How Much Does It Cost to Build a Mobile App?

About The Author

Nikhil-KhandelwalNikhil Khandelwal VP Engineering
LinkedIn|22 Jun 2023
With the benefits of having a mobile application, it’s no wonder why every business invests in app development.

_But what is the cost of a successful mobile app development service?_

You would probably ask this question, especially if you want to build a profitable app for your business.

Creating a basic app cost between USD $40,000 to USD $300,000. Always remember the initial figures are usually only estimates. The final cost may be significantly less or more based on the specific project’s requirements.

Many factors affect the app development cost. Depending on its complexity, the average price would be:

* Simple App Development Cost – USD $40,000 to USD $60,000
* Medium App Development Cost – USD $60,000 to USD $150,000
* Complex App Development Cost – from USD $300,000

This blog will explore factors related to the cost for building an app, prices of popular brands’ mobile applications.

### Mobile App Development Cost Statistics

Data from authorized resources (Statista) suggests that having a mobile app is highly profitable with the growing trends. Here are some incredible statistics to support this claim;

* Mobile app market revenue is predicted to grow by $1,095.9 bn in 2027.
* Google PlayStore has over 100,000 and App Store gets over 30,000 new mobile apps monthly for download.
* App Store market revenue will reach nearly $200 bn by 2025.
* App Store market’s revenue is $34.1 bn in Q1 2023, marking the highest quarterly recorded amount.

Thus, it’s evident that mobile app demand is growing rapidly, and having one will significantly impact your startup.

The app development cost dramatically relies on several factors.

Let’s look at what the app prices rely.

_**Also Read:**_ [_**Everything about mobile app development**_](**.**_

### Top 6 Factors Influencing Mobile App Development Cost

![Top 6 Factors Influencing Mobile App Development Cost](

#### App Platform

Before starting the [mobile app development services](, selecting the right platform is essential. Depending on your target audience, you can go with native, web, hybrid, or cross-platform.

You would opt for one platform as a startup owner with a minimal budget.

_Here are the most popular mobile app platforms you can choose from:_

**Native app platform (Android & iOS)**

Programming language-wise, Swift and Objective C are perfect for iOS app development, while Android app development happens on Java or Kotlin.

**Web app platform**

Web apps like Progressive Web Apps are more cost-effective than native apps.

Regarding cost, web app development prices can range between $15,000 and $50,000.


Developing an app for both Android & iOS platforms simultaneously is a new cost-effective trend.

Single code use and less development effort make cross-platform most popular in the mobile app market. Cross platform app can be developed by using two types of Flutter and React Native frameworks.

**Hybrid app platform**

Hybrid App is a perfect combo of both native & web applications.

App Platforms 

Average Costs 

Android Apps 

USD $50,000-$500,000 

iOS Apps 

USD $75,000-$500,000 

Hybrid Apps 

USD $10,000 to $150,000 

Cross-Platform Apps 

USD $25,000 to $60,000 

Web Apps 

USD $15,000 to $50,000 

#### Mobile App Complexity

The average price of creating a simple application is USD $5,000 – USD $50,000. Such apps have features like a login system, user profile facility, dashboard, and limited administration.

Medium to complex app prices can range from USD $50,000 to USD $120,000. Such mobile apps include a plethora of features for both user engagement and app monetization.

A complex app price is between USD $100,000 to USD $300,000 and up. These apps are equipped with innovative technologies such as AR/VR, AI, and ML. They also include multi-language support, high-end data logic, and many more.

Depending on app’s complexity, an average development cost breakdown is mentioned below in table:

App Complexity

Level of Complexity  

Average Timeline 

Average Cost 

Simple App 

MVP functionality 

Basic UI 

2-3 Months 


Medium Complex App 

Sophisticated features 

Custom UI 

3-9 Months 


Highly Complex App 

High level advanced features 

Bespoke UI 

Two platforms

10+ Months 



#### App Features & Functionality

Features and functionality are important aspects of mobile app development. It includes choosing backend infrastructure, content management systems, tech stacks, and third-party integration services.

These components can potentially add to or reduce the overall development costs. Also different custom or additional features can impact app development prices.

Look at the average app development cost and time required for building the basic & complex features.



