How much time does it take to develop an Android app and an IOS App? – Complete Guide

calender May 12, 2023
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Ravi Ranjan

Flutter & Android Developer | Agile Leader

How long does it take to build an app?

One of the most frequently asked questions after knowing the mobile app development cost.

After discovering the cost of mobile app development, a common inquiry revolves around the time required for the process. The duration for developing an application varies, contingent on factors like available resources, project complexity, and the skill sets involved. In our mobile app development company, the typical timeframe for crafting a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) from the ground up spans from 5 to 16 weeks. This serves as an average, with the actual duration influenced by project-specific needs, leading us to complete tasks either more swiftly or over an extended period.

The landscape of app usage and smartphone adoption continues to expand consistently, showing no signs of decline in the expected future. As Android and iOS platforms host hundreds of apps—some gaining downloads while others face deletion—the key to a successful app hinges on delivering a seamless, indispensable user experience coupled with top-notch quality. However, creating an outstanding app is a gradual process, requiring meticulous planning and thorough implementation. Now, let’s examine the factors that may impact the mobile app development process and subsequently influence the overall timeline for app creation.

Time taken for the App Development Process

Nowadays, many app development projects choose the agile software development approach due to its numerous benefits. Here is the time required for the app development process.

time taken for the app development process

I. Ideation

The initial development step is about understanding the client’s goals and collecting requirements for the app. It’s crucial to grasp the client’s vision before moving on. During this phase, the project’s strengths and weaknesses are analyzed, and the team creates design concepts and wireframes to showcase the app’s appearance and functionality. The UI/UX and app architecture are finalized in this step.

Time – 1 to 3 weeks.

II. Design and Development

This is a crucial phase where a team of analysts, designers, developers, and testers works together on your app idea. They create the initial version, known as the MVP, and share it with the client for feedback. The MVP includes the core features of the app, and after understanding user preferences, more features can be added in subsequent releases.

During this stage, minor bugs are fixed, and adjustments are made to ensure a fully functional app model.

Time – 4 to 10 weeks

III. User Acceptance Testing (UAT)

In the next development stage, User Acceptance Testing (UAT) focuses on implementing changes in the app based on client and user feedback. The app undergoes testing with an in-house team to identify bugs. A trial version is then released for free, gathering feedback from initial users. Developers use this feedback to make final adjustments before the commercial release.

Time – 1 to 2 weeks

IV. App Release

After completing app development, the next step is deploying it to various app stores. The project team assists in distributing the app on Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store, the largest platforms. This process may take up to 3 weeks before the app becomes available for download.

Time – 2 to 3 weeks

Here is a summary of the time taken for the App Development Process

Phases of App DevelopmentTimeline
Ideation1 to 3 weeks
Development and Testing4 to 10 weeks
User Acceptance Testing (UAT)1 to 2 weeks
App Release2 to 3 weeks

Now that we’ve covered the various stages of app development, let’s explore the estimated time for development based on the type and complexity.

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Mobile App Timelines Based on Type and Complexity

Creating mobile apps is a time-consuming process. Typically, the estimate for app development spans from 2 to 12 months or longer when building from the ground up. The duration depends on factors like the app’s size, design, and complexity. Simple apps, with fewer screens and straightforward coding, may take less time, while complex apps with numerous screens, complex coding, and advanced features may require more time.

How many hours/months does it take to develop an app?

The following is the timeline to build an app based on App type.

App TypeHoursTimeline
Basic App80-100 hours1-4 months
Medium complexity App120-150 hours3-8 months
Complex App350-600 hours8+ months 

Now, let’s look at various app development niches and their respective timelines.

I. Games/Entertainment Apps

Gaming and Entertainment categories are not only highly popular but also competitive, attracting users frequently throughout the week. Due to their immersive features, game apps, in particular, can be quite addictive. The development time for Gaming/Entertainment apps typically ranges from 3 to 6 months, depending on the features listed below.

