Most Popular Web Development Frameworks
There is a diverse range of web development frameworks available in the market. But when it comes to adopting the right framework it seems a complex and tricky task. No worries, I have a suggestion for you. If you are a company owner, then I suggest you choose a framework that will be maintained for the next 5 years at least and fit your company’s goals and resources. If you are a web developer and looking for a job, then choose a high-demand framework in the job market, and fit your profile.
Still, you need my help again to make the choices between, which is the best web development framework for 2021? Alright, I have made a list of the most popular web frameworks in 2021. You can choose your favorite one to make web development hassle-free. You need to make your choice clear before choosing the right frameworks for your website. Because how your website works and looks largely depends on which framework you choose as a developer.
Before starting the detailed discussion about these top web development frameworks I would like to clarify some of the general user questions like what are web development frameworks. Why do we need to use web frameworks?
What is a framework in web development?
A framework in web development is a software platform for developing web applications and websites. Web framework has a collection of libraries and modules that support the development process. Developers can create customizable web apps by altering the existing components of a web framework.
The web development frameworks can be used for the development of web services, web APIs, and other web resources.
Why do we need to use web frameworks?
Web frameworks help web developers to achieve a structure in applications. We can add additional features without too much extra work by using web frameworks. Using web frameworks, developers can save a lot of programming time. Many development frameworks standardized coding practices, which systemize the developers’ programming process and avoid errors and bugs. The framework aims to provide a common structure so that developers don’t have to redo it from scratch and can reuse the code provided. In the longer term, a framework ensures the longevity of your applications.
What is the difference between frontend and backend frameworks?
Now, I am going to describe the top web frameworks of 2021 in the market. I am using some reliable tech sources like StackOverflow and GitHub to verify the source of this information. I hope you enjoy the reading, let’s get started:
1. React (ReactJS)
React is the most popular web framework, according to GitHub react is the second most starred web framework:
Do you know? React has ranked as the second most used Web Framework just behind jQuery in the StackOverflow developer survey 2020:
React is also loved by the developer community and as a result, it was ranked the second most loved Web Framework in 2020:
Framework Link: https://reactjs.org/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/facebook/react/
Stable Release: 17.0.2 / 22 March 2021
Vue is the combination of AngularJS (View Layer) and React (Virtual DOM) and offered a gracious substitute to both Angular & React. If you would like to amplify applications then you can easily apply this open-source framework.
In GitHub, it is the most starred Web framework:
Vue.js ranked as the 7th most popular Web Framework in The StackOverflow Developer survey 2020:
In the same survey Vue.js ranked as the 3rd most popular web framework, just behind React:
Framework Link: https://vuejs.org/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/vuejs/vue
Stable Release: 3.0.11 / 1 April, 2021
Angular is a TypeScript based open-source front-end web development framework. It is a very popular name between the developer’s community and industry. We can use it to develop vast and high-functioning web apps. Angular highly focuses on robustness and stability, so it is a perfect choice for enterprise application development. PayPal, Netflix, Upwork, Lego, etc. are the name of few websites that are using Angular.
There is also an interesting fact about Angular is that Google releases Angular in 2016 as an end-to-end, client-side MVW web framework after the failure of AngularJS (Angular 1+).
The tight integration with Angular material makes this framework great for web development. Angular framework offer two-way data binding, dirty checking, convention over configuration. Angular is a more secure client-side framework and offers DOM sanitation security features. If you are looking for web, mobile web, native mobile, and native desktop development then you can go with Angular.
It is fact that Angular has less traction in recent years. But it is a mature and enterprise-grade development framework that is loved by companies. As a result, Angular ranked as one of the most popular web frameworks.
In GitHub, Angular ranked as the third most starred web framework:
Angular ranked at the third position in the StackOverflow developer survey 2020 just behind jQuery and React:
Framework Language: TypeScript
Framework Link: https://angular.io/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/angular
Stable Release: 11.2.9 / 7 April 2021
Spring is an open-source server-side web framework created by Pivotal Software. It is the most popular web development framework for Java platforms. Since the year 2002, Spring grows with time and now it is a primary web framework for Java-based application development.
With time, Spring is evolving and playing a big role to make Java relevant in the age of cloud computing. Using the Spring framework, we can create simple, fast, and flexible JVM-based systems and applications.
