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What is the Cost of App Development and how does it work?

- Mobile App Development

This is a million dollar question that needs an answer to resolve this make-or-break situation.

After certain research, I found that it may not be possible to answer this million dollar question in a binary manner and become brighter in a specified way. So, the best part is to narrow down  the response over a series of filters into a funnel and come up with an outline that is very clear and close to the actual cost of mobile app development.

Points of Consideration

Mobile App Development Points Of Consideration

Jumping Into The Scenario “How Much Is The Development Costs?

As we discussed above, there are certainly some complicated posers – so the question can be better responded through a combination of subjects that will help you to unravel the answer. We have created a sequence to present a logical answer.

Before your mobile app development costing is actually attempted, it is crucial to discuss – how the app is projected to be developed.

Who is going to develop your mobile app?

It can either be advanced by a pricey development center, a resourceful team, or by a freelancer. This factor is going to make a huge difference to the cost your mobile app development. So, before you try to speak to anyone, make sure to check out your needs first.

Single or Cross Platform?

Mobile app development Hybrid VS Native

To initiate, you need to finalize your options first and fix pricing accordingly. Here comes a question that can cross your minds – How do you want your app to work? In a single platform, or be cross-platform.

Remember, the right decision depends on various factors. The persona of users should be importantly profiled to understand the preferences of users.

OS Versions

Right from mobile app platform to variation, everything needs to be factored. This will help you to consider the technical requirements, and can also be avail as a filter. Let me give you an example If your mobile app is more technical in nature and is proposed to accomplish certain activities that are well-matched with advanced versions of OS. Definitely, you need to restrict it to a particular version as it will help you to save your budget on development.

Likewise, iOS may appear as a single platform, there are numerous versions and updates that need to be considered. Then it may be a good idea to go with the latest versions only, which can minimize your development cost and time, or embrace all users.

Which One to Choose? Outsourcing or In-House Development


Your decision will have a great impact on the overall cost of mobile app development.

Remember, a poor decision is critical to the success of your business model. It is therefore not a wise decision to risk a delay in rolling out your business mobile app due to an unprofessional or wrong developer. The lowers cost that you may have achieved with a low-cost developer may lead to nowhere near the loss of your expenses. In order to retain the benefits, a wise decision is to start with a pricey development centre i.e. In-house development.

This decision of selecting an in-house development agency or through a freelancer should be weighed very carefully as it controls the budgets of your mobile app development.

Hourly Rates across Nations

Hourly rates can swing between $10 to $250 per hour!

Golly! The highest priced rates are actually 25 times than the lowest priced hours. You might be looking at hourly rates and making a judgmental twist to the price bands. But let me inform you this is set on the seal by itself.

So, without any judgmental twist, it is significant to know that all the categories will meet different requirements.

Customers who have a shoestring budget and are like to cut down the frills, and expect a reasonable quality within their budget they better look at the lower priced options. On the other side of the coin, if you have enough budget and want a mobile app for a great user experience with excellent functionality then the high pricing ladder will be a good option for them.

Costs Across Locations


  • $50 to $250 per hour – US and Canadian-based companies
  • $50-$150 per hour – Australian app development agencies
  • $35 and $170 per hour – Western European and UK-based app developers
  • $20 – $150 per hour – Eastern Europeans
  • $10-$80 per hour – India based mobile app development agencies. These are attractive enough.

Considerably the average time for designing and developing a mobile app will lie down between 300 to 600 hours. This can be a very valuable benchmark to settle down at the best price towards hourly rates. The time taken for developing a mobile app may vary, depending on the type of functionality.

Mobile App Development Stages In Terms Of Costs.

Mobile App Development Stages In Terms Of Costs.

There are numerous stages of mobile app development when we take into account the technical aspect and the lifecycle of app development. It is therefore essential to consider all the phases and distribute the amount appropriately at each stage.

Here is the list of five different stages of mobile app development:

  • Pre-research Phase
  • Design Phase
  • Development Phase
  • Testing and Deployment Phase
  • Support & Maintenance Phase

To well plan your budget, it is necessary to understand the cost app across each phase. Most of the customers consider the amount that needs to be spent within these phases, but it’s not an ideal decision as the development progresses.

Genuine Development Time

As discussed above, the average time for app design and development required can be anywhere between 300 to 600 hours. But, it takes a lot more time for complex app development which includes additional functionalities. An estimated time for complex applications take up to 800 hours and the highly advanced ones may take more than 1000 hours.

Before you choose to develop an app, you need a better benchmark to take a call on technical complexity that you want to create and the type of resources that you want to use for development purpose.

By considering these two factors, you can easily plan out your app development cost, time and hourly rates. Not the exact, but the figure come out will be very close to the cost of your mobile application development.

Supplementary Cost Factors

Additional app development cost will likely to occur after the development of your app. undoubtedly, you need to market your app – so you need to spend additionally towards backend support and updates. Make sure to keep these mandatory requirements on your budget before you sign off.

Usually, businesses consider the immediate costs to develop an app and overlook the planning that is mandatory for taking the development stage into the final stages. An app can be considered as complete only after it has launched fully and when all the support functions are in place. Leaving out the crucial aspects will defeat the purpose.

More often than not, businesses look at the immediate expenses to build an app and ignore the planning that is required for taking the development into the crucial stages. A mobile application can only be considered complete after its successful released i.e. when all the required functionalities are in place. Make sure, you should not leave out the crucial aspects.

Development Ballpark Estimates

Ballpark Estimates give you a clue of the costs that are likely to take place in mobile app development. As per your business requirements and the choice of various options, included in the table above, you may find the cost will vary.

At the ends, you may have to pay a lot lesser or a lot more, depending on your needs.

  • $500,000 to $700,000 – Cost towards developing an app by a premium app development company –
  • $100,000 to $500,000- Cost towards developing by a middle-sized offshore centre
  • $20,000 to $30,000 – Cost towards app development by a freelancer

Contradictory Study Outcomes Add To the Confusion

A number of studies showed by companies in responding to the conflict – the costs to build an app. Some of them quoted the price of $30,000 towards development, whereas other quoted the costs around $275,000 towards development.

To place a finger on the exact figure is still a confusion, but you can move ahead with the approximate amount and shortlist a mobile app development company or developer to zero in on the amount, right to last zero. The cheat sheet will help you to get an idea of the things that need to be well-thought-out. Depending on your choices, you can shape the actual cost.

Let`s have a granular look at the total cost of development in terms of percentage.

Mobile App Development Study

Deliverables are designed to help you manage your budgets and distributed it perfectly in each milestone.

Use Up-To-Date Inputs on Online Calculators

You can also take help of some online tools to calculate and draft a rough idea of the total budget. These calculations are on a premise of certain standards, so you may fetch an incorrect figure. An uninformed input may end up getting the wrong calculation. It is, therefore, necessary to understand the features and the options of calculator properly.

Get Valuable Insights from an Expert!
The best idea which most of the people find ideal is speaking with an expert who has the up-to-date knowledge of the industry. An expert can help you to come closer to the figure. For instance, some features work better with hardware components or third-party support. Without the detailed knowledge of functionalities and technicalities, it will be difficult to reach the exact cost.

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