Factors Impacting Mobile Development Cost

Expert Tips For Mobile Development

Do you have a great app idea, and are wondering what the cost of mobile dev is to bring your idea to life? If so, you’re in good company. At our mobile app services agency, the estimated mobile dev cost is the most common question we get from new contacts seeking out our app development services.

The thing is, there’s no quick answer to this common question. You can think of estimating mobile dev costs the same way you would estimate the cost of purchasing a new house. What type of house do you want – a single-family home or a townhouse or condo? How many bedrooms and bathrooms do you need? Are you looking for a starter home that can be updated over time or a forever home with all the latest upgrades?

The purpose of this house analogy is to show you that the cost of mobile dev depends on the scope of your project.

And there are two main influences to project scope – internal and external mobile development factors.

Internal Mobile Development Factors

You – or your company – may have a lot of domain knowledge about the industry or consumer sector you want to target with the mobile app features you have in mind. Or you might just have a great idea, but need help fleshing it out. Your domain knowledge is going to directly impact the cost of your mobile dev. For example:

  • What’s the Scope of the Project that You Want to Outsource?

Some companies looking for mobile app services need help with the entire project, including specifying how the app will work. Other companies already have an idea of what they want, they simply need a team of app developers to do it. Where you fall on this spectrum will impact mobile dev cost for your app.

  • How Strong is Your Domain Knowledge?

Let’s say you have a great idea for a game app for kids. How much do you know about kids’ games, what colors and shapes they find appealing, what music they like, how challenging the app should be to keep them to want to continue playing it, and so on? If this knowledge is in your wheelhouse, then you’ll need less help from a mobile app services company like ours specifying your app.

But if you simply have a great idea, but don’t have the domain experience to spec the app out yourself, you’re going to require more mobile app services. While agencies like ours can definitely help with this process, this work will add to your overall cost of mobile dev.

  • Will You Be Providing App Assets?

Some companies seeking our mobile app development services have the in-house capabilities to create and share app assets, such as images for the app and app copy. If you’re going to be relying on your own internal team to create these assets, you’ll reduce your mobile dev cost. Conversely, if you need to outsource these tasks, your cost of mobile dev will go up.

  • What’s Your Entire Budget (Including for App Promotion)?

When determining what mobile app features to include, you need to be thinking about your entire app budget. And it’s important that you don’t forget the cost of promoting your completed app, too. After all, you can upload an app to the App Store or Google Play, but it needs to have a marketing push behind it to get people to download it.

Once you know how much of your entire app creation and promotion budget can be dedicated to each mobile app development stages – that is, planning and development, maintenance, scaling, and promotion – you’ll be able to have a better idea of what your mobile app dev costs will be.

  • How Tight (or Flexible) is Your Deadline?

As the old saying goes, time is money. If you have a tight deadline for turning around your app, you’re going to need a larger development team, and thus, your mobile app dev costs will be higher. 

Alternatively, if you’re flexible on your app upload date, a smaller team can work on mobile dev over a longer period of time, oftentimes for a lower cost of mobile dev.

External Mobile Development Factors

We live in a capitalistic society, which means, of course, that external mobile development factors are going to impact the cost of mobile dev for your new app. Some of the most common external mobile development factors include:

  • The Current Market Price for Developing Mobile App Features

The supply of mobile app developers – and the demand for them – is constantly changing. This means, at any one given point of time, the cost of mobile dev for the same app will be different than it would be at another point in time. 

Geography affects app development costs too. Mobile dev costs vary greatly by regions of the US and international locations.

  • Your App Contractor’s Company Size

When you work with an established mobile app development company like ours, you will be paying a premium for that expertise. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you should search elsewhere if your budget is on the small size.

Working with an experienced team may lead to more development delays, confusion, and bugs, which will end up costing you more in the long run.

  • Your App Contractor’s Location – And Whether or Not They Use Distributed Teams

If you think your app must be developed by Silicon Valley developers, get ready to pay a premium. The simple fact is that the local economy of where your app development company is located will affect your mobile dev costs.

After all, app development agencies have to be paid salaries comparable to what their local competitors are paying to their development teams.

However, this is where the beauty of the distributed mobile app development industry comes into play. You no longer need a Silicon Valley resident to develop your app.

Competent mobile app developers are located all across the US, and many of them work on remote teams using a variety of cloud-based workflow technologies to stay on the same page. 

