How much does it cost to develop an app?

5 min read

In July 2020, it was estimated that there are practically over 3 million various mobile applications on the Apple Store. Meanwhile, the Google Store has reached 2,950 hundred available apps. It is evident that the global market is constantly increasing and advancing in different directions and always tries out various new things. Thus, here comes a very genuine question: “How much does it cost to develop a mobile app?”

It’s essential to make your app technically well developed, which helps solve your consumers’ problems and makes it stand out among the many competitors. To create a quality app, you need to pick a good team of developers. You’ll find out what path you should take, how an app is made, and how much does it cost to develop a mobile app in this article.

The factors that affect the cost of an app development

There are two essential criteria here: the contractor (the price depends on the developer’s location) and the complexity of the application.

Naturally, the price also depends on the amount of work that the team needs to do. It directly depends on the number of app screens, controls, device type, screen orientation modes, security, the number of languages supported in the application, and other vital functionalities involved. The more features the customer wants in his app, the more time and money will be required. Although there is a way to spend less time and money, develop a mobile application with only core and essential functions.

The typical mobile app development path

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The general development plan may look like this (although it may vary from one company to another):

  1. Idea Creation – First, think about what kind of users and what kind of purpose the app is created for, how the user can enter it, what problems will he encounter?
  2. UI Layout – The first half of the design stage begins: the navigation is developed, the layout is made, and the guideline is compiled. With instruction for the developers, all of that is how the design elements should look for different mobile devices.
  3. Compression – All of the produced graphics are sliced, not to overload the application in terms of weight, but at the same time to leave everything you need.
  4. Core Development – Each of the produced materials is transferred to the development process. Often during this step, new ideas may emerge to make adjustments to the initial plan.
  5. Unit Testing – Next comes the testing phase. The QA engineers test the app on different devices and use unique services to evaluate other operating systems.
  6. Deployment & Maintenance  – After testing, the app is uploaded to the App Store, and the monitoring phase begins. This is mainly done to track download statistics and feedback.
  7. Marketing – Once the app is released, you need to work on user engagement and marketing. Collect all the metrics and analyze user behavior. Using push technology, “studying” customer habits and requests is easier with a customer base segmentation service. Having made the necessary conclusions, improve the application.

Before going straight ahead into the development works, make sure that your team will create a prototype of the app. This is very important, as it will help avoid mistakes and milestones and clearly understand what the result will be for you.

How do you find the best cost and quality performers for your application?

As everyone wants fast and cheap digital products, the most exciting question remains:” How do you accomplish such an app?”. The IT market is now quite full of different options. Each of them has its shortcomings, but there are still some suitable cases for any type of solution that you want to achieve.


To avoid paying for an office and reduce taxes a bit, you can consider freelance employees. You may hire people cheaper and contact the contractors directly. However, what we said just now is unfortunately too risky. For example, you risk experiencing difficulties in communicating and controlling the work of the freelancer. And the quality of the work is not always guaranteed. Therefore, this approach is not recommended by us since you need to look for a more organized and professional approach.

Dedicated team

Do you have an idea that is sure to become a long-term project? It makes sense to hire people who will only deal with your business. Specifically, set up a remote office for yourself. For this, you can also turn to one of the companies anywhere in the world.

With a dedicated team, the client has direct access to the entire team, not just the project manager. In this case, the executing company undertakes to provide you with all the necessary personnel: developers, designers, testers, managers, etc. It also takes care of organizational and administrative issues (office, equipment, taxation, health insurance, etc.). It’s basically like your entire team, which will deal with your project throughout the working day, only remotely. There is a variant when part of the group is on the customer side.

Local Devs VS IT Outsource

Two other options available for project implementation are either local developers or an IT outsource team. If you know the pros and cons of development very well, you can manage the team, and you can hire local developers for your company. You can do it permanently or for the duration of the project. This way, you will be fully involved in the development process and control the result.

Or you can go with the second option and hire a separate company that specializes in software development. In this case, it will take care of all the team building, planning, communication, testing, and partially the business analysis. You, on the other hand, will be responsible for the critical decisions and payment.

