There’s something about a good mobile app that just helps you throughout the day– be it your Linkedin, Google maps, CNN, Nike+ Training, or ESPN app– we depend on our smartphones for a lot. Due to the global rise of smartphones and tablets, mobile apps can be the go-to source for information, entertainment, productivity, e-commerce, and more. By 2020, global mobile app store downloads will reach 288.4 billion! With the rise of mobile applications on the market, the demand for mobile software developers continues to grow. We thought it was only right to give you a breakdown of what it really takes to be a mobile applications developer. From educational requirements to general stats on the profession to the top mobile coding bootcamps around the world– read below for our Ultimate Guide to Mobile Development Bootcamps.

Mobile App Economy Average Salaries
Must-know Mobile Technologies Future Job Titles 
iOS vs. Android Development    Best Mobile Coding Bootcamps 

The Mobile App Economy

Mobile application development is the process of building software specifically for mobile devices and technologies– think smartphone apps and wearable tech. If you’re interested in becoming a  mobile dev, then you’ll be in for a successful career ride. The Mobile App Economy is expected to hit $102.5 billion in gross revenues by 2020. This 20% growth from 41.8 billion in revenue in 2015 indicates the increase in need for professionals with mobile development expertise. An important thing to note is that 45% of the global mobile app store revenues will come from emerging markets. As of 2016, these markets such as India and Brazil, are in hyper growth. Mature markets such as the U.S. has become saturated, proving a slower growth in downloads. Even with a slower growth in downloads in mature markets, more time is spent engaging in mobile apps and more money is being spent through e-commerce, predicting a $23.2 billion revenue increase by 2020.

Average Salary for Mobile Developers

As an app developer is responsible for building, testing, implementing, and maintaining mobile apps, you can earn an average salary $72,183 in the US, according to Payscale. The average salary range for a mobile dev is $41,195 - $108,890.

Let’s narrow it down. If you want to be an iOS developer (ie. make apps for the iPhone), the average salary is $80,343. For Android devs, the average salary is $77,442. Once you’re mid-career, you can expect an average salary of $97,100- CNN money ranked mobile app development as the #1 best job in America for 2017.

Mobile Technologies You Should Learn

Technical skills for mobile development requires knowledge of development in iOS, Android, or Windows Phone platforms.

Most mobile dev positions do not require a bachelor’s degree, but rather proven skill that can be tested in a coding challenge or whiteboarding interview exercise. Even better? Have a portfolio of your own apps ready to show an employer!

Developers in this field will work with mobile frameworks like Apple’s Xcode, or Android’s SDK using Eclipse, and need knowledge of the following languages: Objective-C, C++, Java, C#, and Swift. It’s also useful to have expertise in CSS, HTML5, and Javascript frameworks including jQuery and BootStrap. Like any software developer, you’ll need to be self-motivated, but it’s important to know that communication skills are a must in app development, as typical positions require cross collaboration with various departments within an organization.

Typical Mobile Developer Titles

  • Mobile Application Developer
  • Mobile Application Programmer
  • iOS Mobile Application Developer
  • Android Developer
  • Mobile Engineer
  • Mobile Software Engineer
  • Hybrid Mobile Application Developer
  • Mobile Developer
  • Software Developer, Mobile

iOS vs. Android Development

So you’ve gotten the overview of mobile development, but how do you decide which mobile platform to learn? We think Aditya Narayan, co-founder and CEO of mobile development bootcamp TurnToTech, said it best:

“In many ways, because there is so much opportunity in mobile right now, it’s completely legitimate to go with what you like to use as a user. But you can be more analytical than that. If your aspirations tied to the international market – Android is a good option. They have around 80% of the world market. But if your focus is the U.S. market or early adopters of technology, or your goal is app monetization through in-app purchases or paid apps – iOS is a better choice. And remember, in the U.S., iOS and Android have almost the same market share. But it’s not a once in a lifetime decision. If you can write apps in iOS you can easily transition to the Android and vice versa. The underlying fundamentals are very similar.”

Is one easier to learn than the other?

“No. If somebody’s starting from scratch, Android or iOS should take roughly the same time to pick up. Most people don’t know this but there’s a remarkable level of design and architectural similarity between Java for Android apps and Objective-C for iOS apps."

iOS and Android are essentially solving the same problems – providing a good app store experience, good battery life, providing lots of sensors like gyroscope and GPS, fast networking, responsive touchscreens, asynchronous APIs, good development and debugging tools. It’s not just the languages but the underlying platforms are very similar too.”

Trying to decide which type of mobile application development you want to learn can be tricky. According to IDC, Q3 data in 2016 showed that Androids took up 86.8% of global market share, while 12.5% went to iOS,.3% went to Windows Phones, and .4% went to other models. With more Androids in the market, there’s a higher need for Android developers worldwide– but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a preference! As Aditya from TurnToTech puts it, “people with experience in Java are likely to find Android easier to get started with, and people with experience in C++ or C are likely to find iOS easier to pick up.” If you’re thinking about iOS development- here’s a breakdown on learning Objective-C vs. Swift.

Mobile Frameworks vs Native Development

You may have heard of mobile frameworks like Phonegap, Cordova, or more recently, React Native or Xamarin. These are frameworks that allow developers to build apps without learning mobile development languages like iOS or Android. The upside? Less to learn! The downside? The ease can come at a cost. Mobile frameworks may not be supported by Apple or Google, so you run the risk of your code not working perfectly with new updates. The founder of TurnToTech in New York wrote a great piece on the comparison between React Native and Native Mobile Development, if you’d like to read more.

