Mobile Apps Budgeting: The True Cost of Mobile App Development
Published at November 30, 2017

Many agencies don’t list their prices for mobile app development on web pages because this is a very complex process. The price of an app depends on its features, structure and the platform on which it runs. Mobile apps that are connected to big databases can cost up to seven figures, and prices of the least expensive ones are affordable even to the small business entrepreneurs.

Whichever app you choose to make, it will bring many different benefits to your business operation. If you want to find out more information about the advantages mobile apps can bring, check out the article we wrote about benefits mobile apps bring to entrepreneurs.

Apart from the three criteria, we have shared above, the mobile apps ‘ price also depends on the type of server it uses, and on the reputation of the developing company. Searching for the right developer is not an easy task, and that is why you should check our recent article that will teach you how to choose the best mobile app development companies for outsourcing your business.

Factors that influence the mobile app development pricing            

The agency you choose

Mobile app development costs can vary depending on the development agency you choose. Freelancers usually provide the least expensive services, but they don’t give you any type of guarantee that your app will have all the projected functionalities and that it will run smoothly.

Big mobile app development agencies from the Western countries are the most expensive options. Most of them already have a long list rich clients, which means that they have very high price margins.

Offshore mobile development agencies like Virtual Spirit are the best choice. We combine rich development experience, with high product value and competitive offshore prices. Because of that, we have a very wide client network and work with business from all six continents.

The type of app you choose to build

There are several types of apps you can choose, and each one requires different development process and of course has its unique price. These are some of the mobile apps that are the most popular among entrepreneurs:

  • Basic app – is the app with the most basic functionalities and therefore is the least expensive one you can build. These apps are the best for small businesses and medium enterprises that are not dependant on the digital customers.
  • Enterprise app – usually includes database and content management and is usually much more expensive than the basic app. Its most basic price revolves around $15,000, but it can be much higher depending on the functionalities you plan to add.
  • E-commerce app – is an app that can be used for trading and showcasing products and services. These apps come with a long list of features that create an easy navigation from the product to the checkout page and security protocols that protect users’ sensitive data from hackers. The most basic price for these apps can range between $4,000 and $8,000.
  • Game app – usually involves the built-in home mechanisms and 3D graphics. These apps are much more complicated than the basic apps, but they are also less expensive than the enterprise ones. Depending on the set of features you plan to add, the game app can cost you between $2,000 and $15,000

Mobile app’s  functionalities

The number and the complexity of the mobile app’s functionalities are also very important criteria for determining its price. There is a huge list of potential features mobile apps can have. These include: user registration, social media logins, camera integration, GPS, augmented reality, instant messaging or live chat, etc. Each one of these features will increase the overall price of the mobile app development project.

Mobile apps that include databases are much more expensive

If the app will allow users to upload their files, it requires a database for storing them. When users view their photos on the app, the software needs to retrieve it from the database, to show it on their screen. When it comes to the development process, this functionality requires more storage space and lots of coding, which is why it usually increases the overall price of the app. 

These are some other parameters that influence the price of the mobile app development project:

  • The number of screens - This parameter is the easiest one to calculate in your apps’ budget. Each screen that needs to be created requires additional development, UX, and design efforts and influences the overall price.
  • CMS – some mobile apps require content management systems that give webmasters the ability to edit and control the content flow. If the development company would need to create a CMS from scratch, they will include that into the apps’ price.
  • Platform – You probably know that there are Android and iOS apps. Android apps usually require more testing because this platform is much more fragmented. That is why apps that work on the Android phones are usually more expensive than the ones that work on iPhone.

Mobile app development pricing required for investment search

Most entrepreneurs who are trying create the mobile app development budget, do that because they want to know how much money they will need to collect during the first investment rounds. Most Western agencies charge between $70,000 and $150,000 for building a v1.0 app.

Sometimes, you should also add the legal fees and costs that can be as high as $150,000 and $50,000 for the team of four employees, which is an agency standard for building v1.0 apps. So, if you are planning to hire a big Western agency and collect the funds for mobile app development through the VC funding, you will need to collect at least $120,000 for the most basic app.

Of course, since Virtual Spirit is an offshore company we can do the same work for the much lower price. If you decide to hire our agency for mobile app development projects, we will provide you with the top-quality service. Our experts will listen to your ideas and create the most optimal and affordable development plan.

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