We’ve updated the article to provide the final price to make an app like TikTok.
How to Create an App Like TikTok: Features, Estimation, Tech Stack
TikTok video-sharing app has become a new trend among entertainment applications these days. This application has millions of users from all over the world. And they spend hours on TikTok watching videos and creating own content.
The unexpected but stunning success of TikTok led to many requests like how to make an app like TikTok and cost to create a TikTok-like app.
In our article, you can find a ready-made estimation, basic and additional features as well as a tech stack for developing an app similar to TikTok.
Table of contents
How Does TikTok Work?
TikTok is a video sharing platform that lets users create and share videos online. It enables users to upload videos and film content. After that, the videos can be edited as the application provides many editing effects, filters, and more.
Additionally, TikTok is a perfect platform for showing talents and sharing knowledge with a broad audience. It can convert a video into a live wallpaper. Users can save these videos in the settings. The platform has become popular in a short time.
What About TikTok Algorithms?
TikTok has revealed all the details about creating For You and Suggestions fields. Let’s single out the details.
How does TikTok create For You page? The system analyzes several factors like user interactions, video information, device and account settings. Based on this information, TikTok recommends individual content for each user.
Of course, there are more ways to personalize TikTok content. Before using the app, users need to choose the categories they’re interested in. If the user doesn’t select categories, TikTok shows the most popular videos.
Also, users can tell TikTok that they don’t like this video. For this, they need to long-press on a video and tap ‘Not Interested’.
- TikTok has approximately monthly active users from all over the world.
- According to SensorTower, TikTok has been downloaded more than times on the App Store and Google Play.
- According to the latest , TikTok is used by teenagers. The average age of TikTok users is between 16 and 24. more prevalent among men than women.
- Users tend to spend an average of daily on the TikTok.
- Apptrace claims that TikTok is available in .
How to Make an App Like TikTok: Features and Technologies
Creating an app like TikTok, it’s necessary to consider essential features beforehand. In most cases, it’s better to start with building an MVP (application with some basic functions) and, after that, integrate new and advanced functionality.
It may be time-consuming and expensive to develop a TikTok clone. However, you can build an app with some basic features and launch it. The MVP version of the app allows getting feedback from your target audience and deciding what features to develop further.
Additionally, having an MVP version, you have more chances to get investments. A working product makes stakeholders trust you.
We’ve studied TikTok features and divided them into two types — basic and advanced. You can find the information below.
TikTok Basic Features
MVP features for an app like TikTok
Users need to sign up to post the content. It’s better to bring several options for sign up, e.g. email, social network, and phone number.
Offer the users to customize their profiles, e.g. the ability to change the profile pictures or username, add a bio, and more. Customized options are always a good idea.
How to make a TikTok-like app successful? It’s necessary to provide users with an easy and fast way to post videos. As a result, it’s better to consider sharing options beforehand.
TikTok offers adding many filters and effects to the video. So, it’s necessary to add such a feature to your future app. As a result, you can attract more users offering them unique filters.
Users should have capabilities to edit the video on the app. There can be some basic options like flipping, speeding up the video, and more. However, it’s also possible to add an opportunity to turn on ‘beauty’ mode. It makes the users’ skin more smooth.
Similar to Instagram, TikTok provides an opportunity to like the video and comment it on . The users can also look through the liked posts on the specific tab.
To gain more users, you can offer sharing options. It stands for the ability to share their publications on other social media like Facebook, Twitter, etc. Additionally, TikTok offers to connect the user’s profile to other social networks.
To keep users posted, it’s necessary to add a push notification function. You need to inform the users about comments on their videos, likes, or any other updates. Usually, notifications are implemented via Google Cloud Messaging (Android) or Apple Push Notification Service (iOS).
Admin panel offers multiple functions like user management (e.g. edit, delete, or block users). Additionally, it can assist in counting posts of a particular user, providing data about new users, and more.
Exciting Features to Add Later
It’s enough to have only basic features for launching an app. However, the more users you gain, the more advanced and unique functions your application should have. There are some TikTok advanced features below that you can implement if you start TikTok app development.
Some unique features for an app like TikTok
TikTok allows looking through some popular videos before signing up. As a result, new users can look through the content. However, to comment or like, it’s necessary to sign up.
One more advanced feature that you can consider while making an app like TikTok. This feature allows locating the device. According to this data, the app offers content posted by other users with the same location. Additionally, users can add their current whereabouts to the video.
This function provides an opportunity to see the live viewers and broadcasters on the graph. Additionally, it offers data about the number of comments and hearts.
TikTok doesn’t have this feature these days. However, an opportunity to start a live video is in demand among social video applications.
Some augmented reality filters can change the hair or eye color, add objects over the head (e.g. dog’s ears, flowers), and more. This technology becomes more and more popular these days. So, it’s a good idea to integrate this technology into your application. By the way, we’ve developed an amazing AR library. If you are curious, you can check our GitHub profile to study our ARFaceDetection.
Wrapping up, there are a lot of exciting features that you can add while making an app like TikTok. In most cases, it’s better to start with creating an MVP gradually adding some complex features.
How to Create an App Like TikTok: Required Team and Technologies
To develop an app like TikTok, you need to hire a development team and consider the tech stack of your future application.
- Business Analyst
- Project Manager
- UI/UX designer
- Android developer
- iOS developer
- Back-end developers
- QA engineer
There are two main ways to cooperate with IT specialists — hire an in-house team or an outsourcing company. Each option has benefits and drawbacks. For example, it’s easier to communicate with in-house developers, but there are a bunch of additional expenses like rent, equipment, and others. On the other hand, outsourcing companies offer affordable hourly rates and the high quality of the final product.
