Devoted Devoted - 5 months ago 21
Objective-C Question

What is the difference between class and instance methods?

What's the difference between a class method and an instance method?

Are instance methods the accessors (getters and setters) while class methods are pretty much everything else?

Answer

Like most of the other answers have said, instance methods use an instance of a class, whereas a class method can be used with just the class name. In Objective-C they are defined thusly:

@interface MyClass : NSObject

+ (void)aClassMethod;
- (void)anInstanceMethod;

@end

They could then be used like so:

[MyClass aClassMethod];

MyClass *object = [[MyClass alloc] init];
[object anInstanceMethod];

Some real world examples of class methods are the convenience methods on many Foundation classes like NSString's +stringWithFormat: or NSArray's +arrayWithArray:. An instance method would be NSArray's -count method.