How Much Does Mobile App Development Cost?

If you thinking of starting a business, no matter what the type, chances are that launching an app is also in your pipeline. With that said, if not now, soon you also be getting to define a budget to build the app

And as at the get-go, businesses are generally bootstrapped, having the finances in place to keep things up and running is a very real challenge. Considering this, our research team has made cost estimations for building a mobile app by looking at the agenda from all possible angles.

After reading this comprehensive blog, you’ll have complete clarity about how to approach setting the budget and which things you must consider (or not) when coming up with an approximate figure. When engaging an app development company, it's crucial to factor in their expertise and pricing structure to ensure your budget aligns with your project's requirements.

So, let’s get started.

Quick Guide- Learn How to Calculate App Development Cost in 2023

How to Calculate App Development Cost in 2023 | Best Mobile App Development Company

Factors Affecting Mobile App Development Cost

Making cost-effective decisions is the start of being well-set to get the best returns from mobile app development. It helps you stay within your budget while having some finances to rely on in case of a crisis.

The cost of building an app depends on many factors including the platform’s design, complexity levels, features, etc. Here are all of these in detail:

  • Number and Type of Features

A complex feature like IoT device synchronization, social feed algorithms, or augmented reality will increase the overall cost by a lot more than a basic one like form or file upload.

So, when you just starting off, include only those features that you must have in the app considering the product/service you offering to the customers.

And of course, there a direct correlation between the number of features and the cost of app development.

  • Number of Platforms Supported

To create apps for Android and iOS, many different programming languages are used. If you’re building an app that works on both platforms, developers will need to put in much more effort, which will spike the mobile app development cost.

Consider using a cross-platform framework like React Native as it works as a cost-effective alternative to create the front end twice. Thus, the code can be developed once and exported as a native app for every device.

  • Mobile App Type(s)

It is way less costly to build a QR code scanner app instead of a much more complex social networking app. The type of app determines the number of user types, displays, server architecture, & third-party services.

Here are the most fundamental app categories:

  1. Cost-Intensive Applications

Developing apps for ridesharing, music production, or banking costs more as they require more security.

  1. Budget-Light Applications

Static content apps, calculators, directories, educational resources, & note-taking apps are simpler to build and thus, inexpensive.

  1. Informative Apps

Such applications display simple static data. Examples include food recipes, calendars, and diet planners. The more the density of information, the greater the cost of app development.

  1. Database Apps

Such apps depend on website data and help users search, monitor GPS, display results, enter data, and much more. As these apps are linked to databases, they require further programming and APIs.

So, the development cost may increase.

  1. Utility Apps

These are quick-access apps that lead you to the information you want or the task you want to conduct. Such apps provide weather data, sports information, news on stock prices, etc.

  1. Gaming Apps

The cost depends on the features and capabilities you’re adding to the apps. Seamless UI/UX, scoring systems, & social media integration are some features that are absolutely vital for gaming apps.

You can add more depending on the budget you have or the results you seek from the app.

  • App Design

Mobile app development cost is greatly influenced by the complexity of design, number of roles, frameworks used, and business logic.

When more features & integrations are added, the time needed to build an app also increases and this adds to costs.

  • Location of Developers

Your app development team’s location significantly determines the mobile app development cost. That’s because app development requires labor, the cost of which varies with location. This, in turn, directly affects the final cost.

  • Database and E-Commerce Functionality Integration

Expert technical knowledge is needed for database integration so that complex problems can be easily resolved. Further, e-commerce capabilities like security threads, payment gateways, LDAP, cookies, etc. need to be added to certain apps.

These additional factors add to the cost of app development.

  • Deployment and Post-Deployment Costs

The total cost also includes infrastructure costs like domain registration and web hosting. Once the app is launched, there are costs incurred on support and maintenance issues like upgrades, bug fixes, etc.

As the app version becomes even more improved, the mobile app development cost increases.

