Estimating The Cost Factors in Building Your Smart Phone Applications

“Tech will transform from something we actively use to a more seamless integrated experience that is ‘on’ all the time.”- Daniel Bæk, Co-founder of Nodes

Can we imagine a day without having a peep into our Mobile Phone Screen? Technology has transformed a small talking device into a highly upgraded gadget that practically runs our lives.

However, we do not ponder into the fact that an Application requires huge cost to get visibility in the playstores. We normally avoid installing an app which requires us to pay a certain installation amount or to access any of its features. But we do not realise the price, an app developer pays to make the app available for the end users.

There are numerous factors involved in giving a particular shape to an application. It is a gradual process and each step taken involves certain cost factors which builds up the overall  price estimation for the application development.

The Key Mobile Application Development Factors That Affect Overall Pricing:

Purpose & Functionality of the Application:

The type and the functionality of application that you are building must be taken into consideration while determining the development cost factor. Apps built for different purposes will have varied features and hence the price will differ based on such components. Eg: Gaming app require lots of graphics including 3D effects and make use of other built-in mobile mechanisms whereas a business app deals with content, database management systems and high security features. The costs incurred will be different for these two applications.

Platforms & Devices Used:

Different platforms, be it native or hybrid, plays a key role in affecting the cost factor. Some platform can be more expensive compared to the others. It depends on which platform, you  wish to develop your application, will determine the development cost. eg: iOS and Android, are two common platform that developers normally specializes on and they charge a different rate for each. Moreover, if you wish to target both the platforms then the price will rise high cause you require two different teams to work on.

Similarly, the type of devices for which the app is being developed can also impact the cost element. Building an app for devices (iOS, Android, Windows, Blackberry or iPad) is different as all will have different sets of integration.  

Apps Testing:

It is extremely crucial to test the app for any bugs and system errors. Testing is one of the key in determining the cost. It is ultimately important to conduct an extensive testing before the launch of the app. At times, multiple testing activities takes place to keep the app running or making amendments or bug fixing as per user feedback. This comes at an additional cost which is unavoidable as it determines the success rate of the app.

Maintenance & Enhancement:

Successfull launching of the application in the apps store does not end the developer’s work. The immediate user feedback gives the developer an insight into the consumer preferences and ehance the features accordingly. Moreover, bugs and other errors are bound to occur when the application is in use. Again the customer feedback helps in fixing the bugs. It is a good idea to retain the development team for a period after deployment so there is quick response to negative feedback and error fixing. Hence Maintenance Cost is an ongoing factor that stays throughout the life cycle.

Apps Security:

Application Security is a major concern for developers and others. Safeguarding the product from hackers involves looking for tools that help identify vulnerabilities and secure apps. Security of a mobile app is critical while developing an enterprise app since they have many confidential and sensitive datas stored on the device. The cost of securing such data is high thus impacting the overall cost of mobile app. Still it is advisable to invest in a good mobile security tool to protect your business from malicious hackers.

Apps Distribution:

There are many distribution channels where you can upload your business application, depending upon the key concept of your business. Each channel has its own set of costs. For example, commercial channels like iTunes and Google Play have different charges for developer license costs. Of course, the app requires approval by its hosts to ensure security policies.

Integration With Enterprise System:

An app can either be stand-alone or integrated within an enterprise system. If your app is not integrated within any system, they it will not require enterprise data or corporate access thereby reducing the cost. However, the development price will remain restricted to app development only.

User Authentication:

This is an especially important consideration for enterprise apps. Most enterprise applications require user logins with secure access and a secure integration channel into the company’s application. This requires effort and cooperation between the app development team and the enterprise system development team to ensure seamless integration. This increases the cost of app development in turn.

Customer Add-ons:

For many customer-centric apps, you may want to consider revenue- and traffic-generating tools to enhance the user experience and boost your ROI. Eg: Social Media Integration, In-app Purchases, Web services etc.


Apart from the above mentioned factors, there are others which arise once you start building your application, popularly known as hidden costs. Hence all the cost factors, including the unforeseen elements, must be kept in mind while preparing the Cost Budget to prevent any shortage of funds that may, in turn, hamper the development process.

Fluper clearly reveals the entire cost estimation picture before developing any application for its’ clients.

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