Latest 1.1.9
License MIT
Platforms ios 7.0, requires ARC

SHModelObject is a utility model Base Class that uses objective-c runtime to assign the values to instance variables and properties of the model class from an NSDictionary, Which is a basic usecase when using webservices that return JSON response.

Build Status Pod Version License

Let say you have a WebService that serves you back the following Response:

    "user_name" : "Shan Ul Haq",
    "user_id" : 34567,
    "user_role" : "Author",
    "user_x_values" : [
        "abcd", 777, "efgh" , true, false

You parse this response using a JSON library and convert this response into a NSDictionary. Now another task is to populate following User model Object

@interface User : NSObject {
    NSString *_userName;
    NSInteger _userId;
    NSString *userRole;

@property(nonatomic, strong) NSArray *userXValues;


To populate an Object of User, you will have to write some initializer that will take a NSDictionary and will populate the ivars and properties of your model class one by one. and you will have to do this
for all the model classes that you have in your project. you will be adding something like below to your class and implement the method.

- (User *)initWithDictionary:(NSDictionary *)responseDictionary;

Thats where SHModelObject comes in, its a Single class with basic purpose to reduce this effort and do the work for you. all you have to do is subclass your model class with SHModelObject, so the above class becomes:

@interface User : SHModelObject {
    NSString *_userName;
    NSInteger _userId;
    NSString *userRole;

@property(nonatomic, strong) NSArray *userXValues;


and thats it. SHModelObject has a basic initializer that will take the NSDictionary and will populate all the ivars and properties for you.

just initialize the model with provided initializers and off you go.

User *u = [[User alloc] initWithDictionary:responseDictionary];

How SHModelObject knows which value to assing to which instance variable?

SHModelObject compares the keys of NSDictionary with the ivar or property names in an efficient way. while comparing the names of keys with ivars it doesnt take _, - or into account (also the case doesnt matter). so

user_name OR USER_NAME OR USERNAME OR UserName will match with _userName OR userName OR UserName

you can override - (void)serializeValue:(id)value withKey:(id)key method if you want to a custom logic to parse a specific key/value pair. make sure to call [super serializeValue] for the values you want to parse by default.

- (void)serializeValue:(id)value withKey:(id)key
    if([key isEqualToString:@"numberVALUE"]) {
        _numberValue = value;
    } else {
        [super serializeValue:value withKey:key];

Parsing .NET JSON Dates to NSDate or NSTimeInterval

you can use kDateConversionOption to convert the .NET JSON Date Strings to either NSDate or NSTimeInterval or keep it as NSString and parse yourself and also you can define kInputDateFormat to specify your input date format (JSON format, .NET Simple or .NET with timezone)

Parsing instance variables which are also a subclass of SHModelObject

you dont have to do anything :). SHModelObject automatically handles it. checkout the sample code.

for example, following JSON

    "name" : "Shan Ul Haq",
    "person_id" : 123,
    "image" : {
        "image_id" : 234,
        "image_url" : "http://image_url",
        "orientation" : "portrait"

will be automatically parsed into following object:

@interface Person : SHModelObject

@property(nonatomic, strong) NSString *name;
@property(nonatomic) int personId;
@property(nonatomic, strong) Image *image;


where Image object is also a SHModelObject

@interface Image : SHModelObject

@property(nonatomic) int imageId;
@property(nonatomic, strong) NSString *imageUrl;
@property(nonatomic, strong) NSString *orientation;


Parsing arrays of objects which are a subclass of SHModelObject

similar to parsing SHModelObject instance variables, arrays can be handled too. you need to specify the mapping which will define that the JSON array consist of which object type.

for example, if you have following JSON

     "aKey" : "aValue",
     "arrayOfModels" : [
                 "modelId" : 2,
                 "modelName" : "My Model 2",
                 "modelType" : "My Model Type 2"
                 "modelId" : 3,
                 "modelName" : "My Model 3",
                 "modelType" : "My Model Type 3"
                 "modelId" : 4,
                 "modelName" : "My Model 4",
                 "modelType" : "My Model Type 4"

which translates to following objects.

