You can make an app for iOS even if you’re on a PC running Windows 10.

I wish I had known this when I first started because I delayed myself for 3 years before biting the bullet and buying a Mac.

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Had I known about running Xcode on Windows or about the solutions below, I might’ve started building iPhone apps much earlier!

Rent a Mac

Before committing to buying a new Mac, you can actually “rent” one for development. You’ll remotely access the Mac and Xcode through your PC.

It’ll be like having the Mac desktop in a window on your Windows Desktop.

The really nice thing about this option is that the cost is really low and it’s the fastest option to get up and running.

If you decide that app development isn’t for you, you just cancel your plan.

1. MacStadium
These guys were featured in the recent Apple keynote when they introduced the updated Mac Mini! They have the newest Macs available.

(Use coupon code “CODEWITHCHRIS” for 50% off your first month. If you do, please let me know in the comments below. I’ll get a small kick back at no extra expense to you so thank you for supporting my site!)

If you go down this route for iOS app development, make sure you get my Xcode cheatsheet with references and keyboard shortcuts for Windows users.

There are a couple other companies that provide this service:

2. MacInCloud
This is the most well known service out of the three. You won’t have to install Xcode because it comes preinstalled. You can also do pay-as-you-go so it’s a pretty low commitment. Some people complain that it’s slow but you can try it out for yourself since it’s only about a buck an hour!

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3. XcodeClub
XcodeClub is run by Daniel who is a passionate developer himself. From the reviews I see, the service is fast and friendly. The pricing is less flexible than MacInCloud and you’ll have to commit to at least a month.

Virtualize MacOS

If you’re a little more technically savvy, you can use virtualization software and run a “virtual Mac” on your PC.

The services above are essentially doing the same thing on their servers and then they charge you a fee to access the virtual machine.

By setting it up yourself on your own PC, you essentially cut the middle man out of the equation.

Unfortunately it does take a little bit of technical know-how to get this up and running.

The two most popular pieces of software to do virtualization are VirtualBox and VMWare Workstation.

You can download them below and then use Google to find a guide on how to install the latest MacOS (Mojave) with either VirtualBox or VMWare Workstation.

After that, spin up your new virtual Mac and download Xcode. This is as close as you’ll get to running actual Xcode on Windows!

4. VirtualBox
VirtualBox is open source software which means that it’s free. That probably explains why it’s a lot more popular than VMWare Workstation when it comes to running MacOS on your Windows machine!

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5. VMWare Workstation
Unfortunately you’ll have to pay for this piece of software and at the time of this writing, a license costs about half the price of a brand new Mac Mini which is perfectly suitable for iOS app development. I would recommend you try VirtualBox first or try to buy a used Mac Mini.

Build a “Hackintosh”

You can also build a “Hackintosh” which is a PC that has been customized to run MacOS.

This requires the most effort out of all the options presented so far but it can work for someone who wants a separate physical computer running MacOS.

6. Hackintosh.com
A great resource for all things Hackintosh. The first How-To section contains links to a number of great tutorials for building your own Hackintosh and installing High Sierra.

7. Hackintosh Subreddit
I love looking for Reddit communities on anything that I’m interested in because there are always interesting conversations happening. Reddit provides a way to have a dialogue with like minded individuals, to get help and to help others!

8. Hackintosh Articles on 9to5mac.com
I included this link because it contains up to date news and articles for Hackintosh builds.

Third Party Solutions

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Lastly, there are many third party solutions that you can use to do iOS development on Windows.

You won’t be using Xcode in these solutions but you’ll be able to generate an app that can run on iOS devices.

Check out these great Xcode alternatives:

9. React Native
Use JavaScript to build native mobile apps.

10. Xamarin
Use C# to build a mobile app that you can deploy natively to Android, iOS and Windows.

11. Appcelerator
Build native mobile apps using JavaScript.

12. PhoneGap
Build hybrid cross-platform mobile apps using HTML, CSS and JavaScript.

Downloads via App Store takes a lot of time on Mac, how to fix?

The App Store application offers access to all available apps for Apple macOS or iOS operating systems. To find any type of program, simply use the search field to deliver all associated results. When the store works properly it is very useful, but since the storage is vast and contains countless apps, various issues are unavoidable.

