Flutter App Development Cost: How to Estimate The Budget And Reduce Expenses

Updated 30 Aug 2023

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According to Statista researches, Flutter remains one of the most popular among the cross-platform frameworks. Its high demand allows us to define approximate costs from software building. To put in short, Flutter app development cost varies from $40,000 to $200,000+. These are the numbers based on our personal experience as an expert IT provider in cross-platform app development.

The reason is that the price is affected by numerous variables, such as scope of work to be done, level of app’s complexity, number of features, developers’ hourly rates, and more. This guide will help you discover the factors influencing the Flutter software development costs and how they are calculated.

As an example, Flutter app development cost ranges according to the project's defined scope of work, as follows:

How much does Flutter cost: app development prices by types

App typeLevel of complexityAverage costsExamples

🎯Simple

Contains simple UI & MVP feature set

$40,000-$60,000

Fitness app

⚡Middle complex

Has more advanced functionality & customized UI

$60,000-$120,000

Messenger with voice calls

💡Highly complex

Includes top-level advanced functionality and bespoke interface

$120,000-$200,000+

Instagram-like app

Keep reading to understand the Flutter app development cost for diverse industries and find out how to calculate a precise price. You'll also learn how to reduce the price when the app turns out to be expensive.

Key Factors Affecting Flutter App Development Cost on The Whole

To clarify all the components of the Flutter app development cost, we will single out each factor and analyze its impact on the price.

Factors affecting Flutter app development costs

Factors affecting Flutter app development costs

Native app development vs. Flutter

When we’re estimating a native project, we’re taking into account the development time for both platforms. Flutter is a cross-platform framework that lets developers write a single codebase for Android and iOS. This feature halves the development time making Flutter app development cost lower compared to native ones.

What’s remarkable about Flutter is its optimized code and no performance issues. Flutter delivers steady 60 FPS on all devices and even 120 FPS if the device supports it. However, Flutter has some drawbacks. If your project requires a Wear OS version or a Smart TV app, you’ll face some troubles. Technically, you can build a Flutter app for these platforms. But many of Flutter’s development features aren’t supported by Wear OS.

In the case of an Android TV, you’ll have to build the control logic from scratch. The reason is that Android TV reads remote control input only, while Flutter works with touchscreens and mouse movements. This fact can slow down the development process, cause developers trouble, and increase the Flutter price. That’s why it’s better to go for native development if you’re aiming at specific platforms.

Complexity of features

Features are the main component of the app. They are also the main factor that influences the Flutter app development cost. Simple features (e.g. login) take minimal efforts, while the integration of video calls may take up to 2-3 weeks of the development time.

Let’s imagine that you’re going to build an Instagram-like app. The photo upload feature takes around 13 hours of development time. With an average rate of $50/hour, it will cost you $650. However, to build filters for photo editing, your development team will have to spend from 30 to 120 hours depending on their type and amount. A software development company will charge $1,500- $6000 for this feature.

The most expensive features in Flutter app development

FeatureDescriptionApprox time (hour)Approx cost ($50/h)

Navigation

Location map development - applying beacons

194

$9,700

Chat

Video calls - audio calls - text chat

188

$9,400

Payment integration

Integration with PayPal - adding credit cards - withdrawing/sending funds

70

$3,500

Location of developers and the chosen hiring option

Another aspect impacting the total Flutter app cost is the variant of employment you select when hiring specialists for your project:

Freelancers. This option is widely applied due to the opportunity to decrease development expenses. Yet, in the case of Flutter app development, you have no guarantee of freelancers' competence and quality. In addition, such specialists are also not advantageous within the support, maintenance, and updating services, as they may switch to another project and make long-term partnerships impossible.

In-house teams. In this case, you are responsible for project development management, searching and checking the experience and knowledge of potential employers. Moreover, the in-house team gathering requires a row of extra expenses, like purchasing hardware, renting the office, sick leaves, salaries, and many more. Consequently, such conditions significantly raise the total cost.

Outsourcing companies. Outsourcing the project refers to the already assembled team of experts with a proven in-depth qualification taking over the creation process. This option is a great way to save development investments and avoid affecting product quality. Apart from this fact, here are some more benefits you'll receive with outsourcing:

  • Cost flexibility. The global market offers a lot of outsourcing IT companies ready to provide custom software development services at reasonable prices. Central Europe has become the top region for this goal, and many businesses have benefited from the top-class performance of talented developers coming from this location.
  • Scalability. You can adjust the development flow to your requirements: the team of such companies comprises all types of developers who will take part in the creation process when their competence is needed.
  • Faster product delivery. With outsourcing, there's no need to spend time on recruiting. You can adapt the speed of your project creation (e.g., involving more experts). Thus, time to market is cut down, as well as outgoings: you pay only for work done.
  • Vast talent pools. IT outsourcing comprises an immense range of tech-savvy specialists with great expertise and experience. Outsourcing vendors offer businesses flexible hiring opportunities. You are allowed to select among lots of software architects worldwide.
  • A great diversity of technologies to apply. Depending on your project requirements, you can choose a specialist from such companies with relevant expertise.

