mobile app development

How Much Does it Cost to Build an App like TikTok?

Planning to build a TikTok alternative? Here are some insights you can have to calculate the cost to build an app like TikTok!

cost to develop app like TikTok

TikTok, one of the most popular social media apps, has penetrated the global market with plenty of USPs to offer. The app holds approximately 50.3% of the market in the USA and 87.9% of the market in Saudi Arabia. These numbers related to TikTok app development are based on a report shared by Statista for January 2022. 

apps like TikTok

One of the most downloaded apps, TikTok has amazing features that make it suitable for several categories such as a video streaming platform, a chat messenger, and social media app as well. Now, if you are planning to develop a TikTok clone, you might want to go through the details explaining the costs to develop an app that has TikTok features. In this blog, we will throw some light on these costs. So, stay with us until the end of the blog.

TikTok features

Features of TikTok

Now, before proceeding further and discussing the cost to create an app like TikTok, let’s understand what features users get with the app that you will need to consider for your app’s success as well.

1. Video sharing platform

Following the success of TikTok, many such apps came into existence. However, video-sharing features remained the most common and most factor among all these apps. Even though all apps like TikTok tweaked their user interfaces and accompanied video sharing with additional features, TikTok still leads the global market due to having an early hold. On the app, users can create video content and share it on the app for their followers to follow.

2. Growth in online presence

TikTok also offers an opportunity for content creators to grow their online presence. By using the right TikTok content creation strategies, they can grow the app to reach a wider audience. Famous content creators also get benefits and opportunities to participate in content monetization programs.

3. Effects and filters

TikTok also comes with effects and filters. Even many already existing apps like TikTok have started offering filters and effects as well to their users. These filters can be used to create entertaining content and effects, icons and other elements can be added to videos. In short, users can be as creative as they want.

4. Likes and comments

Now, another factor that influences the cost to develop an app like TikTok is the app’s ability to allow users to like and comment. The content that creators on the platform attract engagement from the audience. This engagement is based on likes and comments that creators receive from viewers of their videos.

5. Collaboration

This feature allows two or more content creators to collaborate and produce combined content. Creators can make music duels, vines, and more with in-built features that allow remixing and easy collaborations. Tagging fellow creators is also an easy task on the app.

6. Music library

To ensure that creators have all the resources to create perfect content, TikTok comes with a huge music library. Music choices can either be based on the requirement of the content or creators can also go for trending songs. Trending songs have a better probability of increasing the outreach of a creator due to TikTok algorithms that push content with the trending music to the top.

7. In-built video editor

Apart from filters and effects, TikTok includes an in-built video editor as well. This video editor allows for trimming videos, replacing music, adding sound effects, etc to ensure your content looks professional. 

8. Live streaming

TikTok is also a tool creators use to stream live. Creators can live stream with filters and effects as well. These effects will be applied to the stream in real-time. TikTok also allows the audience to send virtual gifts to their favorite content creators even during the live stream.

9. Virtual gifts

TikTok virtual gifts can be bought with in-built TikTok coins. These coins are purchasable with real money and users can send their preferred gifts to creators as many times as they want.

Factors influencing the cost to develop an app like TikTok

Now, apart from the features that influence the cost, let’s understand a few other factors that influence the clone of TikTok app development cost as well. 

1. Tools and frameworks 

The tech stack of any app can vary from its alternative due to the continuously evolving technological world. From upgrading frameworks to new programming languages coming into existence, there can be multiple factors influencing the cost. However, based on TikTok, we are considering a few famous tools that are used by top mobile app development companies to build apps. 

TikTok app development

2. Hiring cost

Any developer team or development company that you hire or partner with to work on a TikTok alternative project, you will have to pay them depending on multiple factors. For example, a developer from India will cost you less compared to an app developer from the USA with the same level of experience. Furthermore, an image is given for your reference -

how to make an App Like TikTok

The above Android app development cost report by Appinventiv explains how the hourly cost has a huge gap between the Asian market and the North American market. The final cost will be calculated based on the same cost and we will discuss the formula later in this blog.

3. Platform

Another factor that influences the answer to the question of how much does a TikTok app cost, is the platform you are planning to release the app on. If you are planning to build native apps for platforms like Android and iOS, your app development cost doubles up. Also, you need to take care of the maintenance costs for each platform. 

On the other hand, hybrid apps are also in fashion. You only need to build one hybrid app to launch it on multiple platforms and your maintenance cost remains in control as well. But native vs hybrid apps have performance gaps. Native apps can support more features with amazing performance while hybrid apps are designed to support fewer features. From the cost perspective, hybrid apps are the best.

4. User Interface and experience

You can pick any other app like TikTok, to take their UI as an example. For instance, a dedicated page for videos where users can scroll through and find content either from people they follow or based on their taste. Now, your UI and UX strategy influences your cost as well. The number of features that you want to use, the complexity of the app UI trend, animations you want to include in the app, etc are some factors that will influence your cost. So, to prepare a budget to build a similar app like TikTok, you have to consider this factor as well.

5. App maintenance and updates

App maintenance and update costs are a few factors that you can not ignore while planning a budget to build a similar app like TikTok. These both are recurring processes and will require attention from dedicated developers. Thus, your budget to build another app like TikTok should have a financial strategy in mind that can cover the cost to build an app with TikTok features. 

TikTok revenue model

Before we wind up this blog, let’s understand a few pointers that show how TikTok makes money for your reference so that you can understand how you can cover the costs of developing an app like TikTok and make profits as well.

  • TikTok ads - Ads drive the majority of revenue for this one of the most downloaded apps. There are multiple types of ads as well. These types can be in-feed video ads, brand pop-up ads, effects ads, 60-seconds ad videos, etc.
  • In-app purchases - TikTok includes coins that are used to send gifts to others. These virtual coins can be bought by TikTok users.

How much does TikTok app cost? - A formula to calculate

To understand how much you need to pay to build the best apps like TikTok, you have to use a simple formula. 

develop a TikTok clone

Average TikTok clone app development costs

On average, the app development project can take up to six to twelve months depending on the complexity of the app. Now, depending on the complexity level, features, and duration it takes, the average cost to build an app like TikTok can vary between $50,000 to $100,000. These costs can be influenced by numerous factors including the experience level of the developer, the market from where you are hiring developers, etc.

How to create an app like TikTok?

Well, if now the cost to develop a TikTok clone is clear to you, we can discuss how to make an app like TikTok in short. To create an app like TikTok, you need to follow a few stages. These steps are -

TikTok features

Wrapping Up

Preparing an app like TikTok has to be a well-thought process because the competition in the present market is quite high. Top apps like Instagram are also in the race against TikTok. So, if you are sure that your strategy can cover the development cost and generate profits, go ahead with the app. Hopefully, our blog defining the cost to create an app like TikTok will come in handy. Also, do not forget to explore MobileAppDaily for more in-depth reads based on continuously evolving mobile app industry trends. We will see you with another blog soon. Meanwhile, all the best for your app!

Aparna <span>Growth Strategist</span>
Written By
Aparna Growth Strategist

Aparna is a growth specialist with handsful knowledge in business development. She values marketing as key a driver for sales, keeping up with the latest in the Mobile App industry. Her getting things done attitude makes her a magnet for the trickiest of tasks. In free times, which are few and far between, you can catch up with her at a game of Fussball.

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