Charmi Vadaliya
Written By Charmi Vadaliya Sr. BDE

How Much Does It Cost to Create a Mobile App?

post date
August 21, 2023
Reading Time: 8 minutes

In our modern world, mobile apps have completely changed the way businesses operate. With more than 3.5 billion people using smartphones, it’s clear that mobile apps are a big deal. They’re responsible for about 90% of the time we spend on our phones. This has led to a whole new economy where mobile apps are expected to make around $935 billion by 2025.

Think about your own phone – you probably have about 40 apps on it. They’re the tools we use for everything, from connecting with friends to shopping and having fun. Businesses are also taking advantage of this trend, but making an app isn’t easy. It’s like putting together a puzzle with many pieces, each representing a different cost or decision that affects how the app works and how much it will cost to make.

So, the big question is: How much does it cost to create a mobile app? That’s precisely what we’re here to clarify. We’ll break down all the factors that go into the cost, whether you’re a new startup with a cool idea or a big company looking to expand online.

What Is the Cost of Creating a Mobile App?

The cost of creating a mobile app can vary significantly based on a range of factors. These factors include the app’s complexity, the platforms it targets, and the specific features and functionalities it needs. Here’s an overview:

App Complexity:

  • Simple apps with basic functions like calculators or flashlights could range from $10,000 to $40,000 or more.
  • More intricate apps like social media or e-commerce platforms could cost between $30,000 to $500,000.
  • High-end apps with advanced features like banking or healthcare functionalities might exceed $500,000 and potentially reach into the
  • millions for the most complex projects.

Platform Choices:

  • A hybrid app (for both Android and iOS) might cost between $13,000 to $16,000.
  • Developing a web app could fall in the range of $13,000 to $16,000.
  • If you opt for a single-platform app (either Android or iOS), the price could be between $8,000 to $14,000.

Remember, the cost isn’t limited to development alone. Ongoing maintenance, updates, and enhancements will also factor into the overall investment.

Segment-wise Revenue of Mobile Apps Worldwide 2019-2025(in millions U.S. dollars)

What Influences the Cost of Developing a Mobile App?

1. Type of Business Model:

Globally, mobile app spending has reached remarkable heights, with consumers shelling out a staggering 22.6 billion USD. Moreover, the annual download count has surpassed a whopping 178 billion apps. Projections indicate this trend will persist, with an estimated 258 billion app downloads by 2025. These figures underscore the substantial investment in various aspects of business app development.

When considering app costs, your business model plays a significant role. Delve into factors like your target users, services offered, and the intricacy of the app. As the complexity of the app model increases, the development timeline extends. Consequently, more time spent on development translates to higher costs.

Different business models come with distinct requirements. For instance, a customer service app may necessitate additional external tools like APIs, which can elevate expenses. Apps like Uber and social media platforms such as Instagram exhibit varying functionalities, influencing their development expenses.

App Types, Time, and Costs:

Different types of apps take different times and money to develop. Here’s an idea:

  • Social Media: It can take 6 to 12 months, and the cost might be between $50,000 to $500,000.
  • E-commerce: This type might take 4 to 12 months, and the cost can range from $30,000 to $500,000.
  • Gaming: Creating a game might take 2 to 12 months or more. The cost varies a lot, starting from $10,000 and going up to $500,000 or even more.
  • Education: An education app usually takes 3 to 6 months and might cost around $25,000 to $250,000.
  • Health and Fitness: For a health and fitness app, you’re looking at 4 to 6 months with a cost range of $50,000 to $250,000.
  • Travel and Hospitality: Building an app for travel and hospitality can take 3 to 8 months, and the cost may be around $25,000 to $300,000.
  • Productivity: A productivity app can be done in 3 to 6 months, costing about $25,000 to $250,000.
  • On-demand: For an on-demand app, it might take 4 to 8 months, with a cost ranging from $50,000 to $300,000.

Remember, these are just rough estimates and the actual time and cost can vary based on many factors.

2. App Development Team:

Selecting the right approach for assembling your app development team is pivotal. The significance of apps can vary depending on their alignment with core business objectives. This dictates the need for an in-house team equipped with proficient app developers, tailored to your app’s complexity and purpose.

Alternatively, enterprises have options like app development agencies or freelance developers. While these avenues provide similar services, they differ significantly in terms of efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

Opting for an in-house team might strain the budget, demanding domain experts and creative resources. Conversely, outsourcing to an external app development company offers multifaceted advantages. Such firms possess expertise across diverse domains and deploy skilled resources, ensuring exceptional outcomes.

For cost-conscious enterprises, freelance developers present an affordable choice, but the quality may vary. Navigating through the vast pool of freelancers to find the right fit is a challenge, potentially leading to project delays.

Ultimately, enterprises have a range of options to choose their app development partner, tailored to their specific requirements and budgetary considerations.

3. App Design and Functionality:

The cost of making an app can change a lot based on how it looks and what it can do. If you want the app to do more things and work really well, it will cost more.

Different types of apps have different costs. Apps that show lists or things like that are cheaper. But apps that do things in real-time, like messaging or updates, cost more.

