In the good old days (think two years ago), it was relatively inexpensive to launch a new app for a smartphone. While this is still possible, some app firms are finding that the cost of a launch is much higher than they were anticipating.

For example, as Jessica E. Lessin reports for the Wall Street Journal: “Mobile-game maker ZeptoLab UK recently released ‘Cut the Rope: Time Travel,’ its first major title in the popular ‘Cut the Rope’ series since 2011. The launch won’t be a quiet one. The company has been building buzz for the game through a six-week promotion with Burger King Worldwide, which began featuring the game in its kids’ meals in March. Overall, ZeptoLab says it will spend around $1 million launching “Cut the Rope: Time Travel,” which traces the adventures of the green monster Om Nom as he meets versions of himself in time periods like the Renaissance and the Middle Ages. On top of that sum, which includes the costs of animation, the company is counting on some free help by promoting the game inside its other titles. By contrast, the company spent almost nothing to promote the first ‘Cut the Rope’ game when it was released in 2010. It gave the title to a third-party publisher to distribute, then sat and waited.”

Click the image to read more and then watch the video clip.

Image source: ZeptoLab



11 Replies to “Want to Launch an App? How Much Money Do You Have?”

  1. When a market becomes over crowded, the competition becomes more fierce. So with that said all the necessary costs will increase. Apps are here to stay and when a good one hits, it really hits. All I can say is thank god for GE paving the way for new inventors. More companies should follow suit!

  2. It is hard to promote the new generation product to the consumers. In the case, when the game “cut the rope” released in 2010, the company didn’t spend money promoting this app. However, the company spend $1 million on advertisements for launching the next generation app. In my opinion, the successful factor of the previous generation app is creativity. Therefore, the company should invest more money on R&D which may expand their business easily rather than spending money on advertisement.

  3. I think at the beginning they were somehow testing the market. It became the top game app in 2010. Many people were too lazy, so they just simply look at the top 10 list and download it. However, there are many different game apps or other apps releasing everyday. People will get bored with the game. They will need to come up new idea to attract people back to their game. When they came out with the new generation, they will need to put more efforts into this and bring up awareness. These might be the reason that they need to spend 1 million into this.

  4. I think it is easy to understand this situation. When a market attract so many attention, more and more companies pay attention to this area. Then the cost will increase.

  5. In my opinion, it hard for stat-up and small company to develop app product because it’s highly competitive in this market. The appropriate product development and marketing strategy is critical for the success.

  6. It make sense to invest in advertising of such a successful game, especially the competition is getting intense in the app market. However, the expense to launch an app is not necessarily expensive. I feel the most effective tool to promote an app is the word of mouths. Consumers are more than happy to try new apps, and one of the reason may be the price is relatively low or non. At some points, I agree with Sabrina that the company should consider allocate the resource to design new games. At a consumers point of view, all different versions of “Cut the Rope” are the same thing to me. I only keep the original version in my phone.

  7. It makes sense for a company to invest in advertising of such a successful product, especially the competition in app market is getting intensive. However, I feel it is not necessarily expensive for a small company to launch a new app. Most new apps rely on the word of mouths as a promotion tool when they first in the market, and consumers are more than willing to try those apps since the cost is relatively low or nothing. At some point, I agree with Sabrina’s that the company should consider allocating its resource to design new games. As a consumer, all versions of “Cut the Rope” are the same thing to me. I only keep the original on in my iPhone.

  8. in the old day, if your apps were innovative and attractive, they would make a splash all over the world. but now, it is a different thing. whatever your apps are, they are all easy to copy, therefore, the marketing promotion is very important. you must let the users know about it and use it. i am not surprise that it will spend a lot of money if a company prepare to launch a new app.

  9. The costs in the product development time can be very different if the apps originate from different countries. The money paid to programmers and designers surely takes a large portion in the fixed cost. However, the income of a programmer with the same skills from a less developed country can be much lower than those in developed countries. Consequently, the place where an app is born should be taken into consideration when calculating the overall cost.

  10. I always talk with friends about if we could just invent the next big app we could get out of our cubicles for the rest of our lives, but never thought of the money it would cost past developing it.

    There’s just too many options for consumers to choose from, there are dozens of apps that allow you to stitch multiple pictures together into collages and dozens of apps that track your run distance and time using your phones location. With literally millions of apps to choose from, it takes millions of dollars in advertising to make yours stand out from all the rest.

  11. As of right now I believe creating an app has become too expensive and is not an easy way to make quick money. There are so many apps available, that people no longer want to pay for them and rather find a free version. App developers are going to have to find new ways of making profits from apps other than charging for them.

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