remote job consultationWe are offering free consultations on how to lead & manage remote teams during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn More

How to hire an Objective-C Developer in 2018

If you want to hire an Objective-C developer, you probably want to build apps for iOS or OS X. Objective-C is an object oriented programming language that adds more versatile and flexible messaging to C. This language is predominantly used by Apple for their operating systems.

Although Apple recently created Swift, many people still look to hire an Objective-C developer instead for many reasons, such as it’s time-tested reliability. This language was first created in 1983 in an attempt to combine C’s low-level control with object-oriented features in order to allow more customizable system libraries and easier communication.

When Steve Jobs left Apple and founded NeXT Computer in 1985, this company chose to use Objective-C for development. When Jobs returned to Apple, he brought the OS created with NeXT, thus bringing with him Objective C.

Ever since, companies who want to build Apple software search for an Objective-C developer to hire. This language has been used to build over a million different applications, which means that it is well proven and tested.

The large amount of applications and developers who are experts in Objective-C also means that many companies won’t likely switch over to Swift, at least not quickly, so you can feel secure in hiring an Objective-C developer.

Additionally, Swift is still a relatively new language, only being a few years old, so there aren’t as many resources dedicated to help learn and debug this language when compared to Objective-C.

Let’s take a look at some of the main reasons you should hire an Objective-C developer.

Why Hire an Objective-C Developer

Large community

Every single developer who wanted to program for OS X or iOS with Apple used Objective-C. Even after the release of Swift, many still learn Objective-C or have chosen to stick with it rather than learn Swift.

This means that not only are there many books, classes, online courses, and resources dedicated specifically to Objective-C, but also that there’s an active online community on sites like StackOverflow.

So, if your developer gets stuck on a particularly tough bug or problem, they are almost guaranteed to have someone there to help them out. Additionally, because this code has been used by so many coders for so long, elegant solutions to common problems are already thoroughly explained online, meaning less development time for your employees.

More Flexibility

Objective-C is still C-compatible, but it features Object-Oriented extensions that allow you to send any messages to any object. This means that, unlike other C-based languages (e.g. C++ and C#), it isn’t statically typed and objects aren’t directly tied to their class.

In fact, when you are using Objective-C, developers can send messages to objects even if they’re unsupported. If the object is unsure how to handle the message, it can forward it.

Overall, in there is a lot of flexibility with message handling in this language.


As explained, this language has been around for quite a while, with many different applications developed by every iOS and OS X developer, as it was the only option for many years.

It is also built of C, a language that was created in 1972 and has plenty of support and testing. Essentially, if you hire an Objective-C developer who is experienced, you know your applications will run beautifully.

Top Objective-C Interview Questions for 2018

Now that you know why you want to hire an Objective-C developer, you need to understand what to ask them to confirm they know the language inside and out. If you want to find a highly vetted and tested expert without the hassle of searching and interviewing them, contact us.

Explain method swizzling in Objective C and why you want to use it

This feature lets your developers write code that can be executed before and/or after the original method. It functions by changing the implementation of an existing selector, possible only because method invocations in Objective-C are able to be changed at runtime.

The implementation is switched at runtime for a different implementation via method swizzling. Let’s take a look at an example:

#import “UIViewController+Log.h”

@implementation UIViewController (Log)

+ (void)load {

static dispatch_once_t once_token;

dispatch_once(&once_token, ^{

SEL viewWillAppearSelector = @selector(viewDidAppear:);

SEL viewWillAppearSelector = @selector(log_viewDidAppear:);

Method originalMethod =

class_getInstanceMethod(self, viewWillAppearSelector);

Method extendedMethod =

class_getInstanceMethod(self, viewWillAppearLoggerSelector);

method_exchangeImplementations(originalMethod, extendedMethod);



  • (void) log_viewDidAppear:(BOOL)animated {

[self log_viewDidAppear:animated];

NSLog(@”viewDidAppear executed for %@”, [self class]);



Explain KVC and KVO and tell me an example of using KVC to set a value

Your Objective-C developer should know that KVC stands for Key-Value Coding and KVO represents Key-Value Observing.

KVC lets you access a property or value via a string. You can access these at runtime with the string, as opposed to needing to statically know the property names during development.

KVO, on the other hand, lets your developers see (or observe) any changes to a property or value. In order to observe a property with KVO, you need to identify the property with a string via KVC. Therefore, it’s important to recognize that the object isn’t observable with KVO unless it is KVC compliant.

Let’s look at an example with a property name on a class.

@property (nonatomic, copy) NSString *name;

We are able to access it with KVC:

NSString *n = [object valueForKey:@”name”]

We are able to modify the value by sending a message:

[object setValue:@”Mary” forKey:@”name”]

Explain the Responder Chain

The way the apps receive and handle events is by using responder objects. These objects are any instance of the UIResponder class; they receive raw event data and either handle the event or forward it on to another responder object. Any unhandled events pass from responder to responder in an active responder chain, or a “dynamic configuration of your app’s responder objects.”

Your Objective-C developer to hire should know that there is no single responder chain within your app, and all default rules can be changed. Apple has provided this figure to illustrate the default responder chain in an app whose interface has a label, a text field, a button, and two background views.

As you can see, if the text field doesn’t handle the event, it will be sent to the text field’s parent UIView object by UIKit, followed by the root view of the window. From here, the responder chain then diverts to the owning view controller before directing the event to the window.

Then, the event is delivered to the UIApplication object if the window doesn’t handle the event. It could potentially also go to the app delegate if the object is an instance of UIResponder and not already part of the responder chain.

Simply Hire an Objective-C Developer

Now you understand the benefits of Objective-C and the best interview questions to ask your potential developer. If you want to skip the time-consuming job search, contact us to find a well-vetted and guaranteed expert developer to help you with your future plans.

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email

or... Subscribe to our newsletter and get exclusive content and bloopers

Angela Karl

Angela Karl

Everyone has something to say. Whether this is done through a feature article, blog post, white paper, newsletter, how-to post, or improving your SEO, I can help. As a contributor to publications such as The Huffington Post and TechGenix, I am a professional B2B and B2C IT writer with over seven years of experience with writing and editing.

Don’t miss out!

Subscribe to our newsletter now and receive our latest eBook “Agile in Remote Teams” for free.