When Is the Best Time for Custom Mobile Development? 

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MARYNA DEMCHENKO

Published: 17 Jan 2022

mobile app development

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In the era of Remote Everything, the best way to bring your business to the next level is to create a mobile app. When the pandemic broke out, we became tethered to our phone screens even more than ever. Plenty of apps sprouted out during this turbulent time, ranging from telemedicine to video conferencing and remote collaboration apps. 

With that in mind, we at nCube believe that 2022 is the best time to hop on the bandwagon of custom app development. We’ve built dedicated iOS, Android, and cross-platform teams in Ukraine (among many other teams), so we can say for sure that whether you want to boost sales or address the needs of a specific target audience, the best way to do it is via a custom mobile app. If you’re still in doubt if it’s the right time for you to go for it, today’s post will come in handy.

So where do you start when it comes to custom mobile app development? In our experience of helping companies build custom mobile apps, the best time to start looking for purveyors is when your project is at one of these stages: 

  • Requirements: You collected project requirements and documented Project Scope.
  • Budget: Your project attracted investments and now it’s time to achieve Return on Investment (ROI). 
  • Discovery Phase: You want to test your idea and see if there’s a market for it.
  • Minimum Viable Product (MVP): You validated the idea and are ready to build a full-fledged product. 

You have requirements for your custom mobile app

Technical and business requirements documented in your Project Scope let you see the big picture when it comes to your custom mobile app venture. Typically, companies start looking for custom mobile app development experts after the Scope is in place, which means they have a clear idea when it comes to crucial things, such as:

  • A monetization model
  • Business logic
  • Platform choice 
  • Must-have features 
  • Metrics for success

From the perspective of a provider of custom mobile app development, clients like this are ideal, as they have a vision of what the end product should be like. But there's another way to define your project needs: You can start with the Discovery Phase. Many companies decide to interview custom mobile app development experts at this step, as they lack internal resources to identify if their idea has potential. If that's the case, a custom mobile app team can help you with defining the tech feasibility of the idea and take over the development of an MVP so you can get it out to the market and gauge its impact on early users. 

READ ALSO: What is a Discovery Phase and Why Your Project Needs it?

Whether you have a Project Scope or wish to start with the Discovery Phase, you are in a good place to start looking for custom mobile app opportunities.

You have settled the budget 

So your app idea has attracted funds. It must rock! Finding yourself at this point only means one thing  – you want to achieve maximum ROI, and so you by all means need to develop an impeccable mobile app.

From the standpoint of custom mobile application development, budget is just as important as Project Scope. Without knowing your budget, it’s impossible to define such critical aspects as team size and other expenses related to tools and facilities that the team needs for custom app development. Thus, it can be impractical to bring in any resources from outside, such as custom mobile app development professionals, before estimating your financial capacity. Of course, you can start looking for and shortlisting companies specializing in custom mobile applications development, but having a clear budget will let you make the right choice based on your specific needs.

Your budget may also influence the destination you choose for custom mobile app development, as pricing for the service may vary depending on the vendor's location.

READ ALSO: Offshore Product Development: Eastern Europe, Latin America or Asia? 

Furthermore, your budget cannot be overlooked when it comes to the selection between different custom mobile apps development pricing models. In your journey, you'll probably come across the most popular ones: 

  •  Fixed Price

The Fixed Price model allows you to set a specific budget on a defined number of app features, which should be preemptively agreed upon with the provider. In this model, any extra work calls for an additional payment.

  • Time and Material Pricing Model

With this model, you'll pay for work completed on a set schedule. The team is typically billed for the hours spent working on the custom app development. 

Essentially, when you choose the Fixed Price or Time and Material model, you should know that the custom mobile app firm will be responsible for the outcome of the project, leaving the client out of the software development process. If you want more involvement in the process, you may consider other options, including a dedicated team where a team provided through a vendor will take over custom mobile application development under your leadership. We at nCube follow this model, which allows our clients to pay for each full-time employee working on their custom mobile app. We believe that our approach gives the client more transparency when it comes to the budget as compared to other pricing models.

You have already developed an MVP

Having an MVP in place is a great kick-off point for investing in the development of a full-blown mobile app, as you've already validated your idea and gained the approval of early adopters. The next logical step is reaching out to custom mobile application development experts to develop a slew of features on top of your existing bare-bones version of the product. It’s reasonable because the provider of custom mobile apps will take over the laborious task of laying the foundation for further product growth, allowing your team to focus on the marketing aspects of app development. 

Building a stellar product based on an MVP requires a stable team. A team that endures throughout the lifespan of your project will pay off in the long run, as having to onboard new team members every other month may cause a delay in release. In our dedicated model, chances are high you'll work with the same team members for as long as it takes to turn your MVP into a full-fledged product. We focus on custom team formation where the developers are chosen specifically for your project and are passionate to make it a success. 

Afterword: Still considering custom mobile development

So now that we’ve discussed when it’s the best time for you to dive into custom mobile development, you should know that it isn’t the only way to build an app. Admittedly, it may sound a little bit biased, but we believe that this approach misses out on several important things. To prove this point, we have the experience of some world-known brands who have chosen nCube to build their iOS, Android and cross-platform dedicated teams as opposed to farming this activity out to typical custom app development firms. We’ve helped companies such as Flightright, Life360, and doTerra (just to name a few) to build their iOS, Android, and cross-platform teams that are currently a part of many aspects of custom app development, from architecture and design to Quality Assurance and deployment. 

For example, for our client, Life360 (a family location sharing app), we've built a team of 20 mobile software developers (30+ team members overall) who work on the development of applications for iOS and Android platforms. The client approached us at the point where they already had an MVP and required more resources to win over iOS and Android markets. Our cooperation started out with a team of 5 Ukrainian developers and gradually scaled up to 20 in the course of several months. 

As opposed to custom mobile app development, a dedicated team can be a potentially better model in the following aspects:

  • Higher level of control. A dedicated team lets you have a direct impact on the app development process, while in a custom mobile applications development model everything is handled by the provider, from selecting team members to assigning tasks. Thus, a dedicated team model lets you have more transparency when it comes to the processes and eventually get a predictable result. 
  • Direct access to the team. With a dedicated team, you can communicate with your team members personally, define the workload, assign tasks as you see fit, and generally make all project-related decisions.  
  • Transparent pricing. As opposed to custom mobile app development, where the pricing is typically billed for the whole project or a predefined set of deliverables, in a dedicated team you pay for a full-time hired employee (plus a service fee), which puts you in control when it comes to budget. 

READ ALSO: How to Build a Dedicated Development Team in Ukraine

None of this is to say that every company out there looking for custom mobile apps development vendors should convert to a dedicated team model. When choosing this model, you should ensure you have internal tech expertise and the capability to run a development team. However, if you want to know who will work on your project and retain full team control without a middleman – you may consider choosing a dedicated team over a custom app development approach. 

Let’s connect to chat and see if the time is right for you to develop an app and how our model can help you with that.

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