How much does app hosting and maintenance cost?

An overview of app maintenance and hosting. After the app is launched, it is important to maintain it to fix bugs, update code, and comply with app store rules. You also need to consider hosting costs and how to host an app on the app stores.

I have built my app. It is ready to go live on the app stores. Sooo… what now?

There is nothing more aggravating than an app that is riddled with bugs. Even though we are quite accomplished at app development and extensively test our apps, some bugs do manage to slip through the cracks. Code (for example Flutter or Angular) versions, packages, Large Language Models (LLMs such as ChatGPT) and libraries need to be updated. The app stores keep us on our toes by changing things like compliance rules. You will also receive user feedback with feature requests, so you will want to continue adding enhancements. In a nutshell, things happen, and you want to make sure you are maintaining and improving the user experience.

We enjoy developing long-term relationships with our clients. Our first client from ten years ago is still a client today. It is a journey. So, after we have completed your app, we will be happy to maintain it. We will fix any bugs that appear in the first month after launch at no additional cost. After that, we can agree to a retainer for a set number of hours per month. We use this for maintenance (with SLAs for bug fixes) as well as enhancements, which you will undoubtedly want. A retainer means we can keep the same team that built your app and is familiar with it on the project. If you are not regularly updating features, the other option is for us to maintain/improve your app through an ad hoc change request process. You tell us what you need, and then we will quote you for that enhancement or feature.

Apps are a bit like icebergs: the majority of them are hidden from view. Typically, there is a database, APIs, algorithms, and other components that are hosted in the cloud and do the majority of the heavy lifting. We typically use Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Services (including Firebase), or Microsoft Azure, but each app is unique, and frequently our clients have an existing hosting infrastructure that we must integrate with.

Hosting costs are generally surprisingly low and are determined by the number of users on the app as well as how data-intensive the app is. In other words, if you have a lot of video and audio content, your hosting costs will rise. You can think of hosting as a "good cost" because if it rises, it means your solution is becoming more popular. A $200 (R2,500) per month budget should be enough to cover hosting costs when you are getting started.

When it comes to hosting your app on the app stores, our clients typically host on our account at no cost, but you are welcome to set up your account if you prefer.

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