How much does it cost to build an app in 2024? - Prismetric

App Development Budgeting for 2024: A Comprehensive Guide for Businesses

How much does mobile app development cost?For business enterprises, developing a mobile application is both exciting and challenging work. Exciting as it helps the organization to expand its user base and increase revenue and challenging as it can become tough for the firm to keep pace with the changing demands of the mobile app business world. Hence, outsourcing is the most profitable way but knowing how to outsource app development correctly is the key.

One of the main concerns that enterprises face with mobile apps is to decide the cost of building a mobile app. This is because the mobile app development cost is not defined as it depends on various tech factors such as app complexity, features, mobile OS platforms, etc. Also, it depends on other business factors such as the business goal of the organization, requirements of the target audience, etc.

It is important to know how much funds would be required to get the desired success for your app. In some cases, where additional funds are needed entrepreneurs need to pitch their idea along with a business plan for mobile app.

Now since the budget requried is to be mentioned in the detailed plan, getting an estimate for the cost to build a mobile app becomes mandatory. Therefore, in this blog, we will focus on the different parameters that impact how much mobile app development will cost.

How much does mobile app development cost?

The average cost to develop an app ranges from $10,000 to more than $300,000. As a service seeker, the first thing to know about mobile app development cost estimation is that the cost depends on a myriad of different factors.

Now, let us bifurcate the cost of app development into 3 based on the budget required:

  • Basic Apps cost range from $10000 to $30000
  • Moderate Complex Apps cost range from $30000 to $300000
  • Highly Complex Apps cost ranges more than $300000

Similarly, the platforms for which the apps are developed are also decisive in estimating app development costs.

For the best cost estimations, organizations must have a clear focus on what are the requirements and share it with the best mobile app development company to hire. All the top companies have all the resources and great minds to analyze the cost according to the requirement.

Hiring dedicated app developers will help the business enterprises to develop superlative minimum viable products (MVPs) that will help in gauging the needs of the target audience. Also, the cost of MVP development ranges from $10,000 to $50,000.

Let’s calculate the cost of building your mobile app.

Important Factors in Mobile App Development Cost Estimation

Important Factors In Mobile App Development Cost Estimation

After understanding the estimated cost range of developing mobile apps, it is time to explore the important factors that play a major role in determining it.

Application type

Now, to calculate the average cost of app development, it is important to understand that the cost varies according to mobile app type. We will study that in detail:

Simple apps

These are single-purpose apps and are the cheapest to develop. Apps like clocks, calculators, etc. that don’t require any internet connection are included in this category.

Cost of developing a Simple App: $10,000-$30,000

Social network apps

As the names suggest, these apps fall in the category of giants such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Social network apps can handle chats, videos, and millions of simultaneous interactions and allow users to share their information easily.

Cost of developing a Social Network App: $50,000-$300,000

Apps that require personalized data and authentication

Food delivery apps, digital payment apps are examples of mobile applications that require the user’s data. The app is sophisticated and uses user data and shares information across devices.

Cost of developing Apps that require personalized data and authentication: $40,000-$80,000

E-commerce mobile application

To build an eCommerce app, the business organization would require features such as catalogs, social integrations, user registration, etc. Due to the extended feature list, the cost to develop an eCommerce app would be higher than the simple mobile applications. Nevertheless, it is always advisable to check the final eCommerce app development cost with the providers to keep up your budget.

Cost of developing an e-commerce app: $60,000-$300,000

On-demand service mobile apps

These apps such as Swiggy, Uber, etc. have a single-point agenda – to connect the service providers with end-users and fulfill their needs. The features in on-demand apps are a combination of eCommerce apps and social network apps. Moreover, due to the increase in the on-demand economy, the on-demand business model for startups is on the rise.

Cost of developing an on-demand service app: $70,000-$150,000

Marketplace mobile app

The marketplace applications have similar functionalities such as on-demand apps or ecommerce apps, but unlike the ecommerce apps, they render a plethora of different services. Along with the different types of services, they quickly render the service provider to the customer’s choice. Being an all-in-one application, the marketplace app development cost can be justified by its functionalities.

Cost of developing a Marketplace App: $80,000-$300,000

Offline Standalone App Cost

Offline standalone applications are in demand due to their independent nature. These are apps that do not require internet connectivity or backend integration. Such applications are generally simple and have limited features and functionalities like calculators, simple games, notes, and so on. The cost of developing an offline standalone app ranges from $5,000 to $10,000, depending on the number of features and the design quality.

