Average time to develop an app: Stage-wise calculation to know how long does it take to make an app

Mobile App Development , Posted by on 2020/09/28 0     Comments

How long does it take to make an app?- the answer can be given within minutes! We can give you an average estimate and ask you to have a project with us. Don’t worry, we are not going to do anything like this! We don’t prefer to do anything that offers our readers a vogue idea! We are going to evaluate all the factors that are related to determining the average time to develop an app. There are various kinds of apps available today but it is not that all the apps require the same amount of time to get successfully developed. So, let’s take a tour to know the average time span as well as the areas where companies spend most of the time to develop an app.   

Determining the average time is important?

Yes, it is important! Without having an idea of all the factors of app development, hiring an app development company will be tough! If you do not have proper knowledge, there is a high chance of money wastage, time wastage, and project failure. Based on time usage, the final invoice will be generated. So, having an idea on the average time to develop an app is necessary. 

Now you are thinking about how to determine the app development time. Right? If yes, continue reading this exclusive blog. For your ease, we are going to cover all the phases/stages of app development and how much time each phase takes.

According to expert app developers, generally three to nine, an app can take to get fully prepared. The time span can extend or reduce. But it depends on the complexity and structure of the app you desire to build. Experts also say that different app stages take a different amount of time. But there are some stages that take the most amount of time and we are going to list down all of those below-

  • One to two weeks: writing the project brief
  • Four to five weeks: researching for new ideas and discussion with the developers
  • Six to twelve weeks: Design the sprints 
  • Six to twelve weeks: development and prototyping 
  • One to two weeks: deploying to the app store
  • Any amount of time: improvement works
  • Future weeks: on-going support or post-project delivery support

Fast facts:

  • Apps with quality take more time comparatively
  • A feature-rich app will take more time than an app with basic features
  • The budget also plays a great role to determine the required development time
  • Right skills, company culture, and the smooth process shortens the timeline

Before we start to determine the average time to develop an app, we need to discuss some facts that will help us to get a more accurate result. 

The industry perspective for the app development 

You may have noticed that there are plenty of apps available in the app store. Some are useful, easy to use and some are unnecessarily complex to use. Complex or hard to use apps can be created just within two weeks or within a month. The apps that can be made within one to two weeks or months, will not offer a smooth app experience. 

Now, we are going to discuss the apps that we use every day due to their amazing user experience as well as effectiveness. We can say that these apps simply make our life better. According to app experts, these apps are completely bug-free and intuitive. We can accept them as examples of great apps. 

Here we have discussed two categories of apps. And how much time the first one can take, we have already said that. But when it comes to the wow category i.e. the second category of apps, the development process can take lots of hours. 

For example, we can say that we use Facebook and other social media apps on a regular basis. Thousands of people are working 24/7 for the Facebook app. They are performing for the installed apps or on the APIs or the servers. They all are doing these works to let us get a smooth, fast, and impressive user experience. This kind of app can take months to years to get successfully developed. 

You may think that building such apps may not be necessary in your case. The type of application can be different but quality cannot be different. You should consider the fact that your target users are already familiar with the smooth user experience, these top-quality apps have been offering over the years. So, you cannot offer a less quality app that offers a low-quality user experience otherwise your target audience simply stops using your app. And uninstall it after some days. 

So, when it comes to user experience, you have to offer them the best possible experience. It is not that if you pay lots of bucks and you will get the best quality app with amazing user experience. You have to ensure the areas where you should invest to improve the overall quality of the app. Generally, features, UI/UX design, content, platform, and navigation are the most important areas.  And you need to pour extra care here. If you can make these areas of high quality, your app is going to be automatically high-quality and attractive. 

The platform, Screen Sizes, and features

The target platform, screen size, and features in one alignment are called as the app scope. When you are trying to know how long does it take to make an app, you have to identify these things in the first move. Once you successfully identify all these three things, you can easily figure out the time you have to spend on your app development. According to expert app developers, screen size and the target platforms are super easier to determine. So, you can understand that in order to determine the screen size and the target platforms, you do not have to spend a lot of time. Experts also say that making an application that supports all the screen size is also not a big deal and takes a little amount of time. 

