How to Find Out an App Development Cost?

Got an idea for a startup application? Need a mobile app development for your business? This article contains answers about the cost and timing of creating applications, as well as instructions on what is needed to conduct a correct estimation of the project and determine the required budget.

How much does it cost to develop an app?

The cost of application development from scratch starts from $ 10,000 – $ 15,000. Development time ranges from 2-3 months. For this money, you will get a simple application (5-10 screens) with a unique design and minimal functionality that will work on Android and iOS devices (the web version will also be available if the application was developed using Flutter).

What if the budget is up to $ 10,000?

Please note that the phrase “app development from scratch” is used intentionally, since there are many ready-made solutions for such popular queries as:

  • food delivery applications (for restaurants, pizzerias, sushi bars);
  • applications for online stores;
  • applications for beauty salons;
  • applications for ordering a taxi.

Therefore, if your business falls into one of these categories, then it is much faster and cheaper to take ready-made and customize it to your needs. Looking for available options in Google for queries like: “ready-made application for * food delivery *”.

An alternative option between writing an application from scratch and using ready-made solutions would be to use no-code tools. It’s like creating websites using a drag-and-drop constructor, but for applications.

The most famous instrument nowadays is Bubble. With a budget of up to $ 10 thousand, you can find a freelance specialist who will make a simple application in 1-2 months. No-code development is an ideal way to solve 90% of small business problems.

How much does it cost to develop an application based on a unique idea?

If the application has a unique idea or a specific business task that requires an individual approach, then the development cost will be much higher: from $ 25,000 – $ 30,000. It will take 4-5 months to create.

But each request is unique, and the development company estimates the budget of each idea and project separately, taking into account all the requirements and wishes of the customer. And for an accurate evaluation, it is extremely important to correctly formulate these requirements and wishes. Read on for how to do this.

How to find out the exact cost of application development?

App development has a direct analogy to building a house. To calculate the estimate, you need to describe in detail all the “Wishlist”, and even better to prepare a drawing. With applications the same: technical specifications and prototypes of screens are prepared and the cost and terms are calculated based on them.

A technical specification is a document that describes the requirements for WHAT, WHY, and HOW should be implemented in an application. The specs are necessary so that both you and the development teams have the same understanding of what needs to be done.

There are no special requirements for the design of specs, the main thing is to clarify the following questions:

  1. Who is the target audience of the application.
  2. What problem should the application solve for the target audience.
  3. What functionality will help solve this problem.
  4. How exactly this features should be implemented.
  5. What devices and OS should the application should run on.

This information will be enough for experienced developers to make a rough estimate of the project with an error of 50-70%. If exact numbers are required, a more detailed specification is needed. According to the detailed technical task, it is already possible to give an accurate estimation of the project (error 15-20%). However, it will be difficult for a person without experience to make a document of this level of detail. We help our customers to make a technical specifications for free.

If you need help with the preparation of the project specifications, just answer a few questions on the brief for application development and contact us.

How to estimate the cost of developing an application without specifications?

An alternative way to evaluate a project is to prepare screen prototypes. They are also called wireframes or mockups.

Screen prototypes are schematic sketches of the application interface, which make it clear WHERE and WHAT design elements are located and HOW they interact with each other.

Unlike technical specifications, prototypes for a simple application (up to 10-15 screens) can be drawn in 20-30 minutes. You don’t need to have special knowledge for this, and you can do it by hand on a piece of paper. How it might look, see the photo below.

sketches for mobile application
An example of a creative approach to prototyping mobile app screens

From such sketches, it will be easy for designers and developers to understand the essence of the idea and how the application should look and work. It is not necessary to cut them out, it is enough just to draw and show with arrows which button leads to which screen.

With detailed comments on what each button does, the estimtion team will be able to provide a reasonably accurate forecast of development time and cost. If you already have an outline of the application, contact us and we will prepare an estimate for your project.


What do you need to estimate the cost and timing of an idea for a mobile or web application?

You should do your homework, namely:

Prepare technical specifications
Draw screen prototypes

Don’t want to prepare either one or the other? Then it’s not worth taking on a project – you will lose money. We do not dissuade, we warn. According to App Store statistics, 80% of apps do not receive a single download during their entire time in the store.

Are you seriously tuned in? Contact us – we will help you to bring the project to the result!

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