Apart from the hiring option, the location of your development team may influence the Flutter app development cost a lot. In different regions, developers have different rates. The average developer’s rate in North America is $75-$200/hour, while in Estonia, it’s only $50-$60/hour.

In the table below, you can find developers’ hourly rates and compare them with each other.

Flutter developers' rates in different regions

LocationHourly rates ($/h)

CEE region

50-60

Western Europe

50-200

North America

75-200

Latin America

30-50

Australia

100-150

Africa

20-45

India

25-40

If you’re thinking of outsourcing your project, we recommend you take a closer look at the CEE region, particularly Estonia. This country is a popular outsourcing destination because of its affordable rates and high level of customer service. Estonia has a vast talent pool, so the quality of the final product will fulfill your expectations.

Read this article to learn more advantages of offshore software development services

UI/UX design

Mobile app navigation, typography, and color schemes are the main issues that UI/UX designers should pay attention to. They should also provide you with a prototype of your app. Depending on the complexity of your app, design may take from 40 to 90+ hours. This line of expenses will raise the Flutter cost for $2000-$4500.

What are the constituents of the Flutter app design cost?

  • Pre-design activities (market research, analysis of trends, finding ideal criteria for future Flutter solution design). The time required for it depends on the particular business niche and resources available to conduct research. The approximate price of pre-design activities is about $500-$700.
  • UI/UX design preparation at the beginning consists of making sketches and wireframes. The time spent on that is based on design complexity. Sketches and wireframes creation may need about $200-$1000 of your budget.
  • UI/UX design visuals creation includes mood board development and mockup creation. The accurate creation time there also depends on app complexity. It may require a rough budget from $5,000 to $10,000 and more.
  • Brand identity design. This kind of activity means the UI/UX designers create logos, icons, and other design elements according to your brand colors. The rough budget it may require is from $5,000 to $10,000 and more.
  • Animation preparation. The UI/UX designers work on screen and customer content visualization. The development cost for this part of the activities is hard to mention, as it depends on the level of animated images.

App categories

Flutter applications can be classified into different categories, with each having its own features, target audiences, security requirements, etc., influencing Flutter app price.

Variations in features are often observed when shifting between different application categories. Certain apps employ multi-factor authentication, while others do not require login. For example, a Flutter app with limited features like a currency converter is typically less expensive than more intricate apps (e.g., an IoT or ride-booking app).

Tell us product details

We analyze your demands and make a rough cost estimation of your app idea

How to Calculate Flutter App Development Cost

As it was mentioned earlier, features impact Flutter app development cost the most. Flutter is good for projects that don’t include native features. But when it comes to mapping, streaming, AR, and background processes, developers have to build these features separately for iOS and Android and then combine it with Flutter.

Let’s get back to our examples. In the case of native development, you will need around 60-130 hours to implement AR filters in your app. Flutter development will take about 80-150 hours because AR is a native feature. Keeping in mind the rate of $50/hour we should multiply it by the development time. This formula can be used to figure out the final Flutter app development cost.

Except for this formula, another thing matters in the initial stage.

Discovery phase

A poorly considered Discovery phase may result in a collapse of a whole project. But why is this stage so important? This step aims to establish the right vision of the future project, determine possible risks, and identify the business goals and work scope to perform. Moreover, you’ll get an approximate vision of the Flutter app price due to a rough project estimate.

Discovery phase in Flutter app development

The activities conducted during the discovery phase

Rough estimate

A rough estimate assessment is included in the primary stage of the client and software team’s cooperation. It also helps both sides decide whether they will become partners. The main aim of the rough estimate is to calculate the minimum and maximum time required to finish the project and the approximate total cost. Hence, a client knows how much investment in the development flow is required. In addition, this estimate comprises the entire creation process split into stages. This document should not be considered as one with fixed terms and conditions. It is prepared for customers only to inform them.

A rough estimate includes:

  • The main part containing the preparatory works. Commonly, they remain the same from project to project and comprise the product description, database setup, and REST architecture. The items indicated in the section are not necessarily executed at once. Some works are completed throughout the project.
  • The development relates to the encrypting process. This part includes functionality, screens, and features to implement. The development section includes the 'business logic' and 'UI/UX' requirements and the number of hours for a certain part of the work.
  • Integration of frameworks and libraries is required to implement features more efficiently, and cut down the development time and the spending accordingly.
  • Non-development is mainly related to technical writing. Specialists prepare detailed documentation of the code and prepare other data concerning product creation.
  • The suggestions section incorporates various enhancing recommendations.

Here, in Cleveroad, we also make a rough estimate according to the feature list you give us.

We proceed to the Discovery Phase and create a project specification when all the issues are settled. You have to participate actively here because we build project specifications based on the data you provide. In the next stage, we create wireframes for your app. That’s a schematic placement of User Interface elements on screens.

Then, our developers and business analysts devise a detailed estimate of your cost to develop a Flutter app. With an accurate budget, project requirements, and wireframes, we can sign the contract and begin the development stage.

As you see, the discovery phase is a crucial part of any project. Without this stage, you can’t know the price and time needed for the development, because there will be too many variables. If something goes wrong on any stage, the whole project can go wrong with the plan. That’s why you have to cooperate with the software development company, so they can build the project you need.

We’ve revealed all the essential steps and benefits of the discovery phase in this article.

Cost of Flutter App Development: Additional Constituents to Consider

Like any other product, your app needs to be maintained and updated to stay successful on the market. This leads to additional expenses that influence the Flutter pricing for the upcoming app.

It’s time to talk about these expenses.

Flutter app development cost: additional expenses

4 additional factors that influence Flutter app development cost

Server space

If you’re going to process and store the user-generated data, you have to take care of server concerns. Weak servers lead to low performance and high response time on the user side. Besides, unreliable servers with a vulnerable protection system can cause personal data leaks of your users.

To minimize risks, our team trusts only reliable providers, like Amazon EC2. According to the AWS Price Calculator, a 24/7 working server with an 8-core CPU and 32 GiBs of RAM will cost you around $1650/year. Keep this expense in mind when calculating the overall Flutter app development cost.

Release to App Stores

When you already have a finished product, you have to launch it somewhere. Google Play and the App Store are major players among the app distributing platforms. That’s why you definitely should place your app there. However, these platforms charge fees before the app release:

  • Google Play charges a one-time fee of $25
  • Apple Store charges $99, annually

On top of that, both platforms have a 30% fee for every in-app purchase. If you’re distributing your app via a subscription model, you’ll get only 70% of the initial price. However, recently Google Play and the App Store have softened their policies. For now, they charge only 15% for every subscription from an account that purchased a subscription for twelve months.

We’ve released hundreds of applications, and according to our estimates, the release stage depends on the amount of platforms and takes 190-270 hours. With the rate of $50, that’s $9,500-$13,500 for a release, which is a substantial sum in terms of the whole Flutter app development cost.

App distributing platforms

Other app distributing platforms to consider

App maintenance and updates

Applications from the top charts of app stores hold their positions for a reason. They engage clients with constant upgrades and brand new features. Even if your app is perfect, the absence of updates will lead to stagnation and users abandoning your app.

In the perfect world, you should hire a company that developed your app. They’ve worked on your project from the very beginning and know how their code works. If it’s not an option, make sure you have detailed documentation of your app. It’ll simplify the lives of other developers and reduce development time.

Mind that the app maintenance costs rise over the app’s lifetime. Companies usually include 15-20% of the Flutter app development cost into the budget for app maintenance. However, the longer your app has a stable audience, the more money you have to invest in updates. It’s not surprising that you’ll spend more money on updating within a certain time than on the actual development. Still, while your app generates more revenue than losses, it’s a worthy investment.

Unfortunately, with new features appear new bugs and vulnerabilities. You can’t just turn a blind eye to this issue, because it makes user experience worse and opens new loopholes for fraudsters. A number of software development companies offer post-release support that includes the development of new features, testing, and fixing bugs.

We've explained the steps we take during QA testing in this article!

Here, at Cleveroad, we have expertise in both post-release support and working with projects developed by other companies. From our experience, it’s much easier to work on a project you made on your own than to search for bugs in someone else’s code. Besides, the cooperation with the same team lowers the Flutter app development cost.

Third-party API integrations

Depending on the complexity of the apps, Flutter developers may need to apply third-party APIs. Their implementation facilitate data interchange between two solutions using protocols. Initially, you may opt for the least expensive APIs; however, increasing usage will necessitate migrating to more advanced APIs. Hence, the more integrations you want to add, the higher will be the Flutter app price.

Discover Flutter app cost in detail

We're ready to estimate your Flutter software idea and deliver a top app to boost your business!

