Top Software Development Companies in Dubai

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Last updated: March 2024

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Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, of course! Dubai and the whole of UAE are open to remote working. In fact, many companies, including IBM, Microsoft, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and LinkedIn, have set shop here and are thriving remotely, away from their main HQs. 

Applications and software like React.js, React Native, Redux.js, PHP, PostgreSQL, Laravel, Solidity, Ethereum, Oracle, C++, Apache Hadoop, Java, and JavaScript are the popular choices of software developers in Dubai. 

Knowing how to choose the best software development company in Dubai is not an easy task, especially since there are many options. But before outsourcing your services, you must do your due diligence and ensure you will only invest time and money in the right company. You must know your own requirements to help you make a sound decision. 

Here's what you should look for:

  • The company's experience - how many years they have been in the industry, what kind of projects they have worked on, and the experience level of their developers. 
  • Correspondence - how they respond to your queries and approach you with questions or concerns
  • Processes - their internal processes should be a good fit with yours, or you agree with a system that will deliver the best results
  • Methodologies - choose the best coding languages and applications that work for you and the company 

On average, the cost of developing software in Dubai ranges between $40,000 to $300,000. The range is vast because the expenses depend on the complexity of the project, the manpower needed to complete it, the expertise required, and much more.

Dubai is a hub for startups, thanks to the government's strategic processes and programs to facilitate a business-friendly environment that boosts the economy and paves the way for future development. 

Software companies, in particular, will thrive because the city offers various startup funding programs. One in particular is the Dubai Technology Entrepreneur Center (DTEC), which offers funding opportunities and acts as an incubator and accelerator, providing all that a startup needs to flourish.

Other noteworthy programs include the Mohammed Bin Rashid Innovation Fund, Innovation Impact Grant Programme, Dubai SME, and DIFC Fintech Fund. 

On average, any project in software development could take about 4 to 9 months, depending on the size and complexity of the project. Simple projects could take 3 to 5 months, while more complicated ones could take more than a year.

A company's post-launch support and maintenance depends on its internal regulations, regardless of its location. When drawing a contract, it is vital to check all contracts and documents to ensure you get post-launch care if needed.

There are many successful businesses based in Dubai. Soulzer, a top-ranked mobile application development company, provides website development services in Dubai. Other commendable names include CSP Solutions, Diginix AI IT Solutions, and Lumitech. 

The project's scale and requirements directly influence the cost of developing software in Dubai. On average, a freelancer's fee is about $30 to $70/hour in Dubai, which is much less than what you'd pay in other parts of the world. 

Although Dubai is one of the most expensive cities to live in, partnering with software companies in the UAE can still save a lot of money if you choose to outsource your services.


Buyer's guide

Dubai, the epicenter of the Middle East, is a beacon of technological advancement that has drawn admiration from many around the world. With the city's continuous pursuit of innovation, Dubai has become a hub where technologies and software solutions are created. It harnesses the transformative power of software development and recognizes its pivotal role. 

Just like the city, the IT sector in Dubai is constantly evolving. From startups to established firms, all deliver world-class software development solutions. The best software development companies in Dubai develop high-performing mobile apps and deliver complex enterprise solutions for clients worldwide. 

Moreover, the city's location and business-friendly environment make it a magnet for skilled professionals.

All these attributes make the city a much sought-after place for IT professionals and business owners. In 2021, the UAE's tech export was valued at $2.9 billion, and IT services are estimated to bring $3.2 billion in revenue in 2023. This is expected to increase to $4.5 billion by 2028 – an annual growth rate of 7.43%, surpassing the US CAGR from 2023 to 2028, which is 6.70%. 

This tremendous growth is only possible thanks to Dubai's developed IT infrastructure, which includes 32,000 software development companies in the UAE and 328,000 IT professionals. 

All of these factors make the United Arab Emirates a highly attractive market in the Middle East. Today, many international tech giants are investing in UAE-based technology. With the growing demand for services, the number of IT outsourcing companies in Dubai and the rest of the region will increase.

