14 March 2018

The popularity of mobile applications cannot be underestimated. In fact, including a mobile app to the business strategy is an indeed winning move for any startup. If you come up with the solution to create an own one, you should be fully aware of all ins and outs in the custom app development. With such information in mind, you will able to plan your budget reasonably and avoid unexpected spending. In our latest article, we have outlined the main stages of the custom app crafting along with some particular aspects that can affect the total development expenses.

Project milestones of mobile app building:

  • Market research
  • Wireframing
  • App programming
  • Usability testing
  • App deployment

Breaking the ground

A first step towards building a custom mobile application starts with a detailed market research. Why do you need this? It is essential to find out first whether there is already a similar app concept in the app store. Knowing which application can be a counterpart will help you decide upon implementing those distinctive features that other apps don’t have. In such a manner, you will be able to create a truly one of a kind product in the app market.
By analyzing the current app market, you find out which mobile operating systems the app users prefer. With this information in mind, you can decide upon the most suitable platform for your mobile application. It can be a native app development for iOS and Android or a cross-platform development that allows building an app on single code base for multiple mobile OSes.
At the next stage of the research, you need to narrow down your audience by defining gender and age of the app target users. If you know at the outset who your users are, it will be much easier for you to build an effective promotional and marketing strategy in future.
Having conducted the market research, you move on to the most critical process at the preparatory stage of mobile app crafting – wireframing. It will form a basis how your application will function in the long run. Usually, the wireframing part is at the discretion of a UX developer and a project manager. They hold a panel discussion about the app’s scope of functions and features. To bring a wireframing to close, a UX crafter creates a demo version of app navigation, screens, and their functionalities. The overall wireframing timescale will depend on the project complexity. It should be noted that this stage of app development should never be neglected. In fact, rebuilding the app functionalities and even the whole app concept will be more pricey and time-consuming than crafting the wireframes before launching a project.

Delving into development aspects

In fact, the app programming is the most critical part of the overall development process. It stands to mention that this stage of app crafting will depend on the technical skill set of your development team. Thus, it is worth controlling every step of the mobile app development.
Screen design and programming An app design is the first thing that catches the eye of a user. For this reason, you have to create a visually pleasant UI along with a flawless and rich UX.
Database framework development It is essential to set up the server-side frameworks while crafting the app’s database structure.
Server-side application development
To bring the back-end functionalities to action, your developer team has to do all server-side coding.
API development
APIs make possible to incorporate screens into the database along with the server-side app.

Quality assurance

The next step will reveal all the strong and weak points of your application.
While conducting usability testings, it is essential to detect bugs in time. This way you will be able to react and fix the issues more quickly.
If you want to make your application compatible in the market, it should run smoothly on multiple devices. For this reason, you need to test your app manually or automatically on various platforms and their OS versions. Moreover, make sure your app provides a similar experience on different resolutions of mobile devices. For instance, the resolutions for a smartphone and a tablet differ significantly.
Don’t forget about back-end testings. They will help you reveal the blind sides of back-end code performance and security measures.
The whole QA tends to be a time-consuming process. However, without regular testings, you will never launch a robust product.

The final touch

Before launching your application on the app stores, you should be aware of all technical, content, and design requirements of app stores. To make sure your app meets these demands, check out the App Store Review Guidelines for iOS applications and Google Play Policy for Android apps. You should remember that your app will be rejected if it uses private APIs and artworks without permission, provides access to the camera and microphone without user’s knowledge, enables in-app transactions via off-site vendors.

Summing up the total development expenses

It goes without saying that each stage of the mobile app building requires particular expenses. To find out the prevailing prices, we have reviewed a raft of information on the MVP development costs. The prices vary depending on the size of the MVP: small, medium or large. The following tables summarize the average expenses for each stage of custom app crafting depending on the chosen development platform.

Native development expenses

  Small MVP Medium MVP Large MVP
Research and wireframing $1500 $2500 $5000
Screen design $2000 $3500 $5000
iOS native development $9000 $37000 $60000
Android native development $9,000 $37,000 $60000
Back-end and APIs development $5000 $9000 $12000
Project management $9000 $10000
QA for iOS $2000 $5000 $7000
QA for Android $2000 $5000 $7000
Deployment $1500 $2000 $2000
Total (One Platform) $21000 $68000 $101000
Total (Android + iOS) $32000 $110000 $168000

Cross-platform development expenses

  Small MVP Medium MVP Large MVP
Research and wireframing $1500 $2500 $7500
Screen design $2000 $3500 $9000
Hybrid app development $10000 $38000 $100000
Back-end and APIs development $5000 $9,000 $12000
Project management $9000 $20000
QA $2000 $5000 $11000
Deployment $1500 $2000 $3000
Total (Android + iOS) $22000 $69000 $162500

The article was written by Helen Morrice
Helen Morrice is a technical writer at IDAP Group. She does her best to report IT news in a simple and clear manner. If mobile app development is a subject of your passion, please check other coverages on her blog or on Facebook/Twitter.