@interface MyObject : SHModelObject

@property(nonatomic, strong) NSString *aKey;
@property(nonatomic, strong) NSArray *arrayOfModels;


@interface AModel : SHModelObject

@property(nonatomic) int modelId;
@property(nonatomic, strong) NSString *modelName;
@property(nonatomic, strong) NSString *modelType;


you can convert json like this:

// key is the variable name and value is the class name.
NSDictionary *mappingDictionary = @{@"arrayOfModels" : "AModel"}; 

MyObject *myObject = [MyObject objectWithDictionary:dictionary mapping:mappingDictionary];


Realm support out of the box. SHRealmObject is a sublclass of RLMObject from Realm. If you want to use both SHModelObject to parse your JSON responses and have RLMObject to be used with Realm database. SHRealmObject is they class you need.

SHRealmObject is identical in functionality as SHModelObject but also confirms with RLMObject. that means the it also confirms with the restriction that RLMObject class has. (e.g. you cannot use NSDictionary objects. and instead of using NSArrays you will use RLMArray<T> objects).

RLMArray<T> objects will also be parsed automatically for you based on the mapping dictionary provided. (check out parsing arrays section above)

Following is a simple example.

@interface Person : SHRealmObject

@property NSString *name;
@property int age;
@property RLMArray<Car> *cars;


@implementation Person


@interface Car : SHRealmObject
@property NSString *model;

@implementation Car

and to add an object in Realm database.

RLMRealm *realm = [RLMRealm defaultRealm];
    [realm transactionWithBlock:^{
        NSDictionary *d = @{
            @"nAme" : @"Shan Ul Haq",
            @"_AGE" : @26,
            @"cars" : @[ @{@"moDEL" : @"Honda"}, @{@"model" : @"Toyota"} ]
        Person *p = [Person objectWithDictionary:d mappings:@{ @"cars" : @"Car" }];
        [realm addObject:p];

How to Use it.

1- add the files

Using Cocoapods

  • add pod 'SHModelObject/Core' in your Podfile if you just want to use SHModelObject
  • add pod 'SHModelObject/Realm' in your Podfile if you want to use SHRealmObject with Realm.
  • add pod 'SHModelObject' in your Podfile if you want to use both SHModelObject and SHRealmObject.


  • Just add the classes into your project.

2- sublcass your models with SHModelObject or SHRealmObject

3- initialize using the povided initializers and pass the response NSDictionary ( initWithDictionary: and other variants )

4- override serializeValue if you want to parse a specific key/value your way.

5- thats it. off you go.

Tasks Pending

  • [X] adding to cocoapods.
  • [X] adding support for custom instance variable types that are also subclasses of SHModelObject
  • [X] implementing NSCoding for archiving/unarchiving the model objects.
  • [X] adding support for handling arrays of custom SHModelObject objects.
  • [ ] implementing a deserializer for converting the object to NSDictionary.

Contact Me

Shan Ul Haq (


SHModelObject is available under the MIT license. See the LICENSE file for more info.

Latest podspec

    "name": "SHModelObject",
    "version": "1.1.9",
    "summary": "`SHModelObject` a utility class that reads NSDictionary and populates the instance variables and properties automatically.",
    "description": "`SHModelObject` is a utility Modal Base Class that uses objective-c runtime to assign nthe values to instance variables and properties of the model class from an `NSDictionary`, nWhich is a basic usecase when using webservices that return JSON response.",
    "homepage": "",
    "license": {
        "type": "MIT"
    "authors": {
        "Shan Ul Haq": "[email protected]"
    "platforms": {
        "ios": "7.0"
    "source": {
        "git": "",
        "tag": "1.1.9"
    "requires_arc": true,
    "subspecs": [
            "name": "Core",
            "source_files": [
            "exclude_files": "SHModelObject/SHModelObject/SHRealmObject.{h,m}",
            "platforms": {
                "ios": null
            "name": "Realm",
            "source_files": [
            "platforms": {
                "ios": "7.0"
            "exclude_files": "SHModelObject/SHModelObject/SHModelObject.{h,m}",
            "dependencies": {
                "Realm": []

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