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Group expressions and control the flow of execution.

In Swift, there are three kinds of statements: simple statements, compiler control statements, and control flow statements. Simple statements are the most common and consist of either an expression or a declaration. Compiler control statements allow the program to change aspects of the compiler’s behavior and include a conditional compilation block and a line control statement.

Control flow statements are used to control the flow of execution in a program. There are several types of control flow statements in Swift, including loop statements, branch statements, and control transfer statements. Loop statements allow a block of code to be executed repeatedly, branch statements allow a certain block of code to be executed only when certain conditions are met, and control transfer statements provide a way to alter the order in which code is executed. In addition, Swift provides a do statement to introduce scope, and catch and handle errors, and a defer statement for running cleanup actions just before the current scope exits.

A semicolon (;) can optionally appear after any statement and is used to separate multiple statements if they appear on the same line.

Grammar of a statement

statement → expression ;?
statement → declaration ;?
statement → loop-statement ;?
statement → branch-statement ;?
statement → labeled-statement ;?
statement → control-transfer-statement ;?
statement → defer-statement ;?
statement → do-statement ;?
statement → compiler-control-statement
statements → statement statements?

Loop Statements

Loop statements allow a block of code to be executed repeatedly, depending on the conditions specified in the loop. Swift has three loop statements: a forin statement, a while statement, and a repeatwhile statement.

Control flow in a loop statement can be changed by a break statement and a continue statement and is discussed in Break Statement and Continue Statement below.

Grammar of a loop statement

loop-statement → for-in-statement
loop-statement → while-statement
loop-statement → repeat-while-statement

For-In Statement

forin statement allows a block of code to be executed once for each item in a collection (or any type) that conforms to the Sequence( protocol.

forin statement has the following form:

for <#item#> in <#collection#> {

The makeIterator() method is called on the collection expression to obtain a value of an iterator type — that is, a type that conforms to the IteratorProtocol( protocol. The program begins executing a loop by calling the next() method on the iterator. If the value returned isn’t nil, it’s assigned to the item pattern, the program executes the statements, and then continues execution at the beginning of the loop. Otherwise, the program doesn’t perform assignment or execute the statements, and it’s finished executing the forin statement.

Grammar of a for-in statement

for-in-statement → for case? pattern in expression where-clause? code-block

While Statement

while statement allows a block of code to be executed repeatedly, as long as a condition remains true.

while statement has the following form:

while <#condition#> {

while statement is executed as follows:

  • The condition is evaluated.If true, execution continues to step 2. If false, the program is finished executing the while statement.
  • The program executes the statements, and execution returns to step 1.

Because the value of the condition is evaluated before the statements are executed, the statements in a while statement can be executed zero or more times.

The value of the condition must be of type Bool or a type bridged to Bool. The condition can also be an optional binding declaration, as discussed in Optional Binding.

Grammar of a while statement

while-statement → while condition-list code-block

condition-list → condition | condition , condition-list
condition → expression | availability-condition | case-condition | optional-binding-condition

case-condition → case pattern initializer
optional-binding-condition → let pattern initializer? | var pattern initializer?

Repeat-While Statement

repeatwhile statement allows a block of code to be executed one or more times, as long as a condition remains true.

repeatwhile statement has the following form:

repeat {
} while <#condition#>

repeatwhile statement is executed as follows:

  • The program executes the statements, and execution continues to step 2.
  • The condition is evaluated.If true, execution returns to step 1. If false, the program is finished executing the repeatwhile statement.

Because the value of the condition is evaluated after the statements are executed, the statements in a repeatwhile statement are executed at least once.

The value of the condition must be of type Bool or a type bridged to Bool.

Grammar of a repeat-while statement

repeat-while-statement → repeat code-block while expression

Branch Statements

Branch statements allow the program to execute certain parts of code depending on the value of one or more conditions. The values of the conditions specified in a branch statement control how the program branches and, therefore, what block of code is executed. Swift has three branch statements: an if statement, a guard statement, and a switch statement.

