If you’re planning on hiring a mobile app developer, you’ll have to deal with a lot of questions and decisions. Will you hire in-house or outsource to external expertise such as freelancers or remote development teams? If you decide to outsource, it’s important to remember that location can affect the cost of a mobile app developer, depending on where they are in the world. But where do you even begin to look for mobile developers?
Well, the answer to those questions will soon be yours. In this article, we’ll discuss mobile app developer rates, cover the pros and cons of working with freelancers vs. remote teams vs. offshoring, mention the main countries and platforms for developer hunting, and provide tips on all aspects of the process.
It’s safe to say that when you hire a mobile app developer, the two main concerns are price and quality, which are often affected by the location of the developer. A list of sites that have proven to be trustworthy IT service destinations looks little like this:
However, the final cost of your project isn’t only determined by the location of the developer. It also depends on the type of app you want to be developed. So, let’s dissect the average scope of tasks that comprise common mobile software development projects and their average accompanying costs.
|Type of application||Details||Hours||Hourly rates range|
|Basic app||Templates, drop-down menu, list, device storage||80-160||$50-100|
|Data-based app||Backend, server storage, data processing and visualization||170-220||$50-100|
|Ecommerce app||Product listing, cart, transactions||300+||$100-150|
|Messenger app||Various data formats, chats, cloud storage||700+||$70-120|
|Social network||Profiles, networking, photo/video content, real-time newsfeed||400+||$80-120|
|Game||3D graphic, rendering, single-player, multi-player, server storage||550+||$80-120|
Based on the type and complexity of the project, if you refer to these numbers, you’d probably need to invest anywhere from 80 to 600+ hours with a $50 – $150 hourly rate. The time invested can also be affected by whether the technology is designed for iOS, Android, or both.
However, as we all know, salary is not the only expense involved in hiring a developer. Not only do the salaries of software engineers differ greatly across the globe, but there are also various taxes, fees, and other expenditure items to consider when creating your estimate.
According to Glassdoor, if you decide to hire a developer in the US full-time, you will likely be paying between $82k and $180k per annum, based on skill seniority. This suggested figure is comprised of the following:
Adding this all up, we get $82,000/year for a junior software developer, $140,000/year for a middle engineer, $180,000/year for a senior developer. When considering these numbers, remember that nearly 30% of all the expenses on an employee in the US goes towards after-salary charges like federal withholdings, unemployment compensation, and other taxes.
Every UK-based worker has a tax-free Personal Allowance of £12,500 per annum, which is excluded from their salaries. Additionally, the employer of a UK developer has to pay the income tax, the national insurance (Class 1 for software engineers), and the auto-enrolment pension.
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UK taxes (though different) are higher than in the US, but the average salaries are lower. Income tax is 20% for those earning between £11,800 and £46,300 and 40% for those with an income above £50,000. Keep in mind that it is calculated in a different way in Scotland.
All in all, it’s a bit cheaper to hire mobile app developers in the UK for the following reasons:
Based on Payscale’s research data, hiring a software developer in Australia costs AU$50,000/year for junior specialists, around AU$70,000/year for middle talents, and almost AU$100,000/year for senior software engineers.
You will also need to pay a certain sum of bonuses (ranging from AU$500 to AU$10,000/year) and profit-sharing payments, which can go from AU$100 to AU$10,000/year.
As you can quickly tell, hiring remote developers from Australia is not cheap.
If you decide to hire a full-time mobile developer based in the Netherlands, you’ll be looking to pay $56,000/year for a junior developer, above $88,000/year for a middle-level talent, and nearly $99,000/year for a senior software engineer, taxes included. Other taxes to take into account are pension fund payments (5% of taxable salary) and holiday allowance (8%).
The size of the taxable income depends on the tax box of the employee; software developers belong to Box 1. The average software developer’s salary is influenced by the following factors:
Another consideration in the Netherlands, which also applies in Germany, is that if two businesses are registered on the same address, it affects taxation.
Germany is known for its high-quality work in a variety of fields, and software development is no different. However, hiring software developers in Germany will cost more than $66,000/year for a junior developer, around $81,500 for a middle specialist, and nearly $95,000 for senior talent.
You should also know that the German taxation system is one of the most complex in the world. For example, the size of the tax-free allowance depends on a geographical location, age, and marital status. Many German companies prefer to work with Ukrainian or Polish outsourcers to avoid dealing with the paperwork nightmare that is the German tax system.
Here’s what you’ll have to pay for German software developers:
If you are a US-based company and hiring in Europe seems overly complicated, engaging mobile app developers in Mexico might be preferred. Some of the benefits include geographical proximity, cost-considerate labor, and overlapping time zones.
