What is the Cost of Building Profitable Mobile Apps in 2023? Complete Cost Analysis


By : Biztech

What is the Cost of Building Profitable Mobile Apps in 2023? Complete Cost Analysis1


There’s no beating around the bush regarding the immense benefits of mobile apps for businesses. You can unlock your cell phone and find a number of applications lying there – food/ grocery ordering apps, gaming apps, finance banking apps, and more!

You already know that it is the right approach to connect with your audience more personally. But, how much will it cost you in 2023? Can you generate a decent ROI against the money you invest?

This mobile app development cost guide will enlighten you with all the associated factors.

Let’s dive in!

How Much Will it Cost to Build an App in 2023?

We are already in the last quarter of 2022!

Technologies are evolving every day and so are trends. With 2023 fast approaching, how much is it going to cost to develop an app?

That’s something businesses are very eager to know!

Firstly, you should understand that app development cost depends on many factors. You need to assess each one of these factors to determine your true development cost in 2023. Some major factors that influence cost include

  • The type of mobile app (simple, basic, and complex).
  • Custom requirements/ features you develop.
  • The hiring/ engagement model.
  • Location of resources.
  • Technologies used.
  • Mobile app development platforms (native (iOS/Android/ Windows), hybrid, or cross-platform app development).
  • App design complexities.

Consider all these factors to plan your project budget accordingly. In this venture, consulting a reputed app development company can give you an added advantage as you will make an informed decision.

But before that, let’s give you a brief idea about the average cost of app development.

Cost of app development based on complexity

App Type Examples Approximate cost Time
Simple Applications built with minimal features like calculator, pill reminder app, expense tracker, recipes app, book database, etc. $40,000 – $60,000 2-3 months
Basic Apps with decent features without much customization or complexities. For example – chat apps, casual gaming apps, video downloaders, news apps, dictionaries, photo editing apps, etc. $60,000 – $150,000 3-6 months
Complex Customized apps with complex features. For instance, eCommerce apps, finance banking apps, immersive gaming apps, and applications with next-gen technologies like AI, ML, Blockchain, etc. $300,000 onwards 9+ months

Cost of app developers based on region

Region Developer rates (per hour)
India $30 – $40
Eastern Europe $30 – $50
Western Europe $80 – $100
Australia $100 – $120
UK (United Kingdom) $100 – $120
USA (United States of America) $120 – $150

Note that the developer rates will vary based on the kind of app developer you hire. For a junior-level developer, you would have to pay less. However, the developer rates will increase for hiring mid-level, and senior-level developers.

Bonus Tip: Want to develop a quality app on a budget? Well, you may find hiring local developers expensive. But, there’s an option to outsource your mobile app development project to a different region like India where developer rates are much less comparatively.

Cost for app development based on type

Type Development Cost
Native iOS app $55,000 to $300,000
Native Android app $50,000 to $300,000
Hybrid apps using React Native, Flutter $40,000 to $200,000

How to Calculate the Cost to Develop an App?

The cost of building an app isn’t just the developer’s charge you have to pay. You have other things to consider as well. For instance, the deployment cost, maintenance cost, and other associated costs.

Here, let me help you compute the total cost of developing an application.

I. Development cost

As mentioned above, the cost of developing an application will differ based on the complexity of the app. In addition to this, the tech stack, visual UI, UX content, designer, and developer costs are a few other things up for consideration.

A simple app typically contains features like

  • Login/ signup option.
  • Profile creation/ editing.
  • Notification.
  • Search.
  • Admin dashboard.

It is one of the simplest forms of applications you can build and won’t require you to hire an extensive team of polished developers. Thus, the cost will be minimal. You can further minimize the cost by choosing to develop a cross-platform app with open-source technologies like React Native or Flutter.

A basic app has features such as

  • All features of a simple app.
  • In-app purchases.
  • Social media integration.
  • Location tracking.
  • Payment integration.
  • Improved security.

For a complex app, you can add an immense number of custom features like

  • In-app calls.
  • Online streaming.
  • Native features.
  • Video chats.
  • Data synchronization with multiple devices.

Notably, the more complex features you add, the more will be your app manufacturing cost. Also, your cost of hiring would increase. So, determine what kind of app you wish to build and define the features beforehand to get a clear picture of your costs.

II. Third-party integration charges

Developers can save a lot of their development time and speed up the process by choosing to integrate a powerful API. It lets them add desired functionality without having to code it from the ground up.

For instance, suppose you want to build a travel app. You will obviously need a powerful search tool that allows your users to search for flight options conveniently and quickly. Creating a functionality like this can take several weeks’ worth of time.

However, that’s not the case with APIs. Using an API like Skyscanner, developers can integrate the robust search engine into your app conveniently. Moreover, this API is free. But, there are others that aren’t. You should try to reason if the cost you pay will be profitable for your app or not.

In most cases, it is quite profitable and you get to save a lot of developer hours. In any case, the costs associated with the integration are also a part of your total development cost.

III. App release costs

You also have to consider the cost of deploying an application on the app stores. For Google Play Store, you don’t have to pay anything extra to deploy the app.

However, there’s a one-time fee of $25 that you would need to pay to be able to use the Google Developer Console. As for iOS applications, you need to pay about $99 to access the Apple Developer Console.

IV. Maintenance costs

Maintaining your mobile app requires several considerations – bug fixing, paying app store fees, launching updates, etc. You will eventually have to invest some amount of money to keep your mobile solutions up and running.

