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Fitness App Development

Plan, Architecture, Costs

In mobile app development and healthcare IT since 2005, ScienceSoft builds world-class wellness apps with resilient architecture and engaging UX.

Fitness App Development - ScienceSoft
Fitness App Development - ScienceSoft

Fitness Apps: The Essence

The key goal of fitness app development is to meet the ever-growing demand for easy-to-use, accessible apps that help people maintain physical and mental wellness. Varying from fitness tracking, workout guidance, and nutrition planning to mindfulness solutions, fitness apps make a big difference in their users' everyday lives.

  • Key steps: business analysis, requirements engineering and planning, UX/UI design, development and testing, release and maintenance, continuous evolution.
  • Team: project manager, business analyst, solution architect, developers, QA specialists, DevOps engineer, regulatory compliance expert (optional).
  • Costs: from $50,000 for an MVP and up to $600,000 for a full-featured product, depending on the chosen feature set and development method (native, cross-platform).

With a passionate team of experienced mobile developers and healthcare IT consultants, ScienceSoft provides end-to-end development of fitness apps. We offer business analysis, design, coding, testing, support, and evolution of fitness apps of any complexity.

The Fitness App Market

The global fitness app market was estimated at $1.1 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow sixfold within the following decade, reaching a valuation of $8.1 billion by 2032. The surge in demand for fitness apps is associated with the COVID-19 pandemic that raised public awareness of healthy lifestyle and affected brick-and-mortar fitness businesses.

Key Features of a Winning Fitness App

Having delivered over 350 successful mobile apps we fully understand the value of thought-out functionality. Below, ScienceSoft's consultants outline the most demanded fitness app features in 2022:

Fitness tracking

  • Manual and automated activity logging: e.g., steps taken, heart rate, calories burned.
  • GPS tracking (mapping out the route, calculating the pace and the distance traveled).
  • Nutrition logging and calculating the calorie intake by entering the meals manually, choosing foods from the in-app list, or scanning food barcodes.
  • Sleep tracking.
  • Period and pregnancy tracking.
  • Mood logging and journaling.
  • Lifestyle tracking (e.g., physical and mental rest, habits, sexual activity, and more).

Personalized user experience

  • User profile personalization (logging in age, height, weight, preferred activities to create a tailored fitness plan).
  • Goal setting and progress tracking with daily/weekly/monthly reports.
  • Custom workout and nutrition plans tailored to a user's fitness level, preferences, and goals (e.g., weight loss/gain, muscle building, regular physical activity).
  • Push notifications and reminders to log in your daily activities and compensate for the missed ones.

Training and education

  • Pre-recorded, animated, or illustrated workout sessions for an activity of choice (e.g., yoga, workout using gym equipment, stretching).
  • Meditation, breathing, and other mental health exercises in a video, audio, or written format.
  • Real-time one-on-one video sessions with trainers, meditation teachers, or nutritionists.
  • Articles, FAQ guides on a healthy lifestyle.
  • AI chatbot providing recommendations based on users' goals, logged-in activities, etc.
  • Information on nearby healthcare and fitness organizations.

Community

  • Synchronization with social media (e.g., for sharing fitness achievements with friends, logging in via social media accounts).
  • Gamification: in-app competitions with daily/weekly/monthly challenges, progress levels, and unlockable rewards like profile badges, discounts, free access to premium content, etc.
  • Information about and notifications of a user's friends' recent activity and fitness achievements, peer support.

Security

  • Multi-factor authentication (e.g., biometric login, PINs, SMS codes).
  • Secure cloud storage, data encryption.
  • HIPAA, GDPR, PCI DSS compliance.

Billing and payment

  • Secure payment gateways to accept in-app payments (for premium functionality, individual training sessions, etc.) through different channels (e.g., a card, Google Pay, Apple Pay).
  • User invoicing and automated sales tax handling.
  • Handling payment failures.

Sample Fitness App Architecture

Below, ScienceSoft's mobile app experts outline the key building blocks of a microservices-based fitness app architecture and describe its key components.