As the app gets more complicated, it needs a design that makes sense to users. For example, if you have a payment system or a way to save user data, it needs to work smoothly.

Adding features from other services, like social media, can make the app more complex. This means it takes longer to put everything together, and that costs more money.

For gaming apps, you need to make the graphics really good, and that can be expensive. So, every time you add a new thing to the app, it can cost more money.

App Usage Statistics at a Glance

4. App Features and Testing:

Creating a mobile app means making sure it works well for users. Features are like tools in a toolbox, and they need to fit perfectly. Imagine building a payment app – it needs strong security tools and a simple way for people to use it. Similarly, a food delivery app must smoothly manage everything from ordering to tracking.

But here’s the tricky part – making sure those tools (features) actually work as planned. That’s where testing comes in. It’s like giving a new car a test drive before selling it. The more features you add, the more testing you need. And as testing gets detailed, it takes more time and sometimes more money.

So, keep in mind, while adding cool features is exciting, it also means more work to test and make sure everything runs without any glitches. And yes, as the app’s features get more advanced, the cost of development can go up too. It’s all about finding that balance between cool features and a smooth user experience.

5. App Hosting and Security:

Mobile apps are like digital vaults that store and share data on the go. Think about all the stuff you do on your phone – from banking to chatting. All that info needs to be super safe. If there’s a weak point in the vault, it’s a disaster waiting to happen.

To prevent that disaster, the place where the app lives (hosting) has to be super secure. It’s like having guards at the entrance of your vault. Now, depending on how big your business is and how many people use the app, you might need different types of guards (servers).

For big businesses, it’s like having your own bodyguards – dedicated servers with extra layers of protection. They’re more expensive, but they keep your vault super secure. Smaller businesses might share guards – shared hosting. It’s cheaper but might not be as secure.

And remember, spending money on top-notch security is worth every penny. It’s like putting locks, alarms, and even a secret code into your vault. People trust your app more when they know their data is safe. So, investing in security is like giving your users peace of mind.

6. App Updates and Maintenance:

Think of your app as a fancy car. Regular check-ups and maintenance are essential to ensure its smooth operation. Just like a car needs oil changes and new tires, apps need updates and maintenance. These updates keep things fresh and make sure your app works like a charm.

Once your app is out there in the world, it’s not the end of the road. Technology is always on the move, and your app needs to keep up. New devices and systems come out, and your app needs to fit right in. That’s where updates come in – they make sure your app stays cool with the latest trends.

And just like a car might have a hidden glitch, apps can have sneaky bugs too. So, keeping an eye out for those bugs and fixing them is super important. Think of it as a mechanic looking under the hood to fix anything that might slow your app down.

Remember, a well-maintained app is like a well-oiled machine – it runs smoothly and keeps your users happy. So, investing in regular updates and maintenance is like giving your app a spa day – it keeps things fresh and fabulous.

How to Reduce App Development Costs?

Developing an app can be like setting off on an adventure – exciting but also costly. However, with a bit of smart planning, you can make sure your app journey doesn’t break the bank. Here are some tips to help you navigate the cost landscape:

Cross-Platform Development:

Imagine having a tool like Flutter or Xamarin that lets you build an app for both iOS and Android at the same time. It’s like doing two things in one go, which means you save time and money.

Using this cross-platform approach can cut your costs by 10-30% compared to the regular way of building apps.

But, here’s the catch: if your app is all about fancy animations, this might not be the best choice. For those, it’s better to use Swift for iOS, and Java or Kotlin for Android. These tools are perfect for making apps with lots of cool animations. So, consider your app’s needs before you decide which route to take.

MVP Approach:

Starting with an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) journey might seem like taking a shortcut, but it’s a strategic move to put your idea to the test without draining your budget. The real users will provide valuable feedback in this small-scale trial.

By beginning with an MVP, you gain insights that guide you in planning a budget for the full-fledged app version. You’ll channel your energy into the MVP’s features that users truly desire.

Discover the ins and outs of creating a successful MVP app by diving into our dedicated blog post. It explores the pitfalls of failed MVP apps and the steps you need to secure a solid MVP version.

Efficient Design and Development Collaboration:

Choosing an agency that handles both design and development removes the need to go between designers and developers. This streamlined approach boosts teamwork, speeds up decision-making, and cuts down on possible communication issues. With one agency managing both aspects, you’ll save time, work more productively, and get a well-integrated final app.

Where do Consumers Access their Mobile Apps


Creating a mobile app involves costs that shape your digital dreams. Understanding factors that affect these expenses is key; there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. It’s about your app’s features, design, and where it works.

Think of this as an investment, not just spending money; it’s bringing your idea to life. By grasping these factors, you can make smart choices that match your goals and budget.

A successful app needs a balance between features and costs. Expert advice can help. Plan well, make wise decisions, and focus on your app’s purpose to make something special that people will love.

For skilled mobile development, we’re here. We’ve worked on projects in different fields worldwide. Rely on us for cost-cutting advice and using technology for quick launches. Partner with us to save money and make your app idea a reality.

Charmi Vadaliya
Written By Charmi Vadaliya Sr. BDE

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