The first and foremost question that comes to mind when planning to build an app is how long it takes to build an app. You want to know because it will help you determine the product timeline and plan your product launch. The duration will vary depending on the scope of the project and the process you use.
A smaller app will take less time than a larger app. I’ll use three different apps of varying sizes to demonstrate how long it typically takes to complete those apps. This will give you an idea of how long it will take to complete your app.
Using Instagram as an example, I listed all of the features in the existing app and grouped them to create a small, medium, and large Instagram app.
This table will assist you in determining which category your app belongs in.
|Features||Small Version||Mid Size Version||Large Version|
|Login/Signup with Email, Facebook, Forgot Pswd, Change Password||YES||YES||YES|
|Newsfeed with activities||YES||YES||YES|
|Access Phone Camera, Take Photo, Add/Upload Photo from Gallery, post in the app.||YES||YES||YES|
|Follow/Following Other Users||YES||YES||YES|
|Share Photo Facebook||YES||YES||YES|
|Search Users, View User Profiles, Edit Profile||YES||YES||YES|
|Connect to Facebook Friends, Invite Facebook Friends||YES||YES||YES|
|Like & Comment||YES||YES||YES|
|Login/Signup with Phone No, Phonebook Access, Invite phone contacts to the app.||YES||YES|
|Share to Followers or Direct (While sharing photo/video, user can select whether they want to share with their followers or Direct with their friends)||YES||YES|
|Send Photo Directly to Specific Users||YES||YES|
|Add Story in the app (It is listed on Top of the Homepage. It is basically photo/video added with story/description. When you click on any user profile photo, it will open photo/video and story added by the user. App will run user Story in a slider.)|
|Add Emoticons with Photo and Video||YES||YES|
|Capture Video, Add/Upload video in the post. Video Playing.||YES||YES|
|Add Locations, Tag People in Photo/Video||YES||YES|
|Share on Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr||YES||YES|
|Apply Filters & Photo Editing||YES|
|See Following Activity||YES|
|Advanced Upload Settings||YES|
|Suggestions by App for users and content||YES|
How long does scoping and requirements take?
The first step in any app development process is scoping and requirement gathering.
You want to capture the feature list, as well as the app’s detailed requirements and scope. If you’re good at it, you can finish a smaller app in 1-2 weeks, a mid-sized app in 2-3 weeks, and a larger app in 3-4 weeks. You’ll need to look at other apps on the market to determine which features are essential for your mobile app.
|Small App||1-2 weeks|
|Mid Size App||2-3 weeks|
|Big Size App||3-4 weeks|
How long does it take to complete UI/UX Design?
The design is the most important step in developing a mobile app.
The process entails developing wireframes for the mobile application based on the requirements and reviewing/adjusting them. After the wireframes are completed, the graphical UI design for the App, which includes the font, color, theme, and images, must be completed.
This process takes 3-4 weeks for a simple app, 6-7 weeks for a medium-sized app, and 9-10 weeks for a larger app design process involving several UI and UX experts.
How long does development and testing take?
Most startups and individuals want to build apps with as many features as possible. The time it takes to develop the app will be determined by the feature list and the type of company. You will need to create both the mobile app and the backend for the mobile app. All development, including the iOS app, Android app, and backend, should take place concurrently. A small version can be completed in two months, a medium-sized app in three to three and a half months, and a large app in five to six months. Technical architecture, UI coding, backend setup, functional implementation, integration, and testing will all be required.
During this phase, you should have 5-10 alpha testers.
How much time is required for beta testing and deployment?
Once your app has been fully developed, you should conduct beta testing to identify any remaining bugs. Depending on the size of your app, beta testing can take anywhere from 1-3 weeks.
Make a list of beta testers ready and complete the testing as quickly as possible.
As you can see, the time required for each step is determined by the size of the app. At a high level, you should keep a small app for 10-12 weeks, a mid-sized app for 23-25 weeks, and a large app for 35-38 weeks.
You should also ensure that your app is being developed by an experienced team; otherwise, it may be delayed.