The maintenance cost for an app typically ranges between 10% and 20% of the original cost of developing an app. It could be anywhere from $5000 to $10000 annually.

Initiating updates range between $1000 to $2000 and hosting charges may vary between $20 to $300 for your app.

V. Marketing costs

Whether you are developing an Amazon-like app or a social media app, marketing is a critical aspect of your project’s success. It will help your app reach the right audience and you can generate sufficient ROI.

However, it is expensive. Whether you choose paid marketing tactics or organic means of promotion, your promotion costs will be around 40% of the total app cost each year.

To compute the cost of creating an app, you will need to consider all of the above pointers. It should give you a brief idea of how much does it cost to make an app.

Read More: Android vs Ios Development

Development Cost based on Hiring Models

Besides the above pointers, the cost of developing an app also varies based on the hiring models you choose. Mentioned below are some of the options you can choose from and their respective costs for hiring.

Building an in-house team

It is obviously the most trusted and reliable form of hiring model as your in-house employees will work to build the perfect app for you. However, if your services lie in a different sector than IT, then hiring in-house developers and designers would be expensive.

Let’s see how!

You will need to hire a

project manager – $85,000/year – $100,000/year

Designer – $85,000/year

Full-stack developer – $98,000/year

Android/ iOS developer – $85,000/year

Testing or QA expert – $85,000/year – $90,000/year

Combining these costs and operational costs of maintaining an in-house team, your cost will be much higher as compared to other hiring models.

Hiring a local agency

Compared to an in-house team, this is a rather affordable approach for you. All you have to do is connect with a reputed local agency that specializes in mobile app development.

You can share your mobile app development ideas with the company and ask them for a cost estimation. Since you work at the same timezone and are located in the same region, communicating with them would be easier.

However, it is to note that they charge a hefty amount for their services based on the developer rates of the region. If you analyze the benefits against the cost you pay, this option would seem less suitable than the ones mentioned below.

Hire freelancers

This is obviously the most reasonable and inexpensive option out there. However, they are not as reliable as a mobile app development company. While Freelancers can easily take on a small-scale project like developing a planner mobile app, they are not the best fit for developing complex applications.

For instance, if you want to develop a mobile app like Instagram, you would need more resources and skills that a freelancer lacks.

Freelancer rates for different regions are mentioned below

Region Freelancer rates (Hourly basis)
Ukraine $25/ hour
Asia $15 to $25/ hour
Latin America $20/hour
United States $50/hour

Outsource app development

No matter the scale and size of your project, outsourcing services from a different country is no hassle at all. They ensure high-quality products, innovative approaches, reliability, and security. As for the cost to create an app, you can save a lot by hiring from countries like Ukraine, and Asian countries like India, China, etc.

The average price to create an app would be much less when you choose this option. While it is not as less as that of a freelancer, it guarantees you quality app development and standard security practices.

All of these considerations should give you a brief idea of the average app price and would help you plan your budget. Make an informed decision to ensure your project’s success.

A bonus tip!

Why Choose an Outsourcing Company Instead of a Freelancer?

Outsourcing App Development Company Freelance App Developer
High-reliability Less reliability
Low-risk High-risk
Quality development, adherence to security practices. Poor development quality and coding ethics.
Diverse skills, experience, and resources. Limited skills, and resources.

While outsourcing might cost you more than hiring a freelancer at first, it is a rather cost-efficient approach. The reason is you will save a great deal of time and money on maintenance, support, and re-design/ development works.

Read More: Odoo Pricing

How to Minimize Your App Development Costs?

Now that you are aware of how to estimate the app startup cost, let’s help you minimize the development cost.

Tip 1: Plan everything from the beginning and analyze your project requirements to avoid paying unnecessary costs.

Tip 2: Choose to build hybrid mobile apps using React Native or Flutter rather than developing native apps to save on development costs.

Tip 3: Select your app features carefully to avoid any unnecessary costs.

Tip 4: Outsource mobile app development services to a reputed company from Asia to develop high-quality yet affordable apps.

How Choosing The Right Mobile App Development Partner Can Minimize Costs?

As mentioned already, there are multiple costs associated with your app development project. While the cost of technology, marketing, and deployment would remain constant based on the modes you choose, you can actually minimize the cost of development.

How? Well, it mostly depends on the mobile app development team you choose. With the right development partner, you can save a lot of money and maximize your return on investment.

  • For starters, you should check if the app developers’ cost they are charging is worth the services they are offering.
  • You can check the ratings and reviews of the agency to understand how prompt they are when addressing client issues.
  • A reputed agency is likely to provide post-development support for your app to ensure it works seamlessly after deployment.

If you rush into hiring an agency that doesn’t provide quality services against the costs they charge, you will end up losing a lot of money and time. You may even have to re-design or re-develop your app altogether, which would only be a waste.

So, make an informed decision by considering all the factors!

In this venture, team BiztechCS might be of assistance with our 15+ years of experience in the IT industry. You can leverage our mobile app development expertise and find the best suitable developers for your project. Our app development team has diverse experience in many technologies and can help you build seamless yet cost-efficient mobile apps.


There are multiple costs associated with app developing as mentioned above. Every decision of yours would cost money, be it choosing a tech stack, a hiring model, or the type of app. Careful considerations and making sound decisions will help you plan your budget and estimate costs. This guide is all about the various determinants of costs and ways you can minimize them for your benefit.n

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