Control flow in an if statement or a switch statement can be changed by a break statement and is discussed in Break Statement below.

Grammar of a branch statement

branch-statement → if-statement
branch-statement → guard-statement
branch-statement → switch-statement

If Statement

An if statement is used for executing code based on the evaluation of one or more conditions.

There are two basic forms of an if statement. In each form, the opening and closing braces are required.

The first form allows code to be executed only when a condition is true and has the following form:

if <#condition#> {

The second form of an if statement provides an additional else clause (introduced by the else keyword) and is used for executing one part of code when the condition is true and another part of code when the same condition is false. When a single else clause is present, an if statement has the following form:

if <#condition#> {
   <#statements to execute if condition is true#>
} else {
   <#statements to execute if condition is false#>

The else clause of an if statement can contain another if statement to test more than one condition. An if statement chained together in this way has the following form:

if <#condition 1#> {
   <#statements to execute if condition 1 is true#>
} else if <#condition 2#> {
   <#statements to execute if condition 2 is true#>
} else {
   <#statements to execute if both conditions are false#>

The value of any condition in an if statement must be of type Bool or a type bridged to Bool. The condition can also be an optional binding declaration, as discussed in Optional Binding.

Grammar of an if statement

if-statement → if condition-list code-block else-clause?
else-clause → else code-block | else if-statement

Guard Statement

guard statement is used to transfer program control out of a scope if one or more conditions aren’t met.

guard statement has the following form:

guard <#condition#> else {

The value of any condition in a guard statement must be of type Bool or a type bridged to Bool. The condition can also be an optional binding declaration, as discussed in Optional Binding.

Any constants or variables assigned a value from an optional binding declaration in a guard statement condition can be used for the rest of the guard statement’s enclosing scope.

The else clause of a guard statement is required, and must either call a function with the Never return type or transfer program control outside the guard statement’s enclosing scope using one of the following statements:

  • return
  • break
  • continue
  • throw

Control transfer statements are discussed in Control Transfer Statements below. For more information on functions with the Never return type, see Functions that Never Return.

Grammar of a guard statement

guard-statement → guard condition-list else code-block

Switch Statement

switch statement allows certain blocks of code to be executed depending on the value of a control expression.

switch statement has the following form:

switch <#control expression#> {
case <#pattern 1#>:
case <#pattern 2#> where <#condition#>:
case <#pattern 3#> where <#condition#>,
    <#pattern 4#> where <#condition#>:

The control expression of the switch statement is evaluated and then compared with the patterns specified in each case. If a match is found, the program executes the statements listed within the scope of that case. The scope of each case can’t be empty. As a result, you must include at least one statement following the colon (:) of each case label. Use a single break statement if you don’t intend to execute any code in the body of a matched case.

The values of expressions your code can branch on are very flexible. For example, in addition to the values of scalar types, such as integers and characters, your code can branch on the values of any type, including floating-point numbers, strings, tuples, instances of custom classes, and optionals. The value of the control expression can even be matched to the value of a case in an enumeration and checked for inclusion in a specified range of values. For examples of how to use these various types of values in switch statements, see Switch in Control Flow.

switch case can optionally contain a where clause after each pattern. A where clause is introduced by the where keyword followed by an expression, and is used to provide an additional condition before a pattern in a case is considered matched to the control expression. If a where clause is present, the statements within the relevant case are executed only if the value of the control expression matches one of the patterns of the case and the expression of the where clause evaluates to true. For example, a control expression matches the case in the example below only if it’s a tuple that contains two elements of the same value, such as (1, 1).

case let (x, y) where x == y:

As the above example shows, patterns in a case can also bind constants using the let keyword (they can also bind variables using the var keyword). These constants (or variables) can then be referenced in a corresponding where clause and throughout the rest of the code within the scope of the case. If the case contains multiple patterns that match the control expression, all of the patterns must contain the same constant or variable bindings, and each bound variable or constant must have the same type in all of the case’s patterns.

switch statement can also include a default case, introduced by the default keyword. The code within a default case is executed only if no other cases match the control expression. A switch statement can include only one default case, which must appear at the end of the switch statement.