Hubs in UAE besides Dubai

Dubai, with a population close to 3 million and about 300 software development companies, is what you'd call a giant. The workers and companies in the city are ever-growing in the fintech industry and cryptocurrency technology. 

The UAE is a leading country with a favorable business ecosystem, attracting hundreds of companies worldwide. Besides Dubai, the UAE has four other major cities that are huge forces for change:

Abu Dhabi 

The capital of the UAE is buzzing with more than 1.5 million residents. With approximately 3,119 IT-related and software development companies – including multinational enterprises like Amazon, Apple, IBM, and Microsoft and start-ups – it is slowly on the rise to become a place where every forward-thinking company wants to be.

Sharjah

Sharjah, the third-most populated city in the UAE, is home to 1,500 IT companies. Amazon, Salesforce, and Google have their representative offices here, too. Around 700 tech startups have also set up shop here.

Al Ain

Also known as the Garden City, Al Ain boasts luscious parks and green avenues. The city has 645,000 people, while there are 23 computer software companies. 

Ajman

With over 400,000 inhabitants and 564 IT companies, Ajman is on the rise in the tech space. Although it's a comparatively small city, its availability of jobs makes it one of the leading cities in the UAE.

Dubai's Market Overview 

Trends in software development are ever-changing, and the top software development companies in Dubai only deliver cutting-edge services to their clients. 

Here are some of the most popular IT sectors and how Dubai is positioned in the national and global software development market:

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning 

Artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) have become essential for software development. Today, developers use AI to automate tasks, optimize code, and improve user experiences. The global AI market size is estimated to grow by 37.3% from 2023 to 2030, reaching $1.8 trillion.

As a result, the UAE is preparing for the demand to become a leader in these sectors. This has created a demand for software development services and professionals to leverage complicated data analysis and predictions. 

Cloud Computing

Based on research, about 51% of IT expenses will be toward cloud solutions by 2025. 

Cloud computing is incredibly convenient and efficient. It has forever altered how the best software development companies in Dubai and the rest of the world work. As a result, many companies are working on setting up cloud-based apps and solutions for their overall operations.

Cloud computing makes collaboration simpler and more effective. Additionally, it provides easy access to advanced tools and resources to build scalable systems.

Blockchain 

Blockchain has seen a significant growth rate of 56.3% annually, and estimates show it will be worth $163.83 billion by 2029.

Because blockchain technology has potential applications across various industries, it has proven to be an excellent business module and revenue stream. Blockchain can be used for software development and linked with cryptocurrency to create more open and secure software systems. 

As blockchain advances, software developers are expected to leverage its features more and more.

Internet of Things (IoT)

The Internet of Things refers to various linked devices, like wearable technology, smartphones, commercial equipment, and home appliances. In 2022, the IoT security market share grew to $3.35 billion. According to Market Watch, this amount is expected to expand further, with a CAGR of 26.36% by 2028, making it worth $13.36 billion.

The expansion of networks will bring new challenges and opportunities alike. Developers and the best software development companies in Dubai will be able to create new apps on many platforms and ensure they are safe for consumers to wear daily.

Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR)

It has been forecast by Grand View Research (2020) that by 2027, VR will be valued at a whopping $92.31 billion. AR and VR are used for various applications, from entertainment to training. The technology is here to stay, and many expect it to be even more widespread in the years to come. 

Through VR and AR, remote collaboration and training will become easier. It will also change how people interact with one another.

Low-Code/No-Code Development

About 70% of apps that will be released by 2025 will use low-code/no-code technology. Low-code development is increasing in popularity among startups and the best software development companies in Dubai. With these platforms, programmers can build applications much more quickly, even with limited resources or minimal knowledge of code. 

Besides these trends, DevOps is also slowly becoming popular. Many organizations are leading the way toward digital transformation in the UAE, especially Dubai. The increasing need for software development services means firms must create and leverage digital solutions like never before.

UAE's Current Position in the Software Development Market

According to Global Data, the UAE market was estimated to be valued at $36.14 billion in 2022. Experts project that this value will increase by 12.46% in 2027 and reach $291.73 billion. 