When it comes to the platform, we can say that Android and iOS are now the real heroes. Blackberry and Windows are not very popular. Rather, we can say that these platforms do not have a solid number of users today. So, it will be beneficial for you if you choose both ios and Android platforms. 

But the main challenging area is the feature selection. Based on the app type, you have to select the features. It has been noticed that sometimes people want a lot of apps at a V1.0 app. And without any doubt, that’s a problematic task. If you create a long list of features that you want to be in your app, obviously it will take longer to make the app. Along with the time, the cost of the app development will also increase. 

When it comes to the selection of the features, we can say that you should not add unnecessary features. Unnecessary features not only make the app heavy but also create confusion. You have to make a list of the best features that will help you to find the uncontested market for your application. In this way, you may have to wait for four to eight months to successfully develop your dream app.

We have given you a basic idea about the average time to develop an app today. Now you are already introduced to the core areas that you need to consider well to develop an app as well as determine the time frame. Now we are going to give you an in-detail idea or sketch that will help you to have a real-time idea of each development stage. You know that the app development process contains several important stages. Now we are going to elaborate on those stages and give you an idea that each stage may take how much time. So, without more ado, let’s start-

Stage 1: Writing the project brief

In our long service experience, we have seen that some people want to ignore it. Even when we have asked for some time to write the project brief properly, clients suggest us to start the technical work. And they do not want to spend time overwriting the project brief. We know that they are not alone, rather there are a lot of companies as well as clients who underestimate this stage and end up dealing with lots of mess. We always say that when we can write the project brief successfully, it will help both parties to understand the project and its process of development. In order to successfully write a project brief, our team generally takes one to two weeks. In order to make clear the understanding of the project, we always include some things in our project brief such as:

  • Aims and success metrics of the project
  • Request for proposal (RFP)
  • Non-disclosure agreement
  • Budget range
  • Approximate delivery date

In this way, all the related things of app development projects remain clear between both parties. And it helps both parties to determine the average time to develop an app. The project brief also helps to include new ideas, explore the challenges, and invent unique ways to easily solve the problems. A project brief is all like a rough sketch that will clear all doubts between two parties even before starting the technical works. 

Stage 2: App idea research

 This is the first thing that any app development company out there will ask a client. Researching your app idea does not only mean the listing of top apps and their features, it is actually more than that. In this process, both parties I mean the app development company and the client will be able to understand that this idea is going to be successful or not. Along with this, it will also help to understand the average time to develop an app today. So, when it comes to app idea research, we cover some key areas in order to ensure success. Market, users, existing and future problems, and the ultimate success scenario are the key elements that we include rather work on during the app idea research stage. 

When you will complete the app idea research, you should have some facts ready at your hands such as MVP, user stories, and app prototype. When it comes to deciding the average time to develop an app, we can say that this stage will take four to five weeks. Before we start talking about the next stage, let’s get some ideas on the mentioned elements-

Minimum Viable Product (MVP)- this is a very basic function set that your app should do. This is going to cover all the things that your users will desire to get into your app. This does not include additional features you wish to add to your app. Actually, for the app launch having a set of basic as well fully functional features are important. And when it comes to additional features that you can add after some time. 

The user stories: this is basically how your users are going to use your app as well as why they will use your app. Generally, with the help of user stories, you can outline a user’s goal. In order to achieve the goal, he/she will use some pages or do navigation. So, you will understand the areas you need to more smoothen in order to let your users achieve the goal. In this way, you can also understand how many tasks will be on the plate and the average time to develop an app. 

The app prototype: when professionals use the term prototype, they do not mean the fully functional app. We can call it a vital stage where the vital features and functionalities are going to be made. In this way, the features as well as functionalities can be properly tested and validated even before the development company starts working on it. It will also help you to get an idea about how long does it take to make an app. 