The Spring is used for creating high-performing and vigorous web applications. It is one of the top backend web frameworks for 2021. Although Spring is not getting the hype it is the number one choice for business software development due to Java.
In the age of React, Vue, and Django, Spring is still a popular framework in GitHub:
In the StackOverflow developer’s survey 2020 Spring ranked at 8th position:
A great achievement for Spring is that it is also a most loved web framework among developers while Java is not considering now a hot programming language.
Framework Language: Java
Framework Link: https://spring.io/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/spring-projects/spring-framework
Stable Release: 5.3.4 / 16 February 2021
Django is a free and open-source web framework that is Python-based, developed and maintained by an American independent agency DSF(Django Software Foundation). Django is a server-side framework for the web that follows MTV(Model-Template-Views) architectural pattern.
Django uses CoC and DRY patterns and it is one of the top reliable backend frameworks that help developers to create robust web applications. The other reason behind the high adoption of Django in recent years is the popularity increment of the Python programming language. Applications made using Django are safe and that’s why some popular companies like Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, and Disqus use the Django framework for development.
Django is ranked at the second position in GitHub as the most starred server-side framework behind Laravel:
According to the StackOverflow developer survey 2020, Django is one of the most loved web frameworks:
Framework Language: Python
Framework Link: https://www.djangoproject.com/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/django
Stable Release: 3.2 / 6 April 2021
6. Ruby On Rails
In the early 2000s, when writing a simple “hello world” application needed huge effort, David Heinemeier Hansson created Ruby on Rails. It is a server-side web development framework that supported MVC patterns and Ruby as a programming language. As a dynamic web application framework, Ruby on Rails perfect for developing a high-speed application.
According to sources, applications developed with Ruby on Rails are generally ten times faster than classic Java frameworks. The features of Ruby on Rails are not the same as other frameworks such as React, Vue, and Angular, so you will find yourself mixing in other things for the front-end development.
While Ruby on Rails is fast to build but it can be slow in performance especially for larger-scale applications. The other point is that it is not optimized for multithreading, so you have to choose it wisely. Twitter, GitHub, Airbnb are the example of some websites that have incorporated Ruby on Rails.
If we talk about the current popularity of Ruby on Rails then it is not as good as it was in the past. The main reason behind the drop in popularity is other framework’s adaptability. Other frameworks like Laravel in PHP, Grails in Groovy, Django in Python, Play in Scala adapt the functionality of Ruby on Rails and providing better performance. But still, Ruby on Rails is one of the popular web application frameworks for server-side web development.
Framework Language: Ruby
Framework Link: http://rubyonrails.org/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/rails
Stable Release: 22.214.171.124 / 26 March 2021
Every developer knows, PHP is an old but very popular programming language for web development. We are talking here about Laravel, which is created by Taylor Otwell in the year 2011 as a PHP-based, server-side web framework. Laravel functions on an MVC architectural model that uses PHP and follows the “Ruby on Rails” philosophy of CoC and many out-of-the-box functionalities that are essential for enterprise web development.
Laravel has API support and contains a good quantity of packages. It includes a lot of features such as dependency injection, server-side rendering, etc. Functionalities such as OAuth2 implementation, subscription billing, zero downtime deployments, app scaling, everything you’d think a modern website should have, are built-in natively with Laravel.
Laravel enjoys high popularity in the development community and it is the most starred GitHub framework among the server-side frameworks:
Framework Language: PHP
Framework Link: https://laravel.com/
Framework Github Link: https://github.com/laravel
Stable Release: 8.16.1 / 25 November 2020
I hope you guys enjoy this article. I have discussed the seven most in-demand web application frameworks here. All of them have their own pros & cons and excel in a particular use case.
In this modern time, SEO is also very critical for many companies. For this purpose, the server-side web frameworks with traditional backend programming languages are a pleasant option. For large and stable web applications, Both JVM-based Spring and .NET based ASP.NET Core are good choices.
Django, PHP Laravel, and Ruby on Rails are the top choices web frameworks for small startup companies or sometimes large companies who want to prefer faster development.
I try to include the best available web frameworks here according to 2021. If you wanna work with programming languages like Scala, Go, or Rust then you should better find a framework in that language.
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