The simple fact is, you really can find the same caliber of app development talent in Dallas, Texas as you can in Cupertino, California.

  • Whether or Not You’ll Be Using Emerging Tech in Your App

If you want to leverage emerging technologies and specialized development languages, you’ll be paying more for those services to create mobile app features because fewer people are capable of building apps with this new type of tech.

But if you want to use tried and true technologies, your talent pool will be bigger, which will drive down mobile app dev costs.

We Can Help You Develop Mobile App Features

If you need to outsource mobile app development, we’re here today. Contact us today to schedule a consultation by calling (214) 295-5845 or fill out our online contact form.

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The Costs of Custom Mobile App Development

Tips from Top Mobile Developers

Outsourcing mobile app development can provide organizations with cost-effective access to experienced developers who can develop high-quality mobile applications while allowing organizations to focus on their core business objectives. 

Despite the changing numbers surrounding the expenses of custom mobile business app development, the question of how much to invest raises more inquiries during the initial stages, with industry surveys showing costs ranging from low six-figures to over one million dollars. 

This article provides information on the crucial aspects of developing a custom mobile app for businesses, aiming to help readers gain a clear understanding of the process and achieve success in their projects. 

Understanding the Costs Involved in Developing and Maintaining Your App 

The first step in knowing how much you’ll pay to develop a custom mobile app for your business is to set realistic expectations for the development costs, considering the increasing number of mobile phone users worldwide. 

The price for developing an app from idea to market correlates with the functional features and demands of the client.

The ballpark figure that is accepted by the industry at large is between $100,000 and $500,000 USD, but small apps with few features can cost between $10,000 and $50,000. 

The cost of keeping your app running each year will equate to 20% of the cost of making the app. This is without factoring changes in trends, new innovative technologies, or major infrastructure issues that could impede the normal running of your app.

How to Calculate Mobile App Development Costs in 2023 

This is the Formula to Calculate the cost of making a custom mobile business app:

(App Features∗Time)∗HourlyRate=Cost

This simple, yet realistic formula, can be used to structure your budget: App features can be separated in different complexity levels as we will see later on in this article. Time stands for the time needed to code the features described in the app’s functional scope. The hourly rate stands for the pricing of your developer, developer team or agency.

Another way to understand and manage costs is to break down the level of complexity of the app. Factors would include features from simple, moderate to complex; the costs estimate per hour would fall in the range of $50 and $100/hour –prices vary in terms of technical expertise, experience level, and geographical location of the app developers appointed to your project.

As of 2023, the average hourly rate for experienced iOS app developers in the US ranges from $120 to $150 per hour. However, the rates can vary based on the developer’s location, experience, and skillset. For instance, junior developers in Eastern Europe may charge a lower hourly rate, typically ranging from $40 to $70 per hour, depending on their experience and expertise. It’s important to consider the developer’s track record and capabilities, rather than focusing solely on the cost, when choosing a development team for your custom mobile app project. 

This table from Think Mobiles gives you some estimates on mobile app costs based on varying complexity levels:

Complexity Features Time, hrs Cost $50/hr Cost $100/hr
Simple No API integration, no back-end, standard UI components, simple features like email subscription, login, calendar, etc. 400 20,000 40,000
Moderate Custom UI features, payment features, API integration, headsets and tablets adaptation, back-end server 500-800 40,000 80,000
Complex Multi-language support, 3rd-party integrations, custom animations, complicated back-end, professional design, real-time features, etc. 800-1500 75,000 150,000

App development cost breakdown typically includes expenses for design, development, testing, deployment, and ongoing maintenance. The original cost of a mobile app development service can vary depending on a range of factors, including the app’s complexity, the team’s experience, expertise, and the geographic location of the developers. It’s important to remember that these development costs are estimates. Here are three examples of popular mobile apps in 2023 and their estimated development costs: 

  1. TikTok is a video-sharing app that has become incredibly popular recently, particularly among younger audiences. According to some reports, the estimated development cost for TikTok was around $1 billion. This is likely due to the app’s sophisticated algorithm, designed to personalize users’ feeds based on their preferences and behavior. 
  2. Uber is a ride sharing app that has revolutionized how people get around in cities worldwide. According to some estimates, the development cost for Uber was around $200,000 to $500,000. However, it’s worth noting that the app has undergone numerous updates and improvements since its initial launch so the total development cost may be much higher. 
  3. Instagram is a social media app allowing users to share videos and photos with friends and followers. The estimated development cost for Instagram was around $500,000, which is relatively low compared to other apps of similar popularity. However, it’s worth noting that Instagram has undergone numerous updates and improvements since its initial launch, so that the total development cost may be higher. 

