Which Factors Impact the Cost of Mobile App Development?

By Abhishek Amin Feb 22, 2021, 5:53:03 AM , In Mobile Apps
Which Factors Impact the Cost of Mobile App Development?

In my previous blog, we discussed the basic differences between Android app development and iOS app development. It is understandable that the decision depends on a number of factors as we have seen, however there is one crucial factor called “cost of mobile app development”, which helps you decide which platform to go for. 

Hence, we will see and understand all the major factors which affect directly the cost of developing a mobile app. Ask yourself, if thinking of developing a mobile app, you also would have a question: how much money will it take to develop an app, right? 

Cutting it short, let us jump straight to the factors below.

Factors Affecting Cost to Develop a Mobile App

1. Who is developing the app?

Depending upon the scale of your business, resources availability as well as project scope, there is a possibility that the app may be developed in-house, or you may hire a mobile app development company or a freelancer. If it is the case of hiring a mobile app development company, the engagement models will also play the role in the overall cost of the project. Whether you hire a dedicated mobile app developers team or an individual on a full time, part time, or pay-as-you-go basis.

Benefits are more in an engagement with a top mobile app development company as you get that professional touch and assurances in terms of quality and more during the project journey.

2. Choosing a Native or a Hybrid Mobile App Platform

One of the initial points where you must settle down the philosophy is whether you are going for a native Android or native iOS mobile app or both. Or is it going to be the cross platform mobile app? It is vital to understand to select any of these platforms in order to optimize the time and cost factors.

Of course both the platforms, native and cross platform, have their own benefits and limitations when compared. If you have decided to with native application, you can enjoy 100% hardware support while meeting all the business requirements in the form of product functionality, etc. While cross-platform gives a uniform look and feel, a shareable single code for Android and iOS development makes it a cheaper alternative for faster market launch.

3. Nature of the App

Type of mobile app depends on the cost too. It’s common sense that upon the nature of the mobile application, the feature list along with innovative features will pitch in. while increasing the length of the overall mobile app development project. Of course, that depends on a case-to-case basis. 

Database mobile applications will fetch the information directly from the website. Whatever functionalities are provided in the app are done by using the data being fetched from the web platform only. This means that there are multiple and ample APIs developed and integrated to establish a secure and reliable two-way communication between the both platforms. This stretches the programming and as a result the cost.

Gaming apps are design-centric where high quality graphics, traffic capacity, social media integration, and hell lot of real-time features are needed to be integrated. This type of mobile app requires you to figure out a lot of things to provide given a fixed budget.

On the other hand, there are also information sharing mobile apps which do not require that many features. In this case, you may look to reach out to the majority of people instead of thinking about the monetization model, for the first phase at least. 

The list of such industries based mobile apps can go limitless considering categories like food, lifestyle, sports, Ecommerce, health, oil & gas, real estate, etc. 

4. Features, and Functionalities

A photo or video editing app, or an app for reading PDFs does not require features like geolocation services, chat support, video calling, etc. Now consider development of a food ordering app, complexities such as payment gateways, databases, backend development, chat, order tracking features will be an integral part of the process. These will, in such a case, comprise the primary features of your app. 

The time and cost to develop a mobile app depends hugely on the feature list and functionality of the mobile app. I hope it helps you understand the importance of categorising your primary and secondary features to bridge the gap between the time, cost, and expectations for the app.

5. What about the app upgrade & maintenance services?

Nothing ends when you launch a mobile app, there is still a recurring cost on the upgrade and the maintenance of it, which could be 10-20 percent of the actual project cost per year. 

It is advised that you must have a strategic funding on hand to upgrade and maintain the mobile app to save it from malware attacks and bug fixes. This is to install a sense of security and trust of app usage among the app users.

6. Testing and Backend

Apps having small or larger data processing require databases, cloud-based or in-house. The former is cheaper than the latter. And for faster two-way communication, integration to the 3rd party application APIs will be needed to be developed and integrated. This stretches the programming efforts to make the data available at all times to meet the functionality requirements. The cost of paid APIs varies and that impacts the overall budget assigned to the mobile application development cycle.

Talking about testing, I remember what we use to say at work – Prevention is always better than problems. QA assurance and software testing is an integral part during and after a mobile app is developed, before the launch. Yes, it would not come for free, but can your app as well as huge money on a long run.

Quick Tip

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