Python and Swift are two free, open-source tools for iOS app development that are in high demand as the resultant code looks elegant with minimal but comprehensive features. It seems that Swift with 48.2K GitHub stars and 7.71K forks on GitHub have more adoption than Python with 25K GitHub stars and 10.3K GitHub forks. But Python has a broader approval, being mentioned in 2789 company stacks & 3500 developers stacks; compared to Swift, which is listed in 979 company stacks and 526 developer stacks. Swift is relatively newer than Python. Subsequently, Python has a larger community and more followers.
Swift vs. Python: Is Swift similar to Python?
|Definition||Python is an object-oriented programming language, comparable to Perl, Ruby, Scheme, or Java.Python is most praised for its elegant syntax and readable code and is good to learn for beginners.||Swift code is concise, expressive, fast, and can work in sync with Objective C for Ios, OS X, watchOS and tvOS app development, which builds on the best of C and Objective-C, without any compatibility constraints.|
|What companies use?||Uber TechnologiesGooglePinterestNetflixInstagramSpotify and more.||Uber TechnologiesSlackLyftRobinhoodDelivery Hero SERuangguru and more.|
|What tools integrate?||DjangoPyCharmFlaskSentryCircleCLDatadog||SentrySonatype NexusAirbrakeimgixCocoa Touch (iOS)Google Code Prettify|
|Python vs. Swift Performance Speed/Efficiency||Python isn’t applicable to speed intensive applications. It is slow in terms of speed and is popular in the mainstream despite being slow. In case you require fast execution speed in applications as in gaming apps, Python isn’t the right choice. C# would be a better option.Performance speed can be increased by getting more servers online.||Swift is faster and more efficient than Python. E.g.: Swift Playgrounds|
|Standard Libraries||Python has a rich set of standard libraries and frameworks for several purposes. E.g.: Django and Flask for developing web applications, TensorFlow for deep learning, and pandas for data analysis, etc.||The Swift standard library encompasses several data types, protocols and functions, including fundamental data types collections along with the protocols that describe them and algorithms that operate on them, low-level primitives, characters and strings.|
|What makes it popular?||Python is very famous for its simple programming syntax, code readability and English-like commands that make coding in Python lot easier and efficient.Python is highly productive as compared to C++.||Swift is fast, it’s safe, it’s in-demand.The initial reactions to Swift were mixed owing to new and iOS experienced developers.It brought delight with its code, people enjoyed working with Swift as it was simple, flexible and evolved fast with every release.The documentation includes e-books, tons of community guidelines, podcasts, online and even real-life courses, third-party apps, and of course Swift Playgrounds – a gamified learning exp|
Pros and Cons: Python vs. Swift
|Python||Advantages of using Python for iOS app development:Great librariesReadable codeRapid developmentLarge communityOpen-sourceElegantObject-orientedDynamic typingGreat standard libraryFunctional programmingScientific computingGreat documentationMATLAB alternativeEasy to learn/readFast and simpleScriptingFreeEase of developmentMachine learning supportClear and easyIt’s lean and fun to codeGreat for toolingHigh Documented languagePython has great libraries for data processingFast coding and good for competitionsReadability countsMultiple InheritanceEasy to learn and useRapid Prototyping||Disadvantages of using Python for iOS app development:Still divided between python 2 and python 3Performance impactThe poor syntax for anonymous functionsPackage management is a messHard to understandPoor DSL capabilitiesNo anonymous functionsDynamic typingThe explicit self parameter in methodsThe “lisp style” whitespacesHard to obfuscateVery slowIndentations matter a lotThreadingFake object-oriented programmingLack of Syntax Sugar leads to “the pyramid of doom”Requires C functions for dynamic modules|
|Swift||Advantages of using Swift for iOS app development:ElegantNot Objective-CBacked by appleType inferenceGenericsPlaygroundsSemicolon freeOSXTuples offer compound variablesEasy to learnClean SyntaxFunctionalOpen SourceBeautiful CodeDynamicPromotes safe, readable codeProtocol-oriented programmingStoryboard designerSuper addicting language, great people, open, elegantSwift is faster than Objective-CProtocol extensionsHighly Readable codesNativeFeels like a better C++Protocol oriented programmingStrong Type safetyFail-safeCan interface with C easilyEasy to MaintainSwift is easier to understand for non-iOS developers.||Disadvantages of using Swift for iOS app development:Memory leaks are not uncommonIts classes compile to roughly 300 lines of assemblyVery irritatingly picky about things that areThe complicated process for exporting modulesOverly complex options make it easy to create bad code|
Python vs. Swift: Our Take On It
Businesses decide the technology stack for their applications based on their requirements – if it will be a reinvention or a startup-process where everything will be coded from scratch? Whether you wish to wrap app development tasks within 6 months or complete the same project in 4 months – along with paying 20% more for your server? Are you going to focus on the development speed and faster innovation in case the execution speed of the project is the concern?
Python projects take less time to complete but fare low on performance and efficiency. Swift adopts safe programming patterns and adds modern features to make programming easier, more flexible, and more fun. Swift’s clean slate, backed by the mature and much-loved Cocoa and Cocoa Touch frameworks, is an opportunity to reimagine how software development works. Plus the rapid development process, the scalability, improved safety and performance, decreased memory footprint, interoperability with Objective-C, automatic memory management, full-stack potential and cross-device support, vibrant open source community and learnability.
Both Swift and Python have matured with time and each subsequent update. Business owners need to embrace the changes imposed by the changing market. Being prepared to make a switch from one language to the next with minimum effort and at a reasonable cost should be one of the key strategies for 2020 and the near future.