The UAE, specifically Dubai, has always been a top choice for IT services that cater to companies throughout the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Asia. In fact, in the last 12 years, the country has been a hub for more than 1,500 American companies. 

The UAE is dynamic and more than open to international business. Its central location ensures robust business opportunities, making the country an attractive market for multinational enterprises of all types and sizes.

Dubai's Technical Expertise 

Currently, the UAE is seeing a lot of demand for front-end, back-end, and blockchain developers. Here are the skills expected from professionals in these positions:

Front-End Developers

A front-end developer creates websites and applications using certain languages so users can access and use them seamlessly. A front-end developer makes all the design elements you see on a website or app.

Some of the most popular programs used for front-end tasks include:

  • React.js
  • React Native
  • Redux.js

These are widely used in web and application development by startups and well-established companies alike. 

Back-End Developers

Building code and maintaining a website's back-end are some things a developer should do. The growth in the technological sector is constant, and back-end developers are deploying program databases, servers, and apps like never before.

Some of the technologies used include: 

  • PHP
  • PostgreSQL 
  • Laravel

Blockchain Developers 

The demand for blockchain developers is the highest among the top software development companies in Dubai. In fact, the government is utilizing blockchain technology in many sectors. It is believed that Dubai will soon launch its own cryptocurrency, EmCash, which will bring even more opportunities in this niche. 

Some of the software used to develop blockchain include: 

  • Solidity
  • Ethereum

Other Technologies Used

  • Oracle
  • C++
  • Apache Hadoop
  • Java and JavaScript

Successful Software Projects in the UAE

Dubai is home to some of the most talented software developers in the world. The city's digital revolution has helped numerous IT professionals and businesses set up shop here. 

Some of the best software development companies in Dubai have connections with the following multinational companies: 

  • IBM
  • Microsoft
  • SAP SE
  • Oracle
  • Cisco Systems, Inc.
  • Amazon Web Services, Inc.
  • Hewlett Packard Enterprise Development LP
  • Infor, Inc.
  • VMware, Inc.
  • SolutionsDots Systems ltd.
  • Symantec Corporation

Education in the UAE

Computer science, software development and engineering, and data science are top programs in educational institutions in Dubai. Some of the best software development companies in Dubai look for talent from these universities:

  • Khalifa University, Abu Dhabi 
  • United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain
  • American University of Sharjah, Sharjah
  • Zayed University, Dubai 
  • University of Sharjah, Sharjah
  • Higher Colleges of Technology, Al Ain
  • New York University Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi
  • Abu Dhabi University, Abu Dhabi

Aside from these institutions, Microsoft has begun hosting OpenHack, an event encouraging consumers about digital solutions and innovations. This developer-focused event introduces talented coders to challenge-based, real-world scenarios to boost their skills when hired at Microsoft.

Coders HQ, an initiative addressing the increasing demand for software professionals, is changing how the UAE sees software development. This initiative aims to provide professionals with a platform to showcase their skills and connect with some of the top software development companies in Dubai. 

Talent in the UAE

There is immense demand for programmers in the UAE, thanks to the country's technological advancements, specifically in the AI, blockchain, and fintech sectors. The government has invested in the development of smart cities to build and maintain the necessary digital infrastructure. This also encouraged startups and the top software development companies in Dubai to scale up their operations. 

According to reports, there are currently about 63,000 coders in the UAE. The Dubai International Financial Centre's Innovation Hub (DIFC) is home to over 500 startups and tech groups. Even though the number is impressive, it is not sufficient to cater to the demands of the country. This is why more and more students are leaping into the highly competitive field—there is significant scope for skilled programmers to build their careers in coding. 

Currently, the UAE government has signed deals with big names like Google, Microsoft, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cisco, IBM, HPE, LinkedIn, Nvidia, and Facebook. The deal includes plans to train 100,000 coders and create over 1,000 tech companies. 