The latter option will be especially correct if your specialty is far from the development of sites or applications, and the selected company, on the contrary, has a solid experience in it. After all, no matter how tempting it may be to figure it all out yourself, in the end, it only leads to misunderstandings, but not to any gain.

If you are one of those entrepreneurs who don’t have enough technical knowledge and experience in creating digital products, JetRuby can significantly help you. Along with our professional and experienced team, we have created a service called Product Development Strategy Session. A must-have step for every startup, as we will dive into your development plan and produce a ballpark estimate on how to correctly create a quality product that will stand a chance to position itself on the market. Schedule a call with us today, and we’ll be discussing your business idea within 24 hours already!

How much does it cost to develop a mobile app in different countries?

A high price tag doesn’t always indicate good quality of performance. However, in most cases, it does, especially if you can see public proof of successful product launches and production. On average, the level of pay for one hour of work of a programmer with the same qualifications is:

  • U.S. and Australia from $50 to $250
  • The United Kingdom from $60 to $150
  • Western Europe from $60 to $150
  • Eastern Europe from $35 to $100
  • India from $8 to $30

It takes about two months of work to develop a basic application, i.e., 300 hours. But once again, it is difficult to estimate the cost of mobile app development without specific skills and understanding of the work in the field of programming. It is better to use specialized companies’ services (more specifically, outsource ones).

How much does it cost to develop a mobile app with JetRuby?

Estimating a mobile app development process’s total price is not easy to tell you the truth. You need to have a good idea of the final result and be technically savvy to estimate labor costs for each function. That is why our experienced team is usually involved in this process and knows what’s best for our clients individually.

The estimation takes place in several stages:

  1. Product Development Strategy Session – This is the preliminary examination of your entire business project. Even though we produce a rough estimation of your product’s potential, it allows you to know quite accurately the amount of investment needed to create the application before any contracts are signed. That is, you can get it within one day, free of charge.
  2. Design and Discovery Phase – This process involves three main parts that will allow you to see your product’s real potential. They are the dynamic prototype, the marketing theory, and the concrete business plan for your mobile app development. Furthermore, we will solve some of the early milestones that might have impacted your development process early. The price for this step varies depending on what goals you want to accomplish.
  3. MVP – At this stage, we clearly understand what your product is all about, how it will work and look, etc. The main point of this phase is to develop only the core and unique features that your application should have. This
  4. Core Product – Once your product will successfully pass the MVP stage, gain enough customer base, and starts to get more revenue from them, it’s time to add all of the core features that you wanted to add from the beginning.

According to our estimates and the previous projects we’ve done previously for most digital products, our general cost would vary from $25,000 to $50,000. However, keep in mind that these numbers are approximate ones and are covering the first three stages. The total cost will highly vary on the requirements you need to follow and the type of app you want to develop.

During our projects, there were also cases when in the process of development, there is a reconsideration of the original task, which can affect the final cost. That is, nuances emerge that could not be foreseen before, and decisions are made to remove something from the initial list as unnecessary or to add something to it. Especially when unique and unparalleled applications are created.


The question of “how much does it cost to develop a mobile app?” for a working project, business, or even a startup is a challenging development process. Nevertheless, to not encounter all the classic difficulties and frustrations of development, it is worth approaching the process as responsibly as possible. At a minimum, at the planning stage and the choice of contractor.

In our ten years of extensive experience, the JetRuby team has encountered clients who have already failed several times and were willing to make things real once more. Sometimes, for a variety of reasons, projects need to be saved. In such projects, we always start with concrete planning and detailed descriptions of all tasks that a startup has to accomplish. We start with the Product Development Strategy Session.

It is a free business consultation that will significantly ease developing and deploying an impeccable and profitable application for your business goals. First, we analyze your current project state while suggesting the steps you should take to progress to the next stage. And second, we produce a ballpark estimate for your entire project and all of the approximate expenses a similar app might have. All of that, you can get on our 1-hour free call with our business specialists! Schedule your call today and begin producing valuable results the next day!

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