Tips to Minimize App Development Costs

Despite setting an app development budget, entrepreneurs generally have to loosen the financial strings because a few unexpected expenses do tend to occur. But that doesnmean you cant be frugal with spending.

Here how you can go about it:

  • Keep the UI/UX Simple

A great way to reduce the app development cost is to keep it simple. Remember, the app can be basic yet intuitive.

In fact, a simple UI/UX totally works as new users can easily adapt to it. Complex designs not only add to the cost but also confuse the users.

  • First Build an MVP

A Minimum Viable Product is built with fewer, most basic features. Thus, it costs much less than the evolved, final product.

It is wise to use the MVP to raise money for your app. This way, you dont waste resources when building the final app as now youre equipped with learnings.

  • Maintain Consistent Communication

We cannot emphasize this enough. A regular and consistent flow of updates and information between you and the developers is absolutely vital.

It helps keep track of the process so that you know at every step which costs are being incurred.

This makes things clearer for everyone involved. As such, the final result is much closer to what was expected.

  • Be Wary of Mobile-Specific Features

Every mobile device has some built-in features like a camera, call options, GPS, etc. However, integrating these into the app may not always be lucrative.

Thats because adding these features is costly when these are simply not required in an app. For example, a news app does not need the GPS feature.

  • Use Pre-Existing, Stock Templates

Building an app from scratch definitely seems like a promising idea. But the reality is that it’s not very cost-effective. Several templates are available online for use by developers.

Consider using them to reduce the overall app costs.

How much does it cost to build an app?

Now, coming to the real deal. The app development processconsists of many different phases. And every phase takes a piece of your app development budget.

So, essentially, knowing how the budget should be allocated for every app development stage will really help you answer the larger question.

  1. Business Analysis

Regardless of how brilliant your app idea is, it needs verification, market analysis, and requirements documentation. When you hire a mobile app development company, their team will ask you certain questions to prepare an accurate app development quote.

The idea is to ensure that what you request:

  • Is achievable within the time and budget

  • Falls well within the coders; expertise

  • Follows Apple's and Google best practices

  • Can be made using the available technology stack.

Overall, the business analysis budget share in total mobile app development cost is between;$1,200 to $11,000.

  1. Design and Clickable Prototype

Though a lot depends on whether you already have a brand book, the design usually makes up around 15% of the total app cost. So, make sure you get a clickable prototype as a part of the deal.

It lets you check out the UX before the most expensive phase app starts.

The design budget for app development is between;$2,500 to $10,000.

  1. Cost of App Coding

The app coding stage costs more than all other app development phases. We pretty sure you imagine this stage as thoughtful developers sitting in front of shiny iMacs writing strings of code. But thats only a part of the big picture.

The more real image involves daily stand-ups with the development team members. App development is a collaborative process: even a small app needs two or three team members.

App architecture and functionality development cost: $2,000 to $60,000.

  1. Project Management

It is a crucial part of the mobile app development process as a project manager controls the development process from start to finish.

These efforts take up to 10-15% of the total app budget. The project management budget for app development costs;$1,200 to $12,000.

So, to conclude, the entire mobile app development cost for the most basic platform will be around;$12,250. This cost can go as high as;$93,000 depending on the features that your iPhone or Android app will have.

Final Note

Note that all the estimates revealed above are approximate figures. The actual costs may vary depending on the rapidly changing economic climate and other such unpredictable factors.

If you want to arrive at an exact cost estimate for your app idea, talk to one of our experts at Code Brew Labs and book a demo or get a one-on-one consultation.

We build 100% customizable app solutions for a wide range of industries like food and grocery delivery, logistics, real estate, and many more. Take a look at our portfolio to know how we fare.

Our expertise in building custom apps has helped many brands scale growth at a rapid rate despite the swiftly changing market requirements. What’s more? Our partner brands have reported resilience in the face of a changing economy, increased profitability, and complete future readiness.


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