Why Custom Enterprise Development is Soaring

The Digitalization of The Economy & Enterprise Development

In the last year, our world saw a massive acceleration into a more digitalized state. This was largely due to the global pandemic that swept the world. However, the wave of digitalization was well on its way long before the COVID-19 pandemic. Regardless, in today’s world, the economy has shifted to an almost entirely virtual experience. To meet this large appetite of the consumers for instant gratification and virtual service, companies have turned to custom enterprise development for a wide variety of solutions.

Developing a custom enterprise application for your organization leads to a wide variety of benefits.

How Businesses are Utilizing Custom Enterprise Apps

Companies are already making great use of custom enterprise apps and enterprise development. One of the main functions for which many organizations employ a custom enterprise application is communication. Communication is one of the most important aspects of any organization. Without strong communication channels, it’s fairly difficult to accomplish large-scale projects that require robust teamwork, cooperation, and strategy.

Furthermore, this is extrapolated when you consider the remote work atmosphere that many organizations have embraced following the COVID-19 pandemic. While working from home has proven beneficial for both organizations and staff members, it goes without saying that communication efforts saw strain as companies dealt with the transition from office work to remote staff.

The Benefits Of Enterprise Apps

There are many benefits to developing a custom enterprise application that streamlines business operations and creates internal efficiencies throughout the organization. From bolstering communication channels to fostering stronger collaboration sessions between remote employees, custom enterprise development offers firms a wide variety of solutions.

The Lifetime Value of a Custom Enterprise App

Investing in the enterprise development of a custom application is a big decision. However, when you consider the lifetime value that an application of this nature offers your firm, it really becomes a no-brainer.

For more information on custom enterprise applications, or anything else related to app development, keep browsing NS804.

Is It Time To Launch a Custom Enterprise App?

The Rise of The Custom Enterprise App

Organizations all over the globe adjusted operations over the past year in order to meet the needs of the market. Specifically, the COVID-19 pandemic completely altered the economy as we knew it. As a result, many companies began developing custom enterprise applications. These applications have a wide range of features and capabilities and vary significantly from business to business. However, despite the large variance in design and function, there is no denying that a custom enterprise app is perfectly capable of elevating your organization to the next level.

Finding the right time to invest in custom enterprise app development is sometimes crucial to successful implementation. Therefore, it’s vital to do your due diligence before pulling the trigger on custom enterprise app development to make sure that you’re setting yourself up for success.

Conducting an Internal Analysis

One of the very first steps to take in considering the development of a custom enterprise application is; conducting a thorough internal analysis. Performing an internal analysis is a vital process because it yields a waterfall of helpful insights and data that inform decision-making in the context of custom enterprise app development. For instance, by conducting an internal analysis you’ll gain impactful insights into the types of functions and capabilities to be sure to include.

Be sure to take note of your staff’s input when conducting your internal analysis. Staff will often provide deep insights into the exact functionalities that would benefit them the most. Then, by including those features in specific, you’re well on your way to a successful custom enterprise app design.

Another major area to pay attention to throughout the course of your internal analysis is your financial standing. This is arguably the most significant indicator to determine whether or not your firm is in need of a custom enterprise application. Furthermore, this data will allow you to know what sort of budget you would be able to invest in enterprise application development.

Developing Custom Enterprise Applications

As mentioned above, finances are an extremely significant determinant of when to develop a custom enterprise app. However, there is still more than one avenue through which appreneur’s and app developers can pursue custom enterprise app development. There are really three options when it comes to recruiting the programming team. First, you can look in-house if you have a few talented programmers, developers, and designers on staff already. This is arguably the most cost-effective as all of the development processes remain in-house and self-contained. Not to mention, when working with staff and employees, there’s a stronger internal sense of communication that already innately exists.

For those that aren’t lucky enough to have their own suite of developers in-house, there are still two other options. Organizations and decision-makers can look to agency developers, or they can seek help from a freelance developer. As you can imagine, each of these options comes with its own series of pros and cons. For instance, with freelance programmers, there is generally a higher risk associated with the quality of the end result, as well as timing, and other factors that could throw off your project. While some freelancers are more than worth their weight in salt, so to speak, there’s a wide market percentage of freelance developers that are under-trained and under-experienced whose work ends up being subpar. This can range from issues like bug-ridden applications full of faults; all the way to incomplete code, or a final design that feels clunky and unprofessional.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the coin, if fishing for a freelancer isn’t your game; you can trust the development of your custom enterprise application to an agency developer.

Choosing Your Developer

By far one of the most enticing benefits of choosing agency developers to take on your custom enterprise application project is the guarantees that come with. Agency developers and programmers are often part of entire project teams. In other words, they’re pieces of the whole or cogs in the machine, if you will. As such, your app has more people working on it from a variety of angles. With design specialists to UX experts, and everything in between, by choosing an agency developer, you can rest assured your application is in good hands.

