How Much Does An App Cost? And Why You Should Prove Your Business Before You Build An App

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Is it Really Necessary to Build an App?

The world as we know it is shifting to zero and ones, and the exponential growth of technology is affecting every aspect of our life and has a profound influence on our everyday lives. With almost 2.87 billion smartphone users, the mobile industry is booming to new heights.

How Much Does An App Cost And Why You Should Prove Your Business Before You Build An App

But the question is: what do users usually do on their smartphones?

The answer is that 90% of our time on mobile devices is spent on apps and 10% on the mobile web.No wonder, in 2018, the number of app downloads reached 205 billion, with a projected increase to 258 billion in 2022.

How Much Does An App Cost And Why You Should Prove Your Business Before You Build An App

Hence, it’s safe to say that the future of the mobile world resides in apps.

And that’s why developing an app for your business should be among your top priorities.

Now, let’s talk some numbers.


How much does it cost to develop an app?

As broad as the question is, it can be boiled down to a few factors:

  • Operating System

The two dominating operating systems are Android and iOS and the majority of the apps are on those two platforms.

Each of them has different guidelines and requirements to publish your app.

In case you want to publish your app on both, you have to either develop a native app for each platform or create a cross-platform or hybrid app that can be published on both platforms.

Native apps are designed to only work on one platform, so the final executable file for Android (APK) is different from iOS (IPA).

Although Cross-platform and hybrid apps use different programming languages, a Cross-platform and hybrid app can be published in both the App Store and Google Play. 

Needless to say that developing one native app for each platform will cost you more than developing one cross-platform or hybrid app for both platforms.

But on the other hand, native apps have higher performance and responsiveness with a great UX, the ability to add multiple features, and a more secure design.

1. Features

Features are usually the most costly factor in the pricing scheme of an app because it highly depends on how complex you want your app to be.

Simple apps, usually called minimum viable product (MVP), usually contain a very small number of features that is centralized around one idea and all those features work together to achieve their purpose.

Then we have a compound app, that has multiple features that might include one or two complex features such as a map search feature or a QR scanner, or a chatbot.

Finally, you have the complex app in which there are multiple complex features such as integrating a mobile store with third-party APIs as payment gateways like Amazon, an event planning feature with booking and a ticket validation module, or a video & voice calling feature that includes a media messenger like WhatsApp.

2. Design

The layout of your app is one of the main factors that will either leave a good impression on users or a bad one, so it has to be unique, well-thought, appealing, and easy to use.

From choosing icons to the color scheme of pages, to how different screens will look like: these all are important elements that should be considered.

3. Backend

One of the cornerstones of your app’s viability and durability is its backend, most people don’t pay enough attention to this factor because they don’t know much about it.

Servers, disaster recovery, stress testing, and what kind of up-time you’ll have are all very important parameters, we will talk about this in a separate article to ensure we explain it elaborately.

4. Team

Which is composed of:

  • Project Manager
  • iOS developer(s)
  • Android developer(s) 
  • Designer(s) (UX & UI)
  • QA Specialist(s)
  • Sales & Marketing Specialists

Of course, the team size will depend on how complex the app is.

Now that you know an overview of what is involved in the cost of the app, let’s take a look at the actual cost:

How Much Does An App Cost And Why You Should Prove Your Business Before You Build An App

Research shows that the average cost of an app is 270K per app.


Now to the most important part: how many downloads should you expect when you release your app on the App Store or Google Play?

Ten thousand? A hundred thousand?

The answer might surprise you:

How Much Does An App Cost And Why You Should Prove Your Business Before You Build An App

83% of Andriod apps on the Google Play store have from 1000-5000 downloads!

Stunning, right?

So you might go through the effort of spending that much money and taking a tremendous amount of time to develop an app, and in a best-case scenario will have 5000 downloads?

If you’re already thinking that it’s not worth it, think again.

What if there’s an option to test your app first, to assess how successful your app could be, and then scale it from there?

An option that will cost you 90% less than the costs mentioned and will take a fraction of the time: we’re talking days instead of months.

Introducing nandbox!

With nandbox, you will be able to build a fully-functional native app, an Android app, and an iOS app, with the option to have it as simple as containing a few features to a complex app that contains multiple ones.

Build your mobile store and include payment integrations with Paypal, Stripe, or Accept, or your events app and include booking, ticket validation, and ticket redeeming features or your broadcasting app with multiple channels to release different content to your users, or your very own messenger with a video & voice calling feature, the platform is yours and the sky is the limit.

Start your 14-day free trial now!