If you’re set on learning a mobile framework at a coding bootcamp, then check out these schools:

Coder Foundry
Length: 3 weeks, full-time
Mobile Framework/Curriculum: The course teaches Xamarin (a cross-platform mobile app development tool within Visual Studio), C# and .NET.
Career Prep: Interview prep is a key part of the Coder Foundry experience. Students will present their code and participate in weekly mock interviews.
Cost: $1,900
Locations: NYC & North Carolina

CodeSmith
Length: 12 weeks, full-time
Mobile Framework/Curriculum: You’ll learn React Native within the full-stack JavaScript curriculum.
Career Prep: CodeSmith gives extensive hiring preparation and ongoing support for student job searches.
Cost: $17,200
Location: Los Angeles

And just because a coding bootcamp doesn’t explicitly teach a mobile framework, you can still learn one fairly easily during the bootcamp! Remember Tom Goldenberg? He went to Dev Bootcamp in NYC, but chose to learn React Native and even created buildreactnative.com.

Our Suggestions for the Best Mobile Coding Bootcamps:

We’ve got a list of iOS bootcamps and Android bootcamps to browse, but here’s a shortlist of top coding bootcamps teaching mobile dev:

Bloc
Length:
6 months, full-time or part-time
Curriculum: Learn iOS mobile development with animations and network requests; or Android mobile development including databases, views, and more.
Career Prep: Bloc has flagship track programs with job preparation materials and a placement network. Mentors work with students to create a portfolio and prepare for technical interviews.
Cost: $5,000
Location: Online

Flatiron School iOS Developer Program
Length: 12 weeks, full-time
Curriculum: Students will learn Objective-C, Swift, and the entire iOS ecosystem.
Career Prep: You’ll receive a career coach and various resources to land the job. If you don’t land a gig in 180 days after graduation, your tuition is refunded.
Cost: $15,000
Location: NYC

General Assembly iOS and Android Development Immersive
Length: 12 weeks, full-time
Curriculum: Expect to dive into iOS dev with Swift and Xcode. You can also learn to build integrated Android apps with system design, architecture, testing, and software versioning.
Career Prep: GA has in-house career coaches to guide you on your path to finding a mobile developer role.
Cost: $13,500
Locations: NYC, San Francisco, Austin, Chicago, and more.

TurnToTech
Length: 16 weeks, full-time or 8 weeks, part-time
Curriculum: Students take 12 weeks for coursework and 4 weeks for a hands-on internship. Learn Android architecture, fundamentals of UX/UI design, and data storage using Parse. Students can also learn to build functional iOS apps using Swift. Check out their $300 scholarship.
Career Prep: TurnToTech has relationships with potential employers, and hosts corporate and startup job fairs to help their students find the right career path.
Cost: $12,000 and $3,000
Location: NYC

Guild of Software Architects
Length: 12 weeks, full-time
Curriculum: Attending the Guild of Software Architects can help you learn iOS or Android dev. Courses include Swift, Android Studio, Xcode, and Objective-C, followed by an apprenticeship. Check out their $300 scholarship.
Career Prep: Students will have access to job placement help through partnerships with local recruiters.
Cost: $6,000
Location: Dallas, TX

The Iron Yard
Length: 12 weeks, full-time 
Curriculum: The Iron Yard’s mobile engineering immersive includes Swift, Objective-C and iOS SDK. You’ll also learn design patterns, interface builder, Cocoa touch libraries, Unit and UI testing.
Career Prep: Students will engage in hearing guest speakers from the field, mock interviews, resume writing, and portfolio building.
Cost: $13,900
Location: Atlanta, GA

Lighthouse Labs
Length: 4 weeks remote + 8 weeks in-person, full-time
Curriculum: Lighthouse Labs teaches iOS development using Objective-C and Swift. Students will also learn CoreData, Realm, Parse & BaaS Alternatives.
Career Prep: Lighthouse Labs has a dedicated Career Services team to help students find jobs through networking as well as resume, portfolio, and interview preparation.
Cost: $8,000 and $9,000 
Location: Multiple cities in Canada: Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal and more.

Code Fellows
Length: 10 weeks, full-time or 20 weeks, part-time
Curriculum: Code Fellows offers an iOS development course teaching Objective-C and Swift. You’ll learn frameworks like Cocoa, Xcode, UIKit, and more.
Career Prep: Students have two full days dedicated to career workshops and presentations to help with the job search, branding, resumes, and technical interviews.
Cost: $12,000
Location: Seattle

Read More:
Learn iOS at These 10 Developer Bootcamps
Developing for iOS: Objective-C vs. Swift
So you want to build a mobile app- React Native vs. iOS/Android
Everything You Need to Know About Learning Mobile Development

About The Author

Laurenstewartimage

Lauren is a communications and operations strategist who loves to help others find their idea of success. She is passionate about techonology education, career development, startups, and the arts. Her background includes youth/career development, public affairs, and philanthropy. She is from Richmond, VA and now currently resides in Brooklyn, NY.

related posts


  • Ultimate Guide


    Ultimate Guide to Mobile Dev Bootcamps

    A guide to help you learn about mobile dev and what it takes to attend a mobile dev bootcamp.

    New years resolutions coding bootcampers
  • Article


    Learning to Code Before Coding Bootcamp

    Why it’s important to maximize your learning before the first day of coding bootcamp.

    Learning to code before a bootcamp
  • Ultimate Guide


    Ultimate Guide to Security Bootcamps

    A guide to help you learn about cyber security and what it takes to attend a security bootcamp.

    Coding bootcamp prep programs