+1 704 550 2836

Chewing the Fat

Sinew's blog is more than bare bones. We have some interesting sinew, and we invite you to join us and chew the fat.


Apr, 2015

Mobile app development costs

By: | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments: 183

Part 1 of the Costs Series

The cost to build a mobile app can vary widely depending on the type and complexity — size, number of services, customer databases, and other factors. The median cost range of developing an app is $38K and $172K, according to a survey of top development companies. With enterprise e-Commerce or apps with a global audience in many languages, the cost of an app can be $500K or higher. A few quotes:

StarMobile: “€œBased upon complexity, the initial costs to develop a native enterprise application for one mobile device platform can range from $50,000 to $250,000. Those costs grow exponentially if you need that app to support multiple mobile device platforms.”

Kevin Benedict (Senior Analyst, Digital Transformation, Mobility, Cognizant): “€œCompanies are under tremendous pressure to develop and deploy mobile apps for their business systems, yet the traditional approach to mobile app development typically costs $250K+ and takes 6+ months for a single app.”

Ken Yarmosh of Savvy Apps: —Apps built by the largest app companies, the “€˜big boys”€™, likely cost anywhere between $500,000 to $1,000,000. Apps built by agencies like savvy apps cost anywhere between $150,000 to $450,000. Apps built by smaller shops, possibly with only 2-3 people, likely cost anywhere between $50,000 to $100,000.”


Types of apps

There are many types of apps, as listed in the Apple App Store category list. Let’s simplify that into these basic categories.

General: Displays content that users can interact with, from Basic Table Functionality, such as email, to Fully Dynamic, such as those dependent on external information: real estate sites, social networks, and weather. Examples are Ticketmaster, Facebook, and NBA Game Time. Additional costs include social media integration, GPS configuration, photo viewing, ratings, browser integration, language translation, microphone use, camera and flash use, video recording and playback, audio recording and playback, voice recognition, dictation services, calendar integration, document editing, and a few more.

Media:€” Integrates video and audio, from device function enhancement, such as making the camera work better or add functionality, to custom utilities — such as those geared toward permitting a user to input and output content a certain way. Examples are InstaVeme, iMove, Garage Band, Spotify, Audio Memos, and Audible. Additional costs are social network integration, video recording and editing, taking pictures and photo editing, audio edition, text messaging, email management, database and web services, and website management.

eCommerce:€” Sells products and/or services. Examples are Amazon, Ebay, and Sam’s Club. Additional costs are social media integration, audio recording and playback, video recording and playback, browser integration, language translation, microphone use, camera and flash use, calendar integration, and a few more.

Games: from simple to complex to 3D and shared across many users.

The process

There are four major parts to app development: idea, planning, design, and testing and deployment, and each have their own cost factors.

The more complex the idea for your app, the more expensive it will be, but there is also a higher chance of getting a decent return on your investment. Figure your budget to see if it will fit your idea. Planning means going through every single screen and figuring out how each part interacts with another part — buttons, screen states, scenarios. This is put into a design scope document that the designer will use to create wireframes and mockups of the screens. Design can render your app a huge success or a horrible failure, so this is a very important section to regard. Testing should be thorough and extensive on each platform. Deployment with the different platforms have rules and regulations that are quite different and complex.

Please beware of the 18-year-old nephew who says he can develop your app for under $1K.

Cost variables

Platform (Android, iOS, Windows, Blackberry, and web): For native apps, more types mean more teams, not individuals, and they work separately. Some platforms are just more expensive to build upon than the others.

Complexity:€” such as how many buttons; how many fields; how many calculations and algorithms; how many screens and screen states; how many unknowns such as breaking technology and wearables; how many features such as payment processes and push notifications. The more complex the app will be, more costs will be involved.

Back-end infrastructure and administration:€” Because apps are designed to pull and push data and interact with various APIs (application programming interfaces, such as PayPal, GoogleMaps, Zillow), API integration can be expensive, depending on its complexity and permissions. Not many kinds of apps don’t integrate back-end infrastructure.

Back-end infrastructure makes an app more complex because it can require other types of back-end developers, such as PHP or Ruby on Rails. The most cost-driven infrastructure it that some companies even have their own databases and API they want in a native application. These APIs have no documentation, so the development process is as if you put a blindfold on. 

Any app that requires management of users will require not only initial development, but maintenance and support. Changing passwords, account services, booking a UHaul trailer, ordering a pizza, flight confirmation, and QR codes to check-in with hotels and at the airport all require administration panels. Some require full web integration so that the user can interact the functions of the app off device.

Visual design:€” Design quality always depends on what you desire and are willing to invest. Design elements can follow native standards, or be extremely customized experiences. Development companies who have invested in design staff with platform infrastructure and user accessibility knowledge combined with an understanding of design as it applies to marketing strategies, the language of color, and good artistic skill will be able to offer you good return on your mobile app development investment, if you need them. Understand that the more customized the design you want for your app, the more expensive it will be.


