How to Make a Video Chat App: Step by Step Guide with Business & Tech Aspects

Rise in Popularity Among Online Video Chat Apps

Market State of Video Chat Apps

  • Zoom app downloads worldwide grew from ~5 million in February, to 26.9 million by March. Skype also saw a rise in demand — from ~3.5 million to 6.2 million. (Statista, 2020)
  • In Spain, downloads of the Houseparty app were 2,360 times the weekly average in Q4 of 2019. The level of increase differs depending on the country. (Statista, 2020)
  • Six in ten (57%) Americans are currently using video chat platforms for work and social reasons. (Ipsos, 2020)
  • Video chat platforms are widely used to see friends and family (73%). (Mozilla, 2020)
  • In the USA, the most popular live video chat apps are Zoom (66%), FaceTime (48%), Facebook Messenger (31%), Skype (27%), and Google Hangouts/Meet/Duo (22%). (Mozilla, 2020)
  • After the pandemic is over, 75% of review participants say they will continue to use these apps to see friends and family. (Mozilla, 2020)
Most Popular Messaging App per Country (SimilarWeb, 2019)

Types & Unique Selling Points of Video Chat Apps

Conference Video Call Apps

Why Companies use Conference Video Chat Apps

Video Calling Apps

Video Chat Apps for Entertainment

How Does a Video Chat App Work, Technically?

  • MediaStream
  • RTCPeerConnection
  • RTCDataChannel
  • OpenTOK
WebRTC Communication Protocol for Video Chat Apps
  1. The first client sends a so-called Offer to another client via a server (PeerConnection Observer).
  2. The second client (Remote Peer) sends a reply to the Offer via the server as well.
  3. The Peer-to-Peer connection is established between the clients.

Video Chat App: Strategy Development [Steps 1–4]

How to Make a Video Chat App, Step by Step

Step 1: Define Your Video Chat App Value Proposition

  • Who is your target audience?
  • Who are your competitors?
  • What features would you like to implement?
  • Why should users choose your video chat app?

Step 2: Create a Business Plan & Choose a Monetization Model

  • Key activities
  • Key resources
  • Key partners
  • Value proposition (USP)
  • Customer relationships
  • Customer segments
  • Channels
  • Cost structure
  • Revenue streams
  • Advertisements
  • Paid calls
  • Freemium
Business Model Canvas: WhatsApp Example

Step 3: Promote Your Video Chat App

  • Launch a landing page and a blog
  • Post demos and teasers
  • Communicate with early adopters about the first version
  • Continuously work on SMM
  • Participate in local events and promote your app there
  • Reach out to industry influencers
  • Marketing campaign
  • Influencer marketing
  • SMM
  • Partners
  • SEO

Step 4: Hire a Capable Software Development Vendor

  • Background
  • Portfolio
  • Clients reviews
  • Capabilities
  • Culture and talent
  • Development standards
  • Used tools
How to Choose the Best Vendor to Make a Video App

Video Chat App: Functionality & Tech Stack [Steps 5–8]

Step 5: Select Video Chat App Functionality

Step 6: Create a Customer-Centric UX/UI Design

  • UX/UI design
  • Stylistics
  • Responsiveness
Google Meet Interface on Web and Mobile

Step 7: Tech Stack of Video Chat Apps

Step 8: Test Your Video Chat App

How Much Does it Cost to Make a Video Chat App?

  • Pre-development stage, or how well you study competition, market stage, features to implement, etc.
  • Time spent on discussions and identifying business needs
  • Number of platforms you are going to target (iOS, Android, or both)
  • Use of high-tech functionality such as AI, Machine Learning, etc.
  • App design complexity (custom themes, animations, etc.)
  • Software development vendor you have chosen

Note: This is a summary of a guide.
Check out more details and recommendations to build a video chat app in the complete article on the MLSDev blog.

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