Cost of Developing an Offline Standalone App: $5,000 to $10,000

AI-based app development cost

These are advanced mobile applications using artificial intelligence (AI) to provide features like voice recognition and image processing, NLP, chatbots, and so on. These apps are usually complex and need more time and resources. You need intense data sets, algorithms, frameworks, and programming to build these applications.

The current market trend of responding to end-users and customers just in time has led to most enterprises integrating AI-enabled chatbots. Chatbots have been an amazing tool for most organizations today and the evolvement of these bots to make human-like responses have been praiseworthy. All leading business applications have been powered with ChatGPT for untiring customer support and education 24/7. So, the cost to develop an app with ChatGPT integration may range from $35000 and can reach up to $70000 or more depending on the complexity and size of the tool. Overall, the cost of developing an AI-based app will increase and range from $50,000 to $200,000 or more. Again, it depends on the level of AI integration and the advancement of the features.

Cost of Developing an AI-based App: $35000-$200,000

Cloud-based App Development Cost

They are apps based on cloud services. These applications use clouds to store and process data like Firebase, AWS, and Azure. Such mobile applications are scalable and secure but ask for more complex programming and maintenance. The cloud-based app development cost ranges from $25,000 to $100,000 or more. The cost may increase if the amount of data and the complexity of the backend logic are more.

Cost of Developing a Cloud-based Developed App: $25,000-$100,000

Enterprise Mobile App

Customized mobile applications designed for internal use by businesses or organizations are called enterprise mobile solutions. These apps are loaded with features like data management and analytics along with security and collaboration. Enterprise apps are often tailored to specific organizational needs and goals. The enterprise mobile app development cost falls between $50,000 and $150,000 or more. The cost may increase if the scope and the functionality of the app are complex or more.

Cost of Developing an Enterprise Mobile App: $50,000-$150,000

IoT or Wearable Applications

IoT or wearable applications interact with smart devices or wearables like smartwatches, fitness trackers, and also smart home appliances. These are advanced applications and usually have modern features like Bluetooth connectivity throughadvanced sensors. IoT apps are often innovative and need to undergorobust testing and compatibility. That is why the cost of developing an IoT or wearable app rangesbetween $50,000 to $150,000 or more, depending on the number of devices and the features of the app.

Cost of Developing an IoT and Wearable App: $50,000-$150,000

Calculate your app development costs accurately and effortlessly!

Platform and devices to cater

The average cost of mobile app development also depends on the number of platforms and devices. The cost of developing an app for only one platform will be comparatively less as compared to a scenario when you have your app users spread across both iOS and Android platforms.

iOS apps

The iOS apps are developed keeping Apple devices in mind. iOS mobile applications work on different iOS devices such as iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, etc. Therefore, as the business organization is catering to a specific set of audiences, the cost of iOS app development will be different than the other OS platforms.

Android apps

Android apps are built for smartphones, tablets, and Android TVs powered by Android. Here the cost of Android app development will be different based on several factors and a wide range of devices with varying screen sizes that the app needs to work efficiently on.

Cross-platform mobile apps

Mobile apps that can run seamlessly on both Android and iOS mobile OS platforms are cross-platform apps. The use of cross-platform app development frameworks is on the rise as it helps to expand their business and is highly cost-effective as well. React Native and Flutter are the most popular ones used for developing cross platform apps.

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Type of App Developers hired

The cost to build an app varies based on the types of mobile app developers hired for outsourcing the app development project. The different types of mobile app development service providers are:

Freelance developers

There could be freelance app developers or designers available who are capable of creating creative app solutions. However, they might not have a strong hand as far as in-depth expertise and experience are concerned in managing the whole project.

Thus, when there is a complex situation during the app development process, the freelancers might have some issues. Although the app development budget through freelancers is the lowest.

Outsourcing app development company

These remote service providers will guide the enterprise through the thick and thin of app development. These are the top mobile app development companies that comprise a team of dedicated app developers and designers.

One should know and understand when to hire remote developers for their app development project requirements. Due to their experienced staff, outsourcing app development service providers render much better results as compared to freelancers.

Demographic location of app developers

Hourly Cost to Develop Mobile App in different locations

Along with the type, the demographic location of the mobile app development service provider also plays an important role in determining the mobile application development cost.

The average app development cost breakdown also depends on the cost of living, economic stature, and IT infrastructure of the concerned country. In addition to this, there is a difference between iPhone app development cost and Android app development cost according to the region.

Hiring models for mobile app developers

There are three main types of hiring models to hire mobile app developers for app development requirements. The knowledge about such hiring models is important as the eventual cost of app development will depend on that.

