Mobile App Development — The Hidden Costs
If you have reached the point of developing and launching a new mobile app you will need to think about development costs. If you have looked into this at all you will have noticed that you could end up paying anything between $15-$500,000 to get the first version on the market. So how do you move forward?
There are some crucial factors to consider if you want to get your new mobile app off the launch pad. Firstly, you need to hire a team rather than using solo freelancers and secondly, cheap or rushed apps are not good quality. So with that in mind, here are 5 ways to help you avoid any financial pitfalls on your journey to launching your app.
1. Know Your Objective and Set Priorities
Make sure that your personal priorities and objectives are apparent from the outset. For example, if you value user experience and functionality over aesthetics make that clear. If your development partner understands your needs they can iron out any potential bugs and get a quality product to market more quickly which often means less cost. If you are competing with existing popular on-demand apps then you need to understand that users have high expectations. In this case the cost for development is likely to be higher.
2. Quality of Personnel and Resources
Just like in any other industry, if you want quality you will need to pay more. Your biggest cost for software development is labor and resources. The higher the quality the bigger the cost because good software developers are in short supply. As a result you can expect to pay over the odds to keep them. If you look at two offers with a huge gap in pricing you can be assured that you will be getting what you pay for so go back and look at your priorities and objectives and whether your chosen developer can meet these.
3. Developed or Emerging Markets
In the developed markets you can expect to pay more for a developer. However, software development is often done offshore because there is a wealth of talent available at less cost in the developing market. A developer in India could charge $12/hour compared to those in the US charging $150/hour. Take account of the fact that prices vary globally but that the talent may be equally able to undertake your project. For example, Apple’s Macbook uses software that was developed in India.
4. Infrastructure Considerations
Infrastructure can add to the costs of a mobile app. Third-party application interfaces (APIs) can hike costs because these are not in the developer environment. There is also the impact of storage, databases, and so on budget to consider. If you believe that your app will gain good traction then you must make sure that it is scalable at the back end. The cost will increase according to the complexity of the app but as these are crucial you will need someone highly skilled to work on them.
5. Project Understanding
This is a common factor that impacts cost but is often missed when looking at budget. If the developer or stakeholder is not completely sure of your needs right down to the smallest detail it can cause issues at various development stages. Never leave anything unclear as assumptions will impact development causing increased costs and having potentially harmful effects on your working relationship.
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