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What is better: in-house mobile app development or outsourcing app development?

Krunal Shah

Jul 01, 2021

10 min readLast Updated Jan 23, 2023

Outsourcing mobile app development

The realm of mobile app development has increased by leaps and bounds over the past decade. One of the main reasons behind the proliferation of mobile apps is their flexible nature and their usability. That is why in the present-day business world, it becomes tough to sustain a business without having a mobile app.

The process through which the mobile apps are developed is basically of two types:

  • In-house mobile app development
  • Outsourcing mobile app development

But as easy as it seems, the dilemma of choosing between in-house and outsourcing mobile app development affects the business a great deal. Because the wrong selection of app development process means the end of their run at the market.

A prolific mobile app has all the ingredients to increase your overall revenue. Researches have shown that an iPhone user in the US will spend $88 per year on paid apps and in-app purchases. This means that if you render great features to your customers through the app, your revenue is bound to increase.

Thus, in this blog, we will discuss the difference between in-house app development and outsourcing app development. Moreover, we will also see the instances where it is best to opt for in-house or outsourcing.

Thus, without any further delay, let’s get started.

What is in-house mobile app development?

in-house mobile app development

In-house app development is defined as the process in which a company selects a hand-picked team of developers, designers, project managers, etc. As the name itself suggests, the entire app development project is coordinated in-house in this process. This means that the company needs to provide office space, proper infrastructure, etc. to the team.

In in-house mobile app development, you can either select a new team or choose from employees that you already have.

The nuances of in-house mobile app development

The companies must do a lot of research and brainstorming when it comes to forming an in-house app development team. Here we have listed a few methods to make you understand the nuances of in-house mobile app development.

Hiring procedure of the team

For dedicated software development, you need to have a competent team of skilled and experienced professionals. Moreover, companies need to understand that the entire app development process is a collaborative approach.

Thus, it becomes inevitable to find multiple developers who are expert in either iOS or Android development or both. In addition to going with the developers, you need to have a team of equally capable designers. Also, you must have market researchers, quality analysts, etc to support the core team.

The entire mobile app development process is teamwork. Thus, while selecting an in-house mobile app development team, you need to be right on the money.

Experienced Management

After finalizing the team of developers and designers, you move ahead in the hierarchy. So, if you are just beginning to find your feet in the tech realm, you need to hire experts for your work. Experience and market knowledge are two essential things that can make a big difference.

Hiring experienced management will make sure that everything is on track during the entire application development process. Thus, if you have the knowledge, good for you, but if you don’t, hire experts

The right development methodology

'A goal without a plan is just a wish'.

No matter how good your app development team and app idea is, it needs to have the right methodology. Because without it, your entire mobile application development process can go haywire. Thus, we are mindful as well as flexible while selecting your app development methodology.

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Advantages of in-house mobile app development

in-house mobile app development team

The in-house app development process comes with its own set of perks and benefits. They are:

Seamless communication

The communication process in an inhouse mobile app development team will be seamless as they share the same space. In addition, the team will speak your language as it is easier to discuss the things and ideas without making complex arrangements.

Better control over the development process

  • It is easier to reach an in-house team because the team resides where your employees work. Thus even during a horrific pandemic situation, the team will still be present at least in the same country. Therefore, it will be easier to monitor their daily progress during the entire mobile app development process.

Moreover, you can always drop by digitally or physically and ask them about the progress of the app.

Flexible work environment

In the realm of app development, flexibility addresses the ability to make changes quickly. And with an available in-house team, it is easier to achieve it. Some of the biggest reasons behind the flexible nature of an in-house team are:

  • The better communication process with the product owner
  • The team is better geographically accessible
  • They don’t need to re-adjust their work schedule as they are dedicated to one project at a time. Moreover, even they are working on multiple projects, they at least work for the same company

Disadvantages of an in-house mobile app development team

in-house mobile app development team

With the high points, there are certain drawbacks of having an in-house mobile app development team as well. They are:

Limited pool of talent

Building an in-house development team can be a challenge as you have access to a handful of developers and designers. It will be tough to keep the developers motivated to keep working for your project in a dedicated way. For this, you might need to pay other benefits which can become unprofitable in the later stages.

Higher cost

While outsourcing mobile app development, you need to pay to the developers only according to their work hours. While for an in-house team, you will need to pay them salaries and other social packages like health insurance, sick leaves, etc. Moreover, you will also need to give them high-end equipment, and developer-grade computers aren't cheap.

Lack of motivation

The in-house team gets into their comfort zone very easily. Thus, it becomes the job of the employer to constantly motivate them to upskill their knowledge. This process can become dreadful in the long run as unless they are passionate enough, they won’t do it.

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What is outsourcing mobile app development?

Outsourcing mobile app development

Outsourcing mobile app development is defined as a model where you hire an already established team for the development project. It is a completely different approach as compared to in-house mobile app development.

In order to outsource the app development process, the company gets access to a pool of exceptional talent to choose from.

The nuances of outsourcing mobile app development

The process of hiring an outsourcing app development team takes much less time as compared to in-house app development. All you need to do is to conduct several interviews in order to zero down on one company.