Approximate Time 

Average Costs 

User Login 

Login with social media 

Login with email address 

Forgot password option 

Log out option 

30-42 Hours 

USD $500 – $1,000 

Profile Completion 

Add basic info 

Add photo 

Set region

30-40 hours 

USD $900-$1,000 



Online/offline status 

Typing status 

Send media files and documents 

Read/sent status

170-180 hours  

USD $3,000-$5,000 


Push Notifications

Push notifications and reminders for users 

25-32 hours  

USD $1,000 – $1,200 

Basic Admin Panel 

See list of users 

Delete/block user 

Create user 

Edit user 

66-90 hours  

USD $3,500-$4,000 


[![Ready to Create acustom mobile app for your startup](](

_**Advanced Features Integration: Cost Breakdown**_

Advanced Features 


Approximate Time

Average Costs


Transaction history 

Check balance 

Add debit/credit card 

Payment gateways 

60-78 hours  

USD $2,500-$3,000 



Detect user’s location 

Set pickup and destination point 

100-120 hours

USD $3,000-$4,000 


Audio calls 

List of contacts 

Video calls 

300-400 hours 

USD $14,000-$15,000

#### App Categories

Depending on the category, several things can change, such as the number of users, features, functionalities, and security criteria. It can ultimately lead to varying prices to build a mobile app.

_Let’s glance at the top categories of apps with the average development cost & timeline._

App Type 

Estimate Costs 

Development Time 

Startup App 

USD $40,000-$400,000  


Game App 

USD $60,000-$250,000 


Retail App 

USD $50,000-$150,000 


Augmented Reality App 

USD $100,000-$250,000  


eCommerce App 

USD $60,000-$250,000  


Social Media App 

USD $50,000-$300,000  


Business App 

USD $50,000-$200,000  


Learning App 

USD $60,000-$225,000  


Video Streaming App 

USD $80,000-$300,000  


Restaurant App 

USD $40,000-$150,000  


Shopify App 

USD $30,000-$180,000  


Food Delivery App 

USD $40,000-$150,000  


Healthcare App 

USD $55,000-$300,000  


#### Development Team’s Location & Size

Mobile app development costs rely on different factors such as team location, structure, and project complexity level.

A basic development team usually includes a project manager, developer, QA engineer, & UI/UX designer.

A backend programmer, system administrator, or additional designers may be essential for your extensive project. With an increasing project scale, the development costs will increase automatically.

_Here is a rough mobile app development team cost estimation:_

Development Team 

Basic App 

Medium App 

Advanced App 


USD $30-40,000  

USD $50-60,000 

USD $100,000+ 

UI/UX Designers 

USD $4-5,000 

USD $5-7,000 

USD $10-15,000 

Project Managers 

USD $5-7,000 

USD $10-15,000

USD $10,000+ 

Q/A Specialists 

USD $8-10,000  

USD $15-20,000  

USD $20,000+ 

Business Analysts 

USD $2-3,000  

USD $5-8,000  

USD $8-10,000


USD $2-4,000  

USD $5-7,000  

USD $10,000+

Solution Architect 

USD $1-3,000  

USD $5-8,000  

USD $9,000+

_Rough development team cost estimation according to different regions below:_


Hourly Rate USD $ 







Western Europe 


Eastern Europe 




#### App Maintenance

Businesses will have to continue changing their apps to keep up with the varying market trends, which come with different prices.

_What takes your budget post-app development?_

* App bug fixes
* Design changes

App maintenance cost is calculated yearly at 20% of the complete development cost.

So, these are key factors determining the cost of creating a mobile app. Now, we will discuss the costs of popular mobile apps.

#### 5 Most Popular Global Apps and Their Development Cost

![5 Most Popular Global Apps and Their Development Cost ](
Here are five popular apps that have redefined and transformed the concept of customer experience and are currently leading the app market. We have also mentioned the average app development price of these apps below in the image:

#### Cost Breakdown: App Development Phases
![Cost Breakdown App Development Phases  ](

Costs of building a mobile app also depend on each development stage.
_Software development is usually separated into four major stages:_

* Planning & Analysis
* UI/UX Design
* Mobile App Development
* App Testing

_Let's see how each phase impacts the overall app cost._

##### Planning & Analysis

The first stage in the app development process is planning & analysis, also known as the discovery stage. According to Clutch, 70% of businesses start with analysis and project planning.

The discovery stage includes business analysts, UI/UX designers, software developers, and product owners working on several tasks:

* Market research and competitor analysis
* Identify potential users' pain points and their solutions
* Create prototypes for app visualization
* Set all steps during app development and determine a timeline

Planning & analysis stage costs may range from $5,000 to $25,000 and even go beyond. It takes 2-5 weeks.

