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5.1.0 • Public • Published

iOS Runtime for NativeScript

Waffle.io - NativeScript iOS Runtime

Contains the source code for the NativeScript's iOS Runtime. NativeScript is a framework which enables developers to write truly native mobile applications for Android and iOS using JavaScript and CSS. Each mobile platform has its own ecosystem and offers completely different development tools and language(s) - Java for Android and Objective C (Swift) for iOS. In order to translate JavaScript code to the corresponding native APIs some kind of proxy mechanism is needed. This is exactly what the "Runtime" parts of NativeScript are responsible for. The iOS Runtime may be thought of as "The Bridge" between the JavaScript and the iOS world. A NativeScript application for iOS is a standard native package (ipa) which besides the JavaScript files embed the runtime as well.

git clone --recursive git@github.com:NativeScript/ios-runtime.git


  • OS X 10.11+
  • Xcode 8+
  • CMake 3.3.2 - Make sure to install the command line tools from the menu.
  • llvm 4.0 - used to build the metadata generator submodule. Be sure to have the folder containing llvm-config in PATH or make a symlink to in /usr/local/bin/.
  • Automake - available in Homebrew as automake.
  • GNU Libtool - available in Homebrew as libtool.
  • Checkout all git submodules using git submodule update --init.

Architecture Diagram

The NativeScript iOS Runtime architecture can be summarized in the following diagram.

iOS Runtime diagram

For more details on how it works, read the documentation.

Local Development

To be able to open and build {N} iOS Runtime in Xcode you need to configure it for WebKit development and generate the Xcode project files using cmake. To do this execute the following:

sudo ./src/webkit/Tools/Scripts/configure-xcode-for-ios-development 
open "cmake-build/NativeScript.xcodeproj"

After you open the newly generated project in Xcode you can run the TestRunner target or the Gameraww example app.

For more information on WebKit configuration see Building iOS Port section of WebKit's README

Building a Distribution Package

To build the tns-ios npm package run ./build/scripts/package-tns-ios.sh in the root of the repository. The package contains the NativeScript Cocoa Framework, the NativeScript CLI template project and the API metadata generator.

To build the tns-ios-inspector npm package run ./build/scripts/package-tns-ios-inspector.sh in the root of the repository. The package contains the Web Inspector frontend.


We love PRs! Check out the contributing guidelines. If you want to contribute, but you are not sure where to start - look for issues labeled help wanted.

Get Help

Please, use github issues strictly for reporting bugs or requesting features. For general questions and support, check out Stack Overflow or ask our experts in NativeScript community Slack channel.


npm i tns-ios

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