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We hear this question all the time: How Much Does It Cost To Develop an App?

Compared to client expectations about app development costs from three years ago, there is increasing evidence that apps are not “cheap” to develop. Perhaps this is in part due to the fact that most apps are expected to be cloud connected and social.

Asking “How much does an app cost to develop” is much like asking “how much does it cost to build a house”, there is no definitive or easy answer.

Great Expectations

But any expectations around a mobile app costing only a few thousand dollars, and being easier easier to build than a web site, have largely disappeared. For those interested in factors contributing to application build costs, this article on formotus.com provides a good read and food for thought.

So What Stats Are there?

 
A survey of IT professionals by AnyPresence, a backend-as-a-service company, asked about the initial cost of developing a typical mobile application. Over half reported spending more than three months and over $50,000 developing a typical app. Very nearly a quarter reported spending over $100,000.
Read full story on www.formotus.com: Cost To Develop an App

Cost To Develop an App

For some additional resources and recent app cost calculators, see the following links:

In Pounds Sterling:

This post provided some very detailed estimates by the CTO of 5App and his conclusion:

It’s safe to assume that using traditional development techniques to create a cross-platform enterprise app won’t come in under £100K.

The Apple and Samsung patent trial is expected to come to a close this week. Samsung is accused of infringing on iPhone and iPad patents in the design of their own devices. The outcome, be it either a win for Samsung or Apple, will likely influence the direction of how tablets will be designed and marketed worldwide.

In an Article in the NY Times, Nick Wingfield reports:

“But the effects of the case are likely to be felt far beyond these two companies. If Apple prevails, experts believe Samsung and other rivals in the market will have a much stronger incentive to distinguish their smartphone and tablet products with unique features and designs to avoid further legal tangles.”
read the article…

And this will be good news, because if the case goes Samsung’s way, then tablet features and design will continue to emulate the iPad and iOS experience, and I for one would look forward to seeing more innovation from Apple’s competitors both on the hardware and software side.

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

tablet wars 2012 What was interesting for me as an app designer was that attention to detail Samsung paid in copying software features of what they clearly perceived to be a superior product. An internal 132 page Samsung report complained about the fact that Samsung’s design fell short of Apple’s example in key areas, and did so through a comparison of the two devices in the minutest detail; for example a discussion about the pixel width of the separator line between numbers displayed in the of the built in calculator.

This surprised me a bit, as Samsung is a device manufacturer, and I would have expected them to be concerned with tablet hardware features and price to differentiate itself from other Android based tablets and smartphones.

But it seems that the 132 page report points to examples of how Samsung tweaked the Android OS software. And thus contributing to one of the biggest issues that keep Android based tablets from winning the tablet wars for now: Device Fragmentation. There are 700 some varieties of Android devices, with 30+ different screen resolutions and countless manufacturer specific OS tweaks, and this is what presents enormous quality and design challenges for cross platform developers like us.

Tablet wars aren’t won by hardware: It’s the Apps, Stupid!

As an app designer and developer I may be biased, but to me the tablet wars in the end will come down to neither device features or price. To mis-quote Bill Clinton: “It’s the apps, stupid”. Having a vibrant app marketplace, and therefore having an enthusiastic developer community is what I think will continue to primarily influence the tablet wars.

Do hardware features matter?

Manufacturers would like you to believe that hardware features and price make a significant difference to consumers, but in the end the iPad tablet is not that deficient on the hardware front. And on the software side? Of course there are great apps available for Android, but on the whole an extra megapixel of camera resolution on a lesser known tablet may simply not make up for the variety, quality and choice of fantastic apps available on the iTunes App Stores.

All Apple has to do to keep pace and marketshare is to announce a slightly less expensive tablet, perhaps with a 7″ screen size…

Quick Poll: What is your opinion?

What do you value in your tablet?

Are you thinking of creating an app?

In this post we outline some readiness factors to consider before getting started.

Since 2010 we’ve had lots of people approach us with great ideas for apps. Many clients share our vision that the future of accessing content is on mobile devices, and they visualize their own ideas or content as engaging, beautiful, stunning apps.

But before launching straight into developing an app, we help our clients understand the mobile market as a whole, and also help them assess their own readiness to launch a mobile strategy for their business. With this we introduce our assessment tool, and also invite you to download our comprehensive and free “Mobile 2012” white paper.

Mobile Devices? It’s humans who are mobile.

Mobile devices are still relatively new.  The fact is humans have always been mobile.  It’s only now we have the technologies that allow us to access the content we value 24/7 in exciting ways.  This has been possible only in the last couple of years…. thinking here of how the iPad has transformed publishing, news, social media and just about everything else the internet allowed us to do in limited ways.  Apps on mobile devices allow us to interact with content and people in much more compelling, more beautiful and playful ways, wherever we are and whenever we want.  Pretty powerful stuff.

Transform Your Existing Content

If you are already mobile savvy and have fresh app ideas or novel app concepts, you may like following our app design process to create rapid wireframes & prototypes. Many others, like authors or leaders in their field, may be less mobile savvy but already have content they believe is of value to people.  Perhaps the following examples resonate with you:

  • It could be a book you’ve already published, or want to publish
  • It could be training materials that you have developed
  • It could be you have a particular methodology or tool kit that has helped clients in your professional field
  • It could be you have curated a photo or art collection of specific era, or subject matter
  • It could be you have a hobby that you want to document and share with others who share the passion
  • It could be you are a specialist in your discipline of health, fitness, education, medicine, history, astrology, biology, anthropology, or any of the sciences.
  • It could be you have a children’s story that you’ve created and want to interactivate it!

So the question to ask is “How mobile ready are you?” You want to give yourself or your business the best launch possible into the mobile space.

If you have the dream, a strong belief and the content, that’s what counts

Polymash has had 100s of conversations on this topic with individual content owners and businesses.  After years of building relationships and educating clients, we have been able to distill the key drivers to successful app creation to six major dimensions.  This assessment takes a very real look at what it takes to make a successful app in a still relatively new, yet rapidly growing market place.  The self-assessment is not for the faint-hearted.  And, it’s not to say, if you’re strong in few dimensions that you can’t start.  If you have the content and a strong belief and a dream, that’s what counts.

What does it take to make an app, and how ready are you?

  • Know your market – who your users are and what they will do with your app
  • Compelling content – what assets can you provide – images, stories, models, videos, graphics
  • Organization culture – the supportive work context – leadership support, finances, timeframes, innovative mindsets
  • Mobile Device awareness – experience consuming content on mobile, so you’re able to discern good user experience
  • Marketing and Social Media Savvy – a product launch is a product launch, requiring marketing investment and social proof
  • Aligned Strategy including Web – going mobile is a strategic undertaking; a holistic integrated web strategy is important

What does it take to make an app?

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Readiness Assessment Tool

What does it take to make an app? Take Polymash’s Assessment Tool to find our your current state of readiness.

  • Discover where your strengths already exist.
  • Find out what opportunities there are for you to prepare yourself for your greatest success.
  • Learn from our experience and how we have helped many like you who have created apps to serve their user base and grow their global reach.

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As part of the free Readiness Assessment Tool and in addition to your results, you will also receive a comprehensive report and state of the mobile landscape as of July 2012.

Get ahead now in understanding mobile trends and position yourself for the future!

Polymash has developed a sound understanding of the hospitality and restaurant markets. 

We offer clients a state of the art restaurant-app-system that not only delights clientele and patrons with a positive user experience, but also provides a seamless and professional experience for staff as well.  This is achieved through an holistic product, integrating advanced features such as food ordering, reservation systems and dynamic restaurant menus and more.

What facilitates retention and reuse rate for apps?  Good utility, usability and distraction.  So you want customers to come back to your app because it’s a good experience: it provides a service and/or information, it is easy to use and when they are hungry or looking for a favorite restaurant they choose yours.  The presentation of your content is extremely important and the features make their experience engaging and useful.  An existing website does not morph into a great mobile app!

It’s not enough that we build products that function, that are understandable and usable, we also need to build products that bring joy and excitement, pleasure and fun, and yes, beauty to people’s lives.” – Don Norman

[button link=”http://www.restaurant-app-system.com” type=”big” color=”orange” icon=”notice”]Visit the Restaurant App System![/button]

Polymash Inc. today introduces the FilmOneFest app for iPad. The FilmOneFest app is a collection of one-minute films from filmmakers all around the world with supporting stories, artists’ statements and interviews. The app gives visibility and voice to film makers across the world, enabling their talent to serve and inspire others to question, experiment, explore, laugh, cry, and unite us in our common humanity in this one-minute format.

[button link=”http://prmac.com/release-id-27475.htm” type=”icon” icon=”notice”]Read the Full PR Mac Press Release[/button]


We are extremely pleased that Axiom News has just released an article on our recently released “Embracing Change” app. Below a brief excerpt, to read the full article follow this link.

[box]Last year, Stratton-Berkessel published the book Appreciative Inquiry for Collaborative Solutions: 21 Strength-Based Workshops. Since then she became intrigued by the use of tablets like the iPad to consume content. She says she started to see some business applications come out for tablet devices, and thought about how great it would be to turn one of her workshops into an app. [/box]

The tablet market is continuing to exhibit astonishing growth (17 billion in revenue forecasted for mobile applications in 2011 – source: Gartner)

It is not surprising that more platforms for digital publishing and porting content onto the tablet format are cropping up.

At this week’s O’Reilly Tools of Change for Publishing conference , one of the more intriguing announcements comes from a French company that has created a digital publishing platform which will go live in March.

From their press release today:

Aquafadas Digital Publishing Platform offers key advantages in digital publishing:

  • It enables designers to create well-designed digital content
    quickly through easy-to-use plugins for Adobe® InDesign® and
    QuarkXPress® — no coding required
  • Publications can be based on PDF or XML , enhanced by picture galleries, slide shows, videos, and sound
  • Aquafadas ’s Solution makes it easy to deploy digital publications
    to multiple devices, such as tablets and smartphones, and to multiple
    operating systems, such as iOS® and Android™ — simultaneously
  • Publications can be published as interactive PDF, custom Apps, and
    in an unique, XML-based format that supports text reflow while
    maintaining the publication’s design

Unlike other approaches Aquafadas’ provides a complete and
cost-effective end-to-end solution for digital publishing from creation
to delivery.

Leading corporate and professional publishers such as Galleries
Lafayette, Reader’s Digest, and Carlsen Verlag already selected
Aquafadas’ solution as their digital publishing tool of choice.

We will post a follow up once the pricing model becomes available.

Glad to share that “Embracing Change” climbed into the top 100 it’s first week out, and we have not started our marketing campaign yet. Stay tuned:)

[one_half]Anyone interested in how Ditigal Publishing for tablets is evolving should check out the Adobe Digital Publishing suite, which is the platform we have been using at Polymash for the last 1/2 year or so as alpha testers. It is now in public beta status, and is scheduled to go live sometime in Q2 of 2011.  A number of apps have been published on this platform already, and we are happy to count ourselves among them.

[box]Of course our vision is slightly beyond using such a platform for digital magazine content only: We are “repurposing” Adobe’s toolset to create interactive content for information product owners, publishers and authors who want to stand out and shine in an increasingly crowded eBook and app market. To do so we are adding  HTML5 and Javascript features to the platform, such as in-app notebooks, interactive animations and so on.[/box][/one_half]

[one_half_last]We have good company: Our app is listed  right next to Conde Nast titles created with the Adobe suite such as Martha Stewart Living and Wired Magazine, and numerous other publishers have gone live with titles such as the New Yorker, Golf Digest & Readers Digest.

So if you own an iPad, you should check out the Adobe’s full gallery of apps published with the Adobe Digital Publishing Suite:

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