The Analogy of Mobile App Development
What will be the approximate cost of developing a mobile app for my business? It is the most frequently asked questions by the business owners today. But, asking this question without providing your prerequisite requirements would be a little vague.
Would you ask for the bill right away at a restaurant without even choosing what to eat?
Similar is the case with app development.
How many features does the app need? Which features should be there in the first version? Will it be cross platform application development or native mobile app development? iOS, Android or both? These are key features that your developer may want to know before he can tell you the approximate cost of developing a mobile app for your business.
Understanding the fundamental drivers of value in app development will help you take the most cost-effective decisions and achieve the best ROI (Return on Investment) on your development funds.
The Scope of Developing an App
Do you have your app idea? Or you’re just a newbie in your business and want an online platform to drive sales. Whatever your requirements are, there is a prerequisite structure of workflow that takes place involving a hierarchy of processes when your app development starts.
The extent of developing the app has to be understood. The hired app developer must be capable of understanding your app idea. Just like writing a story, requires a proper knowledge of the theme. The app developer needs to understand every individual aspect of your app idea or else developing an app is close to impossible.
Hiring good developers is usually deemed to be very costly. But the truth is, you are the sole bearer of all the overhead of costs that take place. The price of an app is based on some factors. Aspects like budget, the platform over which you want your app, its category decides the price of an app. In brief, we are going to address some of the factors that influence the comprehensive manner of costing.
Factors Influencing your App Development Cost
Your app development is like a Broadway play, you have a group of heroes playing on the stage, but there are whole crew and a scenario of organised events behind the smooth sailing of the play.
Let’s get to the bigger picture and find out what are the key drivers of the lump sum your mobile app development cost narrows down to:
1. The App Functionality – The functionality of your app solely depends on project complexity. How will many number of features be exercised in the product? How many screens fields and buttons it will have? What is the measure of logic required?
App functionality performs a significant role in the total cost of mobile app development, so, to establish a grossing successful Mobile app, it’s important to understand the business flow, determine how the future product will streamline workflow along with the goals it must match. Also, you should do competitors research and know the very peculiarities of the application that will enable you to stand out among your rivals.
However, not all of them are alike. Apparently, the most complicated and expensive are those that include utilising new technologies. Also, such processes as payment processing require a lot of efforts to build them.
2. Database Storage – Will the app have user-driven content? For example, are users able to upload photos or videos, submit reviews, or comments on content? Will the app provide data that changes on a regular basis? Will you need the ability to edit and add data? If “Yes,” then the app will need a database. A database means development time will be necessary to set up the app so it can communicate with the database.
For example, if a user adds a photo from his device, the app will need to be able to take this picture and store it in the database. If a user then views this picture later, the app will need to retrieve the photo from the database and present it on the app. Likewise, if a user comments on this picture at a later date, the picture will be retrieved from the database, then saved back to it with the comments added.
In addition to the development work setting up the database and to getting the app and database to “talk,” there will be costs for hosting and storage on the database. More information on this later.
3. The Platform you’re Choosing – The platform you build your app on influences your app development cost primarily. It is due to the level of fragmentation that leads to variation in testing costs. For example, if you are building your app on Android, it will require more rigorous testing. That’s because Android as a platform, is much more “fragmented” than iOS. Building for all platforms increases the cost.
It is due to the fact that Apple iPhone uses Xcode IDE and Objective-C or Swift Programming Language, Android employs Java Programming Language whereas Windows uses C# Programming Language.
There are many different handsets, handset manufacturers, screen sizes, and operating systems. There are over 15,000 different Android devices in the market, with different features. That explains the level of complexity in conducting testing for several platforms at the same time and hence adding to the development costs.
Also, as there is no forced updating of the Android versions, it’s likely that most of the Android devices are functioning on older versions while the code is written. Contrast this with iOS, where according to research 85% of iOS devices were running the latest operating system as of in a particular year. (Source)
4. User Management – How you manage your users also affects the cost of development of an application. There will be a notable difference in costs if you want to set up your database that captures user information including emails, passwords, address, etc., for your later use. You can simply let your users log in to your app through Facebook and cut down on development cost, but then you won’t be able to capture user data. This information can grow very useful down the track when it comes time to monetise your app.
