Top 5 Biggest Hidden Costs of Mobile App Development

Mobile apps

In this digitized era, having a mobile business app has become essential. With the right mobile application development services, you can create a fantastic business mobile app within your budget. However, sometimes you may face extra charges besides the one you agreed with by your developers and designers. 

Mobile app development is a complex process, and you may miss a few essential details and features. That turns out to be costly after the development process. If you start your app development process without proper planning or knowing each aspect, you may face the consequences of compromising the app quality and hidden costs. 

Top 5 Biggest Hidden Costs of Mobile App Development

This article will highlight the top 5 most significant hidden costs of mobile application development and how you can avoid them. 

First things first, let’s understand what app development is and how much it costs. 

In simple words, app development is the process of developing apps for your mobile devices. The whole process takes up to seven steps, from designing to app deployment. The cost of mobile application development depends on the size, features, application platform, and complexity of the mobile application.

The entire cost of an app development takes up to 35% of the total budget, and the annual cost of supporting and maintaining a mobile app can take up to 50% of the entire app development cost.

An iOS app can cost around $25K, an Android app can cost approximately $23K, and Windows applications can cost about $18K. (These are the approximate costs according to some studies.)

Let’s take a look at the hidden costs of app development.  

Hidden Costs of Mobile App Development

Determining each aspect and cost of app development can help you avoid the hidden charges and disrupt your budget. Hidden app development cost divides into four categories.

  1. Functional costs
  2.  Administrative cost
  3. Infrastructure cost
  4. IT support cost

So let’s dwell on the details.

Functional Costs

Operating costs refer to the cost of your app’s features and functionality. Your app requires a few services that provide a delivery mechanism. It costs a lot, and it has endless requirements. Here are a few benefits your app may need. 

Notifications (SMS and Push)

Notifications help users keep engaged with the mobile application and encourage them to purchase the products. SMS and Push services cost up to $3000 combined annually. 

Social Media Integration 

Social media is one of the most effective marketing strategies. Thus, you’ll need a proper social media strategy to share your content seamlessly. In addition, for a seamless experience, you need social media integration features, such as chatbots, that may cost you up to $1200 annually.

Administrative Costs

Administrative services include content management tools, dashboard emulators, functional services management, dynamic updates, access controls, and data segmentation. These services help you access data so that you can update and manage your app’s content.

Infrastructure Costs

Infrastructural services include components, such as where the app is hosted, where the data is stored, and how the information is delivered. These components help to load the data for backup and security purposes, increasing the complexity.


The annual cost varies from the app and server’s size. You can outsource your servers from Amazon, Google, and Azure. However, it may cost you around $12,000 annually.  

Content Delivery networks 

Content delivery networks deliver the content to an application based on its location, origin, and delivery server. It helps to reduce the delays in loading the web page content and minimizes the physical distance between the server and the user.

The most significant benefit of a content delivery network is that many users can easily access the network simultaneously. On the other hand, it may cost you around $3600 annually.

Data storage 

Every app needs its data stored someplace safe. In addition, you’ll need a place to download, process, and deliver your data. You can rent cloud services from Google, AWS, and ImageX that cost you around $4,800 annually.

IT Support Costs

IT support is one of the significant parts of app maintenance. However, it may cost you more over time. IT support services include iOS and Android updates, app update submission, APIs, and maintenance costs.

Android and iOS updates 

Android and iOS platforms release frequent updates on their platform. However, the updates come baring the errors and various issues that may need fixes over time. Therefore, those updates require constant maintenance that can cost up to $10,000. In addition, it is advisable to keep an additional 5-20% budget separately for the maintenance.

App Update Submission 

Each app update requires submission, and that can cost you an extra around $2,400.


Ideally, every mobile app interacts with a third-party app at the enterprise level. It requires intervallic updates and maintenance that can cost up to $5000.

Now, you have gotten familiar with the categories of the hidden costs in mobile application development. Let’s take a look at the top 5 hidden fees and how you can avoid it.


Once your app development process is completed, it’s time to introduce it to your audience. Marketing is the best way to notify your targeted audience about the upcoming event. Even if your app has excellent value and is perfectly built, your app will fail to stand out in the market without the proper marketing strategies.

No matter what marketing strategy you choose, it will cost you a significant amount. Fundamental public relations and marketing strategies can cost you up to $10,000 monthly. Additionally, you can invest in App Store Optimization for increasing online traffic. It will help your app get better visibility and higher rankings in the app store.

App Deployment

Your work isn’t done after the app development. Your app development team needs to include the deployment requirements in mind while planning the monetizing strategy. Each platform has different app store fees.

For the iOS mobile applications, the Apple App Store charges $99 annually. On the other hand, Google Play Store charges a one-time $25 for Android mobile applications.

Both Google Play Store and Apple store have their own set of requirements for app deployment that you need to remember before submission. Additionally, copyrighting and privacy policies are expensive.

Launching an app on the app store requires a different amount of time depending on the app complexity and the amount of work the mobile app development company has to do. Also, before launching the app, you need to get approval from the app stores and do modifications if required.

App deployment is an essential step in the app development process. Thus, it is advisable to choose the mobile app development company that provides full support throughout the entire process.

App Security and Software License

In this digitized era, cyber-attacks are increasing rapidly. That’s why app security has been a significant concern for app development companies. Each mobile application development project requires a security plan that ensures its safety. However, it is a bit long process meaning it will cost you more.

Each app requires a legalized stamp. During the development process, many SDKs and Libraries are used, and some are paid. Paid solutions require a software license fee. Even using the free versions will take more time and money as the developer takes hourly rates. Therefore, it is advisable to get the paid software for your app development process.

Multiple Platforms

As we know, each platform (Android and iOS) has its programming language. App developed for one platform won’t work on the other one. If you plan to build a native app, you may require both Android and iOS application developers. Thus, your app development cost will increase.

However, if you plan for a hybrid app, you don’t have to worry about the additional development cost. Also, mobile web applications have different web technologies that can run smoothly on any platform.

Testing and bug fixes

Just like app security, app testing is one of the significant aspects of the app development process. Ideally, app testing should be done at each stage of the app development process. Each mobile app development service offers quality assurance as to the part of the app development process.

App development is a complex process, and developers may overlook a few issues that can cause a few problems ahead. Overlooked issues can cost you a lot to fix it. Therefore, it is essential to get the app tested at each development stage.

The cost of app testing depends on the size and complexity of the app. Also, it varies from company to company. However, it can cost you around $5,000 to $10,000, depending on the mobile application development services.


In a nutshell, the prime purpose of your app is to make your customer’s life more convenient and make their work easier. Thus, it is imperative to create an app that fulfills their expectations and requirement. However, finalizing your monetizing strategy for your app development is not an easy task.

If not planned properly, you may face hidden costs in the end that can compromise your app quality and your budget. Hopefully, this article will help you enlist the entire charge to avoid them and plan your budget accordingly.

Looking for a reliable mobile app development company? Well, you are at the right place. We at Sysbunny have an excellent team of iOS and android app developers who can help you develop and handle your unique app development project.

We take pride in being transparent when it comes to the app development cost. We can help you build your excellent business mobile app that will make you stand out in this competitive market. Contact us to kickstart your project right away.

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