VR app Development: Cost to Build Own Application

VR app Development: Cost to Build Own Application

21 August 2017 • 5 min read

VR app development is one of the key areas where mobile app development will drastically evolve. Being the future of tech the market is exploding thanks to consumer-friendly prices of such VR gear as Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. The cheap old-timer - Google Cardboard launched in 2016 and from that point on the VR technology is constantly evolving price-wise solutions.

This technology is already successfully adopted by healthcare, architecture, and other industries where a VR mobile app is a great way for businesses to familiarize their staff and customers with new goods and services that are in the early stage of creation. Still. Very few companies are on the market, and even fewer can offer VR app development at a reasonable price. But still, there are ways to get the right VR app development services if you approach this task wisely. To cut to the chase, how much will it cost your company to build a VR application? This thorough overview will provide you with the needed insights, such as developmental stages and product estimations that will help you calculate the costs of employing a virtual reality application development company.


The financial prospects

illustration 1

  • According to Statista, VR and AR will generate a $143 billion market worldwide by the year 2020.
  • VR jobs start at $75k/year and range up to $200k/year, as stated on MediaJobs.com
  • In a recent article by Forbes, the response was as follows: “One of the more vibrant, up-and-coming sectors of the tech industry these days is virtual reality.”

Regular app development has been around for a while, and the prices for their development are clear-cut according to region and types of apps required. But your financial prospects when getting an app work not on a rectangular screen, but to work in a fully immersive environment is far from clear as of now. It can seem daunting, as the VR landscape has been mostly untouched, and the situation was very similar to the usual mobile app development just several years ago.

And as with everything new, the cost barrier may be too high. But the opportunities are as extensive. You should also take into account the new developments, hardware, and solutions that are rolled out by the industry giants that simplify and ease the financial burden of VR app development. When you are among the early adopters, you can catch the wave and be among the first ones to dive in and reap rich rewards.

Just look at the revenue projection by Digi-Capital , and the market-share of VR/AR in a long-term perspective lets almost any business find a sweet spot and get a piece of the action:


diagram 1


diagram 2


Factors That Affect VR Development Cost

The main issue affecting VR development costs lays in two options you have:
1) develop a mobile VR app;
2) develop a mobile VR game.
The bottom line for a non-game VR app is $40K, and the cheapest option for a mobile VR mage is $60K with time-lines of at least 6 months. These numbers are a basic reference point, and development costs, depending on various factors, can easily be in early six-digit figures.

The ultimate cost and profit from VR software development are dictated by the following key factors:

illustration 2

Research & Development

Most of the aspects of your app development project are generally considered “research and development.” It all starts with the research of your ides, creating user stories to things like distribution planning. And your R&D efforts have a sometimes fatal impact on the final cost of your app in a very specific way.

Read also: Most Popular Software Development IDEs

For every phase of your project to fall into place correctly, app developers have to pause and think of the ways this or that function or feature will fit in the general concept. That is especially true when a development phase involves some complex VR implementation techniques or more unique app capabilities. This process is far from straightforward. It requires trial and error and can cost a lot in the long run. It can actually increase your budget two-fold unless you do your best to reduce the unknowns. Only after that can you hand the project over to a professional developer and not worry about the extra time spent on it.


Content & Software

A major part of your VR development budget will be given to content and software development. For budgeting purposes, it is correct to assume that the two are interconnected. And the more complex VR content you require, the more sophisticated software should be developed.

Do you want a simple 3D environment that boosts your users’ experiences or a multi-player interactive VR game? The decisions you make regarding the content will have a direct influence on the complexity of VR software and its cost.  Try to answer these questions before you give the project into developers’ hands: What type and how extensive your content should be? Will you provide the content to your developers or do you need to subcontract a content-creation unit on outsourcing? These are among the few vital factors you need to take care of from the onset of your project.



Taking into the importance of content that you want to offer to your customers, you need to factor in the platform you choose to base your services on. That can add or subtract a lot of cost from your project. For Google Cardboard the cost is comparatively low, but developing a full-fledged solution for something like the Oculus Rift may cost you a fortune.

Answer these two question to choose the platform and, ultimately, the VR development cost:

  • What does your target audience use?
  • Which platform suits best in providing the features you want to offer?


Developer Location

You can have your VR software developed in a number of places all over the world. You can hire an in-house team or use outsourcing. Eastern Europe and Asia are considered among the cheapest regions for VR app development. On the other hand, companies based in the United States are best. But if these companies have development offices in other countries they usually provide high-quality solutions, customer service at a cheaper dollar rate. Developers’ teams in Eastern Europe have fair outsourcing rates, and you may consider Softermii that is among the best ones. The company is US-based with a development center in Ukraine. It is among the leaders in providing great quality VR app development at a fair cost.

illustration 3

The Bottom Line

So how much will it cost you to develop a unique VR app? Take into account our advice, and you may end up spending less and getting more profit when you start with the right mindset and thoroughly plan your VR app. Think through your app idea and come for advice to a top-notch VR app development company that can make your idea come to life on time and without breaking the budget.

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