  • Hourly based hiring
  • Fixed pricing-based hiring
  • Hiring Dedicated Developers

Complexity of the application

If the business organization wants to build an app that renders seamless performance and a better user experience, it must add advanced technology, features, and functionalities. The use of latest mobile app development tech stack is required to ensure the perfect working of all the features and functionalities. This increases the complexity of the applications and in turn, increases the overall development cost.

Businesses can opt to integrate state-of-the-art technology as required to provide users with better convenience and trust.  The functionality and features of the mobile app will depend on the nature (dynamic or static) of the app.

For example, a mobile app like Kite (Zerodha) deals in real-time stock market analysis. Its functionality and the average cost of producing an app will be more than an app that is not reliant on a real-time online database.

Key features to add in a Mobile App

Mobile app UI and UX

It is straightforward to understand that User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) are vital for any mobile app’s success. The new-age mobile apps should be customer-centric and high-quality in design. A user-centric app will be instrumental in holding the attention of the user.

The app that governs the content flow, payment gateways, user-data backup, etc., is a crowd favorite. But to design an advanced and effective UI/UX for the mobile app, it would require the businesses to pay some extra money.

The app development budget for UI and UX app design will include aspects such as creating wireframes, icons, graphic images, level of design customization, etc. To have an efficient UI and UX implemented for your app make sure to follow a competent mobile app design guide. Thus, mobile app design plays a vital role in determining the cost of getting an app developed.

Updates and Maintenance

According to the requirements of the genre and customer feedback, the mobile app will need periodic updates and app maintenance. Moreover, as there is an increase in the inclusion of advanced technologies, it has become easier for business enterprises to enhance their overall working process and redesign mobile app to suit the changing business needs.

Moreover, modern-day enterprise-level apps are required to maintain APIs regularly which will help in improving the overall user experience. Because of such heavy changes, the custom app development budget will vary as periodic maintenance and monitoring are continuous.

Mobile app security

As far as app security being a factor in Mobile app development service pricing is concerned, high-level protection requires more money. The app’s longevity must keep the data that is retrieved from the users safe.

Therefore, it is wise for business organizations to invest in the security of the data as this can be a major make-or-break point for them in the long run. Mobile app security may increase your mobile app development price but it will provide real-time protection which ultimately saves a huge load of money.

Mobile app testing

To ensure that the mobile app renders a hassle-free experience to the user, it is necessary to test the mobile app appropriately. Therefore, app testing always becomes a defining factor whether it is to estimate iPhone app development cost or Android app development cost. Whether it is for speed, ease of use, or app connectivity, mobile app testing will play a pivotal role in everything.

App testing is an integral phase of the app development process but in some hiring models, the mobile app testing process cost is to be opted for additionally.

For example, in the dedicated developer hiring model, only the cost of mobile app developers is included, that is the cost is based on every resource hired. In such a situation, the business enterprise will have to pay extra charges for mobile app testing or hire an additional resource for app testing.

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How to estimate app development costs?

The straightforward way to calculate the cost is to multiply the total time taken by the hourly cost.

Formula to calculate app development cost

The catch here is that there are different types of resources required for different work and the level of expertise of the resources will also differ. Based on this approach the tentative time and respective hourly rate are considered to calculate the mobile app development cost. Based on the requirements the hired company will provide you with a rough cost estimate before the development starts.

It is suggested to go through a useful mobile app development guide to understand the various important aspects to consider in building an app. Some concrete specifications will help in estimating the price of mobile app development. Moreover, following these parameters, while building an app also allows the business organization to be on the same page as mobile app development service providers.

List of necessary resources

To understand the cost of mobile app development, the business organization needs to break the entire project into smaller tasks. After that, they must assign each task to the hired team and estimate the duration of each task in the mobile app development process and the hourly rate of the team of developers and designers.

Moreover, it is also necessary for the enterprise to hire dedicated developers because they are more likely to deliver better results.

Approximation method for app development cost calculations

To calculate the typical cost of mobile application development, there are three major processes:

Based on different parameters

This mobile app development cost estimation process is based on the previous data and the actual calculations as well. Although this method is a little tedious and time-consuming, it delivers more accurate results on how much the app development will cost.

Ballpark process

It is a rough quotation of the average mobile app development cost estimate that is based on previous experiences. Moreover, this process will not give a precise estimation of the application development cost but it might be able to provide an idea of how much it costs to make an app.

Three-point method

In this process, the importance of market research will come in. The mobile app development service partner will provide three different cost estimations of the mobile app viz: optimistic, pessimistic, and realistic projections.

The pessimistic estimation would include risks and hidden costs of mobile app development, hence, providing the possible worst-case scenario. Whereas the optimistic cost estimation will provide the best-case scenario. Moreover, the realistic approach will be somewhere in the middle.