Another idea to consider is your opinion on using the available code for your app. Are you okay with your developer finding another code online? If you wish to have a customised solution where the developer develops from scratch customising every element, then this will add to your costs.
5. Security – High-security level is one of the main requirements for our clients and just must-have for enterprise apps. Access to company knowledge that includes a plenty of documents, financial transacts security in records, both structured and unstructured data stored in the device, user information and location, and so on. And all of this requires protection from hackers. So, building a secure application that recognises suspicious activities and vulnerabilities needs the monetary investment that influences the entire mobile app development cost.
6. Integrating with Enterprise Systems – An app can be developed in two ways either as standalone or as integrated inside a business system. If your app doesn’t need enterprise data, enterprise system or corporate access, or central business logic, the cost will be lower and restricted to just app development. On the other hand, with enterprise integration, development costs spread to enterprise web services and data access, third-party APIs or other integration tools, and host system app modifications. Your organisation’s enterprise architects will teach you about the mixture requirements for maintaining a mobile app and if your infrastructure is thoughtful enough to support it.
7. Location Data – Location has lately become an important part of an application. Uber taxis won’t work without the location, likewise, Tinder and other apps need consistent server interaction to function. The overhead here being drainage of battery. The more your app pings the server, the more it drains your battery. But less pinging will diminish the accuracy of location in your app, can sometimes have disastrous results. So ultimately, striking the right balance between both these aspects will add to the development costs. Check out more interesting features that an ideal mobile application should have ultimately adding to your development costs: Mobile App Development Checklist.
8. Analytics – While you launch your app, it is critical for you to keep track of the number of downloads, the segment of users that use your app to estimate the amount of buzz your app is generating. More importantly, you would want to know the money that your app is helping you make. It is recommended to use app analytics in your application to keep track of all the issues; the cost depends on some details you want to have in your app. It enables you to figure out where your users are deviating away and hence will help you fix the issues at those places.
9. Scalability – Scalability is defined as the ability of your app to incorporate additional features and be compatible with all the platforms. For example, your recently launched app has managed to create a buzz among users, and they are now looking for more in your app. It is important that your application is scalable to incorporate more features to keep further your users hooked and stayed at the top no matter how many more app come into the market.
10. A Content Management System – In basic terms, it’s a content management system, heard of Magento, WordPress? This feature is especially important in apps that have a social element where users can post items such as text and photos. Can you think if Facebook or Instagram did not have the content management ability? It would be an unmitigated disaster! There was a photo uploading app that was very comparable to Instagram. Sadly, users started posting inappropriate pictures. The situation was otherwise handleable. The problem was that the developers had lost to invest in a content management system. There were no means of signalling users as unsuitable or eliminating them entirely from the app. As a result, the app turned out to be a flop and got closed soon! The information to take away is that user management is very necessary. You will have to choose how much control over your app you will want.
The cost of hiring the application developers changes from place to place. App development is an operation of significant investment which, requires a long-driven process. In contrast, mobile startup entrepreneurs constantly look for cost-effective ways to make the maximum value out of their money. It, in turn, triggers the importance of careful planning to downsize the unnecessary costs and increase the profit figures.
Adhering this fact, details on the most rational ways to spend less on app development costs and earn more. The entire process of app development for an enterprise requires a collective approach. The whole job is created by the united effort of the team in about half the time allotted for the job. There is a separate group applied to the developing as well as the testing phase in different regions of the day. The entire process is triggered to produce results in no less time.
Or else if you’re unsure of your exact requirements, or maybe you’re not technically aware of the functionalities and their uses, you can always consult expert app developers who’ll guide you in coming up with an ideal mobile app Idea. The bottom line is, coming up with a perfect app for your business is not rocket science as long as you have clear cut goals and a surefire strategy to implement your idea. Rest assured, you will have a great return on your investment provided you hire the right people to do your job.
Hence, it is found that the mobile apps development cost varies from place to place and is governed by a mixture of factors. Before stepping ahead into investing huge sums in app development, make sure you consider all the factors listed above.