Although the actual execution order of pattern-matching operations, and in particular the evaluation order of patterns in cases, is unspecified, pattern matching in a switch statement behaves as if the evaluation is performed in source order — that is, the order in which they appear in source code. As a result, if multiple cases contain patterns that evaluate to the same value, and thus can match the value of the control expression, the program executes only the code within the first matching case in source order.

Switch Statements Must Be Exhaustive

In Swift, every possible value of the control expression’s type must match the value of at least one pattern of a case. When this simply isn’t feasible (for example, when the control expression’s type is Int), you can include a default case to satisfy the requirement.

Switching Over Future Enumeration Cases

nonfrozen enumeration is a special kind of enumeration that may gain new enumeration cases in the future — even after you compile and ship an app. Switching over a nonfrozen enumeration requires extra consideration. When a library’s authors mark an enumeration as nonfrozen, they reserve the right to add new enumeration cases, and any code that interacts with that enumeration must be able to handle those future cases without being recompiled. Code that’s compiled in library evolution mode, code in the Swift standard library, Swift overlays for Apple frameworks, and C and Objective-C code can declare nonfrozen enumerations. For information about frozen and nonfrozen enumerations, see frozen.

When switching over a nonfrozen enumeration value, you always need to include a default case, even if every case of the enumeration already has a corresponding switch case. You can apply the @unknown attribute to the default case, which indicates that the default case should match only enumeration cases that are added in the future. Swift produces a warning if the default case matches any enumeration case that’s known at compiler time. This future warning informs you that the library author added a new case to the enumeration that doesn’t have a corresponding switch case.

The following example switches over all three existing cases of the Swift standard library’s Mirror.AncestorRepresentation( enumeration. If you add additional cases in the future, the compiler generates a warning to indicate that you need to update the switch statement to take the new cases into account.

let representation: Mirror.AncestorRepresentation = .generated
switch representation {
case .customized:
    print("Use the nearest ancestor’s implementation.")
case .generated:
    print("Generate a default mirror for all ancestor classes.")
case .suppressed:
    print("Suppress the representation of all ancestor classes.")
@unknown default:
    print("Use a representation that was unknown when this code was compiled.")
// Prints "Generate a default mirror for all ancestor classes."

Execution Does Not Fall Through Cases Implicitly

After the code within a matched case has finished executing, the program exits from the switch statement. Program execution doesn’t continue or “fall through” to the next case or default case. That said, if you want execution to continue from one case to the next, explicitly include a fallthrough statement, which simply consists of the fallthrough keyword, in the case from which you want execution to continue. For more information about the fallthrough statement, see Fallthrough Statement below.

Grammar of a switch statement

switch-statement → switch expression { switch-cases? }
switch-cases → switch-case switch-cases?
switch-case → case-label statements
switch-case → default-label statements
switch-case → conditional-switch-case

case-label → attributes? case case-item-list :
case-item-list → pattern where-clause? | pattern where-clause? , case-item-list
default-label → attributes? default :

where-clause → where where-expression
where-expression → expression

conditional-switch-case → switch-if-directive-clause switch-elseif-directive-clauses? switch-else-directive-clause? endif-directive
switch-if-directive-clause → if-directive compilation-condition switch-cases?
switch-elseif-directive-clauses → elseif-directive-clause switch-elseif-directive-clauses?
switch-elseif-directive-clause → elseif-directive compilation-condition switch-cases?
switch-else-directive-clause → else-directive switch-cases?

Labeled Statement

You can prefix a loop statement, an if statement, a switch statement, or a do statement with a statement label, which consists of the name of the label followed immediately by a colon (:). Use statement labels with break and continue statements to be explicit about how you want to change control flow in a loop statement or a switch statement, as discussed in Break Statement and Continue Statement below.

