iPhone App Development – How Long Should It Take to Build an App?

Many companies are often somewhat surprised at how long it takes to develop an app from start to finish. While apps are run on mobile phones and don't typically take up much memory, they still take a good deal of time to plan out, design, develop and launch.

While they rarely take as long to develop as a full software application or website, most apps typically take at least two to three months to develop from start to finish.

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Typical iPhone App Development Timeline

Architecture & Planning – 2.5-3 Weeks: During this phase of the project all facets of the app are thought out. Beyond a simple idea of what the app needs to do and how it needs to look, what other resources are needed? Does the App need to connect to an outside database? Push or Pull content?

The entire app is mapped out from start to finish. The more that can be done in the planning phase in terms of mapping out content and functionality will make the rest of the development process go much smoother. We estimate that it should take 2.5 to 3 weeks for this phase, though the larger, more complicated the app, the more time it will take obviously.

At the end of this phase, you should have a mapped-out architecture of the app, an app map if you will, as well as wireframes for the app.

Design Phase – 3 Weeks: The design phase is where Comps are created to show how the app will look. Color schemes are implemented, comp images are inserted and placeholder text is generally used at the start of this phase with it being replaced by the actual content either at the end of this phase or during development.