Developing for iOS without an iPhone

I’m creating an app for iOS and Android. I will need push notifications for both so I will be using androids GCM service and iOS’s APNS. I tried registering for notifications in the iOS emulator and got this soul crushing message- “remote notifications are not supported in the simulator”.

Any way around this (guessing not)?

If I must get an iPhone will I need to activate it with a mobile service to test notifications? I really don’t want 2 mobile plans.

Buying an iOS device is your only option really. APNS is tricky at the best of times so will need plenty of testing. Luckily you won’t need a mobile plan as push is data and so can be received over Wifi.

Do you know someone with an iOS device? You could always push a build out to them on TestFlight and get them to confirm push is working.

Thanks for the quick response. I will buy a second hand iPhone off craigslist- hopefully wifi will work but I won’t know till I test it.

I do know people with iOS devices but as I’ve never done any iOS development I will probably need to spend a lot of time debugging and testing. So I can’t really occupy someones weekend with build requests or hog someones iPhone for the weekend.

I’m the same as you. I’m looking at maybe getting an iPad mini, here in Ireland it is 299 euro vs 569 for an iPhone 5C - I assume you can test notifications on that? A reseller here has ex demo or refurbs with a warranty for 239 (for the ipad) so if you shop around you may get a better deal, as in pay a little more but get a warranty.

You should still use test flight though so you can test on many different devices as possible, when you have a more stable build and it’s not such a hassle for friends.

PS do you have any good links to get started with notifications?

It looks like the iPhone 4 is able to upgrade to the most recent version of iOS so it should work for testing as well as an iPhone 5. I’ve been able to find iPhone 4s’s on craigslist for $250-$300 but I haven’t purchased yet so I don’t know about quality.

From what I’ve read iPad SHOULD work just the same as iPhone. I think you’l only have problems with iPod if you don’t have the latest and greatest.

I’ve only just started so I don’t know if the guides I’ve read have the full story. But what I’ve been using-

Plugin for ionic:

cordova plugin add

Guide to setting up Apple Developer “Membership” account with certs etc.

And of course- Google: A breath of fresh air

I’ll be using NodeJS for my server and haven’t gotten that far yet. Last couple of days have been spent working out the above.

If you get stuck let me know: micahwllmsn AT gmail DOT com

Thank you for those links and very kind offer to help. I maybe will take you up on that but will be a while before I get to that stage as still new to all of this.

Back OT - so far my two testers have 4S, not 4, but if it helps they are running iOS 7.1.1 & 7.0.6

@iamchairs take a look at for the server side.

It basically runs a web service that allows you to send push notifications to both Android and iOS. I’m using the MEAN stack on the backend and it’s working pretty well for me and has saved me so much time. Last time I was sending push it was for iOS only and I built it using PHP and it was a bit of a nightmare to be honest.