Stage 3: Design Sprints and idea validation

This is another vital stage of app development. If you discuss this stage a bit, we will also better determine or get some ideas about the average time to develop an app. Generally, this stage requires six to twelve weeks to get successfully completed. But based on the app type and feature set, the time span can reduce as well as increase or remain the same. 

According to experts design sprints are there to test some specific aspects of an application. Generally, a sprint can take nearly seven days or more to complete. Some clients as well as companies try to skip this stage. But we do not prefer otherwise it will invite a lot of future changes as well as problems throughout the entire app development project. And it will be also hectic to determine the average time to develop an app as it may cause late delivery. 

You may have some unique features of ideas. You may want to add it in your app. But you are not sure about how the features will actually work. Your features are going to work well or not that we can easily determine at this stage. In this stage, you will be able to create a basic design and check how users are going to interact with it after some days. 

You may have noticed that most app development companies do not give that much value about the success of the client’s app. They just want to successfully create an app. After the delivery, you are getting the desired result or not- that does not seem like their cup of tea. But here our work practice, as well as ethics, differ a lot. We always help our clients to improve the overall app experience as well as the business based on the real-time feedback our client gets from his/her real users. So, we will suggest to you that along with determining the average time to develop an app, you should consider this fact properly. So, after determining the average time to develop an app, when you will search an app development company that offers the same kind of support. In this way, you will be able to ensure both app success and business success. 

Stage 4: The app development time and prototyping

You may know that app development companies do rapid prototyping along with design sprints. It is something like their normal kind of work style when it comes to developing an application. Both these ways actually help them to quickly build the iterations of the app. And it can be easily tested with the real-time users as well as adapted based on their feedback. So, when you are concerned about the average time to develop an app or trying to calculate how long does it take to make an app, we can say that prototyping is going to actually help you. Prototyping actually saves a lot of time for both the client and the app development company. Here enabling any changes is easy and fast. It is just like proofreading a piece of content before the final submit. Here you can make the changes. In this way, you will have little to zero future changes after the final project delivery. So, you can say that this step of technique is not only helping you to calculate how long does it take to make an app but also helping you to save a lot of time. 

Stage 5: Submit the app to the app stores

This is another vital stage that we need to consider when it comes to calculating how long does it take to make an app. Here you may need to spend one to two weeks maximum. We can divide the entire app deploying process into two main sections- one is submission and the second one is the review. You may know how to submit an app to the iOS and Android app stores. Yet we are reminding you again-

  • Company and the contact information
  • Well written and easy to understand descriptions
  • Screenshots
  • Demonstrations
  • And Icons

Here a common question our clients ask us and that is all the app stores take the same amount of time for app submitting! The answer is NO. Google Play Store takes quite a shorter time to submit an application. But when it comes to the iOS or Apple app store, you have to spend some days or a week more. Actually the iOS store has a more detailed reviewing process. There is a team of reviewers who reviews everything manually and that’s why it takes more time to submit an application there. 

These are vital as well as common stages of application development. And that’s why we have given you little ideas about every stage. After reading all these stages, it will be easier for anyone to calculate how long does it take to make an app. But there is another stage that not all the app development companies offer and that is the post-project delivery support. But we offer the required support and that’s why we are going to discuss the stage below so that it can help you a bit more to properly calculate how long does it take to make an app.

Stage 6: Post app launch support and improvement

This is the last stage that will help you to get an idea about the average time to develop an app. Calculating the time this specific stage will take is quite harder. When it comes to update and maintenance, you have to give it a solid amount of time. So, when it comes to calculating, how long does it take to make an app, we cannot give you an exact number or approximate time frame like previous stages.  

If you do an app development project with us, based on the app type, features, platforms, and others, we can give you an idea that the Post app launch support and improvement can take how much time. And it will be easy for both of us to calculate how long does it take to make an app. 

So, if you need to develop an app, just give us a ring or submit the quote form! 

And don’t forget to share your experience with this blog! 

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