There is, however, a common misconception with the agency development avenue. Since agencies come with quality guarantees on design, user experience, and delivery, they too bring with them a slightly heftier price-point. Consider this, though; when it comes to application development costs, the true lifetime value of the development process is presented in the final application. In other words, while agencies may require a bit more capital; there is a lot less risk when it comes to the end result.

The Benefits To Employees

Committing the time and capital necessary to develop a custom enterprise application, though, will go miles. In the new economy that is nearly fully virtual and with the world quickly accelerating toward an entirely digital social experience, consumers are hungry for instant gratification. As well as instant results. Beyond the growing expectation for instant results in the consumer base, however; is the fact that a large majority of the corporate workforce now operates remotely. To accommodate the remote workforce, more and more companies are buying into custom enterprise solutions for their organization.

One of the most common areas that these custom enterprise applications address is internal communication. While there are plenty of options in the enterprise app market that already target communication, employees show a significant uptick in productivity and efficiency with custom solutions.

Communication Solutions

In today’s day, communication is being recognized as one of the most valuable elements in any context. This extends from business settings to emotional life situations, and every and any type of relationship in between. As such, business leaders and decision-makers have put a much stronger emphasis and priority on developing strong avenues of communication, both internally and externally.

Developing a well-connected and interlaced internal network through strong communication channels elevates business operations, efficiency, and employee productivity. By creating strong channels through which team members can communicate swiftly and seamlessly, you’ll be providing them the suite of tools that they need to conduct and complete their daily activities from wherever they may be stationed.

Equip Your Staff For Success

Following suit, by investing in a custom enterprise application; your company can create a unique suite of enterprise solutions that is specific to your organization. This is a major benefit. It’s a major benefit because it offers you and your team the opportunity to elevate and optimize the processes that are specific to your firm.

Wrapping Up On The Custom Enterprise App

Many companies are trusting custom enterprise applications with the bulk of their internal communications. Not to mention, firms are finding more and more uses for their custom enterprise apps each and every year. This is another benefit of investing in a custom enterprise application. Once your enterprise app is launched, it always has the ability to grow, scale, and adjust itself to the needs that are most pressing in your organization.

For more information on custom enterprise app development, or anything else related to application development, keep browsing NS804. NS804 is the proud development agency for the everyday appreneur.

What’s Involved In Maintaining A Mobile App?

Input cost is always a primary consideration when embarking on the app development journey. That makes sense when a simple mobile app costs about $37,500 while a complex app is north of $500,000. Undoubtedly, designing and developing an app is a substantial investment that company leaders need to comprehend. But they also need to understand the importance of maintaining their applications after releasing them.

User expectations have risen considerably, and they seldom put up with buggy, obtrusive, and unengaging apps. That’s why it’s vital to listen to user feedback and roll out the necessary bug fixes and content updates. However, this is an ongoing process that increases the likelihood of — keeping users hooked — when done correctly. Below, we’ll take a deeper look at what’s involved in maintaining a mobile app.

1. App Development Is Ongoing

 

Pushing an application out the door is only part of the app development process. And the reason for this is that an app is never truly finished if it’s going to enjoy long-term success. There’s no shortage of applications in the App Store and Google Play, which means that users have an almost endless amount of options. Therefore, they’ll quickly delete lackluster apps to make space for those that seem more promising.

Many users have no qualms about removing applications that have intrusive in-app purchases, poor UX, security vulnerabilities, technical issues, unnecessary features, and when they lack content or violate user privacy. However, you can avoid or reduce the frequency of these issues by regularly rolling out updates for your apps.

2. Hidden Mobile App Costs

 

Developing applications comes with its fair share of hiddenmobile app costs. Back-end hosting, gathering user feedback, keeping up with OS updates, maintaining a developer account, supporting new devices, and providing maintenance and support, all cost time and money. Since an app requires regular updates during its life cycle, the costs of maintaining and supporting it may exceed its initial development costs.

3. Listening To User Feedback And Requests

 

The apps that succeed are those made by developers that take user feedback seriously. That’s why you should always be listening to user feedback and responding to their requests timeously. Look out for reviews left by experts and regular users in the app stores, and always make sure to respond with the necessary bug fixes, updates, or replies.

Their feedback will also help shape your app since you’ll gradually implement features and improvements that users want. Furthermore, by understanding user behavior you won’t waste resources on unnecessary content and features.

4. Pushing New Content

 

It’s vital to keep users engaged so that they don’t lose interest in your app. A good way to achieve this is by pushing new content at regular intervals. And one of the most efficient ways to notify your users about these changes is with push notifications. But there’s a push notification cost that you’ll need to consider. While several analytics platforms and vendors offer a free tier to help you get started, eventually, you’ll need to invest in a paid service to increase your reach.

The Bottom Line

 

Maintaining a mobile app is an essential part of the app development process. And doing it right means that you’re ascertaining all the hidden mobile app costs and listening to user feedback. Furthermore, you’re taking advantage of push notifications and applying the right strategies to keep your push notification cost as low as possible. Contact us today to learn how NS804 can help you develop and maintain engaging mobile apps.

