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How Much Does React Native App Development Costs?

By Sudeep Srivastav
August 14, 2019 8. min read
Last update on: August 21, 2020

Finding an answer to how much does it cost to build an app with react native has become a treasure hunt for app entrepreneurs looking to avail cross-platform benefits with high performance intact.

Since the inception of this Facebook’s framework, both startups and established companies are showing an unmatchable desire to know how much fundings they need to raise for embracing this cross-platform development option. 

Assuming you to be one of those, we will be talking about the React native application development cost here.

But before that, let’s take an overview of what exact React native is and the benefits it offers.

In a hurry? Jump directly to –

  1. What is React Native?
  2. Why Do Businesses Choose React Native App Development?
  3. How Much Does React Native App Development Costs: The Deciding Elements
  4. Factors that Reduce the React Native App Estimated Cost
  5. Factors that Increase the React Native App Development Cost
  6. Frequently asked questions

What is React Native?

Ever since its first public appearance at the React.js Con in 2015, React Native framework has crossed all leaps and bounds to make itself synonymous to cross-platform app development. 

At a time when the mobility domain was standing at a crossroad of innovation and high Native development cost, Cross-Platform development approach was introduced. 

But the concept, at the back of its obvious performance and quality limitations soon became a go-to option of entrepreneurs for whom presence mattered more than performance. 

But came 2015 and everything changed. Facebook announced the launch of its cross-platform app development framework that between then and now have been oiled and greased to come at par with Native development. 

Today, React Native app framework has grown to become a synonym to cross-platform – a place it has found for itself after surpassing Xamarin (check our blog on React Native vs Xamarin) and various other cross-platform frameworks and competing in several React Native vs Native debates. And while the framework was continuously perfecting its position, the developers’ interest was spiking.

Interest Over Time

The prevalent rate at which React Native is gaining interest in the mobility domain has given birth to a scenario where mobility stakeholders are asking “Is React Native the Solution to Native or Cross-Platform Dilemma?”

Why Businesses Choose React Native App Development?Why Businesses Choose React Native App Development

A majority of the startups that aim to make a presence on mobile hopes to do it in a way that the process is cost-efficient while the performance quality is intact – both the factors fall under React Native forte. 

This combination is not all. There are other benefits as well that entrepreneurs get when they opt for React Native app development. Here are the reasons to use react native for app development:

A. Low Mobile App Development Cost

The mobile app development cost that you would normally have to pay in case of Native app development is at least two to three-fold higher than the cost of building a react native app. The reason behind this difference in cost that can be seen in the React native cost calculator is majorly the doing of shared codebase and low resource requirement: both being developmental effort and cost-saving factors. 

B. Expedited Go-To-Market Time

Because the development time is less than when you choose the Native approach, it makes it possible for entrepreneurs to launch their application in the market within the stipulated time. This expedition is what the biggest factor of React Native app cost benefit analysis is. 

C. Less Manpower Requirement

One of the prime React native advantages is that React Native application development requires the inclusion of one team – 1 project manager, 1 designer, 2 developers, 1 QA expert. While in the case of Native application development, the required team size gets multiplied by two – one for each platform.  

D. Native-like Look & Feel

The only thing that kept entrepreneurs on the fence when it came to investing in cross-platform app development was the unsurety related to the app performance. React Native, with its easy accessibility to third-party plugins and APIs for accessing in-device features solves the issue by offering a native look and feel to the app user. 

E. Easy Transformation from Web to App

The single-codebase advantage that open -source React Native apps offer is not just between Android and iOS apps. It can also be used to transform your web app into a mobile centric application. 

How Much Does React Native App Development Costs: The Deciding Elements

When we talk about elements deciding the mobile app development costs, there are a few stages/factors which are common in both Native and React Native app development. Meaning, they are not specifically dedicated to the cost to make a react native app. Those stages are:

  • App Discovery Cost 
  • App Deployment Cost

So, let us look at the uncommon ones. 

A. Complexity of the App

Every app present in the stores can be divided into three segments – Low Complexity, Medium Complexity, and High Complexity Apps. 

The segmentation depends on six factors:

  1. Deployment Architecture Model – When it comes to Backend development, there are two options – Custom or BaaS. In the Custom option, clients get their own mobile app architecture while in case of BaaS, they work around a readymade backend architecture.
  2. Admin Panel Development –It is the part which helps entrepreneurs manage the app – keep track of app activity, view statistics, and update content without involving react native app builders. The more feature-rich the admin panel, the more an app rises in the complexity chart.
  3. Third Party Integration –In order to be truly user friendly, your app needs to interact with other app’s functionality to ease processes like login and payment. These integrations are slightly more complex when one has to build a react native app over a native one.
  4. In-App Purchase – Although a good percent of apps active in the industry today have the in-app purchase functionality in one form or another, its inclusion is not easy. So the more in-app purchase options you give, the more complex your react native app would become.
  5. Use of Device’s In-Built Features – The modern day range of smartphones and tablets come packed with a number of features such as Bluetooth, GPS, Nearby, Barometers, etc. which can be linked with an application to better its performance.
  6. Integration with the Enterprise/Legacy System – There are apps which have to be connected with an in-house legacy system – as normally seen in case of Enterprise apps. These applications type by default fall under medium to high complexity scale, as they are not stand-alone. 

B. User Authorization

If you are planning to create a mobility solution which requires user login or authorization, the cost to build an app with react native would be slightly higher than one which does not require the users to sign up or sign in. 