How Much Does It Cost to Create a Flutter App: App Estimation Examples

As you already know the major and minor factors that influence the price, it’s high time to make an overview of the Flutter app development cost for different apps. To make it useful for you, we’ve estimated the development costs of several existing apps from various industries and different levels of complexity.

We’re going to talk about:

  • Transport
  • Streaming
  • Social media

Flutter App Development Cost: Transport

  • Examples: BlaBlaCar
  • Approximate time for features implementation: from 4 to 10 months
  • Approximate cost: $40,000-$90,000+

Transport apps require user profile, driver’s and passenger’s roles, payment gateway, and GPS support. Mind that if you use Flutter to build native features like geolocation, the overall project development time may rise.

Mind that the Flutter costs estimates below don't include time for code documentation, frameworks integration, project management, and more. Here’s a rough estimate for essential features of a BlaBlaCar-like app:

Flutter-based transport app development cost

FeatureDevelopment time (hour)Approximate cost ($)

Sign up

28

$1,400

Sign in (by email and Facebook)

22

$1,350

Push notifications

20

$1,000

User profile

77

$3,850

Payment system

40

$2,000

Ride booking

80

$4,000

Ride payment + coupons

42

$2,100

Geolocation

26

$1,300

Driver’s side

103

$5,150

Flutter App Development Cost: Streaming

  • Examples: Twitch, Periscope, YouTube Live
  • Approximate time for features implementation: from 5 to 10 months
  • Approximate cost: $45,000-$60,000+

Streaming app is a complicated piece of software. It requires your development team to use streaming protocols (which aren’t Flutter’s strong side), develop a text chat for communication with the audience, push notifications, use smartphone’s cameras, and more. Some of them have donation systems, multiple integrations with third-parties, and even paid emojis.

Here’s a rough estimate of the essential features for a Twitch-like app:

Flutter-based streaming app development cost

FeatureDevelopment time (hour)Approximate cost ($)

Sign up

20

$1,000

Sign in (by email and Facebook)

23

$1,150

Personal profile

43

$2,150

Search system

36

$1,800

Streaming protocols

20

$1,000

Player integration

33

$1,650

Stream management (launch/shutdown, set bitrate)

120

$6,000

Chat

146

$7,300

Donation system

35

$1,750

Payment gateway

64

$3,200

Channel management

40

$2,000

Push notifications

20

$1,000

Flutter App Development Cost: Messenger

  • Examples: Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Telegram
  • Approximate time for features implementation: from 8 to 15 months
  • Approximate cost: $41,000-$60,000+

Messengers have simple features, at first glance, but a detailed analysis proves the opposite. Integration of chat with various statuses (typing, online/offline, reading), file transfers, voice messages require a significant amount of time. If you add voice calls and group chats, things will get even more complicated.

Let’s single out each feature and its cost.

Cost of Flutter based messenger app development

FeatureDevelopment time (hour)Approximate cost ($)

Registration

45

$2,250

Sign in

27

$1,350

Chatting

156

$7,800

Sending media files

40

$2,000

Voice Messages

35

$1,750

Group chats

57

$2,850

Voice calls

100

$5,000

Notifications

15

$750

Settings

76

$3,800

Search

38

$1,900

We have shown approximate estimates for some Flutter-based app types for you to consider. Feel free to contact our team and receive an app cost estimate for your business domain

Cutting Flutter App Development Cost: Essential Hints to Take Into Account

Flutter app development prices can rapidly increase and exceed your budget if not managed appropriately. What methods can be used to obtain a high-quality flutter app without exceeding the budget? Begin by following these tips.

Outsource your software project

Appealing to outsourced services for Flutter app development is an effective way of controlling cost and time. Engaging to work with outsourced Flutter app coders is faster and more cost-efficient than recruiting specialists yourself.

You may also consider outsourcing certain projects to an external vendor to lighten the workload for your in-house coders and engineers. The provider's specialists can offer valuable insight and innovations which could be beneficial if the app is intended to have an international presence.

Outsourcing development can also help you unlock long-term savings with the help of an experienced Flutter app partner - from idea validation to support and maintenance. Moreover, working with an outsourcing vendor, you are able to optimize your expenditures due to an opportunity to employ IT experts from all over the world, choosing a region which hourly rates will perfectly fit your budget.

Start with MVP development

When creating your Flutter app, you can keep it simple to optimize costs. It is essential that a feature is only included if it contributes to providing an optimal user experience. This does not necessarily require building a minimalistic app; rather, the functionalities should be tailored to the requirements and expectations of the target audience. For this purpose, market research should be conducted to understand the target audience and their needs.