One issue is very poor downloading performance, resulting in a wait of several minutes when downloading even a small application of just a few MB. Some people report that this issue appears even when they try to update their operating systems. There are a number of causes of this problem, such as wrong DNS server, router or Internet service provider issues, Apple server crashes, and others. Below we describe the most common issues and possible solutions - how to improve App Store downloading speed.

Table of Contents:

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Ensure Apple's service servers are working properly

Crashes and maintenance works are often unavoidable when dealing with electronic systems, and might be reasons for low downloading speeds. Apple has created a status web page for users to check if their preferred servers are working properly. To ensure that the server that you are trying to connect to is working properly, visit Apple's System Status web page and see if a green indicator is displayed bedside it. If you find a yellow or red indicator, there is not much you can do, since this is Apple's issue.

Reboot the device

Restarting the device is often a solution for many issues, including low downloading speeds. For example, minor crashes within the operating system can result in decreased performance. Rebooting is useful for Mac computers and any mobile iOS device. Restart the Mac by clicking the Apple logo in the menu bar at the top of the screen and select Restart. Restart the iOS device by holding the lock button until the slider appears - slide it to turn it off and then hold again to boot up the mobile device.

Try downloading a different application

There are cases when download speed is related to particular applications - a decrease in speed is a result of miscommunication between the developers and App store. So, if a developer removes a product, but the App Store has not updated its storage area, you may receive various error messages and an inactive progress bar. To check if this is the case, try downloading any free app from the store.

Apple ID related problems

Issues can sometimes be related specifically to the Apple ID account. In this case, there is a very simple solution: simply sign out of your account, wait a few seconds, sign back in to the App Store application, and try to download the app again. Open App Store and click on Store in the menu bar at the top of the screen. In the list, select Sign out. Repeat the steps to Sign in.

Troubleshoot your network connection

  • First, ensure downloading speed issues are not caused by your Internet Service Provider or particular wireless network. Begin with checking the download speed by visiting speedtest website. Minimum speed requirements for smooth downloading are above 10Mb/s.
  • Next, switch between cellular and wi-fi networks on mobile devices. Or, switch between Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections on Mac computers. If possible, test all three networks.
  • If speed is low when using a Wi-Fi network only, reboot the router. Turn it off, wait about 60 seconds, and then turn it back on. Check the download speed after rebooting.
  • If resetting the router does not solve the issue, try to connect to a different Wi-Fi network (if available). Some routers, especially schools and institutions' networks, block unnecessary ports or App Store servers to keep download bandwidth accessible to anyone.
  • If you encounter issues while connected to cellular network or Ethernet, contact the Internet Service Provider (ISP) for possible solutions.

Change the DNS settings

Low downloading speed can be caused by a poor DNS server, since all internet requests must travel through that particular server. Low DNS server performance affects all Internet tasks, including downloads via App Store. To check whether the DNS server is causing problems, replace the existing server with Google's or any other OpenDNS server. We recommend that you try several different servers and use the one that produces the highest download speeds. To change DNS servers on iOS devices, open Settings and tap on Wi-Fi. In a new window, tap the information icon (a blue 'i' in the circle) of your current network, and then tap the DNS field and change the address. To change the DNS server on a Mac computer, open System Preferences and choose Network. In the new window, click the current connection, and then click Advanced. In the new window, choose the DNS tab and click the add (+) under the list of DNS servers.

If you notice problems when connected to the Wi-Fi occur on several devices, there may be an issue in the router's DNS settings. In this case, changing settings for a particular device might improve the situation, so read the router manufacturer guide to change DNS settings.

Turn off VPN, firewall, and security software

Slow Download Speed

VPN, firewall, and anti-virus software can affect Internet performance. Incoming and outgoing connections might be cited as possible threats, thus resulting in blocked or restricted connections to associated servers. Disable and re-enable each software package to see if this affects downloading performance. To disable the firewall on Mac computers, go to System Preferences and choose Security & Privacy. Then select the Firewall tab. Click on lock and enter your administrator account password for permission to make changes. To check that you are not connected to a VPN server, choose Network under System Preferences and inspect the list on left side. iOS devices do not have firewall or anti-virus software by default, so if you have not downloaded any, you only need to check VPN settings. Open the device's Settings and choose General. Scroll down until you see VPN options. Disconnect from any connected VPN and check if download speeds improves.

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Video Showing how to fix low downloading speed via App Store on Mac: