How Much Does It Cost To Develop An App Like TikTok?

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An app that can become popular in just a matter of months? Sounds hopeless. But, nothing is impossible and TikTok has proved that. Read on to find out the cost of developing an app like TikTok:

TikTok is the new trend, and you know when a new trend hits mainstream it’s hard to bring it back down. Until everyone has used it multiple times, gone through all its features, and manipulated it in as many ways as possible; it doesn’t lose its spark.

There is a slim chance that you haven’t heard of TikTok. In case you haven’t, TikTok is a Chinese music video platform that allows users to create short music videos and then share them with their friends. Earlier it was known as “” and was then re-branded as TikTok by the Chinese company ByteDance.

So what exactly does it do?

The app offers trending videos, songs, and tunes and users can lip-sync to them like in Dubsmash. It’s not only lip syncing though – users can also dance to the songs, make videos, add filters and effects such as ‘reverse’ or ‘slow motion’ and spice it up by doing crazy and creative things to make their videos stand out from the rest. Asides this, users can also share their videos with friends, browse videos and interact with other users on TikTok.

After I saw Instagram flooded with TikTok videos, I decided to install it. Creating the account was a piece of cake. I watched some trending musers and decided to finally make a video of my own. After trial and error and some research about transitions, I think I did a pretty good job. Asides making TikToks of my own, I loved watching the trending videos. In fact, I spent more time ‘watching’ than making. There is no doubt that TikTok can become really addictive.

This app isn’t only used by teenagers, it’s being used by people of all ages. As soon as you open Instagram, for example, it’s flooded with countless TikTok videos from musers all across the globe.

How Much Does It Cost To Develop An App Like TikTok?

Screenshot © Author

The fun part is that even if you’re a newbie – if you can pull off something creative & interesting; your video can get you thousands of likes and you can become popular in just a matter of days.

Uber and Instagram have lost their appeal as compared to TikTok. Don’t believe this? Check out some of its mind-blowing statistics:

  • TikTok is the 6th most downloaded app in the world
  • It has around 500 million active users worldwide
  • Approximately 800 million installations
  • An estimate of about 1,000,000 daily million page views

Here are some TikTok features that have lured users in:

  • Broadcasting music videos
  • Sharing videos on social media
  • Amazing effects and filters
  • High-speed image capture
  • A massive music library with daily editor’s picks

Fascinating right?

If you’ve read up to here, I’m sure you’d like to know how much it would cost to develop an app like TikTok. For evaluating the cost of TikTok-like mobile application development, we have to consider some factors, such as the features, the resources and the technologies used to develop an app. Even if we do manage to find an approximate cost, it could still fluctuate depending on the mobile application development company that you opt for or the number of functionalities that you want to add.

So first let’s have a look at some of the ‘must-have’ features to create an app that functions like TikTok:

Essentials Features & Functionalities

  • Login & Splash Screen: First and foremost, you will need to provide a means for signing up and logging in. This page needs to be a piece of cake for your users.
  • A Simple User Interface and App Navigation: As soon as you enter the TikTok application, you will see the trending and favorite videos. You can just scroll down to see more, and once you follow your friends, you can also switch to a screen that will show the videos of people that you follow. It’s quick to understand, and you can easily navigate throughout the app.
  • Hearts and Commenting: Hearts are the currency of the app. The more hearts you get the more popular your post becomes. Some people have become celebrities because of TikTok. Asides this, if you like a video and you want to save, leave a heart, and it will be saved in your profile. You can switch through two screens in your profile page, your videos and the videos that you’ve liked.Here is what it looks like:
How Much Does It Cost To Develop An App Like TikTok?

Screenshot © Author


  • Sharing: There is no fun in putting all your heart into a video and not being able to share it. TikTok has a sharing option, and you can easily tap and share on Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Messenger, and even email.
  • Face Filters and Effects: Users that like Snapchat aren’t left behind either. Along with special effects like zoom, flash, slow-mo or reverse, there are face filters and effects as well. For example split screen, cat faces, or valentines day filters (during holidays like Christmas or valentines day, TikTok offers a unique set of filters exclusively for the specific holiday).
  • Notifications: Real-time notifications keep the user updated about their likes, followers, and tags.
  • Upload Video and Sound: Asides acting out on the trending sounds, users can upload their own videos and sounds as well. If they like they can also use their voice to make things a bit more unique.
  • Duet Option: Suppose you like a song, so you create a video and hashtag it #duetwithme. Other TikTokers can make a duet with you and add their own spin to it.
How Much Does It Cost To Develop An App Like TikTok?

Screenshot © Author


  • Video Editing: Users can spice up their videos by adding a handful of ingredients like funny animations, stickers, and filters.
  • Settings: In the settings section, users can change their profile picture, change the password, choose between a private or a public account, block users, switch the language and access the help center.

Now we need to figure out the technologies that will be used to fulfill the desired requirements.

Required Technologies To Build An App Like TikTok

  • You will need cloud storage. You can use servers like Google cloud storage or Amazon S3. The price will depend on the data storage, the network and the operations.
  • You will need Artificial intelligence (AI). AI is used for filtering and personalizing data to thousands of users. TikTok uses the AI algorithm to understand and automatically add tags with the help of image and object recognition. For example, the virtual rain feature; users can hold up their hands and control or even pause the virtual raindrops. This type of technology was almost impossible to develop. For a feature like this, it requires the AI to be able to detect and effectively respond to human body parts.
  • Content delivery networks.
  • Database such as MailChimp integration and Cassandra.
  • Datastax for database management.
  • Real-time analytics and push notifications.
  • For better programming productivity GWT is necessary.
  • Feasible payment methods such as Paypal or e-wallet.
  • Video and audio transcoding.
  • A universal operating system.

Required Developers & Team Members

  • UI/UX designers
  • Android and iOS developer
  • Mobile developer
  • Front-end and back-end developers
  • QA expert
  • Database Expert
  • Delivery expert
  • A sales and marketing team
  • Product manager
  • Languages: A video app like TikTok can be developed using Java & Kotlin for Android and C or Swift for iOS. If you want to build the hybrid version, you can use React native, Xamarin, or Flutter for both Android and iOS.


With respect to the features, functionalities, the technology used and the team of developers required to create the app, the total cost for developing an app like TikTok would be around $150,000 to $250,000. The price I’m telling you is a basic price; it can fluctuate if you intend to add or remove some features.




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