  • Presentation layer is the app’s UI, the central point of user interaction. For fitness apps that accommodate different user roles (e.g., trainee, trainer, admin), different UIs with corresponding user access rights are created.
  • Routing layer serves as an intermediary between the front end and the back end, ensuring a smooth and secure exchange of data.
  • Container ecosystem is the app's back end that consists of several microservices and their respective databases, one for each primary module of the app.

LEARN MORE ABOUT EACH MICROSERVICE

Microservices in detail

  • User's profile microservice collects and stores user data. Communicating with the payment microservice, it verifies a user's payment status (if applicable) and enables access to premium content or paid app features.
  • Nutrition microservice helps log daily food and water intake, calculating the nutritional value of meals by choosing foods from the nutrition database or scanning a food item's barcode, etc.
  • Training microservice contains the workout sessions and mental health exercises provided by the app. It allows users to choose their preferred activities and workout difficulty level, log their training sessions, track fitness progress, and more.
  • Education microservice is designed to encourage the users' interest in fitness-related topics and provide comprehensive information about a healthy lifestyle in an easy-to-digest format.
  • Goals microservice helps users keep up with their fitness goals, reminds them about missed activities, and encourages new accomplishments with push notifications.
  • Recommendations microservice collects comprehensive data about a user's goals and activities from all the microservices to generate personalized recommendations and a tailored fitness program. Relevant tips might be provided with an AI chatbot that sends notifications to the user.

HIDE

Alex Zyil, Head of Mobile Development at ScienceSoft:

Independent modules are easy to deploy, scale, and modify, making microservices a perfect option for complex fitness apps that are likely to evolve with new features in the future.

Fitness App Development Roadmap

Below, ScienceSoft's experts share the key steps common for most fitness app development projects. This plan can be easily adapted to fitness app types, unique feature sets, etc.

Discovery stage

  • Setting business goals to be achieved with the future app (e.g., filling a market niche, promoting fitness products or services, etc.), define the expected goals to conceptualize the fitness product.
  • Examining the target market segment and the competitors' offerings.
  • Identifying the target audience and creating empathy maps to pinpoint potential users' pains.
  • Identifying the app's compliance needs (e.g., HIPAA, GDPR).
  • Developing a business case for the app, including the development cost and ROI estimations.

In most cases, fitness apps fall under the FDA requirements for low-risk devices as they are designed for general wellness use only, have no relation to diagnosing, curing, or preventing diseases and pose no risk to users’ safety. If your app fits this description, it will not require FDA submission.

Healthcare IT Consultant at ScienceSoft

Requirements engineering and architecture design

  • Creating a high-level vision of the fitness app by outlining:
    • The app's purpose (e.g., an exercise guide, a fitness tracker, a nutrition advisor) and its competitive edge.
    • The core feature set and integrations (if applicable).
    • Functional and non-functional requirements, including security and compliance requirements.
    • App monetization model (a paid app, in-app purchases, ads, etc.).
  • Choosing the mobile platform (iOS, Android, both).
  • Designing the optimal mobile app architecture.
  • Selecting the best-suited back end technology stack.
  • Creating a detailed software requirements specification (SRS).

Head of PMO at ScienceSoft

Project planning

  • Preparing a comprehensive project plan with time frames, required resources, and budget.
  • Deciding on a project management approach (Scrum, Kanban, etc.).
  • Defining clear and tangible KPIs (team velocity, deployment frequency, code quality, etc.) to assess the project's health and progress.
ScienceSoft

ScienceSoft

UX and UI design

  • Conducting UX research to understand behavior of potential users and prioritize the development steps.
  • Creating user personas and user scenarios (the patterns of how each persona interacts with the fitness app).
  • Building UX wireframes or mockups that illustrate the interaction flows.
  • Conducting multi-round UX testing to eliminate any potential issues and make the navigation intuitive.
  • Creating a distinctive visual identity and fitness app design concept.
  • Turning mockups into UI prototypes.
  • Presenting UI prototypes to the project stakeholders, making the needed adjustments until the prototypes receive the stakeholders' approval.
ScienceSoft

ScienceSoft

Development and testing (iterative)