How to Plan a Mobile App Budget

Creating a budget for your mobile app is important because it helps you and your business stay on track. Not every app developer can evaluate each aspect of the app, especially the cost involved. This post gives you a brief overview of how you can prepare a proper budget for your app.

How to Identify the Purpose of the App?

One of the best places to plan the budget is to first identify the main purpose of your app. Let’s analyze some of the more obvious ones.

  1. You want to help your customers place an order at your store/website with an app. A good example of this would be Amazon, Wal-Mart, and Etsy.
  2. You have identified a unique money-making opportunity and you need an app to cash in on it. Examples include Uber, Airbnb, and Doordash.
  3. You want your clients to easily engage your customer service team members via an app. Examples include the McDonald’s App.

If you need a rough estimate on the development costs, talk to a professional app developer. You can also use our online calculator to get an idea about the costs.

How to Choose the Right Platform for App Development?

As a general rule, the more platforms you develop your app for, the costlier it will get. You can save costs by targeting the most relevant platforms for your target audience. For instance, there’s no use building an app on Android if your customers primarily use iOS. Moreover, it’s more complicated to develop on Android due to the level of optimization needed for each device.

If you’re running out of ideas, survey your customers to identify the devices they commonly use. It is also worth your while to check in with your competitors to see their target platforms.

Which is Better: In-House Development or Outsourcing?

The answer to this dilemma depends on your goals and specific circumstances. Outsourcing and in-house app development have their own pros and cons. For the most part, you should choose them based on your own unique requirements. In-house development makes it easier to closely coordinate with your team and give them instructions. Additionally, you can directly instruct your team about new features in real time.

It is worth noting that in-house development involves software licenses, salaries, employee benefits, and more. Your next best option is to hire an app development team on a project-by-project basis. This is an economical move since you won’t have to deal with salaries anymore, and finding appropriate software is no longer your hassle.

Of course, you won’t be able to closely coordinate every step of the development process and this is where project questionnaires come in. They let you quickly fill your new team in on project briefs. In fact, experienced app development teams like the one at NS804 will work closely with you to build your app. It helps to think of us as an extension of your in-house team.

How Costly Are the App’s Features?

It’s time to identify which features have to stay and which need to go. Run a comprehensive market survey of your potential customers along with their needs and pain points. You should have a list of features that are must-haves and nice-to-haves. For starters, most apps should cover the basics such as integration with third-party platforms, social networks, and in-app purchases.

Create an MVP to Cut Costs and Estimate Future Profits

If you’re working on a shoestring budget, consider building a minimum viable product (MVP) instead. There is no need to go into in-depth animation and complex UI/UX design. For now, it is important to get the app off the ground to gauge demand for it. Don’t sacrifice user experience! You’ll also get an idea about your projected profit and estimated income.

Building an app is an on-going process that requires a lot of time, energy, and effort. There’s usually no cookie-cutter approach to app building and no cut-and-paste template to work with. You’ll also need to set aside some budget for maintenance and regular updates.

If you’ve decided to build an app, then get in touch with the professionals at NS804.

 

A Brief Look at iOS App Development Costs

One of the most frequently asked questions by business owners is: how much does it cost to make an iOS app? The answer: it varies from case to case.

Developing a mobile app is a tricky process. Data obtained by Clutch reveals that the average cost of app development in the US is around $75,000. The cost of iOS app development in countries like India and Ukraine is much lower than in the US. The same rule applies to Android app development.

The key deciding factor for app development cost is the size and scope of the project. App development is more than just programming. If you want to go the extra mile, you’ll need to invest in things like:

  • Animations
  • Custom solutions
  • Solving unexpected problems during app development

A properly-functioning iOS app will take two months to develop and cost around $5,000 to $500,000. A complex app with lots of features requires more than two months of development and about $240,000.

Enterprise software will typically fetch a price tag of around $140,000, with typical development times of 26 weeks.

Here’s a rough break down of the timeline:

  • Business analysis: 3 weeks
  • UX Design: 3 weeks
  • UI Design: 4 weeks
  • Back-end: 8 weeks
  • Front-end: 8 weeks
  • Testing and launch: 3 weeks
  • Support and maintenance: ongoing

Total time to launch: 26 weeks

You can get a rough idea about cost estimations with our online calculator here.

What are Marketing Costs for App Development?

Now that you’ve built your app, you need to know how to increase your user base and downloads. This is where app marketing comes in. You can do this bit yourself, but it’s probably better to hire an agency to do heavy lifting for you. The typical cost for marketing agencies goes anywhere from $25k to $50k and beyond, depending on the services they’re offering. For instance, if you want to hire an influencer to speak about your app, consider shelling out an additional $10k for extra exposure.

The marketing budget includes SEO, social media, PPC campaigns, traditional ads, content marketing, and word of mouth advertisement.

How to Hire an App Development Team?

By far the biggest factor that goes into the overall cost is the team you hire. Imagine hiring a contractor to renovate your house that has 10 rooms in it. Different contractors will quote different prices, which means you’ll have to do a fair bit of research along the way to get affordable estimates. It is also worth noting that hiring an offshore team from India or Ukraine is a lot cheaper than hiring a local team.

A typical team structure for app development includes a solution architect, a business analyst, a few developers (depending on the size of the app), a quality assurance specialist, UI and UX designer, and a project manager. And even if you do decide to skimp out on the budget for the user interface (such as animations and fancy colors), you must provide good user experience for success on the App Store.

Why is Backend Development Important for App Design?

You’ll need considerable backend development if you plan on launching a dynamic app with a market for millions of users who will exchange huge amounts of data in real-time. More so if the data is to be backed up on the cloud and synchronize with other platforms.

Think apps like SoundCloud, Facebook, Quora – all these underwent extensive time spent on designing a complex architecture before they were ready. Furthermore, such an app will require multiple languages for success, which means you’ll have to hire multiple teams of professionals!

Are There In-App Purchases?

Many organizations also include in-app purchases for extra content and features. In this case, many users don’t like escaping the relatively safe ecosystem of your app. This is why in-app purchases are so useful. The application has to be strong enough to store and process sensitive information like credit card numbers, SSN, addresses, etc.

Your costs will also increase depending on each payment option, such as PayPal, Google Pay, Stripe, 2Checkout, and more.

Which Devices Should My App Support?

Compatibility is arguably the most important factor when developing an app. The iOS app should be compatible with both the latest and previous vision of iPhone and iOS alike. This is why you should run an analysis on your target market to gauge demand for the app. An app that is compatible across various platforms will require a greater budget.

Are There Any Extra Costs?

All developers are not necessarily good designers. That is an extra cost that depends on the size of your app. Prepare to spend costs on hidden expenditures such as legal fees, server costs, startup fees, and more when you’re turning the app into a business.

Since running an app is an on-going process, you will need to provide regular updates to fix bugs, security loopholes, and add new features. This means added maintenance costs after development is done. As a general rule, the industry norm is to allocate about 20% of development costs towards maintenance.

So, if your app costs around $100,000 to develop, then you’ll need to pay about $20,000 every year to maintain it. If you’re dealing with legacy costs, then you’re looking at 50% of your original app development costs. This means $50,000 per year of support and maintenance!

If you’re ready to build your iOS app and want to know how much it costs, get in touch with our team ns804!

 

How Much Does it Cost to Build an Event App?

The event industry is evolving at the speed of light and one of the best ways to capitalize on its explosive growth is building event apps. Building an event app could be a bit expensive depending on the features you add. The typical price for an event app ranges from $5000 to over $500,000 but, as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. To make things easier for you, we’re letting you get an estimate on the price of your event app here.

Over 85% of event planners will make use of event registration software to facilitate faster registrations. It’s all about giving audiences an unforgettable experience while maximizing the event ROI – the best of both worlds.

At least 75% of event professionals who don’t use event applications plan on adopting them sometime in the future. Your competition as an event professional will increase; the sooner you have an event app ready, the faster you’ll capture your target audience.

And before you get started on Facebook for your event planning needs, take note that it only serves as a valuable promotional tool to create awareness about the event. The actual registration, planning, coordination, and scheduling will be done through the event.

Problem is, it’s not easy to build a fully functioning event app. Even a ‘normal’ business app with fewer endpoints will cost anywhere from $100,000 to $140,000 depending on their features and functions. The risks and variables involved when planning and developing an event app are simply greater. There is a ton of information that has to be managed in real-time, requiring developers to exercise precision and accuracy – both of which take time and money.

Most event planners will incorporate the following set of features in their event app:

  • Information on the list of speakers
  • Constant news updates about the venue, etc
  • Report briefings
  • Accurate event scheduling
  • Interactive maps for the venue
  • In-depth information on event sponsors
  • Integration with social media tools
  • Ratings
  • … And much more

Depending on the event planner’s needs and budget, the event app may also come with messaging capabilities that allow participants to communicate with each other. Some speakers also like having the ability to ask attendees questions for constant feedback, which is best done with polls.

Every extra feature will add to the amount of time spent developing the app which, of course, adds to your total costs. Below are the main factors that will affect the cost of creating an event app.

Which Platform Should I Choose for My App in 2020?

What will you choose? A web-based platform or a mobile app? Or maybe both?

If you plan on porting the event app to various platforms, including iOS and Android, the development cost and time will increase based on your needs. For instance, the Android platform development efforts will take at least 200 to 3,100 hours. This may be expensive for some businesses especially if they plan on adding all the bells and whistles.

For the most part, event planners will likely settle with hybrid application development because it is far more affordable and allows at least 70% of the code to be reused on other platforms once it has been developed for one.

GPS Connectivity

Smartphone users are becoming increasingly dependent on GPS connectivity to guide them through busy roads and streets as they struggle to find their destination. This is why event apps must also incorporate map-based GPS services to help users. While users can just as easily swap out the app with a more dedicated tool like Google Maps or Apple Maps, doing so only adds to the hassle.

The best way to maximize user interactivity is to provide them with GPS connectivity built in the app. This obviously increases the development time needed to implement the new feature in the event app.

