I have IPad and I want to buy Macbook for development simple programs for IPad. It will be my first Macbook and I don't want to spend too much many and look at Macbook Air 13' 128Gb.

I'm just wondering if this notebook is good enough to develop a small IPad aps ?

  • 1
    No reason why it wouldn't be enough ! Commented Feb 1, 2013 at 8:45
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2 Answers 2


The answer depends on the types of apps you are developing. Apps that require some of the specialized hardware on the iPad (accelerometer, GPS, compass, etc…) you won't be able to effectively test in the simulator, so the size of the MBA screen may be fine. However for simple apps that do not require any specialized hardware you may find running in the simulator at 50% a bit too cramped, so you may want to opt for a MacBook Pro with Retina display. Running in the simulator has a much faster turn around than running on a device, especially on a Retina MacBook Pro which is as fast as my 2007 Mac Pro.

Personally, I bought a tricked out MacBook Air for my hobby iOS development. I feel I can get away with it because most of my iPad development is on the device. If I used the simulator more I'd move up to a Retina MacBook Pro. I also get more time to play with my stuff because I am willing to take the MacBook Air with me almost anywhere, as opposed to my 15" MacBook Pro which pretty much sat on my desk.

  • I too like the Air (mine is 256GB version) but I am also using Xcode and iOS development more like a hobby. Although I haven't had issues with it primary limitation is amount of RAM. Both XCode and MonoDevelop run well on the Air.
    – jtreser
    Commented Feb 1, 2013 at 13:41
  • I bought my Air last June with 8GB of RAM and 512GB SSD. On this machine I haven't had any issues with RAM, but my MBPR with 8GB of RAM that I use to build large projects (15 minutes for a full build) could use more RAM.
    – Ɱark Ƭ
    Commented Feb 1, 2013 at 13:54

Either one is good enough, but the base MacBook Pro 13" comes with 8 GB RAM, compared to only 4 GB for the MacBook Air. I just bought at 13" MBP, and while it's heavier and more expensive, the extra RAM and retina display make it a much better machine. IMHO.

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