To estimate your custom mobile app development costs accurately, you can either use online app cost calculators or consult with an experienced developer team. By working with a team that understands the factors affecting app development costs, such as technology, complexity, and size, you can get a realistic budget that aligns with your project goals. While freeware platforms that offer ready-made modules for building mobile apps at no cost are available on the internet, they usually come with ads and lack the sophistication required for custom business app development. Therefore, if you aim to project a professional and refined image, it’s best to avoid such options and invest in a custom mobile app that meets your specific needs. 

Additional Factors Affecting the Cost of App Development 

It’s important to remember that these are just estimates. The actual development costs may vary depending on various factors, such as the app’s complexity, the features required, the development team’s geographic location, and the developers’ hourly rate. Additionally, developing multiple platforms can significantly increase app development pricing. Here are some updated estimated development costs for custom business app development in 2023, based on the platform:

  • Developing a custom business app for iOS can be more expensive than other platforms due to the platform’s closed ecosystem and higher development standards. The estimated development cost for an iOS app is around $150,000 to $250,000. 
  • Developing a custom business app for Android can be less expensive than for iOS due to the platform’s open nature and a broader range of device options. The estimated development cost for an Android app is around $100,000 to $200,000. 
  • Developing a custom business app for Windows can be less expensive than iOS or Android due to the platform’s smaller user base and more limited device options. The estimated development cost for a Windows app is around $75,000 to $150,000. 

Going from idea to product, you might want to consider hiring professional assistance who understands the field of app development to make sure that misunderstandings between you and the developer, or developer team, will not become a big cost factor. 

And don`t forget good freelancers are usually fully booked at least a few weeks in advance, don`t expect immediate availability or just plan in some weeks in advance on your development timeline. Same is true for the price range of good developers or as Benjamin Franklin put it: “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of a low price is forgotten.”

Outsourcing Mobile App Development 

Outsourcing mobile app development involves hiring a third-party company or team to develop mobile applications for your organization. Outsourcing mobile app development can be an effective strategy for organizations looking to develop mobile applications while minimizing costs and leveraging external expertise. However, choosing the right outsourcing partner and establishing effective communication and quality assurance processes are crucial to ensure a successful outcome.

Here are some key considerations when outsourcing mobile app development 

  1. Cost 
  2. Expertise 
  3. Flexibility 
  4. Communication 
  5. Quality Assurance 
  6. Intellectual Property Rights 

Outsourcing mobile app development can provide organizations with cost-effective access to experienced developers who can develop high-quality mobile applications while allowing organizations to focus on their core business objectives. 

Final Thoughts: Mobile App Development Cost 2023 

As of 2023, the costs of custom mobile app development vary widely based on a variety of elements such as the difficulty of the app, the platform it will be developed for (iOS, Android, or both), the location and expertise of the development team, the features, and functionality required. Statista states mobile app development cost is expected to grow from $318 billion in 2020 to more than $600 billion by 2025. 

Developing a custom mobile app design cost can range from $10,000 to $500,000 or more, with most projects falling in between. Creating a basic app with standard features and functionality for small- to medium-sized businesses may start at around $20,000. A more difficult app with advanced features and custom app development design could cost $100,000. 

Power Up Your Online Marketing with a Top Mobile App Development Agency 

Agency Partner Interactive is the best mobile app development in Dallas that provides various services; here are some services that our mobile app development agency offers. 

  1. Requirement Analysis 
  2. UI/UX Design 
  3. Native or Hybrid App Development 
  4. Backend Development 
  5. Quality Assurance and Testing 
  6. Maintenance and Support 
  7. Cloud Integration 
  8. Analytics and Reporting 
  9. App Store Optimization (ASO) 

Our mobile app development company experts work closely with you to develop customized marketing strategies for your business needs. Our friendly, approachable, and knowledgeable team makes the experience of working with us enjoyable and stress-free. We are dedicated to helping businesses succeed and are committed to providing exceptional customer service every step of the way. 

Contact us now to discuss your next project in greater detail!