Event Agenda

Think of event agendas as the heart and soul of your event app. Event agendas are a great way to help your guests get to the event on time. This is an essential feature that your guests will use and depend on. Most events such as conferences and seminars are characterized by multiple breaks that often occur at the same time. Attendees need to know which ones they can attend and which ones they should cancel in case it conflicts with their schedule.

An event agenda gives your guests the ability to save sessions that they are interested in. It also gives them an easy way to view their favorite schedule. The last thing they want is to revisit an event or session that they already skipped before during their research.

Post-Event Surveys

Surveys help event planners measure the success of their event. Unfortunately, few event planners give due consideration to post-event surveys. In fact, at least 55% of event professionals believe they don’t properly measure the success of their events properly. This is where post-event surveys or feedback forms come in.

59% of event professionals listed down feedback surveys as the most important way to measure the success of their live event. All event planners want to know what features worked, what didn’t, and what went wrong. This is where post-event surveys come in. They let you collect honest feedback from guests who will be more than happy to voice their concerns and complaints if something goes wrong.

Once you have identified which areas of the app need improvement, you can start fixing themes right away. Most event professionals miss out on collecting this information because they send requests for surveys long after the event was held; at this point, fewer guests are willing to share their suggestions and feedback. To make your surveys quick and easy, give your guests the ability to send their reviews in real-time. It should ideally be done with a few taps instead of combing through long and drawn out questionnaires that waste their time. You can always add an optional section for longer reviews to let users share as much or as little of their feedback as they want to.

Social Features

No event app can survive without being well-connected with social media networks. This is the primary way to maximize user engagement and reach a large chunk of your target audience. Once again, users can always open another tab, window, or app to check their social media. But as mentioned above, most smartphone users would rather do this within the app to save time.

The best part about social media is that it is completely free of charge unless you are running ads. Adding social features to your event app will increase development costs and time. But this cost is definitely worth it since users will find it much easier to share information and post what they did at the event.

If possible, try adding support for multimedia features too such as photographs, videos, gifs, and more. Adding support for social media will increase your traffic as more users will download it out of curiosity.

API Interface Integrations

API interface platforms are extremely useful for event-based companies if they plan on selling tickets, merchandise, and collecting donations. APIs are responsible for point-to-point integration for the exchange of data, including payments. Once again, the idea is to provide access to users. This is best done by adding digital payment gateways so guests can purchase tickets without ever having to leave the app.

Adding this feature will obviously drive up the costs because of the extra number of additional hours and resources that your development team will put into API integration. The ideal event app should be compatible with most major payment processors including PayPal, Visa, bank transfers, and even cryptocurrency.

Offers and Discounts

Who doesn’t like having generous discounts that cut down the price by a significant margin? Most users love the instant gratification that comes with small discounts and the potential freebie. Instead of sending offers and promo campaigns into their inbox, you can send notifications directly through the event app. You’ll soon notice that customer loyalty will increase as users utilize more of your event services.

Conclusion

Can you make an event app at an affordable price while getting all your desired features? Yes, you can! The trick, however, is to find the right team to develop your apps at an affordable price that fits your budget.

If you are looking to create an event app for your business and wonder how much it will cost, then get in touch with our development team at NS804. We will offer you the best possible price while delivering superior event applications that will maximize your ROI.

 

What is the cost of hiring a freelance developer for your mobile app?

There’s a simple formula you can use to determine what your app’s development costs will come to: hourly rate + time + scale. Using an equation such as this would lead you to believe that a freelance developer would be cheaper than a development team in every respect: freelancers have a lower hourly rate than development companies, freelancers work on a time crunch, and one person is obviously a smaller scale than a team and the resources necessary to run one.

It’s true – on paper, the option of a freelance developer looks better than hiring a development team in every way. There is a reason, however, that so many development companies are familiar with a client approaching them by saying: “I had a freelancer make this app for me, and it just wasn’t what I was hoping for, it didn’t work properly, I need to update it and I can’t figure out how to without them…”

The list goes on, and development companies have heard everyone.

The app lifecycle

If we lived in a world where apps were developed and then their codebase was never touched again, this topic would be null and void – freelance developers would be a more affordable option than development companies. And initially, freelance app developers are cheaper.

Unlike websites that can be updated once every few years (other than content), the top-performing apps are on an update cycle of one to four times a month. When operating on a rigid timeframe such as this, it’s important to have a reliable partner that is available when you need them to be, and has the bandwidth to handle your updates as they are needed.

Why do apps update so frequently? The app lifecycle continuously revolves back into itself:

After the steps of ideation and requirements gathering, and after development, design, testing, and deployment, app publishers need to keep an eye on their app with the use of analytics. By measuring user engagement, you can determine what areas of your app need improvement, and which areas are your strong points.

Tip: When looking over your app’s analytics, keep an eye on the features users engage with most, and leverage these features as much as possible. Talk about it on social media, and make sure that users can access these features as fast as possible. If you notice a feature that users never engage with, it might be wise to consider removing it from your app, unless it is necessary to the core functionality.

