iOS Emulator not working on OSX 10.11 (El Capitan)

Recently when experimenting the ionic framework I ran into a problem on OSX.  Every time I run these commands, the iOS emulator from Xcode would not pop-up:

ionic emulate ios
gulp -e ios

The issue seemed to be that the iOS simulator was never installed on my current computer (despite xcode being installed), and it does not give any warning/error to let you know about this.

Here is what solved it for me:

  1.  Open Xcode, hit Command-comma to open the preferences section/
  2. Hit the “Downloads” tab in Xcode
  3. Hit the small “download” icon next to the latest iOS simulator (in my case it was iOS 9.0).

ios simulator

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