“Discord is for everyone and not just for Gamers”. Though initially built for gamers, Discord has become a general platform used by multiple communities. You will be surprised to know that within 4 years of its inception, Discord has gained over 250 million users worldwide. Well, we can easily vouch that it is going to be tough competition to Skype, Zoom, or maybe your app. Yes, you read it right. It is possible to develop an application like Discord in just a few days and give a tough competition to it. In this article, we are going to discuss the basics of Discord, its features, functionalities, and suggest ways in which you can build your app. Keep reading…
If you ever wondered how you could develop an “All in one voice and text chat app for various communities,” then, you have landed upon the right page. This article shares the main features & benefits of the Discord app and guides you on how you can make an app like Discord? Let’s start with the basics.
The history of Discord:
Discord was the brainchild of Hammer and Chisel, a game development company, developed specially for gamers and intending to ease out their struggle of group voice communication in the game. It is completely a Voice over IP (VoIP) app that was released on 13th May 2015. It supports video, voice, and text communication. It allows users to make a unique place for themselves(servers) and connect with the people having the same interests.
Apps like Discord are a savior, specially in times of COVID 19, when the whole world is remotely working. Video conferencing and in-app chat features are invaluable communication tools today in the business world. Scheduling meetings, communicating with each other has become a norm today.
Discord is a PC-based, web-based, and mobile-based app where people sharing common interest can gather, chat, or do video conferencing. Even though Discord is new in the field of such VoIP apps like Skype and Zoom, it’s quirkiness made it earn millions of users. Discord is unique with the black background and cartoony graphics; it is fun to use Discord indeed. Additionally, you can customize your server and create public or private servers. Further, you can divide the channels within the main server and discuss a topic.
When the developers designed Discord, they thought it would be used to communicate and collaborate with other games. But, to their surprise, the popularity of the app grew across various verticals of community. And today, Discord is used to make voice calls, video calls, share files, and almost everything that you do with popular other platforms like Zoom & Skype.
Well, you may wonder when there were already popular apps, how did Discord make a difference?
Well, a single unique idea can make a huge difference. The Unique Selling Point of Discord is that you can add as many members to the servers as you need. Wish to connect 5000 members on a server, you can easily do it with Discord. You just have to contact Discord support, and they will shift your server to a hardware supporting server.
Some more facts to motivate you for building a VoIP like Discord:
It has around 250 million users already;
The company holds a value of around $2 billion after raising $150 millions of funding;
The app company is thinking of expanding its ambitions into selling games. It has already taken steps by taking the Steam PC gaming platform & the Epic games.
Imagine, a single differentiating thought could earn them millions. What are you waiting for? Do you have an eccentric idea then contact an on-demand app development company today!
But wait, let’s understand the features of Discord app :
Servers and the channels are the places where you will connect with the team. As mentioned, you can connect as many as 5000 members on a server and create 500 channels (subgroups) on each server.
If you are searching for a server in particular and can’t find one, you can create your own server and ask people to join in. The server allows you to manage the roles and decide it based on the hierarchy.
Based on the roles assigned by the admin, special permissions can be assigned to each of them. You can decide on who has the permission to read the message, send, or join the channel. You can collectively define the permissions for all the channels or can define it individually.
You will be surprised to know that there are around thirty options for permissions. An admin can also transfer the management permissions to the other account. This liberty has attracted many users towards the app. Hence, while you go for VoIP app development, do not miss upon this feature in the app.
Developed primarily to make a voice communication feasible between the gamers, Discord has every possible feature in it. You can voice chat, video chat, and connect with hundreds of people with just a single click. The app uses WebRTC (web real-time communication), which is an open-source project having APIs that make it possible to have high-quality audio and video communication.
Discord facilitates both person to person and group chatting feature.
Additionally, today every single app supports file sharing across the users. So if you are planning to make a voice and text chat app like Discord, you should allow the users to share the files in the chats. If you are a free account user, you have an upload limit of 8 MB, and if you have subscribed for the Nitro plan, you get the upload limit of 50 MB.
However, in your case, you need to decide the sharing limit for your app. This may vary depending on the target audience and the region.
In today’s hustling life, it is difficult for any individual to go and check every single message and reply. We prefer apps that notify us about the messages received and allow us to respond to them at our convenience. Hence, notifications, aka message alert setting, is a must.
Discord app allows us to Mute all the notifications, mute specific channels or servers. You can customize the notifications with a specific user name or with specific words in the chat. We all do not welcome distractions and hence, always prefer to get information that is really important.
Screen share feature:
Needless to say, it is a must-have feature in an app like Discord. When hundreds of people are connected to a server, it becomes really convenient if they can share their screens in the chat. Discord app allows users to share the PC or mobile screens and leave important notes on the shared screen.
For apps that are mainly used for business purposes, it is important to allow them to go back and review the messages from months back. It is true that text messages as they accumulate start occupying space. But, if you wish to develop an app like Discord, you need to give the facility of unlimited storage.
Social accounts integration:
The on-going trend in the industry suggests that you should allow the users to connect with an app using their social media accounts like Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. It is not a norm to have this, but it would be helpful if you develop an app that allows social media accounts integration.
Excited with the features? So how will you create an app like Discord?
To develop a modern app that can process tons of information, you need modern technologies. As mentioned, you can contact the VoIP app development company and ask them to use WebRTC open-source.
Furthermore, you need to ensure that seamless communication is maintained across the channels and the servers. For this, you need strong and robust backend support. You can use Elixir, Erland, Golang, Python, Ruby, and C++ for server-side programming.
This being said, you can also develop an app like Discord using Node.js, which will be cost-effective but will have a few limitations.
For the client-side rendering, you have to be more specific with your choice. Discord works across all the platforms, which includes Windows, Linux, iOS, macOS, and Android. Discord also works flawlessly across the web platforms.
Hence, study your target audience well in advance, pen down their requirements, finalize their platform of communication, and then go for development. You can use Kotlin or Java for building Android apps and Swift or Objective C for iOS apps.
You can design the user interface using React, Flux, and Electron. The frameworks have a pool of libraries that assists you in building classic UI.
Many chatting apps face data encryption problems in the initial stages. Specially if you are planning to develop an app like Discord that can handle hundreds of users in a chat, data protection is a must. To ensure that the personal and sensitive data is not leaked, you can provide TLS for text chats, DTLS for voice over browser, and XSalsa20 for voice over a desktop app.
So, we hope that you are clear now with the basics and the features of Discord app, you may develop one for your business.
But how will you make money? You may also question, how does Discord make money?
Like almost every chatting and messaging app, Discord is also free to use. But, there are limitations to the free subscription, and hence, it has another subscription plan named Nitro, which has some additional benefits. The Nitro plan costs around $4.99 per month and offers some additional features and advantages for a chat like custom emojis, file upload limit up to 100 MB, higher screen quality, and upgrade to favorite servers.
Well, other options to monetize the app are Freemium services, Ads, Paid Downloads, In-app purchases. Freemium model, which means Free download and optional premium subscription plans, has been everyone’s favorite so far. Do proper research of your target audience and then come up with a monetizing solution.
How much does it cost to make an app like Discord?
You can ask your development partner about their charges for the project. They may give you an estimate and not an exact figure because the final figure may vary depending on the changes in the features you make.
However, you may need a team of 1 project manager, 1-2 UI/UX designers, 1-2 Android/iOS developers, 1 frontend developer, 1 analyst, 1 backend developer.
As you go on increasing the complexity of the app, the final price of development will keep changing. You can expect the price to be around $45,000 to $85,000 or more.
Another option is to hire mobile app developers who charge on an hourly basis and assist you in developing your app.
You might have understood by now that a unique idea can make all the difference in app development. Additionally, the field of VoIP apps is still young and evolving, and so any outstanding idea of app development will be welcomed by the audience. Get ready to grab your piece of cake today!!
For an in-depth consultation, you can connect with us directly. We have years of experience in developing such on-demand apps like Discord.