After measuring your app’s analytics, you’ll want to take that user data and utilize it in the improvement of your app. As stated above, the top-performing apps update one to four times a month, and this is for a few very good reasons:

  1. Updates are free marketing for your app – they give users a notification that will not go away until they have looked over what your update entails. This serves as both a reminder and a chance for you to highlight the new features that await them.
  2. Users take security very seriously. If your app’s security is compromised, and therefore your users’ data falls into the wrong hands, you will have a serious app abandonment issue.
  3. By updating your app frequently, you show your users that you can about their experience. This will make it more likely to receive positive ratings and reviews. Think about a pleasant customer experience you had recently – most likely, the person helping you was attentive and responsive. This is the same for apps – frequent updates mean happy users.

For more about updating your app, check out our blog, How much does it cost to update an app?

What is the cost of hiring a freelance developer for your mobile app?

Freelancers are rarely available as frequently as your app will need to be updated – often, a freelancer will move from project to project, and have multiple going on at the same time. With your codebase at the whim of their next availability, you could be forced to wait months to update your app.

App developers, on the other hand, make use of development teams so they can always stay on top of app updates and development. Plus, with a larger knowledge base, and the ability to specialize, development agencies are more efficient overall, especially when accounting for robustness and it’s lifetime as a product.

Development is just the beginning

You can expect to spend up to 20% of your app’s initial development cost every year that it is on the app marketplace – be it Google Play or the App Store. With a freelancer, you’ll constantly be playing catch-up as you find someone who is available to do the work for you, as well as dealing with the significant vetting process that is necessary when working with freelance app developers.

For more about the differences between freelance developers and development agencies, check out our blog on the topic.

How much is a MVP app?

How much is a MVP app? Well, honestly, that’s a question with a few different answers, and all of them are open-ended.

If your question is in reference to how much of a feature set a MVP app includes, the answer is “all of it,” and you’re wondering about the spend of developing a MVP app, the answer is “it depends.”

MVP apps aren’t magical money-saving inventions, nor do they follow a strict development roadmap – there isn’t a uniform MVP app, just as there’s no set of rules for running a business. A MVP app, by definition, provides the minimum amount of features to be a viable product. So the answer to both of these pre-supposed questions is “as much as you want it to.”

MVPs and feature sets

First off, it’s important to fully define what a MVP is:

Minimum – the minimum set of features a product can have while still remaining…

Viable – to provide value to customers, so they are willing to engage with the…

Product – which is ready to be used for consumption.

Many people like to think MVP means “rushed” or that the product produced could be classified as a prototype. But a MVP app is neither of those things – what makes a MVP app a MVP app is the idea and the implementation of that idea, not the product itself.

MVP apps come with complete feature sets, as they must be ready for consumption on the market – and in fact, MVP apps usually need to perform their specific task better than any other app on the App Store or Google Play.

This is especially true when building a MVP app when competition already exists.

Now, keep in mind, that while a MVP app’s feature set must be complete, there is no such thing as a complete app. Updating your app is a continuous process that is necessary to the success (and survival) of your app. There is a correlation between frequently updating an app, and the revenue that app produces – the most successful apps today release an update one to four times every month.

This is why MVP apps lend themselves well to the app marketplace – software products are expected to update frequently anyway, so you might as well start with a basic, robust foundation that allows for easily planned, strategically implemented updates.

This is the true value a MVP app brings to both you and your users – when presented with a minimal feature set, users are able to request the features they want, and developers are able to implement these user-requested features without the hassle of working around other existent features.

A MVPs feature set should only work to solve the problem the app is designed to solve. Pain points are the most powerful aspect of your app – and any feature that doesn’t play a role in that solution should be removed.

For example, a rideshare app like Uber would only need a few of the features it currently makes use of to solve the transportation pain point it solves. A MVP rideshare app would make use of GPS and mapping, navigation, location services, a backend database to store user data, and a payment gateway like Stripe. This would all be organized in a simple UI.

All of the other features Uber makes use of are quality of life improvements – while they aren’t vital to the core functionality of the app, they do bring users extra value. Adding value to an app over time is a great way to retain users – they will continually return as they see the update notifications.

The cost of MVPs

Due to their reliance on a specific, targeted feature set, the development cost of a MVP app can vary wildly. Depending on what your MVP app is attempting to solve, your app could cost $25,000, or $100,000.

The equation to determine the development cost of any app is the one constant in app development: hourly rate, time, and scale. A MVPs limited feature set – by design – reduces two of these variables. While this does reduce the initial development cost of the app, the true value of a MVP app, as stated above, is the engagement you receive from your users.

This is why the money saved in the development stage should be put right back into building a community for your MVP app. The value a MVP brings is nonexistent if your app doesn’t have a community built around it. As soon as you have an idea for an app on the table, and even before development starts, your first priority should be to find your market, and then engage with it in order to create a community.

For more about MVPs, market research, and pain points, check out our aptly-titled blog, MVP development: Market research and pain points.