  • Setting up the development and delivery automation environments (CI/CD, container orchestration, etc.).
  • Developing the server side of the system and the APIs, using secure coding practices.
  • Developing the client side of the system: creating a full-fledged UI based on UI prototypes, setting up network communication, integration with databases.
  • Implementing security features (e.g., data encryption, MFA, etc.).
  • Integrating the app with third-party wearable devices, social media platforms, payment gateways, etc. (if applicable).
  • Conducting end-to-end testing in parallel with development, including functional, performance, security and compliance, compatibility, and accessibility testing.
  • For apps that collect PHI: Conducting a HIPAA compliance pre-audit.
ScienceSoft

ScienceSoft

Release and maintenance

  • Uploading the fitness app to the chosen mobile store(s).
  • Selecting monitoring tools and setting up performance alerts to immediately detect and resolve availability and performance issues.
  • Establishing support and maintenance procedures to ensure smooth operation of the fitness app: releasing updates to ensure full compatibility with new OS versions, addressing user issues, optimizing cloud resource consumption to reduce cloud fees, etc.
ScienceSoft

ScienceSoft

Continuous evolution

Adjusting the solution to meet the evolving business needs:

  • Rolling out new app features (including those powered by advanced techs like AR, IoT, AI/ML, etc.).
  • Developing new integrations with other apps and services.
  • Refining the UX/UI according to user feedback and new trends in the fitness industry.
  • Implementing the most recent security measures and more.
ScienceSoft

ScienceSoft

Consider Professional Fitness App Development Services

ScienceSoft can design, develop, and support a highly engaging fitness app or assist you at any stage of your mobile development project.

Fitness app consulting

ScienceSoft's experts are ready to lay a solid foundation for the success of your fitness app. We will conduct competition analysis, help conceptualize the fitness app, differentiate your product among the competitors, help decide on techs, design UX and UI.

I need this!

End-to-end fitness app development

ScienceSoft's team will analyze the needs of your target users, study your market competitors, define a winning feature set, create an optimal architecture, design a sleek UI, code the app, and provide comprehensive QA. After the app is launched, ScienceSoft is ready to stay with you for its long-term support and evolution.

I need this!

Why Your Fitness App Project Is Bound for Success with ScienceSoft

  • In mobile app development and healthcare IT since 2005.
  • 350+ successful mobile projects, including the Android version of Rakuten Viber, apps that power global brands (MTV, T-Mobile, KFC, Fox Entertainment), and Deloitte-approved banking apps.
  • Hands-on experience with HIPAA, GDPR regulations.
  • Strong Agile and DevOps culture.
  • ISO 9001 and ISO 27001-certified to guarantee a robust quality management system and ensure the security of the customers' data.
  • Quality management system for medical device software proven by ISO 13485.
  • ScienceSoft USA Corporation is listed among The Americas' Fastest-Growing Companies 2022 by Financial Times.

Selected Fitness App Development Projects by ScienceSoft

Mobile App for Heart Rate Tracking

Mobile App for Heart Rate Tracking

  • End-to-end implementation of a native iOS app that helps assess users' physical state before, during, and after a fitness session.
  • Immediate interpretation of heartbeat data from the heart monitor, displaying the results on a handy three-colored chart.
  • Widely used by US healthcare and military organizations to improve patients' well-being and monitor the training progress.
Healthy Food Mobile App

Healthy Food Mobile App

  • Development of engaging iOS and Android apps that help users accurately assess their food's nutritional value: calories, protein, carbs, fat, cholesterol, sodium, and the glycemic index.
  • Actionable recommendations on an optimal diet according to a user's blood type: the app identifies food that is beneficial for intake (indicated green), neutral (yellow), or not good for their blood type (red).
MVP Platform for Patients with Obesity

Startup MVP Platform for Patients with Obesity

  • End-to-end development of a HIPAA-compliant mobile MVP that helps patients to eat a healthy diet, prepare for and recover from a bariatric surgery.
  • Calories counting, generating personalized suggestions with AI engine, instant messaging, gamification.
  • Empowering healthcare practitioners with real-time access to patient health data (weight, calorie consumption, physical activity) and progress reports.

Our Customers Say

Talents that Make Up Our Fitness App Development Teams

Project manager

Devises a project plan and manages the team; ensures full compliance with the SLA; reports to the stakeholders on the project progress.

Business analyst

Researches the fitness app market and competitors; elicits functional and non-functional requirements; outlines the feature set and the required integrations with third-party devices (if any).