  • Advanced CMS to publish content
  • Intuitive, engaging, and compelling UI/UX
  • Special effects for video/gaming Apps
  • Social media sharing
  • Attractive images
  • Seamless gaming experience
  • Push notifications

The highest-earning apps in app stores are games and entertainment apps. Examples of game apps are PUBG, Clash of Clans, FreeFire, and Candy Crush. For entertainment, there are apps like Amazon Prime, HBO Max, Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, and more.

II. E-Commerce App

E-commerce apps offer a convenient and preferred shopping experience, helping businesses of all sizes reach new customers and boost brand presence and revenue. Creating an online presence makes businesses more discoverable to potential clients.

The average development time for an e-commerce app is around 3 to 12 months, depending on features, app complexity, scalability, and the development platform. Key features may include the following-

  • One-Step registration
  • Personalized customer experience
  • Advanced search capabilities
  • Augmented Reality
  • AI Voice Assistant
  • Wishlist
  • Super-fast checkout

Notable players in the e-commerce industry, such as Alibaba, Amazon, Walmart, and eBay, are giants in the market.

III. On-Demand App

On-demand apps act as a bridge between businesses and customers, providing real-time information, easy access to services, and facilitating transactions based on needs. These apps are scalable, offering businesses of all sizes unlimited growth potential.

The development time for on-demand apps typically ranges from 4 to 8 months, depending on the business model and conditions. The following are some essential features that may take up development time.

  • Authentication and security
  • Push notifications
  • Wishlist
  • Order history and tracking
  • Payment gateway
  • Real-Time analytics
  • Reviews and ratings

Top On-demand Apps are across these verticals

  • Food and Drink
  • Groceries
  • Travel/Transportation
  • Dating
  • Petcare
  • Healthcare
  • Products

IV. Food-Delivery App

As more people, about 80%, now prefer ordering food online to save time visiting restaurants or stores, the competition in the food delivery sector is intense.

Developing a food delivery app, on average, takes about 4 to 8 months, depending on the complexity, advanced features listed below, development platform, etc.

  • Map integration
  • Push notifications
  • Order tracking and delivery
  • Restaurant filters
  • Delivery tips
  • Payment integration
  • Social media integration

Some of the most popular delivery apps are DoorDash, Uber Eats, Deliveroo, and GrubHub.

V. Social-Networking App

Social Media Apps are among the most popular, with Facebook reporting over 1 billion active users daily. These apps must be fun and fast and continually integrate all necessary features like the following to keep users hooked and include social sharing functionality. Social Networking apps can be built in 2 -8 months depending on the features that include-

  • Simple and intuitive UI
  • Secure Login Process
  • Easy Content sharing
  • Open discussion forum
  • Instant notifications in real-time
  • Visually appealing and accessible design

Some common social media apps include Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat.

VI. Educational App

As e-learning becomes more popular, educational apps are on the rise, providing users of all ages the flexibility to learn comfortably. On average, developing an educational app takes about 4 to 8 months, depending on the features and integrations, such as:

  • Safe login
  • Recording sessions
  • Smooth video streaming
  • Chatting during sessions
  • Sharing screens
  • Sharing files
  • Conducting polls

Top educational apps include Khan Academy, BrainPOP, Evernote, edX, Duolingo, etc.

VII. Healthcare App

Healthcare apps store and analyze patient data, providing reports to healthcare professionals. The development process takes about 5 to 15 months, requiring an expert team to ensure compliance with HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) standards and include the following features-

  • Integrate with Electronic Health Records(EHR)
  • HIPAA compliant
  • Track the real-time progress of a patient
  • Goal setting
  • Telemedicine
  • Built-in messaging

Popular healthcare apps include HealthTap, WebMD, Generis, Apple Health, and PEPID.

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Let us sum up the average app development time based on the above niches.

App TypeTime (in months)
Games/Entertainment App3 – 6 months
E-Commerce App3 – 12 months
On-demand App4 – 8 months
Food-Delivery App4 – 8 months
Social-Networking App2 – 8 months
Educational App4 – 8 months
Healthcare App5 – 15 months

How much time does it take to develop an App?

