Want an App Like Uber? How Much Does It Cost to Build?


Want an App Like Uber? How Much Does It Cost to Build?

With the extraordinary success of Uber, the ubiquitous mobile taxi app which initially launched in 2009 and now counts with the support of over 100 million users worldwide, demand for taxi app development has skyrocketed in recent years. As a result, one of the most common questions our company is asked is how much it costs to build an app like Uber.

Of course, every organisation will have their own unique product vision and business model, so these numbers will unavoidably vary, but this does not stop us from drawing helpful conclusions in order to generate some ballpark estimates.

With that in mind, Software Planet Group would now like to share our knowledge on how much time a project like Uber should take and shed some light on the challenging decisions you can expect to encounter along the way, should you choose to steer your company in this direction.

The Inherent Decisions of Building an Uber-Like App

When answering the question how much does it cost to make an app like Uber? first off, the average cost to develop an app will depend on the technical route you follow, as mobile applications can be developed natively or in a cost-saving hybrid fashion:

The Native Option

The native approach provides arguably the best performance and user experience, as all applications are blended seamlessly with their respective UIs and environments. Nevertheless, despite these benefits, native app development is certainly not for everyone. In order to cater to as many users as possible, for instance, companies are required to build two applications instead of just one — one for iOS and another for Android — which obviously has an impact on the native app development cost. This, however, not only is bound to significantly drive up expenses but also to slow down development.

The Hybrid Approach

Alternatively, to lower Uber app development costs, companies may choose to build a hybrid application, which essentially involves utilising some very clever frameworks like Facebook’s React Native or Ionic. These are able to convert a single source of code — in the case of the former example, JavaScript code — into native-like mobile applications. Naturally, this can greatly simplify development, but it must also be said that due to inherent UI differences, in either iOS or Android, your app will not be able to deliver a fully native experience. Nevertheless, for companies on a tighter budget, it is certainly a viable option.

Want an App Like Uber_ How Much Does It Cost to Build?

How Long Will It Take to Build an App Like Uber?

Once the issue above has appropriately been dealt with, then it is time to focus on another important factor. You see, a major misconception regarding these projects is that businesses only have to focus on a single mobile application. Yet in reality, Uber’s system consists of three fairly distinct components: an app for customers, an app for drivers and an administrative backend for system managers.

Each part of the system will be equally complex and may vary significantly on the matter of user stories (or features). On average, however, the customer app should take around 1,147 hours to develop, the driver application totals roughly 280 hours of development and the backend for administrators can be developed in about 287 hours.

For further clarification on how this translates into actual costs, the table below provides additional information. Please note that this refers to the cost to develop an app in the UK.

How long will it take to build an app like Uber?

Remember that the admin panel comes with additional features and expenses:

How long does it take to build an app like Uber? -- Admin expenses

Choose Wisely

While Uber’s success is certainly incontrovertible, many software companies are not entirely aware of the complex nature of this multilayered undertaking — not to mention its significant challenges. For this reason, SPG recommend making certain that the company you choose to work with will be competent to circumvent any potential issues.

On that note, when it comes to mobile app development costs, Software Planet Group believe that your company’s best bet is to initiate this project as a simple MVP. Not only will this enable you to launch your product as quickly as possible, as it will strip the project down to its basic components, but instead of relying on uncertain business hunches, you can base your product on feedback and actual user demand.

Who knows? With any luck, you could end up creating the next Uber!

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