##### UI/UX Design

The development stage includes creating a user-friendly design relevant to your customers' expectations.

Designing a mobile app can range from $5,000 to $50,000. The price depends on the different screens.

##### Mobile App Development

How much does a mobile app development cost? Several influencing factors can shift the cost of creating an app.
The minimum price to build an app is USD $5,000-$10,000.

A more complex app can cost you around USD $50,000-$75,000 and reach USD $300,000+.

##### App Testing & Deployment

The last stage of mobile app development includes testing and app deployment. This phase ensures your app is ready for customers with an impeccable user experience.

For [QA & app testing services](, you need to pay $5,000-$10,000.

#### 4 Options to Choose for App Development

The total mobile app development price heavily relies on who you select for the app development.

_There are multiple choices._

* App development company
* Local team
* Inhouse development team
* A freelance developer

Hiring an experienced development team has several benefits, such as lower costs and higher quality.
_If you want the best team for your buck, select experts wisely._

**Option #1 - Hire a Local Agency**

You can always select an expert mid size local app development company that provides a wide range of services, including SEO optimization.

Android and iOS app development costs by local companies will be higher.

_Also Read:_ [_iOS app development let your business grow at full potential_](

Depending on the country, the development & design team's per-hour rate can range between $150 to $250.

**Option#2 - Build an In-House Team**

The in-house team works entirely as a part of your company, receives fixed monthly payments, and gets daily instructions from your management.

The cost of an in-house team varies with the startup's location and the developer's expertise.

_**For startups based in the US, the price is**_

* Full-stack developer = $180,000/year
* Designer = $160,000/year
* Android & iOS mobile app programmer = $ 170,000/year

**Option# 3 - Hire Freelancers**

You can work with freelancers if you need a team for a small project. But you must spend much time on communication and project management.

_**With a freelancer, you can follow two ways:**_
Hire them on a contract basis

Hire them on an hourly basis

Plus, you can find freelancers from several platforms, such as Upwork, Fiverr, etc.
The freelancer's average hourly costs depend on the country you are hiring from.


* US: $50 per hour
* Asia: $15 to $25/hour
* Ukraine: $25/hour
* Latin America: $20/hour

**Option #4: Outsource App Development**

[Outsourcing a mobile app development agency]( allows you to turn your app idea into reality and manage the overall architecture.

It lets you focus on your business needs while the expert team manages your technical requirements.

_Development costs differ from country to country._

**For example**, developers' costs in the USA are 2x-3x higher than hiring developers in Ukraine.
The cost of outsourcing mobile app development to an offshore agency varies from USD $30,000 to USD $500,000.
Suppose you plan to hire a decent outsourcing agency to revitalize your digital presence. In that case, VLink is the right choice for your business, whether you have a startup or an established one.

#### How can VLink Help in Mobile App Development Cost Estimation?

So, how much does it cost to build a mobile application? Considering all the key factors should help you determine a nearly accurate price for your dream app.
But analyzing app development’s final cost is a very challenging task. So, it would be better to consult a certified app development company like VLink for reliable app development.
Our development & designing team are experts in creating, designing, and launching innovative, scalable, and secure apps with next-gen features.

[![Know Your intial app development budget](](
Frequently Asked Questions
How to reduce the cost of app development?

To reduce app development costs, consider using cross-platform development frameworks like React Native or Flutter, which allow you to simultaneously build apps for multiple platforms.  

Prioritize essential features, minimize scope creep, and leverage existing libraries and open-source solutions. Outsourcing development to countries with lower labor costs can also be cost-effective. 

What are key hidden cost-driven factors?

Key hidden cost-driven factors refer to underlying factors that can significantly contribute to the overall cost of a project, product, or service but may not be immediately apparent. These factors are; 

  • Inefficient processes 
  • Poor quality control leads to rework or defects 
  • Inadequate planning and risk management 
  • Reliance on outdated technology or infrastructure 
  • Lack of skilled personnel 
  • Regulatory compliance issues 
  • Unforeseen market fluctuations 


Identifying these hidden cost drivers is essential to minimize expenses, improving profitability, and enhance overall project success. 

What is the timeline for developing an app?

The timeline to develop an app can range from a few months to a year. It depends on complexity, features, team size, and resources.  

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