The best way to reduce the cost of your MVP app (and this is true for the development of any application, software, or product in general) is to have a solid plan, and carefully execute that plan by properly managing your development cycles.

For more about MVPs and development cycles, check out MVP + Agile methodology.

How much does it cost to make an app like WhatsApp?

An app such as WhatsApp is similar to an iceberg: there’s a lot more going on under the surface than above. Like many of the apps we have covered in our How much does it cost? series, WhatsApp’s seemingly simplistic design and easy-to-navigate functionality disguise its internal complexity. Every app’s development cost comes down to the following equation: Feature set + scale + hourly rate = total development cost.

Using this equation, we can determine that based on the scale of the app being created, the cost of developing an app with a feature set similar to that of WhatsApp would range from $75,000 to $95,000. These are, of course, the ranges of your app’s initial development cost – you can expect to spend one-fifth of your app’s total development cost in app maintenance every year. Also, different hourly rates can increase or decrease your overall spend drastically.

It’s important to note that no app is the same – and until you have your app’s entire feature set planned out, it’s backend systems architected, and your market research complete, you won’t be able to accurately assess the true cost of your app’s development. The estimates below are just that – estimates. While these ranges do come with the backing of years of professional experience and know-how, development of any app’s feature set can vary wildly depending on many factors.

WhatsApp’s market presence

WhatsApp was founded all the way back in 2009, and five years later, in 2014, was sold to Facebook for $19 billion. To put that return-on-investment into perspective, their initial app was developed with $250,000 in seed money.

WhatsApp didn’t just experience record growth in the company’s valuation – in just four years time, the app had seen its monthly user metric rise to 419 million – that’s more monthly users than Facebook Messenger, Gmail, Twitter, and Skype’s fourth year monthly numbers combined.

Now, in 2019, WhatsApp’s monthly user number rests at 1.5 billion. That’s a lot of messages.

Let’s look into the feature set that created the environment for such a wildly successful app:

WhatsApp’s feature set

UI / Design / Animation

There’s a pattern in UI/UX design that’s so constant it could be called a rule: the simpler an interface is, the more time and thought was spent designing it. Taking the entirety of WhatsApp’s feature set and creating an easy-to-use interface takes time, resources, and plenty of experience. Designing an app that uses the number of features that are present in WhatsApp would cost at least $10,000, but this cost can vary depending on the functionality you want your app to possess.

Instant messaging

This is the main feature of WhatsApp – for many of the app’s users, the instant message feature either replaced or beat SMS to the punch – and this is made especially recognizable by the app’s large number of international users.

All messages (and indeed, all forms of communication) sent through the app are free – users only need to provide WhatsApp with a phone number that is used to create a unique profile, and they are able to instant message with any WhatsApp user for no charge.

WhatsApp sends messages over a wifi connection using end-to-end encryption – if a user is not connected to the internet when a message is sent to them, the message will be stored temporarily on WhatsApp’s servers, until the user has established a connection again. Once a wifi connection has been re-established, the message is downloaded to the phone. After a message has been sent and received between the parties communicating, it is deleted from the WhatsApp servers.

WhatsApp’s instant messaging feature can be used to send messages to an individual WhatsApp account, or to a group – of which you can add a maximum of 256 users to a single group. The technology behind WhatsApp’s instant messages is called XMPP (extensible messaging and presence protocol).

Developing these combined features for your app would cost at least $35,000.

VoIP and video chatting

WhatsApp users can also make phone and video calls through the app – by using voice over internet protocol technology. By using internet and cell data, users can talk and see each other anywhere around the world without paying for international charges.

Developing your VoIP features for your app would cost at least $35,000.

Geolocation

Using the “Live Location” feature, users can share their location in real time with contacts. They can control their privacy by manually turning this on and off, or by setting a share timeframe. If your app will be developed for Android, it’s best to use the Google Play location services API, and if your app is intended for iOS, Apple’s Core Location Framework.

Implementing a feature such as this will cost around $3,000.

Push notifications

Users will receive push notifications whenever they are sent a message while they are not currently engaged with the app. There are many different methods of implementing push notifications, whether through cloud integration, AWS, or may other platforms. Our favorite is Kumulos.

Other features

WhatsApp makes use of other features to round out its feature set: cloud integration so users can save messages, calendar sync so users can easily schedule meetings and appointments, multi-media file transfers so users can share content with each other, and in-app payments so users can send money to one another.

WhatsApp?

If you were to build from scratch an app that mirrors WhatsApps’ current functionality, your development time would range from 650-750 hours. This can change depending on many different factors, including the development team, the feature set, and the specific requirements for features such as security and latency. The time spent developing an app such as this is worth it however – and all 1.5 billion WhatsApp users agree.

How much does it cost to make an app like tinder?

Building a dating app like Tinder is much the same as building a relationship – it takes time (which in the case of app development, means money) to develop something special. If you’ve been keeping up with our How much does it cost? series, you’ll be familiar with the app development cost equation: Feature set + scale + hourly rate = total development cost.