How much does it cost to make an app in 2019? We’ve revealed various hourly rates and what affects the final price.
A lot of modern technologies can be used to create an app like TikTok. In the case of native mobile development, you need to choose a programming language — Swift (iOS) and Kotlin (Android). Also, if you choose cross-platform development, software engineers can utilize Flutter app development services.
To give you a hint, we’ve listed the APPROXIMATE tech stack to make an app like TikTok.
- Programming language: Swift
- Networking: Alamofire
- Programming language: Kotlin
- Networking: OkHttp 3
- Programming language: Node.js
- Framework: Express 4
- Database: MongoDB, SQL, MySQL
- Cloud: AWS or Azure
- Storage: Amazon S3
- Signup: Amazon SES, Amazon SNS
- Notifications: Google Cloud Messaging for Android and Apple Push Notification Service for iOS
- Real-time analytics: Azure stream analytics, Google Mobile App Analytics
- AR-filters: ML Kit, ARCore
- Geolocation: Google Maps API, MapKit/Core Location frameworks (for iOS).
- Chat: Twilio
The technology stack is approximate and may differ depending on your goals, project requirements, features, and more.
Factors That Affect the Final Price
Creating an app like TikTok, you need to consider several factors that can completely change the price. The most essential of them are platform, design, application features, and a team of mobile developers. Let’s discuss them more precisely.
Factors to consider
Nowadays, there are two popular platforms — iOS and Android. So which platform to choose? The answer — you need applications for both platforms if you want to make an app like TikTok.
However, if you have a lack of budget, you can choose one platform depending on your target audience and their preferences. For instance, Instagram was first launched on iOS. The Android version was released a year and a half later.
Additionally, it’s curious that iOS development tends to require 20% or even 30% less time in comparison to Android. It happens because more devices run on Android. As a result, it’s necessary to provide support for various screen resolutions and OS versions.
The design of the applications is always a struggle since it can require a decent amount of money and time.
Explained: How we create UI/UX design at Cleveroad
Users are quite demanding these days. User-friendly and intuitive UI/UX design can assist in driving new users and gaining their trust and loyalty.
|Design||iOS app||Android app|
To start making an app like TikTok, you need to prepare a list of required features beforehand.
The number of features and their complexity are the main components of the application development cost. To build an advanced feature for a TikTok-like app, the developers require more time.
How to make a TikTok app? There are two main options — cooperate with an outsourcing company or hire in-house developers. Each option has advantages and disadvantages.
In-house development tends to be more expensive since there are such expenses as hardware and software purchases, taxes, rent, and more. However, the communication process is much more comfortable.
On the other hand, outsourcing development has become popular these days. Vendors offer various hourly rates depending on their location, so you can choose the company that fits your budget. For instance, developers from Eastern Europe are highly-qualified but have low hourly rates.
|Region||Average iOS developer rate||Average Android developer rate|
$110 - $250
$150 - $170
$37 - $175
$23 - 80
$35 - $50
$35 - 150
CCPA and GDPR Compliance
The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are established to provide consumers with more control over their private data.
GDPR compliance. If you make an app like TikTok for the EU market, you need to follow GDPR. It protects users’ personal data. Additionally, there are high fines in the case of noncompliance.
CCPA compliance. You need to consider this law if you make software for California residents. CCPA tends to offer users more control over their personal data.
TikTok App Development Cost: MVP Version
TikTok app development cost always depends on the functionality of your app variation. However, to give you a basic understanding of price, we’ve prepared the estimate for the TikTok MVP version.
In the estimate, you can find the MVP features we’ve discussed above, including iOS, Android, and back-end development.
Below you can find APPROXIMATE time and cost to build an app like TikTok.
|Feature||iOS development||Android development||Back-end development|
Log in & sign in
Filters & effects
Likes & comments
Considering all the factors mentioned in the article, the cost to create an app like TikTok may range between 1,441 hours and 2,466 hours for one or two platforms respectively.
Let’s take a look at the details.
|Type of work||Back-end development||iOS development||Android development|
Frameworks and libraries integrations
All the estimates below are based on the average rate in our region (Eastern Europe, Ukraine) — $50 per hour.
Having the development time, let’s find out the final cost to make an app like TikTok.
You should add back-end development time and iOS or Android development hours, depending on the chosen solution. After that, you need to multiply the time by the team’s hourly rate.
To create an app like TikTok (MVP version), you need at least $72,050 for one platform (iOS or Android) and $123,300 for two platforms (iOS and Android).
Total for one app (iOS or Android)
Total for one app (iOS and Android)
Cleveroad Expertise: Ayoo Dance
Our team has already developed an application similar to TikTok and we would like to briefly talk about this experience.
We’d love to introduce our social network that connects dancers from all over the world — Ayoo Dance.
Ayoo Dance project stack
Ayoo Dance gives dance lovers a place where they can show their skills,abilities, and communicate.
Our development team has created a mobile solution and a web-based admin panel according to the project requirements.
The main challenge of Ayoo Dance development was implementing the Duet function. Duet stands for playing two videos together. As a result, users can create a dances comparison that is fully synchronized.
One more exciting feature is the opportunity to vote for a dancer. So, the users watch two videos together and vote for the best show.
Ayoo Dance: Duet function & Votes