Then you may start your Flutter software creation from MVP features integration. This will allow you to test the app concept viability, gathering early users' feedback and seeing whether your Flutter-based application would be essential for them. What's more, all that can be done without spending too much from your budget for any modification and exceeding Flutter development cost.

Focus on the Agile approach to cut expenses

Consider that it gets more expensive to make bug fixing the further along the Flutter app goes in the development process. So, you can use an Agile development methodology, which is test-driven, and make adjustments as you go.

For example, Cleveroad software development team works with Agile methodology to remain flexible and easily make changes to the project. We are always ready to provide you with in-depth consultation on optimizing your project budget expenditures for Flutter app development cost.

Furthermore, we strive to help you practically, offering the below partnership models to maximize your working convenience:

Time and Material model allows you to get an approximate estimate and adjust the requirements during the development flow. Thus, customers can make changes in the needs from the final product and be charged for the services they require.

Dedicated Team allows extending your opportunities by hiring developers with experience in the domain of your business. Scale up your in-house team structure with additional team members, assemble an agile-oriented team for a project created from scratch, or support the current one.

Fixed Workscope agreement is a one-time payment contract intended for the Discovery phase with clear specifications, precise estimates, and tight timelines. To ensure suitable end outcomes, you can communicate with engineers their precise vision of the product. In the Discovery Phase, which comes before development, the Fixed Workscope model is employed since it is the best option when needs, requirements, and prices are largely predictable.

Materials contract in outsourcing — consider more on how it’s established and used from our guide!

Flutter Pricing Estimation at Cleveroad

The delivery of a successful Flutter app highly depends on skilled performers. This way, you can apply to a proficient tech partner experienced in creating Flutter-based software. We would like you to represent such a vendor.

Cleveroad is a widely experienced software development company from Central Europe, Estonia. We’ve been delivering state-of-art digital solutions to startups and businesses of various scales since 2011.

We specialize in providing various IT-related services and custom digital product creation. They allow to advance workflow efficiency, overcome business challenges, and stand out from the crowd of competitors. Cleveroad incorporates:

  • 10+ years on the market
  • 120+ in-house engineers
  • 170+ successful projects

How is Flutter app development cost estimation done for your project? We, at Cleveroad, prepare two project costs evaluations: Rough and Detailed estimates. Let’s learn more about each of them.

Rough estimate

A rough estimate is typically the most approximate figure. The client is being provided with the development stages’ rough cost data for informational purposes.

We generate two approximate estimates to refine the costs accuracy incrementally.

  • The first one was prepared following the Solution Design Workshop. We establish goals, outline the scope of work, identify complexity levels, assign roles and limitations, anticipate risks, and plan accordingly. We utilize this information to make an estimate and proposal.
  • The second one is formed after the Discovery Phase has been completed. We assess business process intricacies, define a detailed feature set, identify key development nuances, and develop non-functional requirements and architectural solutions.

Detailed estimate

A detailed estimate is the best way to get an accurate cost estimation in project management. The product creation process includes the participation of the developers who will be directly responsible.

Detailed estimates are compiled after the Discovery Phase and used during the development process. The business analyst prepares a detailed user story for each sprint or two-sprint period as part of an iterative process. After the evaluation of each user story, a detailed estimate can be determined taking into account the following points:

  • Maintaining thorough records of the upcoming software solution, including wireframes, specs, and other written material
  • Integrations, recommendations, and other non-developmental activities
  • All you need to know about quantities, prices, and rates: for instance, cost-calculating rates

When customers submit a documentation package, we can generate a detailed estimate more quickly and easily.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • A software with simple features, like a fitness app with workout suggestions, meal plans, personal profile, and weight diary costs from $26,000 to $34,800.
  • Flutter app development cost of a middle complexity software, like a messenger with voice calls, will be from $34,950 to $48,850.
  • The development process of an app with complex features, like Instagram, will cost you from $41,500 to $55,000.

The total Flutter app creation price may vary from $40,000 to $200,000 or more.

The price depends on the developer's experience and location. For example, In the USA, the average developer’s rate is $75-$120/hour, while in Central Europe it’s only $30-$65/hour.

  • Total number of features
  • Complexity of features
  • Location of developers
  • Design
  • Server Space
  • Release to app stores
  • App maintenance

To calculate the Flutter app development cost you have to multiply developers' time by their hourly rate.

Author avatar...
About author

Evgeniy Altynpara is a CTO and member of the Forbes Councils’ community of tech professionals. He is an expert in software development and technological entrepreneurship and has 10+years of experience in digital transformation consulting in Healthcare, FinTech, Supply Chain and Logistics

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