Top 5 Trends Offsetting Mobile App Development Costs
Explore the top trends that will offset the cost of app development for businesses
Stroll down any street, sit down on any train or bus, enter any restaurant, and you’re sure to find the majority of people with their faces glued to their mobile devices. Whether it’s for messaging, browsing the Internet, playing online games, or watching their favorite TV shows, the mobile device has become a fixture of modern living.
Business Apps: Indispensable Assets in the Digital Age
Statistics indicate that the number of mobile devices operating worldwide is likely to reach 17.72 billion by 2024. The increase in the number of mobile devices and mobile users in the world means one thing – mobile app usage is on the rise as well.
According to Think with Google, 90 percent of smartphone users say they use apps. If you can master the art of developing engaging and easy-to-use business apps, you can get closer to a higher level of customer engagement between the businesses you’re developing apps for and their customers.
High Cost of App Development is a Major Stumbling Block
Despite the easy availability of mobile app development tools, there are still challenges that make it difficult for developers to create high-quality business apps. The major challenge is often the high cost of the app design, development, and deployment.
So, why is app development so costly? The simple explanation is that each app development process involves several factors that jointly influence the final cost figure. These factors include:
- App functionality, purpose, and complexity
- Supported mobile platforms
- Supported mobile devices
- Integration points
- Hardware features
Generally, the cost of app development is directly affected by the development efforts and time that the app development team will put into the entire process. The more time and efforts spent in the app development process, the higher the development cost.
Fortunately, there are ways to reduce this cost without compromising app quality.
Top 5 Trends That Will Offset App Development Costs
Here are some of the top trends that will offset the cost of app development for businesses.
1. Cross-platform Development
When most people hear of mobile apps, their minds go straight to native apps developed for particular platforms such as Android, iOS, and Windows. Although native apps offer benefits like great performance and deep hardware integrations, creating an app for multiple platforms increases mobile app development costs substantially.
Developing native apps is costly because app developers have to write code for one platform at a time, creating separate codebases for each platform. As a result, creating individual native apps takes more time and, by extension, money. This makes it imperative for app developers to become acquainted with cross-platform mobile app development.
In case you’re wondering, cross-platform development is the development of software applications that are compatible with multiple mobile operating systems. By using cross-platform development platforms, companies can keep app development project costs under control and ship apps quickly that can run on smartwatches, smartphones, tablets, and more, all from the same codebase.
Research indicates that hybrid apps developed via a cross-platform approach are easy to develop and do not require platform-specific skills. The ease of making these types of apps shortens the development period and eliminates the need for highly-skilled app developers, thus offsetting app development costs. Further research indicates that cross-platform development helps reduce maintenance costs as developers only have to write the code once and deploy it to multiple operating systems.
2. Continuous Testing
Like designing a new car or building a house, developing an app has many nuances. All software has bugs, including mobile apps. No matter which stage of the app development process they are added in, you can expect them to cost money to fix.
According to the Systems Science Institute at IBM, bugs are 6 times costlier to fix during implementation and 15 times costlier to fix during the testing phase than the cost of fixing them during design.
So, how do you offset the costs that arise due to errors made during the app development process? The answer is simple – continuous testing. Following a DevOps methodology, continuous testing is the process of testing software at every stage of the app development lifecycle. The purpose of continuous testing is to assess the quality of software to ensure that defects are detected and fixed as quickly as possible.
A study by Kobiton showed that 79% of companies were ready to spend more on testing in 2021, with 72% saying they’d increase their tester headcount. Businesses that embrace continuous testing will save more money on app development since there’ll be continuous improvements through all stages of the release.
3. MVP Releases
If you thought deploying an error-prone app was costly, try deploying an app that doesn’t resonate with the company’s target market. Luckily, there’s a way to minimize the time and resources you might otherwise dedicate to developing an app that won’t succeed – releasing a Minimum Viable Product (MVP).
An MVP is basically a prototype that has just enough features to attract early-adopter customers while providing developers with necessary feedback that they can use to develop a feature-complete product. It helps developers to isolate bugs, identify improvements, and preview the feasibility of the product before releasing it for commercial use.
One of the notable benefits of releasing an MVP is the cost-benefit it presents to mobile app development. Compared to full-fledged apps, MVPs are easy to develop, which means that you will not need to invest too many person-hours, energy, and most importantly – money.
4. Use of Pre-Built UI Component Kits
Most people presume that building software from scratch is a great idea, or necessary to fit their unique guidelines. The problem with this approach is that it’s not usually cost-effective. One of the ways developers are helping business owners offset app development costs is by using ready-made solutions.
With numerous templates and UI components available freely online, you can easily find an ideal fit for your business app. Using these off-the-shelf templates minimizes the time, effort, and, ultimately, the cost of developing a mobile business app.
5. Developing Apps In-house Using Developer-Friendly Tools
You’ve probably been told that outsourcing is the most cost-effective app development practice. While this might sound true on the surface, it ends up being costlier in the long run. Gaps in communication cause project delays and frankly, translating business requirements into software your customers will love is a challenge. All of these issues are costly to remedy.
With every company becoming a technology company, the bottom line is that you need to build apps in-house. Luckily, there are several developer-friendly tools on the market that help development teams with varied software development experience make high-quality apps.
Develop Apps Effortlessly and Cost-Effectively with the Ionic App Platform