Calculate mobile app development cost according to features

While calculating the total cost to develop a mobile app, it is inevitable to understand the cost of development with respect to each feature. Here are some common features along with the efforts that the developers need to put in to add more value to the mobile app

Registration: In this feature, the developer has to render different options for registering or logging in for the user. In addition, it is necessary to make the registration process hassle-free.

Search option: The search bar should be visible and should allow the user to enter their queries. Also, the developers should render an option of voice typing in the search option to enhance the overall user experience.

Payment gateways: The payment gateways allow the customers to complete their shopping process easily. But, every payment option added to the cost of app development. So it is a smart decision to add only the most widely used mode of payment opted by the users in that location.

Offline mode: This mobile application feature will enable the app to work even when there is no internet connection.

Video/Audio streaming: This feature will require the developers to add certain features and functionalities that will allow the user to access the audio and video content in the Mobile app.

Google map integration: The developer will require to add the code to integrate Google Maps functionality. Integrating Google Maps will help in real-time tracking and discovering newer places with accuracy.

Chat: The developer must keep in mind to keep the chat end-to-end encrypted to protect the data of the user.

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Breakdown the Cost of App Development Project through different Phases

Every professional app development service provider will provide you with a bifurcation of the cost across every app development phase. To better understand the ‘Why’ of the pricing quote for each phase you need to have a better idea of the mobile app development process.

Estimating the cost for different app development phases is important as it allows the app owners to ensure that the budget is kept under control.

Cost breakdown of App Development Phase

App development consists of the following 5 major phases.

  • Discovery
  • App Design
  • App Development
  • App Testing and deployment
  • App Maintenance and Support

Let’s have a look at an estimated cost range for each phase.

Discovery & Research Phase

The discovery stage is the pre-research stage in which the app development team conducts research regarding the various features and functionalities to be included in the app. This app development phase also includes research regarding the app’s viability. As a rule of thumb, you can budget around 10% of your total app development project cost into the discovery stage.

App Design phase

In the design stage, the overall look and feel of the app is decided. In technical terms, the design phase entails building the UI and UX of the application. In most projects of app development, the design stage consists of 20% of the total cost of developing the application. In some applications, the designing stage may be unnecessary.

App Development phase

The development stage is the stage where the actual coding process takes place. This is where skilled app developers build the various features of the app using various tools. While estimating the mobile app development cost breakdown, the development phase of the app development procedure is responsible for 60% of the cost of a mobile app.

App Testing and Deployment phase

The testing and deployment stage is where the testers test the app to ensure that the app performs according to expectations. Deployment is the final step in the launch of the app in the market. The app launch marks the end of a release cycle.  10% of the total project cost can be budgeted for testing and deployment purposes.

App Maintenance and Support phase

Bugs will arise when the app is released in the market and the maintenance and support stage is the phase where these bugs are resolved. Apart from resolving bugs, the mobile app development team also releases updates to help keep the app competitive. The app maintenance and support stage usually takes up 15-20% of the total cost of the app development project.

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Closing thoughts on how to calculate the App Development Cost

Determining the cost of app development is an art that can be improved with time and experience. The leading app developers are adept at this but to have a typical app development cost estimate that doesn’t deviate much from the pricing range provided it is important that the businesses have all their requirements clear and have a clear idea about the features and functionalities to integrate.

Based on the changing trends and technologies there will be changes and further integrations required which if focused on and informed to the app development partner in advance can have a better-calculated approach for app development. If you need to develop a mobile app for your business, simply send us your requirements and get a personalized cost estimation for your app. This is especially for when you are looking for a more appropriate pricing range that suits your budget.

Calculate your app development costs accurately and effortlessly!

FAQs on Mobile App Development Cost

How much does it cost to make an app?

The cost to create an app ranges from $10,000 to more than $300,000. A basic mobile app will cost around $10000 to $30000, while moderately complex apps cost around $30000 to $300000 and highly complex apps cost more than $300000.

What are the factors affecting the cost of building a mobile app?

The app development cost depends on various factors and by considering all these factors we can estimate app development cost. The most important factors affecting the app development cost are listed here:

  • Application type
  • Platform and devices to cater
  • Type of App Developers hired
  • Location of app developers
  • Hiring models opted
  • Complexity of the app
  • Mobile app UI and UX
  • App Maintenance and Updates
  • App Security level to be provided
  • Mobile App testing levels

How much time does it take to build an app?

The time taken and cost are very closely linked in app development, as the time increases costs also go high. The time taken to build, a basic app is around 2-3 months, while a moderately complex app is around 3-9 months and a highly complex app is around 10+ months.

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