The development of mobile application systems is usually realized on the basis of iterative process models of which there are many different variants. The selection of an appropriate process model is a crucial issue for the success of every system development project, particularly for systems in a highly volatile environment such as mobile application systems. This article is devoted to the idea of selecting and applying alternative iterative process models in a project-specific way. As a first step, an analysis of five predominant groups of mobile application systems has been conducted. On the basis of the results of this analysis, a three-dimensional classification scheme is developed. Applying this, we illustrate that mobile application systems can be classified, characterized, and differentiated over three dimensions: degree of innovation, speed of development, and risk. Based on these three dimensions, technical and organizational-personnel criteria are deduced and a typology of mobile application systems is developed. This framework allows the typification for a planned mobile application system according to eight defined types. Thus, recommendations concerning technical and organizational-personnel requirements can be generated and integrated into a specification in order to enable systems development teams to select an appropriate iterative process model.