Salaries and Compensation in the UAE

According to a survey, professionals in the IT sector in the UAE are the third-highest earners in the industry worldwide. Software engineers based in Dubai can earn up to 30% more than professionals from London, Amsterdam, and Berlin. That said, places like Silicon Valley and New York make 35% to 22% more than professionals in Dubai. 

According to Hays, here is the average payscale of professionals working in some of the top software development companies in Dubai: 

  • Software development directors - Dh52,500 ($14,295)/month
  • Front-end developer/engineer - Dh25,000 ($6,806.56)/month
  • Back-end developer/engineer - Dh23,500 (6,398.16)/month
  • Mobile application developer - Dh24,000 ($6,534.29)/month
  • Engineering manager - Dh45,000 ($12,251.80)/month
  • Head of software engineering - Dh55,000 ($14974.42)/month

Freelancers in IT charge a fee between $30 to $70/hour. But some may charge more, depending on their level of experience and niche.  

Cost of Living in the UAE 

The UAE is not just a tourist destination; it is a cultural and tech hub. The city of Dubai is the 18th most expensive city to live in. The monthly expense for a single person (excluding rent) would be about $1,000. A family of 3 to 4 people would see monthly expenses of $3,540, not including rent or mortgage. 

While living in Dubai is undeniably expensive, the rest of the cities in the UAE are not so extreme. For example, those who live alone in Abu Dhabi or Sharjah will see monthly expenses ranging from $762 to $900. 

If you wish to work with some of the best software development companies in Dubai, knowing the current market rate will help you make smart business decisions. It is estimated that most software development companies charge between $9,000 and $13,000. However, the exact amounts vary based on the project's complexity, duration, expertise level, and more. This number is quite a steal if you compare it with the costs in US-based companies, around $50,000 to $250,000.

Why Choose Dubai for Software Development?

Dubai is undoubtedly a high-end tech hub in the Middle East, with all the IT infrastructure and talent needed to deliver the best possible services. Here are some of the specific reasons why the city has attracted so many enterprise partners over the years and will continue to succeed in the industry:

Business-Friendly Environment

It is no secret that the UAE has some of the friendliest policies for business, creating an ideal location for software development companies. Companies can start and run with highly favorable tax policies, hassle-free steps to register a company, and a supportive business environment.

A Wide Pool of Talent

The UAE, specifically Dubai, has diverse and qualified professionals—primarily expatriates. This means you will have access to many skilled and experienced professionals from all over the world. This diversity and varying points of view will only improve projects and services. 

Tax-Free Income

The UAE is a tax-free country. Software developers can earn higher salaries here and keep more of their income. This encourages professionals to aim higher in their field and perform as well as possible. 

Developed Infrastructure 

The UAE has made huge investments in infrastructure, including world-class data centers and initiatives, like Coders HQ and OpenHack, to provide IT professionals with an ideal environment for software development.

Reduced Expenses

By outsourcing work to a country that specializes in software development, companies can reduce expenses. This is how some of the top software development companies in Dubai effectively reduce overheads, such as utility bills, office rent, and infrastructure expenses.

Conclusion

Dubai has become the IT hub of the UAE, surpassing technological innovation and software development in the Middle East. The city's commitment to promoting a business-friendly environment and its strategic location have attracted global tech giants and startups. 

Besides Dubai, cities like Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Al Ain, and Ajman are also becoming hubs for progress, reflecting the technological advancement throughout the nation. From AI and cloud computing to blockchain, the Internet of Things, and virtual reality, the country is on its way to leading the next wave of technological evolution. Moreover, education in the UAE—with renowned institutions like Khalifa University and initiatives such as Coders HQ—ensures a continuous influx of skilled professionals for decades to come. 

The city of Dubai and its sector for software development extends beyond financial incentives. It's all about the vibrant ecosystem, fostering innovation, collaboration, and diversity. The country's infrastructure and reduced operational expenses position the city as an ideal choice for companies seeking to partner with the top software development companies in Dubai. 

As Dubai continues to evolve, the growth opportunities will be better than ever. So, if you want to outsource your services, now is an excellent time to get your foot in the door.