The scope of a labeled statement is the entire statement following the statement label. You can nest labeled statements, but the name of each statement label must be unique.

For more information and to see examples of how to use statement labels, see Labeled Statements in Control Flow.

Grammar of a labeled statement

labeled-statement → statement-label loop-statement
labeled-statement → statement-label if-statement
labeled-statement → statement-label switch-statement
labeled-statement → statement-label do-statement

statement-label → label-name :
label-name → identifier

Control Transfer Statements

Control transfer statements can change the order in which code in your program is executed by unconditionally transferring program control from one piece of code to another. Swift has five control transfer statements: a break statement, a continue statement, a fallthrough statement, a return statement, and a throw statement.

Grammar of a control transfer statement

control-transfer-statement → break-statement
control-transfer-statement → continue-statement
control-transfer-statement → fallthrough-statement
control-transfer-statement → return-statement
control-transfer-statement → throw-statement

Break Statement

break statement ends program execution of a loop, an if statement, or a switch statement. A break statement can consist of only the break keyword, or it can consist of the break keyword followed by the name of a statement label, as shown below.

break <#label name#>

When a break statement is followed by the name of a statement label, it ends program execution of the loop, if statement, or switch statement named by that label.

When a break statement isn’t followed by the name of a statement label, it ends program execution of the switch statement or the innermost enclosing loop statement in which it occurs. You can’t use an unlabeled break statement to break out of an if statement.

In both cases, program control is then transferred to the first line of code following the enclosing loop or switch statement, if any.

For examples of how to use a break statement, see Break and Labeled Statements in Control Flow.

Grammar of a break statement

break-statement → break label-name?

Continue Statement

continue statement ends program execution of the current iteration of a loop statement but doesn’t stop execution of the loop statement. A continue statement can consist of only the continue keyword, or it can consist of the continue keyword followed by the name of a statement label, as shown below.

continue <#label name#>

When a continue statement is followed by the name of a statement label, it ends program execution of the current iteration of the loop statement named by that label.

When a continue statement isn’t followed by the name of a statement label, it ends program execution of the current iteration of the innermost enclosing loop statement in which it occurs.

In both cases, program control is then transferred to the condition of the enclosing loop statement.

In a for statement, the increment expression is still evaluated after the continue statement is executed, because the increment expression is evaluated after the execution of the loop’s body.

For examples of how to use a continue statement, see Continue and Labeled Statements in Control Flow.

Grammar of a continue statement

continue-statement → continue label-name?

Fallthrough Statement

fallthrough statement consists of the fallthrough keyword and occurs only in a case block of a switch statement. A fallthrough statement causes program execution to continue from one case in a switch statement to the next case. Program execution continues to the next case even if the patterns of the case label don’t match the value of the switch statement’s control expression.

fallthrough statement can appear anywhere inside a switch statement, not just as the last statement of a case block, but it can’t be used in the final case block. It also can’t transfer control into a case block whose pattern contains value binding patterns.

For an example of how to use a fallthrough statement in a switch statement, see Control Transfer Statements in Control Flow.

Grammar of a fallthrough statement

fallthrough-statement → fallthrough

Return Statement

return statement occurs in the body of a function or method definition and causes program execution to return to the calling function or method. Program execution continues at the point immediately following the function or method call.

return statement can consist of only the return keyword, or it can consist of the return keyword followed by an expression, as shown below.

return <#expression#>

When a return statement is followed by an expression, the value of the expression is returned to the calling function or method. If the value of the expression doesn’t match the value of the return type declared in the function or method declaration, the expression’s value is converted to the return type before it’s returned to the calling function or method.


As described in Failable Initializers, a special form of the return statement (return nil) can be used in a failable initializer to indicate initialization failure.

When a return statement isn’t followed by an expression, it can be used only to return from a function or method that doesn’t return a value (that is, when the return type of the function or method is Void or ()).

Grammar of a return statement

return-statement → return expression?

