25 Factors that determine the cost of building a mobile app

25 Factors that determine the cost of building a mobile app

Are you unaware or confused about the cost to realize your disruptive app development idea?

This article will walk you through the different factors that determine the cost of building a mobile application.

1. Features and Size of Application

The most important factor that determines the cost of an application is how big the app really is. For example if you compare a BMI calculator application with something like Zomato or Uber, there is a great difference in the level of functionalities and features. So the cost will naturally be higher for an application that requires more effort to build.

2. Number of Stakeholders Interacting

This refers to the number of entities that are interacting with the application in real time. For example if you consider a platform like Zomato, there are customers, delivery partners and restaurants interacting in real time.

3. Number of User Personas

There can be more than one user personas using the application. And depending on the user persona, the whole flow should be different. For example, a startup accelerator platform may need a different flow for an investor and a startup entrepreneur on the same application.

4. Complexity

Complexity can be due to the features that you require, deployment model of architecture (custom or SaaS), the level of third party integrations, and the requirements for admin panel and so on.

5. Internationalization of the Application

In how many countries the app will be used, what all currencies will be accepted and the number of time zones involved will contribute to the cost.

6. App Design

The number of screens, the use of templates and whether it is native or cross platform design are some of the important factors.

7. In-App Animations

If there are more interactive elements and animations involved in the app for a better user experience, there will be a significant addition in the cost.

8. App Platform and Devices

The platform in which the app works, whether it is mobile only, mobile and smart watch, mobile and tablet etc. will be another determinant of cost.

9. Technology Stack

There are plenty of technologies to choose from including hybrid ones, when it comes to building an application. The right combinations of such technologies should be chosen depending on the desired features/scope of the application.

10. Use of specific technologies

If there are complex technologies involved, such as block chain, the cost will be higher compared to those which are simple and do not require any niche or special expertise

11. Media Content Incorporation

The level of media content is another factor that determines cost. If there is a heavy usage of media, editing etc. the cost will likely be on the higher side.

12. Payment Gateway Integration

The kind of payment gateway integration required and the number of such integrations required will have a significant impact on the cost.

13. Geolocation

Some of the applications, especially delivery apps, taxi booking apps, dating apps etc. need Geolocation based features. The cost here depends on the level of accuracy. That is - A roughly approximate location vs middle range proximity vs an accurate location.

14. Multiple Language Support

This refers to the number of languages the app needs to support. Including more languages will require additional efforts.

15. In-App Purchase

This is a facility to make some kind of purchases, usually for some additional features or privileges to the user. Inclusion of such an option will increase cost.

16. Hosting

Depending on factors such as bandwidth required per user, and Backend API request the cost can vary.

17. Scalability

If the app needs to be more scalable, the foundation should be good enough. It may require more investment to ensure that the app is scalable.

18. Advertisements

Inclusion of the feature to add advertisements can increase the cost depending on the kind of media involved and the level of interaction.

19. Users Login

Login facility may be desirable for many applications, and there can be multiple login options which can add to the cost.

20. Push Notifications

Push notification is a powerful feature, and it requires additional effort to include push notification options in the app.

21. Search Options

The level of search functionality and the filtering options can be additional features that adds to the cost.

22. Data Encryption

Security is a great concern today for any application, and if it deals with sensitive information of the users, it becomes more critical. Facilitating Data Encryption can increase the cost.

23. Offline Mode

Some of the apps are expected to work on offline mode. There must be an architecture that enables users to use the application without the internet, and it requires some additional efforts.

24. Location of the Agency

App development is a service that involves the effort of a team of developers and designers. Depending on the location of the team, the cost can vary. For example, a team located in the USA will naturally be more expensive compared to the one based out of India.

25. Size of the Design & Development Team

If there is a need for a higher number of developers or designers to work on your project as a team, then the cost will proportionally increase.

Now you have an idea about different factors that determine the cost of building a mobile application. But, do you want to know how much it will cost to build exactly what you want? Talk to us, and with our expertise in developing 300+ applications, we can definitely help you. Book a free app consultation at or write an email to to schedule a call with our leadership team.