How much does it cost to build an app like Instagram?
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Anna Chebanova
Media manager
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Oct 03 2016

How much does it cost to build an app like Instagram?

In the world of large amount of information there is no time to read long posts, or even just to read. Thus, visual content plays an important role in human perception of news. In confirmation of these words, the number of downloads from Google Play applications such as Twitter or Instagram has exceeded 1 billion. Just imagine: 1 billion people - 1/7 of the whole population of the Earth - downloaded Instagram.

Instagram is a social network for editing and posting photo and video content.

Instagram has an elaborate strategy of application’s development - every update is accompanied by the introduction of useful functions, such as new filters, the ability to add video fom 15 seconds to 1 minute, online videos which are kept for 24 hours, text translation below the content description and so on. It helps to gain a bigger user base, preserve active users, and, as a result, monetize the app.

Let’s see how much and how long will development of Instagram take with the addition of necessary functions:

Instagram app estimate Instagram app estimate Instagram app estimate Instagram app estimate Instagram app estimate

Everything seems simple at first sight, but you must know that an exact copy will never be as successful as the original. That is why, developing your application, think of its uniqueness. Why not to create an application with a functional different from those of Instagram or similar apps?

What other variants of social networks with visual content could be created?

Today users are ready to pay for high-quality photo processing, such as popular among photo lovers programs VSCOcam and Prisma. Despite the fact that applications are free, additional filters can be bought.

These applications use better technologies, which allow to work with color correction and contrast more carefully than in Instagram.

  • Create your own unique editor with extraordinary filters;

  • Develop an app with the creation of theme albums with privacy settings. For instance, one for family and friends, another for public view;

  • Application for short video-lessons on photo/video processing in various styles (to help create smart and trendy profiles);

  • Thematic applications for photographers only: to discuss photographic works, equipment, locations. For those who are keen on taking pictures of food, animals, cars, etc. People love thematic forums;

  • You can follow the example of already existing editor apps, but make them more convenient and simpler for learning, paying attention to UI/UX design, as applications get deleted very frequently because of difficult, incomprehensible at first opening interface. A user is unlikely to make extra effort trying to understand how the application works, they will simply delete it and substitute with something user-friendlier.

Get inspired with some successful photo editing applications
Retouch
allows to remove or add an object to a photo
Matter
adds specular objects like hypercubes, volume lines, flying saucers
Brushstroke
turns photos into painted pictures
Lorystripes
adds strange figures (“additional dimension”)
Mextures
for those who love textures, gradients and the effect of old film photos

And also Aviary, Afterlight and so on. Each of these projects has its peculiarity, so your main goal is to find the one of your own.

Instagram owners have released only two applications for video processing so far:

1. Boomerang - makes short looped gifs.

2. Hyperlapse - speeds up video several times.

Video apps have a long way to develop. You can also create an interesting service for editing, such as iMovie, VivaVideo, Splice. Besides, you must have heard about MSQRD, which allows to add live filters to your face.

But you must understand, that in order to take place of these apps, your app must perform the task better than others (even similar).

Most importantly, do not forget about the active marketing of your applications, such as:

  • Update social network pages with the latest news;
  • Use opinion leaders;
  • Open the paid features to a limited number of people who have shared the app in their social networks;
  • Start advertising on the Internet in the form of banners;
  • Landing page creation.

If you are looking for a team of developers to create a similar mobile app, SteelKiwi Inc. will happily help you! We will provide you with a business analyst, PM and team of talented developers which turn your idea into reality. Visit our Works.

Useful links

  1. I have a great mobile app idea. What do I do next?
  2. Why does my business really need a mobile app?
  3. How we create projects from scratch
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