Alongside iOS 10, tvOS 10, and watchOS 3, Apple today officially released Swift Playgrounds, a new app aimed at teaching both children and adults how to code through simple interactive coding exercises. It's meant to make learning to code "easy and fun" for everyone.
First announced in June at WWDC, Swift Playgrounds is meant for beginners who have no experience with coding, and it will be deployed in numerous schools around the world as standard curriculum.
"Everyone should have the opportunity to learn coding, and we are excited to bring Swift Playgrounds to the next generation of programmers looking for a fun and easy way to explore key coding concepts using real code," said Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of Software Engineering. "More than 100 schools around the world have already committed to adding Swift Playgrounds to their fall curriculum, and we can't wait to see what students create with it."
Swift Playgrounds is organized into a series of lessons that introduce new concepts and guide users through challenges and puzzles. It's centered on three characters that need to be guided through a graphical world using coding concepts like issuing commands, creating functions, performing loops, and using conditional code and variables. Apple plans to release new lessons on a regular basis.
The app also includes built-in templates that can be modified to create customized programs that can be shared with friends and family, and Swift Playgrounds code can be exported directly to Xcode to be turned into a full iOS or Mac app.
Swift Playgrounds is compatible with all iPad Air and iPad Pro models, along with the iPad mini 2 and later. iOS 10 is required to download the app, which is available for free from the App Store.