Mobile app maintenance: The Complete Guide

We live in a time of digital revolution, with more than 4.88 billion people worldwide using smartphones. Mobile apps are essential for many people to work and live their daily lives efficiently. It is crucial not only to create practical and innovative apps but also to maintain them continuously. Those that are insufficiently convenient and useful will be removed. A well-maintained app lasts longer. However, it must respond to user needs and work with new software

What is application maintenance?

Application maintenance is continuously updating, reviewing, and modifying existing software. It is a critical process for keeping applications running at peak performance. Competing businesses must constantly improve and manage their IT solutions to meet changing user needs. Application maintenance is more than just bug fixing. It involves continually modifying the product once deployed to improve performance and efficiency. Given the competitive nature of the mobile market and rapidly evolving technology, regular application maintenance is an absolute necessity. 

The importance and benefits of mobile app maintenance

  • Regular updates allow apps to adapt to changing expectations and trends.
  • Continuous improvements and the addition of new features increase user satisfaction and loyalty.
  • By eliminating bugs and improving performance, apps encourage users to use them longer.
  • Long-term application maintenance strengthens its market position and contributes to a better ROI.
  • Regular updates ensure protection from threats, compliance with privacy policies and regulations (e.g., GDPR, CCPA), and interoperability with the latest devices and systems.
  • With continuous updates, applications remain protected from cyber threats.

And what are the potential consequences of neglecting application maintenance?

  • A lack of updates and patches can prevent users from becoming frustrated and abandoning the application.
  • Unmaintained applications quickly become outdated, losing functionality and market appeal.
  • Legacy software is more vulnerable to data theft and cyber-attacks.

Types of Mobile Application Maintenance

There are five types of mobile application maintenance. Each is tailored to a different kind of software. Below are examples that explain how each type works:


Example: Imagine a popular social networking application suddenly crashes, preventing users from logging in. The development team quickly identifies server overload as the cause. Emergency maintenance is triggered to address the server capacity issue, and user access is restored within hours. This rapid response is critical to maintaining user confidence and interest in the application.


Example: A fitness app receives feedback that users want more personalized workout recommendations. The development team decided to implement a feature based on artificial intelligence. It analyzes the user’s training history and preferences to suggest customized training plans. This perfective maintenance increases the app’s value and user satisfaction by better adapting its features to current needs.


Example: After the release of a new version of the Android operating system, the mobile banking app begins to experience compatibility issues such as poor performance and display glitches. The development team uses adaptive maintenance to update the app, ensuring that it runs smoothly on the new operating system and that users have a seamless experience.


Example: To avoid potential problems in the future and improve the software’s overall performance, e-commerce application developers decide to refactor the code base. This preventive maintenance involves cleaning the code, optimizing database queries, and updating documentation. Such measures help reduce the application’s load time, making it faster and more responsive. This, in turn, improves the user experience and reduces the likelihood of future problems.


Example: Users of a photo editing application report a bug that causes the application to hang when applying certain filters. The development team investigated these reports and identified a memory leak as the cause of the crash. The bug is fixed, and an update is released to users. This not only resolves the issue of the application freezing but also demonstrates the company’s commitment to quickly resolving issues reported by users.

How much does it cost to maintain an app?

On average, maintaining a mobile app costs between 5% and 20% of its initial value. As the app becomes more complex and gains more users, maintenance costs can increase. This includes supporting the latest operating systems, developing new features, and testing and updating integrations with external services.

Best practices for updating mobile apps

It pays to actively listen to user feedback and use it to improve the app. It is essential to regularly release security patches and feature updates to ensure the app remains secure and attractive to users. Thorough testing is required before each update is released to avoid introducing bugs. Compatibility with the latest operating systems and devices also ensures that the app runs smoothly on a wide range of hardware. Also, remember to communicate any changes, updates, or fixes to your users.

Using artificial intelligence and machine learning for predictive app maintenance

AI can significantly improve mobile app maintenance. Automating routine tasks like generating code documentation significantly reduces developer time and effort. AI improves the analysis and prioritization of bug reports, allowing you to focus on the most critical issues. Using machine learning algorithms, AI tools learn from previous bug fixes and suggest solutions for similar problems in the future. This speeds up repairs and creates a knowledge base to support future maintenance.

Work on a mobile app never stops. There will always be updates to the software and the addition of new features and functionality. When choosing a technology partner, remember that this long-term relationship requires good communication and trust.

let's create something together