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Last Updated on April 19, 2024 by APEX Team

Many clients ask us “how long does it take to make an app?”. Just like the other question “how much does it cost to make an app?”, there is no blanket or universal answer here. Instead, the required time depends heavily on the respective app project. The more complex the application, the more elaborate the design, and the more extensive the desired functions, the more time it will take to complete the app.

Conceptualization is the first step in the app development process, during which the idea is improved and verified. The next step is planning, which includes outlining features, budgets, and schedules. Design comes next, with an emphasis on interface aesthetics and user experience. Coding and functional integration are steps in the development process, which is then followed by extensive performance and bug testing. Deployment, which is frequently combined with marketing initiatives, introduces the app to the intended platform. Following the launch, ongoing observation, user input, and upgrades guarantee the app’s continued relevance and functionality. Success in this process depends on teamwork, effective communication, and attention to agile methodologies at every stage.

  • Conceptualization: Refine and verify the concept of application.
  • Planning: List the features, deadlines, and available materials.
  • Design: Pay attention to interface aesthetics and user experience.
  • Development: Write code and incorporate features.
  • Testing: Check for errors and performance in-depth.
  • Deployment: Start the application on the designated platform.
  • After launch: Keep an eye on things, get user input, and roll out updates.
  • Agile Methodologies: Throughout the process, maintain excellent communication and teamwork.

Average turnaround times for app development

Since developing software is a process that is unpredictable and varies case-by-case, it is difficult to provide accurate projections. However, by breaking down the app development process step-by-step, we can still determine the average time to create an app. Starting with the smaller procedures that make up an app, let’s construct a larger picture of how long it takes to develop an app in this part.

Discovery Stage

We dig further into understanding the app idea, identifying the target audience and goals, sketching the concept, and developing project estimates during the 2 to 3 weeks of the discovery stage. Risks are identified, navigation concepts are established, and a company plan with profitable marketing strategies is produced. An app requirements document, which guarantees expectations and success criteria, is the product of this step. The foundation for a successful app is laid by this exhaustive investigation, which emphasizes problem-solving and market need. Enough time must be spent on this phase in order for the product to be successful and of high quality in the end.

Idea validation

In the 3 to 6 weeks idea validation phase, experts evaluate the feasibility of your product’s concept. Methods include user surveys for direct feedback, competitive analysis to estimate market demand, and the formation of test groups to verify navigation concepts. To get feedback on important features and filter out irrelevant ones, teams also create minimal lovable products (MLPs) and medium-fidelity prototypes. This step, however longer than the discovery phase, is essential for translating theoretical ideas into real-world applications. It guarantees that your program has the potential to succeed and satisfies user needs.

Design strategies and pre-development

You now have a clear idea of the essential aspects of your future product and a design concept for the app’s design when your idea has been validated. Now is the time to incorporate them into a prototype. The goal of the UI/UX design and pre-development stage is to compile the knowledge you gained from the earlier phases and figure out how to make your app both aesthetically pleasing and useful.

This stage is for developing a high-fidelity app prototype. This prototype allows you to track your user activity in addition to obtaining input from your test group. This time, the prototype should have comprehensive UI and UX designs as well as essential functionalities, which should take 5-7 weeks of the estimated time to build an app.

Design and development

An app’s design and development typically take 3 to 6 months. The coding and designing phase of the app development process is the most variable in terms of time estimates. It is always distinct and is determined by the intended usefulness, the quantity and complexity of features, and the choices made during the design process. It won’t take 6 months to code and design your solution if your app only has one main feature and you want a simple look.

Testing and bug fixes

After development, some developers choose to test their apps independently, which leaves businesses open to flaws that are detected too late and can cause major delays in the app’s release. Every step of the feature development and design process should incorporate testing and bug fixes to reduce this risk. Final testing, which usually takes up to 2 weeks to resolve and prevent the majority of bugs, provides the greatest quality of the product. This methodology builds a planned mindset toward quality control, reducing hold-ups and optimizing the overall efficacy and dependability of the application.

Deployment and launch

Deployment and launch are the last stages,  after research, prototyping, testing, design, development, and final testing. The launching process is determined by the platform selection made earlier in the process. Make sure your program satisfies the requirements of the app store of your choice. Google Play has fewer restrictions than the App Store, which has stricter guidelines. Optimizing for the chosen platform is essential to a successful launch procedure.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Does it Take to Build an App in 2024?

In mobile app development, the estimated time frames vary depending on the complexity of the app:

  • For small-complexity apps, the development typically takes at least 3 months.
  • Medium-complexity apps usually require around 6 months of development time.
  • Complex apps may take anywhere from 8 months to over a year.

Which factors influence the time to build an app?

Key factors impacting the app development timeline include the complexity of the app, the number of features and design choices, the selected platform(s), team size, and available resources.

Is the time to build an Android app similar to the time it takes to build an iOS app?

Due to the broader range of devices supported by Android compared to Apple products, there’s a slightly longer adaptation period required to ensure functionality and design compatibility with various screen resolutions. On average, developing an iOS app from scratch typically takes 20% less time than development of an android app.