The MVP for these niches typically takes 1 to 3 months. The final app delivery may range from 3 to 15+ months, depending on factors like technology, platform, features, complexity, and developer expertise.

Things that May Slow Down the Process of App Development

As mentioned earlier, app development can take from 1 month to over a year. Now, let’s discuss some factors that can cause delays in the overall development process.

Factors that Slow Down the App Development

Factors that can delay app development include

I. Unexpected Changes:

Any mid-level change in the development process can disrupt the flow, impacting overall performance and potentially requiring code base rebuilding.

II. Inexperienced Developers:

Hiring developers without the necessary experience can disrupt the app development process. Having skilled and experienced developers is crucial for successful app delivery.

III. Technology Complexity:

Integrating advanced technologies like Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, and Augmented Reality can slow down development. These technologies enhance the app but require specific skills and budgets.

IV. Industry Differences:

Different industries have varying development timelines. For instance, a social media app may take 1 to 8 months, while a healthcare app can take 6 to 15+ months. Research your industry and consult with the development company for accurate project timelines.

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How To Shorten Mobile App Development Timeline?

The app development timeline depends on various factors. However, it’s essential to develop the app on time without compromising quality. Let’s explore ways to reduce app development time.

mobile app development timeline

I. MVP Approach

Start with a Minimum Viable Product, focusing on essential features. This can reduce development time by up to 30%, gather user feedback quickly, and pave the way for further development.

II. Cross-Platform App

Use technologies like Xamarin, React Native, or Flutter to create a single app for multiple platforms. This avoids the need for separate native apps, cutting down development time.

III. Hire Experienced Developers

A skilled team can significantly impact app development time, utilizing updated knowledge for efficient development. Ensure you inquire about the developers’ skills when hiring a development company.

IV. White Label Solutions

Instead of building from scratch, use existing products and rebrand them as needed. This saves time and money.

V. Automated Testing

Opt for automated testing instead of manual testing to ensure efficient testing of app features. It’s faster, reduces errors, and is cost-effective.

Reasons Why Startups Should Choose iOS App Development?

Summing Up

We hope this guide helps you figure out the time needed to build your app. Developing an app can be a lengthy process, requiring planning, patience, and flexibility. Be prepared for unexpected situations, like third-party integrations, app store guidelines, and bugs during testing, which can cause delays.

Stay connected with the app development team post-release, incorporate improvements and updates to provide optimal value to users and enhance your brand.

If you’re looking to hire an app development team, consider Ailoitte. We’re a web and mobile app development company with extensive experience crafting multi-platform apps. Partner with us to scale your team and access top-notch solutions and results. With over half a decade of experience, we’ve collaborated with startups and brands across various industries.For a quicker app development turnaround, contact us for a quote.


How long does it take to develop an app from start to finish?

Apps take anywhere from 2 to 12 months, depending on the number of features and integrations. For example, a simple app may take 1 to 4 months, a medium app can take 3 to 8 months, and a complex app can take eight-plus months to develop.

Can you build an app in 2 weeks?

Creating an app ready for public release usually takes 3 to 4 months. However, you can prepare a Minimum Viable Product(MVP) in 2 weeks.

How do you estimate app development?

You can estimate an app based on project scope, UI/UX design, technical complexity, web hosting, deadlines, and contract type.

Is it easier to make an Android app or iOS app?

Developing for iOS is usually easier for both new and experienced programmers. iOS apps typically take less time to develop and are more cost-effective to build and maintain than Android apps.

What is the best language for both Android and iOS app development?

JavaScript is a widely used programming language for web and mobile app development. It’s versatile and can be used for creating both Android and iOS apps. A key benefit is its widespread adoption and a large community of developers.

What are most iOS apps built with?

iOS apps are mainly powered by two languages: Objective-C and Swift. While you can use other languages, they might need extra effort and workarounds.

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