C. App Category

A number of elements change when we move from one app category to another: functionality set, security considerations, number of real-time users, etc. 

Changing with these intricacies is the React Native app development cost. For example, a standalone app (like timer or calculator) will cost a lot less compared to a feature-rich mCommerce or on-demand application. 

D. Focus on Hardware

The more hardware you connect with your application, the greater would be the pricing of React native app development. While developing an IoT application is still some points easier under the Native approach, achieving the same using React Native is difficult in terms of attached development complexity. 

E. App Design

Ensuring that users spend maximum time in your application calls for a well-devised design strategy – one that has a well articulated user flow, makes use of timed animation and transitions to move from one screen to another. But, designing screens and experience that is bound to hold users’ attention come attached with a cost. 

However, for an app entrepreneur relief, the cost to design a mobile app in case of React Native app development is much lower when compared to Native app design cost, for only one app version needs to be designed. 

F. App Maintenance

It is unquestionable that the expenses do not end at app launch. You will have to regularly update it to keep up with users’ expectations. Recently, we worked on Dominos application and only at the back of an app redesign we saw a sharp increase in user retention and engagement levels. 

When we talk about app maintenance, we mainly talk about three individual processes –

  1. App updates
  2. Design changes
  3. App bug fixes

The app maintenance cost estimate is usually calculated yearly as 20% of the complete react native application development cost.

G. Team Size

The cost to hire React Native app developers would vary in three ways 

  1. If you plan to take help of freelancers
  2. If you plan to associate with a mid-cap company
  3. If you plan to partner with a high-cap company

Normally, choosing freelancers to develop your React Native project will be most cost-effective. But it won’t be quality efficient. On the other hand, if you plan on partnering with a high-cap agency, the base price itself would be very high because that is how they sustain in the market. 

Ideally, you should go with a mid-cap company whose base hourly rate starts at $30-$50, for there is a chance that they are more open to an innovative app idea compared to one with a hefty price tag.

H. Agency’s Location

Location is a very important criteria when it comes to determining the mobile app development cost. The difference in ,cost that an agency in the USA or Australia charges when you opt to hire React Native app developers from their region is a lot higher than what Eastern countries ask for. This is one of the reasons why app entrepreneurs prefer outsourcing their project. 

Here’s a map showcasing geography wise per hour development cost –

Map showcasing geography wise per hour development cost

Factors that Reduce the React Native App Estimated Cost

1. Synced Development

At the back of React Native app development, you get all the versions of an application on targeted OSes at the same time – this not just cuts down the incurred cost but also the time it takes to develop the application. 

2. One Team

React Native app development calls for the inclusion of only one team, as opposed to two teams that Native app development approach calls for – specific to Android and iOS. 

3. Use of Existing Frameworks

The React Native app development frameworks enable developers to speed up the process by giving them a skeleton framework to work on. 

4. Reusable Code

Developers will be doing half the work that they usually do with Native app development as they will be working on shared codes that are used to develop both Android and iOS versions of applications. 

Factors that Increase the React Native App Development Cost

1. Crossing UI Limitations

Using a common code for development of both Android and iOS side of the application can, in turn, have a negative impact on the performance of an application. Shared codebase, more often than not, make apps appear similar on platforms that are inherently different. 

Optimizing the application platform wise, is something that what increases the React Native app price immensely.

2. Optimizing Performance

The one major point of difference that stands between React Native and Native apps is performance. The app quality that Native apps come packaged with is one that makes use of in-device features and enables easy third party integrations: all with the aim to make the user experience better. 

Bringing React Native up to Native Apps’ standards is a difficult task which comes with an attached cost. 

3. Investment Needed to Learn New Frameworks

While React Native comes with a low learnability curve, if your team is of Native app developers, you will still have to invest time in getting them to learn and perfect the nitty-gritty that the React Native frameworks come with.

4. Security Assurance

When compared to Native apps, React Native app development offers less security, which in turn can make a security breach a massive issue. 

The solution lies in investing in a team of QA experts who specialize in cross-platform testing and maintenance – which plays a massive role in upping the answer to How much does it cost to develop react native app? 

These were some of the key factors that decide the React Native app development cost you should plan for in the beginning of our app journey. Assigning numerics to them is a task which can only be achieved after getting an in-depth insight into the app project. 

Get in touch with our team of Business Consultants to know the range to expect depending on your app’s model. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How Much Does it Cost to Build a React Native App?

The cost of React Native app development is dependent on a number of factors –

  • App complexity
  • App category
  • Design
  • Maintenance
  • Location of the agency, etc. 

Giving a numeric answer to these individual factors will call for an in-depth understanding of the project. Share your app idea and get a free estimate from our team of React Native app developers. 

Q. Why Use React Native for Your Mobile App?

There are a number of benefits that React Native app development offers to app entrepreneurs –

  • Low Mobile App Development Cost
  • Expedited Go-To-Market Time
  • Less Manpower Requirement
  • Native-like Look & Feel

Q. Is React Native a good choice for app development?

The answer to this question depends entirely on your business app needs and expectations. For example, if you wish to enter both the Android and iOS market with lower budget and shorter timeline, React native is the right choice for you. However, it is not a suitable option when you are looking for multiprocessing options or integration of latest native elements into the development architecture.

Sudeep Srivastav
Sudeep Srivastav
CEO, Appinventiv
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