Continuing costs

App design and development costs don’t end at deployment, that kind of thinking will be a mistake. Art Whitman of Information Week said, “The short-term investment in creating those first pristine apps is likely to be the tip of the iceberg in terms of people and capital costs. Whether you’re using internal teams for development or contracting with coding houses (a practice that brings its own set of challenges), you’ll need to make a sober assessment of the short- and long-term costs of supporting the practice.”

According to an AnyPresence survey, over 80% reported updating their apps twice a year and nearly 33% were updating once per month. Things to consider are business process changes and operating system updates.
We have a three-part series on maintenance that starts with How your app can fail without maintenance and support, PART ONE.

Detailed Breakdown of Development Stages
Stage Component Median Low (Hours) Median High (Hours) Maximum High
Planning Research and discovery 8 40 200
Scope definition 9 27 160
Design Wireframe design — seven screens 14 56 140
Visual Design — seven screens 14 87.5 210
User experience design 7 28 200
Features Native device features 4 29 100
User engagement, such as SMS, Email, Push, Social 5.5 30 150
User login 4.5 28 70
Use of location data 5 24 150
Payments 12 40 200
Sync across devices 16 62.5 200
Infrastructure Initial setup/Basic controls 5 20 50
Data storage 6.5 40 200
Third-party API integration 8 50 120
Access to enterprise data 22 100 400
Data encryption 10 40 80
Scalability/Large number of users 24 130 800
App Administration Infrastructure for performance
 management and analytics 8 20 80
Web portal or CMS to manage application 35 120 1,000
Testing Internal, user, and deployment testing 30 160 300
Deployment Licensing, packaging, etc. 5 11 40
Total Hours 252.5 1,143 4,850
× $100/hour $25,275.00 $114,300.00 $485,000.00
× $150/hour $37,912.50 $171,450.00 $727,500.00

In conclusion, the cost to build a mobile app varies as wildly as purchasing a house. There are many different things to consider that make it difficult to pinpoint with any exact formula. Development firms can charge from $100 to $150 per hour. Maximum costs can range between $485K to $728K at those per hour charges. Sinew has competitive prices with costs per type of app (Media, E-Commerce and General), per platform (Apple, Android, and Windows), and per optional feature. Call us today.


How much does it cost to develop an app? www.bluecloudsolutions.com/blog/cost-develop-app/
Cost to Build a Mobile App: A Survey www.clutch.co/app-development/cost-build-mobile-app-survey
Figuring the costs of custom mobile business app development www.formotus.com/14018/blog-mobility/figuring-the-costs-of-custom-mobile-business-app-development



