Various modes of communication exist that bind the whole world in a string. For example, A person in Alaska can send instant messages to his friend who went to Africa.
There are many more real-life examples that can excite anybody. In 2021, more than 3 billion people used messaging apps to stay connected with their friends and loved ones.
“What do you think about why messaging apps are trending?”
The first reason is that the world is dependent on communication not only today but even since civilization. Earlier, people used to pass messages via a human, bird, or letters. But now you just need to type the message and send it to multiple users you want to address.
The entire credit goes to messaging applications as multiple messaging apps exist at present and are used by millions of users.
“Have you ever thought about why messaging apps have been introduced?”
Let’s go to the flashback!
Do you remember the first SMS you typed and sent to one of your dear friends? Of course, everybody remembers it.
Before a decade when mobile phones secretly made their place in your pocket, it was one of the newest things for everyone. But, there were some limitations with it like-
- It was costly as there was a cost for each SMS.
- There was a limitation of words.
- File sharing was not there.
- There was no guarantee of instant messaging due to the low-speed telecom network.
- Multiple send was impossible, or you had to send the same message to multiple persons after copying manually.
- There were no marketing tools associated so that you can use them professionally.
- You can’t send voice messages.
And other challenges.
Now, a messaging app solves all these issues, such as
- Send multiple files instantly
- Send a common message to multiple people in a single click
- Attach media files containing video and audio in a click.
- You can send voice notes.
- Make a group or broadcast list.
- Can maintain privacy while communicating with your loved ones and more.
And there are multiple advantages; messaging apps have eliminated multiple issues a user faces while communicating.
These apps not only solved the issues of end-users but also offered an innovative way for businesses around the globe to business growth. These apps are beneficial in terms of speed, seamless communication, marketing & promotion, sales & support, and for multiple purposes.
If you are also interested to know- how to make a messenger app, then here we have created a guide to messaging app development by keeping all focus points in mind. This messaging app development guide aims to take the users through all the aspects that will help them gain knowledge about messaging apps and their development.
While reading this guide, you will access the information like: Basic definition, Market stats, Info about top messaging apps, Features and functionalities, Challenges while developing messaging apps, Tech stack required, Monetization model and other information.
So, let’s start exploring this blog, where the first section contains some basic info.
What is a Messaging App?
In terms of definition, messaging apps are mobile applications specifically built for receiving and sending information leveraging internet connectivity. Using the messaging application, mainly two types of messages can be sent: Short Messaging Service, and MMS, aka Multimedia Messaging Services.
It allows its users for-
- Video call
- Voice call
- Text messaging
- Voice Notes
- Video files
- Location sharing
One of the prime objectives of messaging mobile apps is to make communication private between two users. So, there is applied end-to-end encryption which means senders and receivers can view messages that even a company can’t read or view. It is one of the reasons behind the popularity of messaging apps.
In continuation with the definition, here I would also like to share some real-life examples of using messaging apps to help people.
- ICRC’s Yemen Delegation supports WhatsApp as a hotline so people can request help or any information.
- BBC Media has used WhatsApp to circulate information about the Ebola virus.
- Yuva Community Center, Gaziantep, Turkey, uses Telegram and WhatsApp to address the issues of refugees.
Including the recent evolution in messaging app development, the chatbot has also become an integral part. The best real-life example is UNICEF Chatbot. It has helped many children to find help. On September 22, it recently helped foster teens find support in Ukraine.
Not only in terms of welfare, but the messaging apps also provide benefits to different sectors. For example- various businesses are using messaging apps including chatbot facilities to provide customer support and improved user experience.
The next section of this blog belongs to the stats about the messaging app that will provide you a great insight into the ongoing market practices.
Market Share of Messaging App
Messaging apps are a viable alternative to traditional text messages and phone calls. It is not a new concept, but the increasing demand for messaging and chatbot app development services is indicating something else.
The idea of using text messages to communicate was introduced in 1992 on December 3rd. They have become an integral part of our lives today. To date, 23 billion texts are sent around the globe in a day, that is 270,000 texts per second.
Moreover, there are several benefits of messaging mobile apps, so businesses are focusing on developing a mobile messaging app with the help of an instant messaging app development company to provide a unique experience and cater to the demand of a worldwide audience.
This section is about the market share of messaging apps, which is one of the important parts of this complete guide to messaging app development, and will take you through all the key stats. So, let’s start!
Let’s start talking about the key stats by referencing one of the most popular messaging apps called WhatsApp. It is one of the most famous and most used messaging apps with a huge fan following worldwide. It has more than 2 billion monthly active users, confirmed by the survey websites such as Statista, Backlinko, etc.
WhatsApp Messenger is counted as one of the authentic apps that have shown the real fun of instant messaging to the world.
There are 16 million messages sent in an internet minute, and another legendary app, Facebook Messenger, also contributes to these stats. You will be surprised that the number of its users is more than WhatsApp, which is 2.91 billion.
The best part about Facebook Messenger is that it facilitates businesses to promote their products online. There are 10 million active advertisers exist on the Facebook platform. It is the reason that makes it one of the most liked messaging apps. Its popularity is near to an app like WhatsApp.
Moreover, it is a great reference to develop a social media app for business with the help of a social media app development company.
In the USA, Messenger was on the top with 64.43% market share, and the next favorite app of Americans is Snapchat with 13.59%. WhatsApp comes in the third number with 13.56%.
Compared to the United States, the United Kingdom is also a great market for messaging apps and has an appropriate influence on instant messaging app development.
The stats about the messaging app market share will surprise you not in terms of data but one similarity: here, again Facebook Messenger is a top choice of people. The market share of messenger in the UK is 54.90%, and the second next favorite app is WhatsApp (25.59%).
Although several messaging apps exist in the market, when it comes to top-notch messaging apps; they are WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Telegram, Signal, and Snapchat. If you want to develop a messaging app, these also work as a top reference.
If we specifically talk about the market share of top messaging apps in 2022, then, these are:
- In June 2022, a highly downloaded messaging app was WhatsApp.
- In the third quarter of 2022, the number of active Snapchat users will be 363 million.
- In the second quarter of 2022, the number of Telegram and Signal downloads is 101.13 million and 8.78 million.
- In 2021, global downloads of WhatsApp Business were 220.52 million.
- South Africa is at the top in making video calls using messaging apps.
Here we are also going to share an image by messenger people by Sinch that depicts the popularity of messaging apps in different countries.
This image also depicts the surprising fact that there are only 25 countries where WhatsApp has less presence. It is easily indicating that how big its market is.
The motive for mentioning this fact here is to let you know that you can launch a unique messaging app with the help of a software development company no matter which region you belong to.
In terms of global users, in one of the reports published by Statista, in 2021, there were 3.09 billion smartphone owners who used top messaging apps for communicating with each other. This figure is projected to grow to 3.51 billion users in 2025.
There is one thing common in all statistics & facts that the messaging app market is one of the dominating app development segments worldwide. Very soon, it will be on the advanced move as it is continuously progressing forward.
After reading all the mentioned stats, it is time to move to the next section, which is about top messaging apps that will inspire you if you want to know- how to develop a messaging app. It is one of the main objectives of this complete guide to messaging app development.
Top 10 Famous Messaging Apps Worldwide
There are a lot of messaging apps out there, and it can take a lot of work to know which ones are worth your time and investment. In this blog post, we’ll go with the top 10 messaging apps that are famous and widely used.
This section will provide knowledge about the top 10 examples of messaging apps, what category they belong to and what are their key functionalities that will help you to understand how to make a chat app. So, let’s explore the list.
1. Facebook Messenger
Most people are familiar with Facebook, a social networking site. It also has a messaging app called Facebook Messenger. There are many benefits to using the Facebook Messenger app: You can easily send messages, photos, and videos back and forth.
Messenger also makes it easy to group chat so you can stay in touch with multiple people. It is one of the best examples of social messaging app development.
WhatsApp is a popular messaging app that allows users to communicate with each other via text, audio, and video calls. The app has over 2 billion users and is available in over 180 countries.
The app is free to use and easy to set up. WhatsApp also offers many features that other messaging apps do not, such as the ability to create group chats and broadcast lists where you can easily send messages.
Telegram is a cross-platform messaging app that was launched in 2013. It is one of the fastest-growing messaging apps with over 700 million active users. Telegram is known for its security and privacy features, as well as its wide range of advanced features and customization options.
It allows users to send large-sized video files, PDFs, and others. Its operational center is located in Dubai, UAE, but its servers are located in different parts of the world.
The Signal is a cross-platform messaging app that focuses on privacy and security. It is one of the most popular messaging apps among security-conscious users.
It is known for its end-to-end encryption, which ensures that the intended recipient can only read your messages.
WeChat is a Chinese messaging app that was launched in 2011. It is one of China’s most popular messaging apps, with over 1 billion active users. WeChat is known for its wide range of features, including group chat, mobile payment, and more.
In 2018, it became the largest standalone app, with more than 1 billion monthly active users.
LINE is a phone app that allows you to make free voice & video calls and send free messages to anyone else who has the app installed on their device. The app includes a range of stickers and other fun features to make your conversations more engaging.
It has become hugely popular in recent years, particularly in Asia, where it is often used as an alternative to WhatsApp. LINE also offers a range of official accounts that you can follow, which provide updates on news, sports, and other topics.
Skype is a VoIP service that enables people to make and receive calls over the Internet. It offers a variety of features, including instant messaging, file sharing, and video conferencing.
Skype has become a popular choice for businesses and individuals who need to communicate with people in different locations. Most organizations use Skype for professional communication purposes.
While Snapchat may be a relatively new app, it has quickly gained a large following. With its unique features, it’s no wonder that so many people are using it. One of the things that makes Snapchat so popular is its filters.
These allow users to change their appearance, add effects to their photos, and even create animations. These filters are often updated, giving users new ways to play with their photos.
Discord is specially made for gamers where they can stay in contact with other gamers. An app like Discord allows gamers to voice call, video call, and text together.
It was launched in 2014, and now it has more than 300+ million users around the globe. You can find detailed steps here if you are also looking to develop an app like Discord.
Zoom is a video conferencing app that has been around for more than 10 years. They have been providing video conferencing solutions to enterprises and businesses from all over the world. The Zoom App is free and can be accessed on any device.
It offers several features that make it an excellent tool for business meetings, such as a high-quality video conferencing experience, a high level of security, can use on any device, and free use.
This social media messaging app doesn’t need any introduction as now, it has got a wide user base worldwide. This free image and video-sharing app is largely used by people and even celebrities. Apart from it, it has messaging feature that helps users to send messages, pictures, videos, GIFs, emojis, stickers, etc. to each other.
Considering users’ privacy, it also comprises a ‘one-time allow’ feature for their shared images and videos. It permits the receiver to view the image only once. In this, users can also react to the sent or received messages.
Slack is a popular instant messaging app specially used by businesses to get the accurate information they want. Corporate people and other professionals use it to connect with other people relevant to their field.
It helps organizations to adopt an innovative way of communication along with the features such as free-to-use, user-friendly design, internal communication, and others.
What are the Important Functionalities of Messaging Apps?
Messaging apps are a dime a dozen these days. So, what sets a good messaging app apart from the rest? Here are some important features that a good messaging app should have.
Privacy is important to users of messaging apps. Being able to control who sees your messages and who doesn’t is a must for many users. A good messaging app will allow users to set privacy settings to control who sees their messages.
Another important feature of a messaging app is the ability to send messages to groups. This is a great way to stay in touch with family and friends. It allows users to create groups and add or remove members as needed. The other key features are photo sharing, videos, and other files.
For implementing a fine messaging app, features and functionalities are essential on the other side; these greatly influence the cost to develop a messaging app. So, let’s check what are these functions and functionalities.
1. User Verification & Authorization
A major percentage of mobile phone users use messaging apps for personal use. However, these apps like Skype or Zoom also allow their users for professional communication. Users create their accounts on these apps, which is possible via authorization.
For example, apps like WhatsApp or Telegram take input as mobile numbers and then send OTP to authorize the users. Compared to these applications, an app like Facebook Messenger authorizes the user account via e-mail. Similar functionality you can also provide via going with a unique way.
Suppose you launch a website with the help of a web development company, then your users can register themselves on it and create a username and password that will also work on your app.
The point is that an app follows various ways of user authorization. While developing a messaging app, you can implement authorization in a way where users can sign up on the app via e-mail, phone number, and using their social media IDs(Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.).
2. Customized Profile & App Settings
One of the great functionalities of a messaging app is profiles customization and setting. It showcases all the necessary information about a user. Most users prefer to see the profile of other users while connecting.
Although different messaging apps have different settings, such as on an app like WhatsApp, you can see the user’s profile and status with a phone number after connection. But if you are using Facebook, then you can only see the public profile.
Users can create their profile after signup on the app and set it private, public, or shared with only their friends and friends. There are multiple settings available in accordance with the app.
The common idea to implement a profile functionality in your app is that after signing up, users must be able to change or put their image and a brief description about them, they must be able to set who can view their profile or not, and at any moment they must be able to change their details such as contact, e-mail id or others.
3. Importing Contacts
Importing contacts facilitates the users to connect with their known on the messaging app effortlessly. Once the users import contacts from their contact list, it displays their contact’s account on that particular app. The apps like Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, Line, Viber, and others follow the same functionality.
If we look closer, it is one of the functionalities that can help create the best user experience. The best part is most of the messaging or social messaging apps come with import contacts features.
It works like when a user setup their account, the app automatically starts scanning the contacts and showcases all the possible profiles of the other users who he knows or have saved their contacts in the phone’s contact list.
The apps can also import contacts from email IDs, increasing the measuring app’s usability. So, if you want to acquire chat and messaging app development solutions, it would be best to integrate the contacts importing functionality such as:
- Importing the contacts via the phone number
- Importing the contacts via email
4. Instant Chat or Messaging
The prime objective of any messaging app is to let the users send instant messages to one another. It is a prime feature or functionality of any messaging app that you also need to take care of while implementing a messaging app.
The major factor that influences instant messaging functionalities is your app’s architecture:
The server-based messaging app stores messages on the server. Here the interaction between users and server happens with the help of HTTPS protocol, and encryption happens with the help of an SSL certificate.
Due to the interaction with the server, the message-pulling interval remains 1-2 seconds initially. Additionally, here you also need to implement an additional layer of security to prevent any threat to the user’s privacy.
Via going this method, a central server plays a key role. The client-side messaging apps do not store the messages on the server.
The central server authenticates the messages, including cryptographic encryption. The message delivery happens via a wireless mesh network.
5. File Sharing
Suppose you are going to create an instant messaging app. In that case, it is most important to understand the concept of file sharing and need to implement it in a way so that users can seamlessly share files in different formats, examples- images, documents, audio, video, and more.
The best example of a file-sharing app is WhatsApp. It is a messaging app with end-to-end encryption and offers free file sharing for certain file types.
While the most obvious applications of this functionality are for sending personal photos and videos to friends, there are other potential uses as well.
For example, small businesses could use WhatsApp to send invoices or contracts to clients or to share photos or videos of products with potential customers. This functionality could also be useful for sharing information between employees within a IT company or for students and teachers to share documents and other resources.
The SOAP and RESTful APIs can help you the best in implementing file-sharing capabilities in your messaging app. While creating the app from scratch, you need to take care that while using the app, the users must be able to share photos, videos, and documents easily.
6. Voice Messages or Notes
While implementing voice notes and video call functionality, you need to think from the user’s perspective. These can be great ways to communicate with your loved ones, colleagues, or others. To implement voice notes, chat, & video call features into the instant messaging apps, there are used APIs such as Twilio, Getstream, Intercom, Jitsi, Agora, etc. that can help you the best. These APIs allow real-time sharing of voice messages and videos.
The point is people avoid typing long text messages, so they mostly share voice notes or do video calls. Hence, for the app’s success, you need to implement it in the best way. The better idea is to take assistance from experts from an experienced messaging app development company.
7. Voice and Video Calls
The messaging apps are especially for communication, and it will be beneficial to include all possible channels, and these are:
- Video calling
- Voice calling
- Group Call
- Group Chatting
For implementing these functionalities, VOIP and video codecs play a key role. The best part is these codecs facilitate the users to stream or send the video effortlessly and with low bandwidth. The word codec is made by the combination of encoder and decoder. These are necessary to implement voice and video call facilities.
8. Image Editing & Filters
Surprisingly, WhatsApp users share 4.5 billion photos daily, including in-app image capture, uploading images from the gallery, and edited images. Some of the keyboards, like MINT, also facilitate the users to convert text into images.
An app like WhatsApp allows users to swipe images for preview. It is about something other than apps like WhatsApp; almost all messaging apps come with photo editing features. Moreover, it also provides the best user experience.
Now the question is how to make photo editing easy and fun for users. Then the first thing you need to implement is an easy interface. The next thing is to implement essential image editing features like crop, straighten, rotate, flip, red-eye removal, color correction, hue correction, and others.
Filters are essential for creating a high-level image-sharing experience via a messaging app. The best example is an app like Snapchat. If you include all these features, it will attract users’ attention to your messaging app.
9. Location Tracking & Sharing
It is counted as one of the best features and functionalities of messaging apps. Most apps like Telegram and WhatsApp offer geolocation features. The users can share their live location with ease. An app like Whatsapp allows setting the time duration of location sharing. It depicts that if you want to develop a messaging app, consider it in your app.
The geolocation feature is not only useful for personal but also professional communication. The brand stores or any startup can use it to share their store’s location with the customers in real time. For implementing geolocation functionality, the APIs, such as Apphitect, PubNub, etc., can help you better.
10. Push Notifications
Push notifications are the best for real-time communication. It allows direct communication between messenger service providers and users. Usually, these notifications remain short in the text, and the app alerts the users about some new updates & announcements, suspicious activity, or any update with the app.
It also alerts the users about their contacts appearing online now, who have sent them messages, who have received them, and other info. These notifications work even if a device is locked.
You can implement multiple types of push notifications where key push notifications are triggered push notifications, FYI notifications, and reminder notifications. There is only one condition: It must work in real-time. So, to create the best experience for push notifications, you can integrate APIs such as AlertMedia, WonderPush, GetResponse, etc.
11. Security & Encryption
Messaging apps are often used for more than just sending voice messages. They allow users to send texts, pictures, videos, and audio messages. Some messaging apps also have other features, such as you can send stickers and GIFs in a chat.
Suppose you want to build a messaging app Including all these functionalities. In that case, you also need to take care of the user’s privacy, which can be implemented with the help of message encryption.
It works like when a user sends a message, including text, files, stickers, or others, it turns into scrambled text, and on the other receiver’s side, it decodes again with the help of the primary key. The advantage of encryption is that a third party can’t read or gain access to the messages.
There are some common protocols such as TLS/SSL, IPsec, SSH, PGP, S/MIME, & Kerberos along with encryption functionality that only an experienced messaging app developer can implement in your messaging app.
12. Connect to Public Channels
The public channel functionality of a messaging app is useful for bloggers, brand promoters, and companies. It is counted as one of messaging apps’ powerful and essential functionalities. Usually, its use is for the announcement that an admin can create, and subscribers can like, comment, and share the post.
In the communities, creators can create a post for common users. The prime objective of public channels is to create and send messages to a wider audience. While developing the messaging app, it is best to include.
13. Social Media Integration
Almost all messaging apps have social media integration. With the rise of social media, it has become more and more difficult to communicate with people without being interrupted by social media notifications.
Some messaging apps have started integrating social networks into the messaging app so that you can communicate with your friends and family without being disturbed by other notifications.
Some popular messaging apps like WeChat, Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp have integrated social networks into their chat platforms. This allows you to talk to friends or family members on different chat platforms in one place. You can also see who is online on different chat platforms at the same time.
14. Cloud Storage and Data Backup
Cloud storage and backup are the finest functionality that would be the best while thinking and planning about Android messaging app development or developing an iOS mobile messaging app.
Read More: How Much Does it Cost to Develop iOS App?
It provides a secure way to store messages and files on the cloud. You can also use it to save your data from getting lost or corrupted. Some of the most popular messaging apps, like WhatsApp, Viber, and iMessage, offer this feature. But some other apps still need to provide this service.
An app like WhatsApp is the finest example of understanding it. The app allows you to schedule the backup time, or you can schedule the backup weekly or monthly.
15. Disappearing Messages
It looks magical when messages self-destruct or disappear once the receiver reads them, but it is happening in reality. New-gen messaging apps provide the facility for senders so they can send self-destructing messages for a chosen period that will get disappear automatically after getting seen by the receiver.
It is a fantastic option for sharing sensitive information. The users can decide the time frame for self-destructing messages, for example- one minute, two minutes, or auto-delete after reading.
Some Advanced Features of Messaging Apps
Several messaging apps are available over the internet, and some are yet to come. It has yet to be determined which app will replace WhatsApp or Telegram in the future. If you want an extra edge in the competition while launching the next messaging app, then it would be the finest decision to include advanced functionalities in your app.
So, let’s see the advanced functionalities you can include as per this guide on messaging app development.
A chatbot is an AI-powered software that mimics human conversation. It gives answers to questions of users. The land looks on the other side; some support agent is there. If you want to go for mobile chat app development for business, then it is one of the potential advanced features to include in your messaging app.
The advantages of including a chatbot for business messaging applications are cost-effectiveness and saving efforts to handle customer queries.
Read More: How Much Does it Cost to Develop a Chatbot?
2. Using Stickers, Emojis, GIFs
Stickers, GIFs, & emojis add some emotions to the chat and improve the user’s experience. It attracts users to use the app for their personal communication. The best examples are apps like Snapchat, Viber, etc.
3. Schedule the Messages
Message scheduling is a feature that is becoming increasingly popular in messaging apps. This allows users to schedule messages to be sent later, which can be useful for several reasons.
It can be a helpful way to stay organized and on top of your tasks. Overall, message scheduling is a useful tool to make messaging more convenient and efficient.
4. In-App Gaming Experience
Including the games in messaging app is the best way to improve customer engagement while using the app. The perfect example is Facebook Messenger, where users can play games without leaving the app.
5. Mobile Payment Integration
Mobile payments in messaging apps are the latest trend in the mobile payments industry. The feature has yet to be widely available, but a few messaging apps have already incorporated it. Examples are—WeChat and WhatsApp. Here you can implement three options which are:
- Scanning QR Code
- In-app Payment
- Web Based Payment
Just remember one thing, it is best to integrate a secure payment gateway to ensure the user’s safety. There is another best way for payment also exists that most of the new-gen apps are following and that is a digital wallet. The digital wallet allows for payment instantly instead of login into the net banking account or using a UPI id.
You can develop a wallet by availing of digital wallet development services from a trusted eWallet app development company and integrating it into the created app.
6. Live Streaming
The leading example of streaming in messaging apps is Facebook Messenger, which allows for live streaming while chatting. It is the finest example of social media app development and messaging app development that comes with many new-gen features, where streaming is one of them.
Read More: How to Built Live Streaming App?
7. Natural Language Processing (NLP)
Messaging apps increasingly use artificial intelligence (AI) to improve the user experience. NLP, aka Natural Language Processing, is a branch of AI that deals with understanding and generating human language.
It can be used to automatically translate messages, understand the sentiment of a message, and even generate responses. Using NLP, messaging apps can provide users with a more natural and humanlike experience.
8. App Feed
This feature is the best for implementing and developing community-based messaging apps. It is like the app’s main screen, where it will showcase useful discussions in the community. It can also be associated with creating private chats with community members.
What are The Challenges of Messaging App Development?
Every coin has two sides, one is bright, and another one is dark. Messaging app development is beneficial, but certain challenges are associated with it.
So, let’s check what these are. It will also give you insight into what you need to take care of about developing a messaging app.
1. App Safety & Compliance
Safety and compliance are one of the biggest challenges to create an instant messenger app. Everyone remains concerned about their security and privacy, so your responsibility is to take care of security. It includes the protection of users’ data and message encryption.
For implementing security and compliance, the following the solutions to it:
- End-to-end encryption
- Inclusion of cryptographic keys
- Robust architecture
- High-standard security protocols
2. Better Performance & Scalability of the App
Millions of users use messaging apps and prefer only those that work seamlessly. If there is any loose point in messaging app architecture or a flaw that destroys the user’s experience, no one will use the app.
Moreover, it is okay that if you launch the app, then initially, there will be few users but what will happen when the number of users increases? So, it is the biggest challenge to maintain the high performance and scalability of the app. The better idea is to hire dedicated developers with experience to develop high-performing and scalable apps. It can save you lots of effort and create the best experience.
3. Multiple Integrations
The integration has multiple types such as payment integration, geolocation integration, social media integration, and others. The only motive of integration is to create the best user experience and improve engagement to higher degrees. But sometimes, it becomes quite challenging. The better idea is to include the APIs that will help you finish the integration tasks easily and ensure the best results.
4. Common App Updates
Technology can be changed overnight; on the other hand, users’ expectations are increasing daily. Moreover, many apps in the market are giving tough competition to each other.
The perfect way to overcome this challenge is to implement frequent updates and app maintenance so that users will always have an advanced app version on their devices.
5. Backup & Cloud Synchronization
Cloud synchronization is related to the synchronization of text messages, videos, and other media fields in-between different devices. It also helps in backing up the messages on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis so in case of any message is lost or any harm to the device, so the messages can be retrieved easily. If there is not any cloud synchronization, then it will be difficult to retrieve the messages.
6. User Acceptance and Retention
Many challenges need to be considered when developing a messaging app, but one of the most important is user acceptance and retention. In order to get users to download and use your app, you need to offer something unique and appealing.
Once you have users, you need to make sure they keep using your app by providing an enjoyable and valuable experience. It can be a difficult balance to strike, but it is essential for the success of your messaging app.
7. Right Market Approach
One of the biggest challenges for messaging app development is competing with already existing apps in the market. A newly launched app can face multiple roadblocks on the path to success; a good strategy can save the app from it. The best way to do it is to do extensive market research. It will help you to develop a market fit strategy.
8. Engagement & Connectivity
The absence of connectivity is one of the key challenges for mobile messaging app development. It works like if connectivity is not stable, it will create a bad impact on the messaging app users. The app must be worked under any network condition and with any device without any interruption.
Here you need to include the tools and technology that can make the connection stable in all conditions with your app, or you can take the help of a comprehensively experienced instant messaging app development company.
How to Create a Messaging App?
Most businesses are interested to ask this question, they also search for this over the internet, how to create a messaging app. So, this particular section of this messaging app development guide belongs to it.
Here are some key steps you can follow while creating a messaging app. The following steps also answer the question of how to make your own messaging app.
Step 1. Market Research & Identification
The first ever step you need to follow is to research the market thoroughly while creating a messaging app. It is the most important step for messaging app development because users always want a unique experience.
Here you need to find out the users’ existing requirements and the advancements in the app development market. It will help you to implement the right things at the right time and ensure a firm base for development.
Step 2. Identify App’s USP
Before developing or launching the mobile app, you need to decide about the USP of your messaging app. It will have a great influence on the future of the app.
Suppose you have developed the app with the help of dedicated mobile app developers for hire, but if there is not any USP associated with the app, then there will be less chance of growth. Moreover, your investment and efforts will be useless. So, you need to think carefully about it.
Step 3. Competitors Analysis
Multiple messaging apps exist in the market, and some leading messaging apps are WhatsApp, Facebook, and Telegram. These are legendary apps, but it may be possible that other startups are also planning to launch a messaging app for businesses. So, here you need to decide with whom you are going to compete and make the decision accordingly.
