Build Your Own Apps: 3 DIY App Builders for Non-Programmers

App developers aren't cheap, so if you want to save money and do-it-yourself, check out these tools for building apps designed for non-programmers.

Here at Idea to Appster, we’re not very big proponents of going the DIY route. (Unless you’re doing something super cool like launching a rocket with Alka-Seltzer or performing culinary wizardry). We do recognize, however, that money doesn’t grow on trees and that there are arguably cheaper, arguably faster, arguably easier ways to build an app than hiring a professional developer. Below, we’ve got three DIY app builders you may consider. Don’t worry, our feelings won’t get hurt.

1. Infinite Monkeys

Infinite Monkeys makes creating an app a snap. They make it really easy to make your own apps with their free drag-and-drop mobile app builder, which includes a variety of add-ons like social feeds, a live calendar, and business-based features, such as a menu if you are building a restaurant app. They even do all the publishing work for you, so you don’t have to pay any developer fees to get your app into the app stores. Infinite Monkeys is available for native iOS and Android.

Cost: Free! But it comes with ads*. And you can’t sell your app – you build an app for free, and users get to download it for free. This is a great model for small businesses or community groups who just need a basic app for their organization.

Wanna monetize your app? If you’ve got $99 to spare, your ads will go bye-bye and you can sell your app for as little or as much as you’d like. There’s also no revenue sharing here, so you get to keep 100% of the profits. This upgrade will also allow you to self-publish, meaning it will be published under your own name or brand, not under Infinite Monkey’s.

*You can remove the ads for $9/month. Still can’t sell it though.

2. AppMakr

AppMakr is the mother of DIY app building. It has given birth to thousands of apps, including PBS, MacWorld UK, MacLife, and NewsWeek. Now, you too can build full-featured apps with all the fixin’s: multimedia newsfeeds, social sharing features, push notifications, and analytics to monitor downloads. Wanna test your app? AppMakr will also let you test your app on your device for free, and ou can even rebuild the app as many times as you want with free updates to fix bugs or make improvements.

Cost: Free! Or say toodles to ads for $79/month and get full control + monetization options. You’ll also get additional goodies, such as custom wallpapers, scroll menu navigation, and more.

3. GameSalad

GameSalad is “the startup that’s going to make programming a thing of the past,” according to Business Insider. Now, whether that’s true or not is up for debate, but if you want to build a gaming app with zero programming skills, GameSalad is the place for you. GameSalad has produced 60 top 100 games at the App Store (U.S.), including a #1 hit. Check out some of their success stories. With GameSalad, anyone who wants to make a game can make a game – no coding necessary. They’ve also got an entire gaming community set up, so you’re never alone if you ever get stuck or need help with anything. You can develop on Windows or Mac, then publish on iOS, Android, and HTML5.

Cost: Free! The creator is free, the iOS/Android viewer is free, iOS publishing is free. But that’s about it. Wanna go Pro? For $299/year, you can publish to Android and Windows 8 and get a handful of additional features, such as in-app purchases, iAds, Game Center, external links, and Twitter TweetSheet, which allows users to tweet and share your game within the app. (If you’re a student or educator, they’ve also got special pricing via Studica.com)

Want a robust app with full, unbridled control? Hire a professional. Want something you can knock out in a day or two? DIY app builders may be for you. These service make app building accessible for just about anyone – and you can be successful with them too.

Have you ever tried any of the DIY app builders? What are your thoughts and which would you recommend? Let us know in the comments below.

About Sara Angeles

Sara is a copywriter, blogger, and content strategist for startups and lifestyle brands. She graduated from UC Irvine and has a background in law, finance, and business administration. You can connect with her on LinkedIn and follow her on Twitter. Her Google+ is lonely. Find out more about her at SaraAngeles.com.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jennifer.iannuzzi Jennifer Marie Iannuzzi

    Magmito is great and cheap, $9.99 and it works on all phones.

  • Arden P

    Hey this reminds me of this step-by-step process for DIY Apps – http://bit.ly/ZuL5ez

  • http://www.facebook.com/pedropumas Pedro Castillo

    awesome

  • kartheekb

    free ones never satisfy our needs on apps

    http://www.technodiscuss.com

  • Fernando

    Mobincube is another great option for build your apps for iPhone, Android and Windows Phone

    http://www.mobincube.com

    • http://texrat.net/ aka texrat

      Thanks, I was wondering why WP was omitted…

      • Ifediri Dominic Eluagu

        Oops! Come Onnn, you dont build apps with WP, you build websites/blogs
        http://www.editweaks.com

        • http://texrat.net/ aka texrat

          Windows Phone

  • BluesFairy

    “Want a robust app with full, unbridled control?” Check out MobileSmith.com

  • Laxman Sankar

    We recently launched http://AppNotch.com with great killer features like
    100% customizations for HTML5, Android, iPhone and iPad including Multimedia, Form Builder, QR code, App Preview and more with full access to source code. Check out Appnotch.com when you get a chance and build a Free App.

  • Graham

    For even younger kids, check out tiny tap : http://www.tinytap.it
    They can record their voices, teach , ask questions and tell a story

  • Annea

    Now we can build our own apps.

    uniecommerce.com

  • emilyjames

    These application will change the world of thoughts.

  • http://www.larrynocella.com Larry Nocella

    Whoa! These three options look awesome and this is exactly what I’ve been looking for. I know some coding but find it a tad dull for my tastes. Thanks for this article! Great stuff!

  • Maritza Cieza

    nice idea

  • Brian

    Try our app builder out! Easy to use app builder for hospitality and retail businesses. http://www.orbose.com

  • JRo

    Orbose.com is my personal favorite. Their product is fast, intuitive, and extremely affordable.

  • http://www.apps-training.com.au/ Apps Training

    cool article, i got video tuts ready for you to use 100 Tools to make your next killer APP:))) Heaven for non coders to know all about Apps development. I cover every thing

    Kind
    Regards
    Moud

  • http://www.apps-training.com.au/ Apps Training
  • Marc

    You can easily build your application on myapp.net. There’s a CMS to make your app and you can fill it easily in few times. No coding is asked because it has been thought for non-programmers. You can see directly the result in the application simulation. It’s cheap and first month is free! http://www.myapp.net

  • Anne Simbahan

    I purchase their service in http://GetYourOwnApps.com
    to create me an iPhone and Android app and build my business app.
    I was amazed how they provide service to me and I even pay moderately for this
    iphone and android app for my business. They
    will provide a free app for you to try on and test and free download as well
    for the customer. Customers can download it as well in google playstore and
    apple store. Try this app builder and you will not regret their service.

  • Abiodun Akintola Lawrence

    This is simply awesome! Thanks for sharing

  • watchesandmore

    http://easyappcreation.com/ is a great resource…..

  • alina thomas

    Hello,
    It is really a good list of tools by which a non programmer can also do lots of things in a better way .Some of the tools are still missing apps builder, buzz
    touch, isites are also provide the great functionality.

    iphone app development melbourne

  • PixelPower

    Using Phonegap I made a game in HTML + Javascript.I made a FREE game called Super Zombie Run Pro that includes zombie
    runner game plus free streaming zombie movie app all in one https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.zombie.app

  • surethom

    As far as i can tell there are NO free or non monthly over expensive way to create an app that can be uploaded to the Play store. PLEASE tell me if there is. all the above & below are no option for someone who just want to create a simple free app for the play store :(