183 thoughts on “Mobile app development costs

  1. Pingback: 2019

  2. Pingback: cialis oral jelly

  3. Pingback: buy cialis

  4. Pingback: alprostadil price

  5. Pingback: alprostadil

  6. Pingback: fluoxetine 10 mg

  7. Pingback: prozac medication

  8. Pingback: prozac generic

  9. Pingback: levitra 20 mg

  10. Pingback: diflucan 150 mg

  11. Pingback: best price for viagra

  12. Pingback: cialis generic prices

  13. Pingback: simvastatin 20 mg

  14. Pingback: lipitor generic

  15. Pingback: amiodarone 200 mg

  16. Pingback: augmentin 875 mg

  17. Pingback: azithromycin 250 mg

  18. Pingback: sildenafil 100mg

  19. Pingback: viagra 100mg

  20. Pingback: levofloxacin 750 mg

  21. Pingback: sildenafil citrate

  22. Pingback: levitra generic

  23. Pingback: cialis generic pharmacy

  24. Pingback: cialis generic tadalafil

  25. Pingback: Ruchika Roy Kolkata Escorts Call Girls Services

  26. Pingback: ABrand

  27. Pingback: Cialis 5 mg

  28. Pingback: Fiza Khan Kolkata Independent Call Girls Services

  29. Pingback: buy cialis

  30. Pingback: Trully Independent Bangalore Escorts Services

  31. Pingback: worst

  32. Pingback: click here

  33. Pingback: Trully Independent Bangalore Escorts

  34. Pingback: tedwap.me

  35. Pingback: Sruthi Pathak Bangalore Escorts Services

  36. Pingback: hdmobilesex.me

  37. Pingback: 119gDvMjt8

  38. Pingback: sfgjidfgn414 afeu23na1125 abdu23na67

  39. Pingback: newtube tube planet133 afeu23na3232 abdu23na0

  40. Pingback: fknjn544a257 afeu23na1248 abdu23na58

  41. Pingback: sirius latest movs99 abdu23na6823 abdu23na71

  42. Pingback: newtube sirius162 abdu23na5911 abdu23na89

  43. Pingback: Sruthi Pathak Bangalore Female Escorts

  44. Pingback: comment466

  45. Pingback: comment110

  46. Pingback: comment804

  47. Pingback: comment916

  48. Pingback: comment26

  49. Pingback: comment673

  50. Pingback: comment692

  51. Pingback: comment719

  52. Pingback: comment989

  53. Pingback: comment168

  54. Pingback: comment952

  55. Pingback: comment111

  56. Pingback: comment388

  57. Pingback: comment878

  58. Pingback: comment991

  59. Pingback: comment103

  60. Pingback: comment782

  61. Pingback: comment811

  62. Pingback: comment318

  63. Pingback: comment132

  64. Pingback: comment792

  65. Pingback: comment653

  66. Pingback: comment123

  67. Pingback: comment429

  68. Pingback: comment481

  69. Pingback: comment816

  70. Pingback: comment169

  71. Pingback: comment592

  72. Pingback: comment403

  73. Pingback: comment424

  74. Pingback: comment713

  75. Pingback: comment15

  76. Pingback: comment496

  77. Pingback: comment410

  78. Pingback: comment885

  79. Pingback: comment495

  80. Pingback: comment971

  81. Pingback: comment752

  82. Pingback: comment550

  83. Pingback: comment862

  84. Pingback: comment188

  85. Pingback: comment599

  86. Pingback: comment641

  87. Pingback: comment47

  88. Pingback: comment1

  89. Pingback: comment876

  90. Pingback: comment904

  91. Pingback: comment343

  92. Pingback: comment959

  93. Pingback: comment221

  94. Pingback: comment633

  95. Pingback: comment126

  96. Pingback: comment551

  97. Pingback: comment27

  98. Pingback: comment274

  99. Pingback: comment910

  100. Pingback: comment34

  101. Pingback: comment465

  102. Pingback: comment320

  103. Pingback: comment666

  104. Pingback: comment7

  105. Pingback: comment277

  106. Pingback: comment873

  107. Pingback: comment964

  108. Pingback: comment810

  109. Pingback: comment383

  110. Pingback: comment222

  111. Pingback: comment174

  112. Pingback: comment503

  113. Pingback: comment483

  114. Pingback: comment786

  115. Pingback: comment378

  116. Pingback: comment415

  117. Pingback: comment234

  118. Pingback: comment992

  119. Pingback: comment852

  120. Pingback: comment203

  121. Pingback: comment950

  122. Pingback: comment639

  123. Pingback: comment509

  124. Pingback: comment945

  125. Pingback: comment927

  126. Pingback: comment600

  127. Pingback: comment87

  128. Pingback: comment392

  129. Pingback: comment528

  130. Pingback: comment708

  131. Pingback: sirius latest movs429

  132. Pingback: amateurgirls9314

  133. Pingback: Ambika Ahuja Jaipur Escorts Services

  134. Pingback: Sruthi Pathak Escorts in Bangalore

  135. Pingback: Mayra Khan Escorts Services in Kolkata

  136. Pingback: Goa Escorts Services Drishti Goyal

  137. Pingback: Sofia Desai Escorts Services in Goa

  138. Pingback: Ashna Ahuja Escorts Services in Kolkata

  139. Pingback: Simran Batra Independent Escorts in Kolkata

  140. Pingback: Divya Arora Goa Independent Escorts Services

  141. Pingback: Alisha Oberoi Kolkata Escorts Services

  142. Pingback: Elisha Roy Goa Independent Escorts Services

  143. Pingback: Navya Sharma Independent Kolkata Escorts Services

  144. Pingback: Kolkata Escorts Services Ragini Mehta

  145. Pingback: Simmi Mittal Kolkata Escorts Services

  146. Pingback: Yamini Mittal Independent Escorts Services in Goa

  147. Pingback: Rebecca Desuza Goa Independent Escorts Services

  148. Pingback: Devika Kakkar Goa Escorts Services

  149. Pingback: Diksha Arya Independent Escorts Services in Kolkata

  150. Pingback: Diana Diaz Goa Independent Escorts Services

  151. Pingback: Ruby Sen Kolkata Independent Escorts Services

  152. Pingback: XXX PORN Radhika Apte Model Escort


  154. Pingback: Bangalore Escorts Sneha Despandey


  156. Pingback: Bristy Roy Independent Bangalore Escorts


  158. Pingback: Enjoy With Jaipur Escorts Tanisha Walia

  159. Pingback: Selly Arora Independent Bangalore Escorts




  163. Pingback: Jiya Malik High Profile Jaipur Escorts Model


  165. Pingback: Dhruvi Jaipur Escorts




  169. Pingback: Ambika Ahuja Jaipur Escorts

  170. Pingback: Goa Escorts

  171. Pingback: Kolkata Escorts

  172. Pingback: Bangalore Escorts

  173. Pingback: Purchasing cialis on the internet

  174. Pingback: Viagra daily

  175. Pingback: Cialis 20 mg

  176. Pingback: Cialis generic

  177. Pingback: Viagra 20 mg

  178. Pingback: Cialis prices

  179. Pingback: Viagra vs cialis

  180. Pingback: Buy cialis

  181. Pingback: essayforme

  182. Pingback: writeaessay

  183. Pingback: traiteur rabat

You must be logged in to post a comment.