It's a question that's both externally determined, e.g. "What does the market bear?" and also based on someone's own perception of their worth. It's hard to disentangle the two but very important in order to maximize revenue. What's more the objective question of what the market will bear is often colored by my own perception, which is a recipe to leaving money on the table.
Weinberg's advice is to set your rate such that you'd feel emotionally neutral whether or not you get the gig. If you over price (by your own feeling, not by what the market says) and you get the gig, you'll be stressed to deliver at what you think that price level should be worth in labor. If you under price (by your own standard, perhaps because you think the market will not accept more) then you'll be resentful for working below what you're worth. Having been a consultant myself, I can only advise everybody to challenge the own perception of what the market will bear.
On the top end, I would hope these "rockstar" teams are charging 250/hr per developer?
I like to think I'm at the very bottom of the totem pole with plenty of room to climb higher and increase my revenue over a long career to come; seeing things like this make think I'm rapidly approaching a pretty hard cap.
But, our data may be skewed this year just due to our reach. We didn't have many people from companies in the range of 20-100 people which I think is a sweet spot for high specialization.
The heavier font weight didn't register and I completely missed the links in the body of the text. Maybe they need to be set off more, or maybe I just need more coffee :)
Or ping me at contact at statwing.com and I can do the data-loading stuff for you (I'm a cofounder).
- Additionally there isn't enough supporting data, e.g. no where is the rate of time defined in the article. I'd be interested to see the original survey to see if this is clearly mentioned here.
- Can someone point to one clear unambiguous place where an iOS developer position is advertised at over $100 per hour?
- The data clearly shows that this is per hour (see the data here: http://bigswing.com/ios-rates-2013, per the post). You can also view an archived copy of the survey here: http://bigswing.com/ios-rate-survey-2013-archive/
It poses the question: "If you do have an hourly rate, what is it on average?"
- The point of doing this survey was that rates are rarely, if ever, actually posted. There are a lot of reasons for that, but it also makes hard to know if you're in line with your industry. Hence, the survey!
Your critiques and questions seem to imply that you don't think our findings are valid. Is that true or am I reading too much into it? ~$100/hour USD is right in line with our experience for an average across the whole industry. It's low for an agency or big firm and high for a young freelancer.
I think this misses the point. You seem to imply you're thinking about what a developer could make in a full-time salaried position. What a consultancy (whether one person or ten) charges is generally significantly higher.
If you're a legitimately good mobile dev (or can become one), there is lots of room for you in the scene right now, making plenty of money.
Discoverability is a huge problem, if you're not in a featuring, a top-X list, or something of the sort, your profitability is extremely limited. If there's no visibility on the App Store for you, you don't get fewer users, you get almost no users.
$2K sustaining revenue a month isn't impossible, but it's hard.
- Most of them are pretty sketchy marketing schemes, not unlike the "Top Sites" aggregators of yore. There's no user trust, because they are just pay-to-play.
- The friction is still enormous. You're on a website, you find an app you like, you tap on a link. It switches to the App Store App (heh). You wait. You wait some more. You wait for the hybrid-webview-bullshit-thing to kick in and load the detail page. You tap Buy/Install, you authenticate. You wait some more. There's no way to bypass the App Store, sadly.
Android does better in this regard where a user sitting at their home computer can send an app to their phone. This does wonders for your ability to market your app.