So far, Apple’s new programming language Swift has gotten a primarily positive reception from the mobile development industry. However, a few developers are now claiming that the language is slower than Objective-C on benchmark tests.
“What we were curious about was for the things that we do in-house, which is a lot of array work and a lot of working with these types of data, was Swift going to be as fast as Objective-C? In our tests, it wasn’t.” Splasm Software’s Keith Gugliotto said. In fact, in one set of tests, Swift was between 6 and 40 times slower than Objective-C, and in another it ranged 10 to 20 percent slower.
In separate tests, a Finnish developer found that C++ and Python were also faster than Swift.
However, Gugliotto cautioned, “There’s a heckuva lot more reasons to use a programming language than its performance. As long as the performance is relatively acceptable, if the language provides modern [capabilities] and at least allows you to develop quickly relative to other languages, that’s a strong case for continuing to use it.”