General Question

Dog's avatar

Roughly how much do programmers change to create Apps for iPhone/iPad? Does the client get the coding?

Asked by Dog (24435 points ) July 15th, 2010 from iPhone

I have seen ads in magazines for companies that say they will take your idea and make it into an app.

I am slowly learning how to create apps and was wondering if anyone knows how much these companies charge?

If it is within reason I may go for it,

Also- who owns the coding?
If it is for reference could I use it again for a second app with a new topic? Would I have to pay again?

Please let me know anything helpful you might know on such programmers as well.

Thanks!

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10 Answers

janbb's avatar

My son has developed apps directly for Apple; not through a company. If his experience might be relevant to you @Dog, PM me and I will talk to him.

drClaw's avatar

They all charge different amounts of money based on what needs to be done for your app to come to fruition. For example most agencies will listen to your idea and give you a estimate/proposal. This proposal should include the different types of work that will go into your project.

Just as a guess based off of my experience I would say that you would pay on the low end $100 per hour up to $700 per hour on the high end.

gorillapaws's avatar

It really depends on how sophisticated your idea is. Apps typically cost tens of thousands to develop, if it’s a game or anything sophisticated that’s doing networking on a large scale or something like that then costs can go even higher. Also, very few ideas haven’t been thought up, and the economics of the app store aren’t very pretty at all.

Not to totally discourage you, but according to this article the estimated median return on an app is $682/year. In other words, the vast majority of apps fail.

wgallios's avatar

I usually charge anywhere between $100 to $120 per programming hour. So if the app takes 100 hours, well you can do the math.

But it all depends on the contract. Typically if a company has come to you, you would create an agreement where they would retain the rights to the software upon delivery.

Or you can license the software to the company and retain the rights to the software. It’s kind of up to you and the agreement you have between the company.

But one thing I can say, make sure you at least have a contract signed before anything is programmed for someone else.

Dog's avatar

Thanks so much for the input here.

To clarify I was thinking of hiring someone not actually making money creating apps.

My app idea may not even be possible and I won’t know this till after I take all the time to learn. It is having an app that automatically picks up our blog posts.
The app would be free in hopes that it would help homeless pets.

Any other thoughts?

jrpowell's avatar

If you just want a app to show blog posts that is pretty simple. Here is how I would do it. I’m going to assume your blog has a RSS feed. If it is Wordpress it does.

1: Use Magpie RSS to parse the RSS feed. It is what I use for the Fluther iPhone thing.

2: Style the parsed data from the feed using CSS to be iPhone friendly.

3: Use PhoneGap to make the page a app.

The first two are pretty simple and I will do them for you if you give me all your kids LEGO.

#3 is a bit tricky. But someone that knows what they are doing could probably bang it out in an hour.

This is assuming I understand what you want correctly.

gorillapaws's avatar

I think TapLynx is exactly what you might be looking for. It’s a really cheap and easy way to create a certain style of iPhone app. It can be easily customized to give your app a unique look without having to hardcode the visuals.

chaingarden's avatar

Just to give you one more option (especially since you mentioned that you were starting out doing some iPhone coding), here’s a tutorial you can check out:

http://www.mobileorchard.com/how-to-build-a-simple-rss-reader-iphone-app/

There’s a link to download the source code. Open that up in Xcode, then search for “http://feeds.feedburner.com/TheAppleBlog” and replace it with your blog’s RSS feed URL. The app is very rudimentary and has some memory leaks, but it gives you (or a developer you hire) something to play around with.

@johnpowell, I wouldn’t recommend using PhoneGap as Apple tends to reject any applications which were built outside of Xcode (e.g. PhoneGap, Flash CS5). Unless you’ve had experience that suggests otherwise?

Also, I agree with others’ ideas on pricing—you’d most likely be looking at $100 per hour minimum.

janbb's avatar

@Dog That’s ^^ my boy!

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