Has anyone ever sat you down to show you the 'funniest YouTube video ever'? If so, you probably asked "how long is it?"
Partly, you ask because of a healthy skepticism that this video might not suit your sense of humor and politely faking laughter for 14 minutes can be exhausting. But, you also ask because you want to set your expectations accordingly.
There's a huge difference between a 30 second video of a child throwing spahetti and a 5 minute Daily Show clip.
Whether you love the video or not, the point is this: you want to know how long something will take. That applies to waiting for a table at a restaurant. It applies to standing in line for a rollercoaster. It applies to the timeline for mobile app development. If you think your app will take a week (nope) to build and it takes 18 weeks, you're likely going to grow impatient. That puts added stress on the developers building your product and undue frustration on you.
When you approach a company to develop a mobile app for you, you want to make sure your expectations are set correctly. If not, you become the metaphorical kid-in-the-backseat intermittently crying out "are we there yet?" Nobody has fun on that car ride. Mobile app development should be a fun process - you're building something amazing! As long as you and the developers are on the same page about when it will be done, it will be.
Why does the timeline for mobile app development take approximately 18 weeks? See the infographic below for a snapshot of the process: