A number of factors determine the development time of an app.  App development time cannot be decided without analyzing the type of the app and the complexity of its features.

To simplify this challenge, we can take you through a definite and step-by-step process of developing different types of apps. App development can be classified under 3 main types: mobile app development, enterprise app development, and game app development.

Smartphone and app ideas on paper on desk

What are the steps involved in developing a mobile app?


  • Confirming the app features & specs

  • Confirming the UX/UI design

  • Development of the app   

  • Testing phase

  • App store launch

The time taken to develop any mobile app on an average basis is approximately two to three months. As with any average, however, there are plenty of examples below and above that range. Some apps can be ready in a single month while others may take over a year.

Complexity of the mobile application decides the time, and therefore cost, involved in the development. Many apps require backend processes like online storage, synchronization of data, and user accounts. Spending two months on basic backend functionality is typical, while the user interface design takes about one month.

These time frames are given based on the development of native mobile apps built for one platform. Hybrid apps for multiple platforms take a little longer, but less time than developing the app for each separate platform in native code.

How long does it take to make an enterprise app?

Along with consumer apps, enterprise mobile apps have enjoyed a surge of popularity. Some of the major factors that affect enterprise app development are data acquisition, security, and integration with existing systems. With the increasing reliance on data-driven business management, more enterprise apps have been launched.

For instance, an enterprise app developed for the customer marketing team of Sky (a pay TV broadcaster with more than 10 million subscribers) developed an internal reporting application that provided results for their marketing campaign data, an interactive timeline, infographics, and results to their subsidiaries and related business ventures. With so much intricate real-time and complex data accessed by multiple users, developing an app that retains all these data may take more time.

How long does it take to develop a mobile game app?

The 3D game development process involves 3 main stages: pre-production, production, and post-production.
In pre-production, the game team considers:

  1. Evolution of a dinosaur from sketch to 3D modelConcept/Idea

  2. Game Design Documentation

  3. Prototyping

  4. Client Approval

  5. Concept Art

    • Script

    • Characters

    • Props

    • Color

Production involves creating all the assets:

  1. 3D Modeling

  2. Texturing

  3. Rigging

  4. Animation

Finally, all the elements are put together in post-production:

  1. Integrating with Game Engine

  2. Coding

  3. VFX/ Lighting

  4. Final Out

The 2D game development process involves pretty much the same pipeline except that designing and finalizing 2D art is a simpler and shorter process than modeling, texturing, rigging, and animating 3D assets.

As with any other mobile application, the time taken for any mobile game depends upon various factors like the type of animation (2D or 3D), game mechanics, genre, complexity of game levels, and simply the number of elements like levels, characters, power-ups. A small game like Flappy Bird has simple gameplay and consists of just one level but it was wildly popular – for a while. A simple game can always be expanded after its initial release, either with free updates or in-app purchases.

Adding features like real-time multiplayer or destructible environments on a mobile platform can be challenging. Rule changes or additions affect the core logic of how a player advances, so can lengthen a game development project if introduced mid-stream.

Every app is unique, so the development cycle will vary. The more artwork, functionality, and complexity involved in an app, the longer it will take to develop. Changes mid-process, prompted by operating system updates or competition, can increase required time of mobile app development services as well.

If you want to develop some awesome apps, email us, or call 603.881.9200.

Tags: mobile application development tips, 2D and 3D mobile gaming app, develop enterprise apps, 2D game development process, developing mobile apps