Step 4. Choose Relevant Features
You can include multiple features in a chat app, but only some are necessary. When deciding which features to include, it is important to consider the app’s purpose and the users’ needs.
Some essential features for most chat apps include creating and joining chat rooms, sending and receiving messages, and seeing a list of online users. Other features that could be included are:
- Video and voice chat.
- File sharing.
- Integration with other platforms such as social media or gaming.
The specific features will depend on the target audience and the app’s purpose.
Step 5. Selecting the Appropriate Platform
There are two major platforms, and on anyone, you can focus on launching your app. These platforms are Android and iOS. A major percentage of Android users exist, but there is a separate fan base of iOS app users.
So, once you decide on the platform, your next step must be accordingly. Suppose you want to develop an Android instant messaging app, then hire Android app developers, but if you want to go with iOS, then hire iOS app developers.
Step 6. Monetization Strategy Implementation
The objective is clear that you are opting for messaging app development for business, then deciding about the monetization strategy is the right thing or must-do step for generating revenue.
You can choose any of the following:
- In-app purchase
- Subscription plans
- Third-party advertisement
Step 7. Choose a Leading Mobile App Development Company
The most significant step for developing a messaging app is to hire a mobile app development company. It will help you to leverage the expertise of mobile app developers for your app. The best idea to find a reliable app development company is to find out that:
- Do they have the right expertise for mobile application development?
- Do they have the right resources for mobile app development?
- Can they develop the app with the latest technology or tech stack?
- What kind of projects have they done so far
Once you find all the answers, you can opt for android application development services or iOS application development services, or if you want to target both platforms for launching a messaging app, then go for cross-platform app development as the best option.
Step 8. Set a Vision with Your Hired Firm
Once you’re done with hiring and making your team of dedicated developers, it is time to share your vision with them. You need to discuss your objective clearly with them to create the app as per your expectations and via following the right way.
Step 9. Feedback Sharing
It is okay that developers will develop the app, but you must share your feedback at every step with them to achieve the best results. If you have any updates about the messaging app development market, discuss them to attain fruitful results.
Step 10. Ensure the Proper Designing, Development, & Testing
Assuming you have a messaging app, the following needs to be done for it to be fully designed, developed, and tested:
- The messaging app design should be created, which includes the user interface and user experience. It can be done by a professional designer or through software such as Photoshop.
- The messaging app development should be completed, which will code the design into an actual functioning app. This can be done by a professional developer or through software such as Xcode.
- The messaging app should be tested to ensure it is functioning properly and there are no bugs. It can be done by running it on a simulator or device and testing all features.
Step 11. Marketing Strategy
The best marketing strategy is to start early and get the word out about your app before it is released. This way, you can generate interest and build a user base before the app is even available.
There are several ways to do this, including social media, online advertising, and PR. Start by creating a strong social media presence and post regular updates about the app. You can also run online ads and target potential users who might be interested in the app.
Step 12. Launch the App
The app developers will develop the app and help you launch it on respective platforms such as Android’s Google Play Store or iOS Apple App Store.
Suppose you have create an iOS app, then the company you have opted for iOS application development services will help you to launch the app on the Apple app store.
Step 13. App Maintenance
It’s important to maintain your app and keep it up-to-date, but you must also be careful about adding new features. Adding too many new features at once can be overwhelming for users and lead to buggy app.
It’s best to add new features gradually, over time. This way, users can get used to the new features, and you can iron out any bugs before adding more.
Step 14. Users Feedback
User feedback is essential for understanding how people interact with your product or service. It can help you identify areas for improvement and gauge user satisfaction.
Several ways to collect user feedback include surveys, interviews, and focus groups. Once you’ve collected the feedback, it’s important to analyze it carefully to extract actionable insights.
Messaging App Technology Stack
In order to develop a fine messaging app, it is also essential to keep the tech stack in mind. So here are the details of a tech stack that you can consider for developing the instant messaging app.
Table 1: Frontend Tech stack
|Programming Language||Java, Kotlin||Swift, Objective-C|
|Local Storage||Core Data, SQLite||SQLite, Core Data|
|Social Authentication||Facebook SDK, Twitter||Twitter, Facebook SDK|
|Chat||Starscreen, Firebase, Socket.IO||Firebase, Socket.IO|
|Voice & Video Calling||WebRTC||WebRTC|
Table 2: Backend Tech Stack
|Programming Language||Ruby, Java, Swift, Objective-C|
|Data Storage||PostgreSQL, MongoDB, MySQL, SQLite|
|Web Server||Nginx, Puma|
|Hosting||Amazon Web Services|
How to Make Money from Messaging Apps?
