Advanced and Practical Enum usage in Swift


released Fri, 01 Mar 2019
Swift Version 5.0



The biggest issue is, Tuple support. I love tuples, they make many things easier, but they're currently under-documented and cannot be used in many scenarios. In terms of enums, you can't have tuples as the enum value:

enum Devices: (intro: Int, name: String) {

   case iPhone = (intro: 2007, name: \"iPhone\")

   case appleTV = (intro: 2006, name: \"Apple TV\")

   case appleWatch = (intro: 2014, name: \"Apple Watch\")


This may not look like the best example, but once you start using enums, you'll often end up in situations where you'd like to be able to do something like the above.

Default Associated Values

Another thing which you may run into is that associated values are always types but you can't set a default value for those types. Imagine such an example:

enum Characters {

   case mage(health: Int = 70, magic: Int = 100, strength: Int = 30)

   case warrior(health: Int = 100, magic: Int = 0, strength: Int = 100)

   case neophyte(health: Int = 50, magic: Int = 20, strength: Int = 80)


You could still create new cases with different values, but the default settings for your character would be mapped.