Using this equation, we can determine that based on the scale of the app being created, the cost of developing an app with a feature set similar to that of Tinder would range from $80,000 to $150,000. These are, of course, the ranges of your app’s initial development cost – you can expect to spend one-fifth of your app’s total development cost in app maintenance every year.

It’s important to note that no app is the same – and until you have your app’s entire feature set planned out, it’s backend systems architected, and your market research complete, you won’t be able to accurately assess the true cost of your app’s development. The estimates below are just that – estimates. While these ranges do come with the backing of years of professional experience and know-how, development of any app’s feature set can vary wildly depending on many factors.

Let’s look over Tinder’s feature set, and go over the individual aspects that influence a dating app’s cost of development:

Tinder’s feature set

UI / Design / Animation

For every screen an app has, and for every point of interaction on those screens, more time will be spent designing and animating your app. Animation is a key factor to user retention in any app, but when designing an experience meant to entice users, animation is a necessity.

Depending on the number of features your app utilizes, your UI/UX costs could range anywhere from $6000 to $15,000. If your app is being developed for both iOS and Android, this time will be nearly doubled (this is applicable to most app features).

Social login integration

A quick onboarding process is another important development choice when it comes to maximizing your app’s user retention. The less steps a user needs to take before they are able to use your app, the better. This is where social login integration comes into play.

Tinder connects a user to their Facebook profile, and then creates unique credentials for that user, which can then be used by the user to login to Tinder. While the user is still effective logging in via Facebook, Tinder creates a unique tag based on the user’s Facebook profile to increase its security. Implementation of this feature can cost anywhere from $300 to $1,500, depending on the level of security you want in place.

Instant messaging

Tinder’s chat feature can be replicated via a messaging service like Pubnub or Apache Kafka.

PubNub can provide real-time integration for chat features, IoT device communication and streaming, mapping, GPS, push notifications, and alerts. PubNub’s services start at $49 per month, plus data transaction fees.

Kafka can be used for messaging, website activity tracking, log aggregation, stream processing, and event sourcing. Like everything under the Apache license, it’s open source, and therefore a free API to implement.

There are many more real-time services that provide real-time chat functionality, like AWS and Google Firebase. For more about realtime implementation, check out our How much does it cost to implement realtime updates in your app? blog.

Facebook data integration

After using the Facebook login feature, Tinder will mine for specific data from a user’s Facebook profile – examples being mutual friends and common interests, as well as location. Tinder then takes this collected data and uses it to help find potential matches for the user.

Implementing a feature such as this can range from $10,000 to $13,500, depending on how much information you want your app to collect.

User profile

In order to keep track of who a user has matched with, potentially matched, rejected, and been rejected by, Tinder must store data tied to individual user profiles. This data would be collected and stored in the backend in data tables located in remote servers.

When users add a profile photo, edit their bio, or make any change to their profile, the app will re-write the data stored on the server. Anytime a user views another user’s profile, they are connecting to the server that houses the respective data.

Implementing a feature like this can take 120 to 200 hours of development time – building out the data layers necessary for an app like Tinder is a massive undertaking. Also, be aware -managing a growing user base over time can significantly increase your backend server maintenance costs.

Matching

We all know how the process of using Tinder works; if a user swipes right on another user’s photo, and then that user swipes right on the other user’s photo, a match is created, and the users can then begin chatting through the app.

While this creates an easily understandable flow for the user, there is a significant amount of real-time data transferring that must take place in order for this feature to be properly implemented.

Development of this feature can cost anywhere between $1,500 to $3,000 to implement.

Notifications

Notifications are one of the most effective forms of engaging users when they aren’t directly using your app. They are also incredibly practical calls to action – if a Tinder user gets a match, they can be alerted via a push notification alerting them as such. Or, if a user has ran out of swipes for the month, but has a high number of potential matches, you can entice the user to buy more swipes so they can connect with the users who have expressed interest in their profile.

For more about implementing push notifications, check out our blog How much does it cost to implement push notifications? – with Kumulos.

Location services

Tinder automatically detects a users location, and provides potential matches based on that location. Tinder also gives users the ability to pin their location to a specific area, and to change their location entirely.

Implementing this feature would range from three to five hours of development time, but this estimate can change depending on the complexity of the system you are creating, and the SDK you are utilizing.

For more information, check out our blog, How much does it cost to add a GPS and mapping API?

In-app purchasing

Tinder uses in-app purchasing to increase its revenue – from paid subscriptions to emoji packages, users can make purchases through the app. In order to implement in-app purchasing, you can use a payment API like Stripe.

Proper integration of this feature can range anywhere between $4,000 and $5,000.

Tinder’s revenue

Tinder’s revenue stream is massive – in 2018, the app made $800 million. The app sees about 50 million users per month, has 3.8 million paying subscribers, generates almost 26 million matches every day, and users swipe over 1.6 billion times every 24 hours.

While developing and maintaining a dating app like Tinder might have a fairly high initial development cost, the potential revenue your app can generate more than makes up for it. For more about app maintenance costs, visit our blog, How much does it cost to update an app?