Mobile architect

Designs the optimal fitness app architecture and the required integrations with third-party devices; chooses the best-suited tech stack.

UX designer

Investigates the needs and expectations of the fitness app's users; assists the business analyst in preparing the app's requirements specification; creates user personas and interaction patterns; builds UX wireframes and participates in UI creation.

UI designer

Designs an attractive and intuitive visual interface of a fitness app; cooperates with the UX designer and the developers to ensure easy navigation within the app and high user engagement; participates in discussing the UI prototypes with project stakeholders.

DevOps engineer

Sets up the fitness app development infrastructure; introduces CI/CD pipelines to automate development and releases; monitors the app's security, performance, availability, etc.

Mobile developer

Cooperates with designers to work out sleek GUI elements, codes the app and fixes the defects reported by the QA team.

Back-end developer

Builds the server side of the fitness app and establishes secure data exchange among the app's modules; fixes the defects reported by the QA team.

QA engineers and testers

Work out a test strategy and a test plan based on the app requirements; design test scenarios and test cases; set up the testing environment and run the tests; introduce test automation (if feasible); report on the detected issues; validate bug fixes.

Note: Depending on your project specifics, ScienceSoft can involve additional talents. For example, your fitness app collects personal health information and shares it with healthcare providers and insurance companies. In this case, a regulatory consultant will join the team to ensure the app's compliance with HIPAA and prepare the relevant documentation for an OCR audit.

Key Sourcing Models for Fitness App Development

Technologies We Use

Mobile development languages and key toolkits

Programming languages

Objective-C
Swift
Java
Kotlin
C#
HTML
CSS
JavaScript

Environments and frameworks

iOS SDK
Xcode
Cocoa Touch
Android Studio
Eclipse
IntelliJ
NetBeans
Xamarin
Cordova
React Native
Flutter
Ionic

Back-end programming languages

Databases and data storages

SQLite
Realm
Firebase Realtime Database
Amazon Relational Database Service
Amazon S3
Amazon Redshift
Amazon DocumentDB
Amazon DynamoDB
AWS ElastiCache
Azure SQL Database
Azure Data Lake
Azure Blob Storage
Azure Cosmos DB
GCP SQL
Google Cloud Datastore

Architectures

MVC

MVVM

MVP

VIPER

Reactive

Event-driven

QA tools

TestFlight
XCTest
Detox
EarlGrey
Appium
Calabash
JUnit/NUnit/xUnit
JUnit5
AppTester
Mockito
Jest
Enzyme

DevOps

Containerization

Docker
Kubernetes
Red Hat OpenShift
Apache Mesos

Automation

Ansible
Puppet
Chef
Saltstack
HashiCorp Terraform
HashiCorp Packer

CI/CD tools

AWS Developer Tools
Azure DevOps
Google Developer Tools
GitLab CI/CD
Jenkins
TeamCity

Monitoring tools

Zabbix
Nagios Core
Prometheus
Elastic Stack
Grafana
Datadog

APIs

REST API
KeyChain API
GraphQL
Apiary
Bluetooth Low Energy API
Apple Pay API
Google Pay API
Apple Maps API
Google Maps API
Fingerprint API

Creating Innovation Opportunities With Advanced Techs

We're ready to deliver an app that goes beyond the regular fitness tracking functionality. Turn to ScienceSoft to create a one-of-a-kind product powered by advanced techs:

How Much Does It Cost to Develop a Fitness App?

The total cost of a fitness app development project highly depends on the chosen feature set, the development method (native, hybrid, or cross-platform), and the sourcing model (in-house or outsourced). It may vary as follows:

$50,000–100,000

For a native fitness app MVP with simple features like GPS tracking and diet planning.

$200,000–$300,000

For a cross-platform workout app with personalized user experience, goal setting, progress tracking across various modules, etc.

Up to $600,000

For a high-end native fitness app with advanced features like live streaming, AI chatbots, AR, etc.

About ScienceSoft

ScienceSoft is a global IT consulting and software development company headquartered in McKinney, TX. With 17-year experience in mobile development, we design and implement highly engaging fitness apps that users love. In our projects, we employ a robust quality management system and guarantee the security of our customers' data in accordance with ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 requirements.