There are multiple companies in Mexico that provide mobile app development services. Unlike some of the previous countries we’ve looked at, the average salary of a junior app developer in Mexico is around MXN$99,000/year (US$4400/year). Middle specialists are paid around MXN$302,000/year (US$13,500/year), and senior software development engineers in Mexico are paid around MXN$647/year (US$29,000/year).
Due to various bonuses that range $130-$4500/year and profit-sharing payments of $220-$660/year, the total sums might fluctuate.
Deciding to hire a mobile app developer in Ukraine comes with various benefits not available in the other countries we’ve covered so far. These include a simplified taxation system and cheaper cost of living.
The average net salary of a junior software developer in Ukraine is about $18,000/year, middle specialists cost around $25,000/year, and senior talents can be hired for up to $50,000/year. Software developers in Ukraine mostly belong to the Entrepreneur group #3 and have to pay 5% of their earnings or 3% + VAT.
There are numerous reasons why Ukraine is the best destination for IT outsourcing. But we’ve shortlisted them to five most eye-catching and valuable ones.
Ukraine stands out as one of the most affordable offshoring destinations, yet the one providing consistent quality.
All in all, the cost of hiring remote developers across the globe varies greatly. Calculating your estimate when you’re planning your project can depend on subsistence wages, taxation systems, and other factors.
Once you’ve decided where you want to hire your mobile app developers from, and have found the right balance of price and quality, the next question is: how to hire them? The three most common answers to that question are freelancers, remote employees, or a team from an offshoring vendor.
Breaking down the pros and cons of these hiring options will help make the right choice.
Pros of choosing freelancers:
Cons of choosing freelance developers:
Pros of choosing to work with remote teams:
Cons of choosing to work with remote teams:
Pros of outstaffing/outsourcing:
Cons of outstaffing/outsourcing:
Relevant has also published an article on the pros and cons of the three most popular ways to extend your software development team. You should check it out for more information.
Once you’ve decided on the hiring option, it’s finally time to actually do some headhunting. But where?
One of our articles covers the ten best sites to hire remote developers. As a sneak peek, here are our favorite five:
Pick any of these, and you will definitely find the needed expertise. However, there are several considerations to be aware of.
Relevant has covered the hiring process in more detail in our guide on how to hire a mobile app developer. But there are a few key points to keep in mind before you hire someone:
Most importantly, have your requirements, milestones, and roadmap clear. The more concise and precise the specification, the better the chance of nailing it with the product features.
Apple wants iOS app development to remain standardized, so it all boils down to learning to work with Swift and Objective-C. This is why good iOS developers need to know the following:
On average, iOS developers cost around $80,000/year in the EU and above $120,000 in the US. In Ukraine, you can hire a senior iOS developer for as low as $48,000/year. If you’re looking to develop a mobile app for iOS, Relevant has written a detailed guide on what to look for in an iOS developer. It includes how to evaluate their hard and soft skills, what questions to ask during the interview, and more.
Android is a much more open ecosystem and is used by a wide variety of mobile device manufacturers. An Android developer must be able to write consistent, clear, and reusable code, and be proficient in:
Android developers are traditionally in a costly segment of a job market, with annual salaries reaching up to $130,000. In Ukraine, their wages range from $6,000 to $30,000/year.
Relevant has prepared an in-depth guide on how to hire an Android app developer, skills to look for, and questions to ask. Feel free to take a look at it!
Google positions Flutter as a unified SDK for web and mobile apps, and as Google and its Chrome browser are the most popular Internet tools today, Flutter could be the way the web will evolve. As of now, Flutter developers can create apps that work equally well on mobile and desktop. However, to do that, the developers must possess the following skills:
Based on findings by Indeed, Flutter developer salaries can range up to $130,000/year in the US. In Ukraine, you can hire such specialists for a mere $30,000/year.
Relevant has described the hard and soft skills to look for in Flutter engineers, along with some other tips and tricks on how to hire a Flutter developer. We hope this review will help you find the best fit for your project.
When outsourcing mobile app development to freelancers, remote employees, or offshoring teams, you need to keep an eye on a variety of factors like:
We’re sure this article will address the main questions and concerns you might have about how to hire skilled mobile developers.
Speaking of developers, why not work with us? Relevant Software is a business-minded Ukrainian IT service provider with an end-user-centered approach. We provide a wide range of services, from web/mobile apps design and lightning-fast development to DevOps and cybersecurity services. We’re ready to answer any questions on mobile app development costs — and we would be glad to help you meet business objectives by using our high-grade services. Contact us today, and let’s start working on your project tomorrow!