Throw Statement

throw statement occurs in the body of a throwing function or method, or in the body of a closure expression whose type is marked with the throws keyword.

throw statement causes a program to end execution of the current scope and begin error propagation to its enclosing scope. The error that’s thrown continues to propagate until it’s handled by a catch clause of a do statement.

throw statement consists of the throw keyword followed by an expression, as shown below.

throw <#expression#>

The value of the expression must have a type that conforms to the Error protocol.

For an example of how to use a throw statement, see Propagating Errors Using Throwing Functions in Error Handling.

Grammar of a throw statement

throw-statement → throw expression

Defer Statement

defer statement is used for executing code just before transferring program control outside of the scope that the defer statement appears in.

defer statement has the following form:

defer {

The statements within the defer statement are executed no matter how program control is transferred. This means that a defer statement can be used, for example, to perform manual resource management such as closing file descriptors, and to perform actions that need to happen even if an error is thrown.

The statements in the defer statement are executed at the end of the scope that encloses the defer statement.

func f(x: Int) {
  defer { print("First defer") }

  if x < 10 {
    defer { print("Second defer") }
    print("End of if")

  print("End of function")
f(x: 5)
// Prints "End of if"
// Prints "Second defer"
// Prints "End of function"
// Prints "First defer"

In the code above, the defer in the if statement executes before the defer declared in the function f because the scope of the if statement ends before the scope of the function.

If multiple defer statements appear in the same scope, the order they appear is the reverse of the order they’re executed. Executing the last defer statement in a given scope first means that statements inside that last defer statement can refer to resources that will be cleaned up by other defer statements.

func f() {
    defer { print("First defer") }
    defer { print("Second defer") }
    print("End of function")
// Prints "End of function"
// Prints "Second defer"
// Prints "First defer"

The statements in the defer statement can’t transfer program control outside of the defer statement.

Grammar of a defer statement

defer-statement → defer code-block

Do Statement

The do statement is used to introduce a new scope and can optionally contain one or more catch clauses, which contain patterns that match against defined error conditions. Variables and constants declared in the scope of a do statement can be accessed only within that scope.

do statement in Swift is similar to curly braces ({}) in C used to delimit a code block, and doesn’t incur a performance cost at runtime.

do statement has the following form:

do {
    try <#expression#>
} catch <#pattern 1#> {
} catch <#pattern 2#> where <#condition#> {
} catch <#pattern 3#>, <#pattern 4#> where <#condition#> {
} catch {

If any statement in the do code block throws an error, program control is transferred to the first catch clause whose pattern matches the error. If none of the clauses match, the error propagates to the surrounding scope. If an error is unhandled at the top level, program execution stops with a runtime error.

Like a switch statement, the compiler attempts to infer whether catch clauses are exhaustive. If such a determination can be made, the error is considered handled. Otherwise, the error can propagate out of the containing scope, which means the error must be handled by an enclosing catch clause or the containing function must be declared with throws.

catch clause that has multiple patterns matches the error if any of its patterns match the error. If a catch clause contains multiple patterns, all of the patterns must contain the same constant or variable bindings, and each bound variable or constant must have the same type in all of the catch clause’s patterns.

To ensure that an error is handled, use a catch clause with a pattern that matches all errors, such as a wildcard pattern (_). If a catch clause doesn’t specify a pattern, the catch clause matches and binds any error to a local constant named error. For more information about the patterns you can use in a catch clause, see Patterns.

To see an example of how to use a do statement with several catch clauses, see Handling Errors.

Grammar of a do statement

do-statement → do code-block catch-clauses?
catch-clauses → catch-clause catch-clauses?
catch-clause → catch catch-pattern-list? code-block
catch-pattern-list → catch-pattern | catch-pattern , catch-pattern-list
catch-pattern → pattern where-clause?

Compiler Control Statements

Compiler control statements allow the program to change aspects of the compiler’s behavior. Swift has three compiler control statements: a conditional compilation block a line control statement, and a compile-time diagnostic statement.

