. Swift reveals better functionality and protection. Objective-C is a C-based program created to provide object-focused expertise. 


Due to lengthy encrypting, Objective-C needs more upkeep and updates. It makes finding faults a daunting task. A fault in the arrangement or pattern can stop the application from working or crash it. This affects businesses and creators alike.

When assessing Swift vs Objective-C, the former minimal code for execution. Interpolation eliminates learning the tokens. This helps in the direct use of fluctuating factors minimizing shutdowns that occur. The mistake frequency is also reduced. 

Should I learn Swift or Objective-C first?

Although Swift has superior qualities, it is prudent to acquire Objective-C skills first. The reason is that the latter has proven usage, so a user can find many projects, resources, and other details built on it. Without knowing the format, making proper progress is an uphill task.

Swift vs Objective-C: Which is the right one?

The answer to the conundrum is not a simple one. Swift vs Objective-C comparison relies on multiple factors like familiarity with the language, time constraints, the size of the project, the budget, and the future scope. If, for instance, you are restricted by time, using a faster format is a good choice. Swift scores well in this aspect and in many others, like using a simple syntax and having cleaner code. 

Further, it has better performance and works well with all the sophisticated tech in use now. Continuous development by the community ensures it is updated regularly. At the same time, if the team is new to Swift, using Objective-C makes sense. The team can be given time to become proficient in Swift before using it.

On the other hand, if an application has used Objective-C, it is prudent to continue using it for updating. While the two languages are compatible, users need to be familiar with the two to use them in the same application. Further, in projects that necessitate the use of C language, using Objective-C is the ideal choice.

With app development undergoing mammoth changes, businesses need to embrace newer, cleaner languages like Swift. Barring a few use cases, as discussed above, companies should turn to the newer format to enjoy the perks it offers. Its rapid progress, convenient learning curve, and protective capabilities make it a safe bet. 

Make sure you consider the team perspective while choosing what is best. Experience, familiarity, timeline, and project size are deciding aspects to mull over before you make a choice. APIs, support, runtime, and stability also play a major role in decision-making. 

In short, the use cases abound for the two formats. Keep in mind that learning a new format that aligns with the existing technologies is always a benefit that can improve capabilities and give way for better results.

David Malan
Account Manager
A specialist in the field of market analysis in such areas as software development, web applications, mobile applications and the selection of potential vendors. Creator of analytical articles that have been praised by their readers. Highly qualified author and compiler of companies ratings.

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Swift vs Objective-C: Here Your Find an Answer