You will indeed invest in messaging app development for business, so you also have a right to decide its monetization, but how?
So following are monetization strategies that you can choose accordingly!
- In-App Purchase: one of the best ways to earn money from messaging apps is an in-app purchase that allows users to buy some additional features or functionalities in the app, for example- stickers, themes, games, app skins, or more.
- Subscription: you can also generate good revenue by offering app subscription plans. Initially, you can offer a trial or a free version; then, for advanced features and functionality, a user must buy a premium plan to use the app.
- Third-party Advertisement: multiple apps exist in the market that allows third parties to show their advertisements on the app. It can be a great revenue source if you allow the brands or services to display their ads on your app.
How Much Does It Cost to Create a Messaging App?
Here we have reached the second last section of this complete guide about messaging app development cost, but it is one of the most important sections of it. You must understand that developing a messaging app is a complex process involving idea generation, competitor research, designing and developing the app, testing an app and launching the app, app promotion, and maintenance.
If you are thinking about the cost to develop a chat app, then you need to keep in mind all constraints. One of the biggest constraints that decide the cost to develop an app is its complexity. Three types of app complexity exist, i.e., simple, mid-complex, and highly complex messaging apps. So, their cost will be accordingly.
|1||Simple Messaging App||$15k+|
|2||Mid-Complexed Messaging App||$35k+|
|3||Highly Complexed Messaging App||$50k+|
In terms of a detailed analysis of the cost of developing a messaging app, some factors affect it, such as:
- Project estimation
- UI/UX design
- Mobile app development( admin panel, user panel)
- Implementation of features
- Implementation of security protocols
- Quality Analysis
- App Launch
- Project Management
Considering all these cost-affecting factors, the overall cost of developing a messaging app will range from $15,000 to $50,000 with core features. The rest of the elements in building an Android instant messaging app or iPhone instant messaging app depend on the requirements.
Messaging app development is one of the biggest segments of the mobile app development market, and advancement is happening rapidly. So, developing an instant messaging app or social media messaging app is such a daunting task. Most users search here and there like – how to create a messaging app.
By understanding the need, we have created this complete guide about messaging app development to help the users so they will be able to understand how things happen and how they can turn their idea into real-life messaging apps. We hope this guide has answered all possible questions you can face while creating a messaging app!
Along with all these aspects included in this above guide, there is the most important thing required for developing an instant messaging app. Do you know what it is? It is about finding out a prominent messaging app development company with the right & expert development team. SemiDot Infotech stands second to none when it comes to a leading mobile app development firm, you can share your vision and business goals with us to turn them into a reality. We will be happy to assist you. Feel free to contact us anytime!
Read out these FAQs to solve the queries about messaging app development-
- How to Create a Messaging Application from Scratch?
Creating a messaging application from scratch may seem daunting, but it's easier than you might think. There are a few key components that you'll need to build your app, such as user interface, backend, database, sign up & login, group chat, voice $ video calling, file sharing, and push notifications. With a little planning and effort, you can create a messaging app that users will love, or you can take the help of mobile app developers for hire.
- How much does it cost to build a messaging app?
The cost of building a messaging app depends on factors such as-
1. Idea formulation
2. Front-end designing & development
3. Mobile app development (admin panel, user panel)
4. Implementation of features
5. Implementation of security protocols
6. Quality Analysis
7. App Launch
8. Project Management
So based on the above factors, the average cost to develop a messaging app ranges in-between $15k-$50k. The rest of the cost depends on requirements.
- How long does it take to build a messaging app?
Depending on the app's complexity, it can take a few days to a few months. For example, it may take 4-6 months to develop if you want to develop a simple app. But, if the complexity is high, it may take more than 6 months depending on requirements, features, and functionalities.
- How do messaging apps work?
Most messaging apps work similarly. You are asked to sign up or log in when you open the app. Once you have done this, you are given a list of your contacts who also use the app. You can then start chatting with anyone on the list. The app will send your messages to the person you are chatting with, and they will receive them in real-time. The app may also allow you to make video or audio calls or share photos and other files.
- What protocols do messaging apps use?
There are multiple types of protocols available that a messaging app can use. Here are some of the key protocols listed below:
3. XMPP- Extensible Messaging and Present Protocol
4. AMQP – Advanced Message Queuing Protocol
5. WebRTC – Web Real-Time Communication
6. IRC – Internet Relay Chat
7. MQTT – Message Queuing Telemetry Transport
8. RCS – Rich Communication Services.
- What basic features a messaging app should have?
Messaging apps are known for their features. So, here are some key features listed below that you need to implement while going through messaging app development:
• Profile creation
• Admin Login
• Admin dashboard
• User Panel
• Voice and video messaging
• Voice and video call
• File sharing
• Message encryption