Grammar of a compiler control statement

compiler-control-statement → conditional-compilation-block
compiler-control-statement → line-control-statement
compiler-control-statement → diagnostic-statement

Conditional Compilation Block

A conditional compilation block allows code to be conditionally compiled depending on the value of one or more compilation conditions.

Every conditional compilation block begins with the #if compilation directive and ends with the #endif compilation directive. A simple conditional compilation block has the following form:

#if <#compilation condition#>

Unlike the condition of an if statement, the compilation condition is evaluated at compile time. As a result, the statements are compiled and executed only if the compilation condition evaluates to true at compile time.

The compilation condition can include the true and false Boolean literals, an identifier used with the -D command line flag, or any of the platform conditions listed in the table below.

Platform conditionValid arguments
swift()>= or < followed by a version number
compiler()>= or < followed by a version number
canImport()A module name

The version number for the swift() and compiler() platform conditions consists of a major number, optional minor number, optional patch number, and so on, with a dot (.) separating each part of the version number. There must not be whitespace between the comparison operator and the version number. The version for compiler() is the compiler version, regardless of the Swift version setting passed to the compiler. The version for swift() is the language version currently being compiled. For example, if you compile your code using the Swift 5 compiler in Swift 4.2 mode, the compiler version is 5 and the language version is 4.2. With those settings, the following code prints all three messages:

#if compiler(>=5)
print("Compiled with the Swift 5 compiler or later")
#if swift(>=4.2)
print("Compiled in Swift 4.2 mode or later")
#if compiler(>=5) && swift(<5)
print("Compiled with the Swift 5 compiler or later in a Swift mode earlier than 5")
// Prints "Compiled with the Swift 5 compiler or later"
// Prints "Compiled in Swift 4.2 mode or later"
// Prints "Compiled with the Swift 5 compiler or later in a Swift mode earlier than 5"

The argument for the canImport() platform condition is the name of a module that may not be present on all platforms. The module can include periods (.) in its name. This condition tests whether it’s possible to import the module, but doesn’t actually import it. If the module is present, the platform condition returns true; otherwise, it returns false.

The targetEnvironment() platform condition returns true when code is being compiled for the specified environment; otherwise, it returns false.


The arch(arm) platform condition doesn’t return true for ARM 64 devices. The arch(i386) platform condition returns true when code is compiled for the 32–bit iOS simulator.

You can combine and negate compilation conditions using the logical operators &&||, and ! and use parentheses for grouping. These operators have the same associativity and precedence as the logical operators that are used to combine ordinary Boolean expressions.

Similar to an if statement, you can add multiple conditional branches to test for different compilation conditions. You can add any number of additional branches using #elseif clauses. You can also add a final additional branch using an #else clause. Conditional compilation blocks that contain multiple branches have the following form:

#if <#compilation condition 1#>
    <#statements to compile if compilation condition 1 is true#>
#elseif <#compilation condition 2#>
    <#statements to compile if compilation condition 2 is true#>
    <#statements to compile if both compilation conditions are false#>


Each statement in the body of a conditional compilation block is parsed even if it’s not compiled. However, there’s an exception if the compilation condition includes a swift() or compiler() platform condition: The statements are parsed only if the language or compiler version matches what is specified in the platform condition. This exception ensures that an older compiler doesn’t attempt to parse syntax introduced in a newer version of Swift.

For information about how you can wrap explicit member expressions in conditional compilation blocks, see Explicit Member Expression.

Grammar of a conditional compilation block

conditional-compilation-block → if-directive-clause elseif-directive-clauses? else-directive-clause? endif-directive

if-directive-clause → if-directive compilation-condition statements?
elseif-directive-clauses → elseif-directive-clause elseif-directive-clauses?
elseif-directive-clause → elseif-directive compilation-condition statements?
else-directive-clause → else-directive statements?
if-directive → #if
elseif-directive → #elseif
else-directive → #else
endif-directive → #endif

compilation-condition → platform-condition
compilation-condition → identifier
compilation-condition → boolean-literal
compilation-condition → ( compilation-condition )
compilation-condition → ! compilation-condition
compilation-condition → compilation-condition && compilation-condition
compilation-condition → compilation-condition || compilation-condition

