Mobile App Development Cost in 2021 – The Ultimate Guide
Mobile Apps has become an important aspect of doing business. Many companies are now opting for custom mobile apps to offer various services like Uber for a Taxi, Tinder for a date, Google Maps for Navigation, Duolingo for learning, WhatsApp for chatting and many more.
But the big question is, how much does it cost to develop a mobile app? The answer is not fixed because it will depend on a lot of things like level of customization, UI/UX of App, Coding Complexity etc. So, the price will depend on your goals and requirements.
Let me give you a simple example, A movie for the same script can be made for $ 1million to $ 100 million, depending on the rate of actors, VFX costs, Marketing etc. This is same for an App you can build an app for $10,000 or $ 1million for the same idea.
So, we have made an ultimate guide for you, so you can completely understand how much your app will cost. Let’s see
Things you should know before App Development
1. Native vs Hybrid App Development
An app which is designed to run only on a specific platform is called Native App while a hybrid App is designed to run on multiple operating systems. So, it is obvious Native App will cost you more than the Hybrid App, as you have to develop app separately for other platforms in native app development.
But if you are looking to develop a quality and a high-performance app then go with native app development and if you have low budget then go with hybrid app development.
2. Android vs iOS App
Android and iOS platforms are two of the biggest mobile operating system in the world. If you want to reach a large audience then your app must be developed for both the platforms.
App Development Costs Breakdown
1. Discovery and Research
Almost all software development starts from this phase where planning and blueprint of the project are developed. The delivery timeline and tentative budget are also determined in this phase. Final Project Concept, Project Infrastructure, Roadmap and Market/Competitor analysis.
Average Cost: $5000 - $15000
2. Design (UI/UX)
In this phase, we design UI/UX for the app. UI design will make the mobile app visually stunning and UX will take care of user experience. This is one of the most important phases of mobile app development where wireframe and protype of the app is designed and finalized.
Average Cost - $8,000 - $15,000
The development is phase is where all the functionalities and modules for the app is implemented. In the first phase the core development of the app is completed, then in the second stage all features are implemented and in the third stage the APIs are integrated.
Average Cost - $10,000 - $25000
4. QA and Testing
In this phase, all the codes, design and features are tested. First testing is done on various devices, second user interface testing is done, third functionalities are tested and finally app interaction with hardware is checked. Testing and QA will determine the quality and performance of your app.
Average Cost- $5000- $10,000
5. Launch and Maintenance
This is the final phase of app development; your app will go live on different platforms. But after you have launched the app it needs to be updated regularly and new functionalities are incorporated from time to time.
Average Cost - $10,000 - $20,000
Total Cost for Basic, Medium and Large Apps
1. Basic App
An app with fundamental functionalities and simple UI/UX design.
Total Cost - $30,000 - $50,000
Time – 3-5 Months
2. Medium App
An app with more custom features, complex structure and designed to cater to a large audience.
Total Cost - $70,000 - $100,000
Time- 5 –10 Months
3. Large App
An Enterprise level app designed to run on multiple platforms and handle high volume operations. Design and Development of this app requires a lot of time and highly skilled personals.
Total Cost - $150,000 +
Time- 10 + Months
Types of Mobile Apps
a) Basic Apps
This type of apps is designed to perform only basic operations. Most of the apps serve a single function.
Example – Alarm, clock, calculator, weather type of apps
Average App Cost - $10,000
Timeline- 2-3 Months
b) Gaming Apps
This is the most popular app industry, gaming apps are designed with stunning UI/UX and designed to perform heavy operations.
Example – Subway Surfer, PubG, Ludo King etc.
Average App Cost – $ 50,000 - $250,000
Timeline- 6-12 Months
c) Social Media Apps
Social media apps are also one of the most popular types of apps, the common motive of these apps is to connect people and business on a common platform.
Example – Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat etc.
Average App Cost – $ 100,000 - $300,000
Timeline- 9+ Months
d) e-Commerce Apps
e-Commerce Apps is a type has a lot of features like user registration, product listing, payment gateway etc. The infrastructure and design of this app is complex.
Example – Amazon, Ebay, Flipkart etc.
Average App Cost – $ 50,000 - $150,000
Timeline- 6 –9 + Months
e) Educational Apps
Online learning is the future of education and educational apps are the need of the hour.
Example – Duolingo, Photomath, TED etc.
Average App Cost – $ 20,000 - $80,000
Timeline- 6 + Months
Hidden Costs in App Development
App development requires many specifics and you will be surprised by knowing what are the hidden costs. So, before you decide your total budget for app development you must also consider app development.
1. App Store Fees
If you have developed an app then it must be placed in a platform like App store. So, you must have to pay a certain amount of fee to register your app on App store, Google Play store or Amazon App Store.
App store - $99 Google Play Store - $25 Amazon App Store – NIL
Other extra charges are applied every year and also transaction fee.
2. Cloud Data Storage
There will extra charges if your app stores and process data like photos, videos, files etc. You will be surprised to know that Facebook pays $ 1.5 billion just to store data of users. So, you must be ready to pay hefty price if your app store big data.
3. Maintenance Cost
After your app is launched, the maintenance is required to fix all the bugs, incorporate new functionality, update your app regularly etc. So, you must prepare to take out 20 % from your budget just for maintenance. If your buget is $50,000 then $10,0000 must be for maintenance.
4. Marketing Cost
Your app will not be a success if you haven't planned a proper marketing strategy. You need to determine your target audience, demographics and platforms to run your ad campaigns. On an average $5000 is spend on marketing the app.
Summing it up
So, you must have got an idea how much budget you need to develop your mobile app. We hope you found this guide helpful and please let us know how we can help you with app development.