Published on April 8th, 2017 | by Guest


How much does mobile app development cost?

With the rise of technology, mobile app development for businesses is not an option but rather a must. According to Smart Insights, 80% of all Internet users own a smartphone. It means that an app can become an excellent opportunity to benefit business starting from customer engagement to direct marketing channel and beyond.

Going further, Forbes gives seven convincing arguments to start an app development for business:

  • Business becomes visible for clients all the time
  • App creates a direct marketing channel
  • Providing an additional value to the customers
  • Helping to build brand recognition
  • Improving the customer engagement
  • Standing out from competitors
  • Cultivating customer loyalty

It also happens sometimes that an app that was built for business became so powerful that after a while it outgrowth to stand alone business. In this article, we are going to bring you through the app development stages and reveal an answer to one of the most popular questions “How much does mobile app development cost?”.

Cost of outsourcing app development

However, the cost of every app depends on rates of professionals that are going to create an app. These rates can vary in different regions. Traditionally, it is extremely high in the USA, Canada, and West Europe. Developers from India propose vice versa the lowest rate, but the quality is not always satisfying. The best place to go for good developers and reasonable prices is an East Europe. This article is based on prices of an app development company The App Solutions with an R&D office in Kiev, Ukraine.

Step 1. Determining the mobile strategy and conducting business analysis

Having an app idea doesn’t mean having a direction of further steps and a clear strategy. The importance of planning should not be underestimated since the cost efficiency depends on it. This stage helps to find the place of the application among competitors reveals strength and weaknesses of the idea and gives an understanding of required resources.

Sometimes app owners try to go through this path by their own. However, the result can be not so resized. It is better to give this task to professionals, and moreover, big app development companies provide such service for free.

Step 2. Creating a technical documentation

Technical documentation is a description of all technical requirements. It becomes a roadmap of the whole project and leads all the stakeholders and developers through the project. It contains all the timeframes, budget, assumptions and use cases.

Both Stage 1 and 2 involves Business Analyst and Technical Writer. The cost per hour of these professionals in East European countries is on average $25.

Step 3. Prototyping

At this level, an app project requires an intervention of the UI/UX designer. He visualizes everything that is written in technical documentation and makes a rational logic of how users will interact with an app.

Everything starts from sketches made simply on paper, and then it goes to wireframes. Afterward, he creates clickable prototypes, which make a project “touchable.” The whole logic and user paths become visible. Now comes the design itself.

The cost estimate of this stage based on the rate of a designer. You can find an excellent UI/UX specialist starting from $25 per hour.

Step 4. Developing an application

Here comes the true magic that turns an idea into an app. Now it is time to decide whether to stick to the native app development or to go for the cross-platform one. Cross-platform app development provides an app that fits both iOS and Android platforms at the same time. In its turn, native app development means that there will be separate applications for every platform like iOS or Android wherein apps show fast and smooth performance and security. The cost breakdown composed from hourly rates of a relative developer. On the average price for iOS, Android, frontend and backend developers start from $35 per hour.

In a case of the small budget, it also makes sense to start development with Minimum Viable Project (MVP). This is the very first version of an app that contains the only essential feature. This approach helps to test an idea and market and also always used by startups to raise investments in the first stages.

Step 5. Testing

Testing is a crucial stage of the development. Usually, this continuous process becomes a part of every sprint. Depending on the project complexity it can be manual or automated. After finding and fixing bugs, the project comes back to another round of quality assurance tests. The experienced QA engineer costs the project about $25+ per hour.

So, what are the mobile app development costs?

The app development process itself requires a solid conceptual foundation, effective planning, and a good ecosystem and experienced team of engineers, designers, and coders. All these influences the phone app development cost.

There are lots of factors that are to be considered before start:

  • Choose the app platform;
  • Define the type of development (native or cross-platform);
  • Determine the cost for mobile app development;
  • Specify the type of design (should it be basic, stock or the fancy & polished one);

So, there is no the particular answer about the price as so many factors influence it. The best thing to get the price is to contact few app developer companies and ask them to do a precise estimation of the project. The average mobile app development cost also depends on the region and the experience of developers.

At The App Solutions, we were told that a right-on MVP for one platform (iOS, Android, Frontend, Admin Panel) could be done for $5-7k. With this price, you can launch an app and check an idea and market and understand whether it makes sense to move further.

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