platform-condition → os ( operating-system )
platform-condition → arch ( architecture )
platform-condition → swift ( >= swift-version ) | swift ( < swift-version )
platform-condition → compiler ( >= swift-version ) | compiler ( < swift-version )
platform-condition → canImport ( import-path )
platform-condition → targetEnvironment ( environment )

operating-system → macOS | iOS | watchOS | tvOS | Linux | Windows
architecture → i386 | x86_64 | arm | arm64
swift-version → decimal-digits swift-version-continuation?
swift-version-continuation → . decimal-digits swift-version-continuation?
environment → simulator | macCatalyst

Line Control Statement

A line control statement is used to specify a line number and filename that can be different from the line number and filename of the source code being compiled. Use a line control statement to change the source code location used by Swift for diagnostic and debugging purposes.

A line control statement has the following forms:

#sourceLocation(file: <#file path#>, line: <#line number#>)

The first form of a line control statement changes the values of the #line#file#fileID, and #filePath literal expressions, beginning with the line of code following the line control statement. The line number changes the value of #line, and is any integer literal greater than zero. The file path changes the value of #file#fileID, and #filePath, and is a string literal. The specified string becomes the value of #filePath, and the last path component of the string is used by the value of #fileID. For information about #file#fileID, and #filePath, see Literal Expression.

The second form of a line control statement, #sourceLocation(), resets the source code location back to the default line numbering and file path.

Grammar of a line control statement

line-control-statement → #sourceLocation ( file: file-path , line: line-number )
line-control-statement → #sourceLocation ( )
line-number → A decimal integer greater than zero
file-path → static-string-literal

Compile-Time Diagnostic Statement

Prior to Swift 5.9, the #warning and #error statements emit a diagnostic during compilation. This behavior is now provided by the warning(_:)( and error(_:)( macros in the Swift standard library.

Availability Condition

An availability condition is used as a condition of an ifwhile, and guard statement to query the availability of APIs at runtime, based on specified platforms arguments.

An availability condition has the following form:

if #available(<#platform name#> <#version#>, <#...#>, *) {
    <#statements to execute if the APIs are available#>
} else {
    <#fallback statements to execute if the APIs are unavailable#>

You use an availability condition to execute a block of code, depending on whether the APIs you want to use are available at runtime. The compiler uses the information from the availability condition when it verifies that the APIs in that block of code are available.

The availability condition takes a comma-separated list of platform names and versions. Use iOSmacOSwatchOS, and tvOS for the platform names, and include the corresponding version numbers. The * argument is required and specifies that, on any other platform, the body of the code block guarded by the availability condition executes on the minimum deployment target specified by your target.

Unlike Boolean conditions, you can’t combine availability conditions using logical operators like && and ||. Instead of using ! to negate an availability condition, use an unavailability condition, which has the following form:

if #unavailable(<#platform name#> <#version#>, <#...#>) {
    <#fallback statements to execute if the APIs are unavailable#>
} else {
    <#statements to execute if the APIs are available#>

The #unavailable form is syntactic sugar that negates the condition. In an unavailability condition, the * argument is implicit and must not be included. It has the same meaning as the * argument in an availability condition.

Grammar of an availability condition

availability-condition → #available ( availability-arguments )
availability-condition → #unavailable ( availability-arguments )
availability-arguments → availability-argument | availability-argument , availability-arguments
availability-argument → platform-name platform-version
availability-argument → *

platform-name → iOS | iOSApplicationExtension
platform-name → macOS | macOSApplicationExtension
platform-name → macCatalyst | macCatalystApplicationExtension
platform-name → watchOS | watchOSApplicationExtension
platform-name → tvOS | tvOSApplicationExtension
platform-name → visionOS
platform-version → decimal-digits
platform-version → decimal-digits . decimal-digits
platform-version → decimal-digits . decimal-digits . decimal-digits