Look for the best app development service provider

Once you have finalized your mobile app development requirement, you need to find an able service provider for them. For this, you need to interview the outsourcing app development companies and ask them about their credentials. Make sure the company has enough experience to handle your kind of app development process.

This might become a tedious and time consuming process as you have a global pool of talent to hire from. But with outsourcing mobile app development, you can always find the experts who will build an exceptional app for you.

Convey your app idea

After finalizing the team, you need to direct with your expectations related to the app development project. Moreover, you should also develop clear terms of aspects such as price, time of the project, etc. with the company. Because, while hiring an outsourcing app development team, it is essential to be on the same page with them. This will ensure that the entire app development process is smooth and streamlined.

Regular updates and feedbacks

You need to be on your toes while dealing with an outsourcing mobile app development company. Make sure that you know the details of the app development project regularly. As you might work in different time zones, ask for updates in a timeframe of every 2-4 weeks.

Moreover, always finalize this entire time schedule at the beginning of the app development process only.

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Advantages of outsourcing mobile app development

outsourcing mobile app development

The horizon of outsourcing app development projects is on the rise and for the right reasons. Here are some of the best advantages of choosing this app development process.

Faster time to the market

When you have good resources, whether individual team or freelance, the app development project becomes streamlined. The outsourcing app development team works on several projects thus they set deadlines to meet the objective. Moreover, the majority of the outsourcing agreements include fines for violating the deadlines without proper reasons.

Thus, the team of outsourcers will always be on time in meeting the deadlines and completing the project. Therefore, it reduces the time to market and you can launch your app faster.

Cost-effective method

You don’t need to provide the required infrastructure to freelance or the team of outsourcers. They are unlike the in-house app development team, they are already equipped with the infrastructures. Thus, you will not have any office-related cost which will cut down the overall expenditures significantly.

Moreover, in a situation when the project is on hold, you can always come back to the team when it restarts. Whereas in an in-house app development team, you might lose employees in this situation.

Versatility and scalability

When you outsource with an experienced app development company, you get the benefit of versatility. You will always find a specialist for every situation in this method. Thus, there are high chances of making your app more scalable without spending extra money in outsource app development.

As the app will be scalable and versatile, it would have a large user base and will add to your overall revenue.

Access to a large pool of talent

When you are dealing with an in-house mobile app development team, your selection is limited to the geographical area only. But this is not the case when you opt for outsourcing mobile app development.

In this process, you can choose developers from all over the world. Moreover, you can also combine a team of freelancers and app development companies according to the requirements. This flexibility of choosing the best team will give you emphatic results in the long run.

No dearth of innovation

While dealing with outsourcers, whether freelancers or a team, you don’t need to worry about innovative ideas. Outsourcers in general work on their skills, thus there is no lack of motivation. All the experienced developers and specialists keep a keen eye on the changing trends and innovate the working process constantly.

The outsourcers understand the value of staying relevant, thus there is no room of complacency in their work.

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Disadvantages of outsourcing mobile app development

outsourcing mobile app development

Like two sides of the coin, outsourcing the mobile app development process has its share of disadvantages as well. Here is a list of them:

Lack in communication

The lack of communication while hiring an outsourcing app development team can occur in two scenarios:

  • Different time zones
  • Language barriers

Moreover, it is not very easy to fix the language barrier. Thus, you need to set the communication expectations straight before the beginning of the project.

No immediate access

Since you don’t work in the same office environment as the outsourcing app development team, accessibility is an issue. Thus, to solve this problem, always set a point of contact while working with the outsourcers. That point of contact will be to ensure regular updates about the app development process.

Security issues

Security concern is one of the major issues for companies while dealing with outsourcing app development. They have a fear that the company might steal their idea and present it as its own intellectual property.

Thus, make sure that you have a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) signed before the beginning of the project. This will ensure that your ideas and information are protected from any kind of mishap.

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When to opt for an in-house and outsourcing app development process?

in-house and outsourcing app development

There are few things that you need to keep in mind while selecting either of the above-mentioned processes. They are:

In-house mobile app development

  • You have no financial restriction related to the entire app development process
  • You won’t mind taking control over the development process
  • The app development project is long term and requires the services of the developers constantly

Outsourcing mobile app development

  • Your project must not have any sensitive information or data about your business
  • You have a budget constraint
  • The app development project will only require occasional changes and updates
  • The mobile app product is aimed at making fast changes in the niche market

We are a team of expert developers, testers and business consultants who strive to deliver nothing but the best. Planning to build a completely secure and efficient application? 'Hire Dedicated Developers'.


When it comes to choosing between in-house and outsourcing, you don’t necessarily have to make a constant decision. The requirement of the app development process must only depend on the project. Thus, you can hire an outsourcing app development team and work with your in-house team according to the demand of the app.

Moreover, keep in mind to not make any stringent decisions. Because flexibility is the key to success in this fast-changing business world.

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Krunal Shah

Krunal Shah is the CTO and Co-founder at Third Rock Techkno. With extensive experience gained over a decade, Krunal helps his clients build software solutions that stand out in the industry and are lighter on the pocket.

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