PHP or Python or JavaScript on current development trend analysis


PHP, Python and JavaScript have been popular languages in the field of web development. Each language has a huge community of users and the demand and scope of these languages have only been increasing in the recent years.

In this article, we are going to discuss about the languages: PHP, Python and JavaScript; along with their recent development trends and comparisons.



PHP has become the de facto server-side language of choice for web developers. It is fast, flexible, and can be used for everything, from a simple blog to the most popular and dynamic websites in the world. The release of PHP 7 in 2015 and PHP 7.1 in 2016 made the language even better providing many features for better performance and interoperability. The increase in speed and maturity of libraries provided by the version has greatly improved the language and it can easily compete with other languages.

With PHP, a minimum viable product can quickly be built to get a project off the ground. However, in the recent trends, PHP is also used for highly scalable and business-critical applications. PHP is also a suitable language for IoT (Internet of Things) infrastructure solutions. PHP code can also simultaneously run several tasks in the same script which can be used in apps that operate smart gadgets. The Xively Internet of Things platform which offers an easy-to-use PHP SDK is a suitable example.



Python is one of the most commonly used languages, developed in the late 1980s. Python is easy to learn and offers rapid prototyping and dynamic semantics capabilities. It has an extensive library with built-in functionality making it possible to develop different kinds of applications. In December 2016, Python 3.6 was released solidifying its place as the scripting language of choice for many users providing various improvements in implementations, security, windows and standard library and added syntax features and library modules.

In the recent trends, Python is still widely used to develop different web based and non-web based applications. Python is a core technology in blue chip sites and services like YouTube, Instagram, PayPal and many more. It is also used for IoT infrastructure solutions. Python frameworks like Django, makes it easy to build applications and are more secured. Because of its’ vast library and built-in functionalities, Python is used in many applications where PHP cannot scale.


JavaScript has become a very important language for web development. JavaScript can be used in anything web related and provides lots of different libraries and plugins. Furthermore, it is supported by every web browser making it one of the core components of web besides HTML and CSS.

JavaScript is mostly used for developing the frontend of projects. JavaScript frameworks like Angular and Ember and libraries like React have been very popular in this aspect. JavaScript libraries like D3.js have made data visualization more elegant and refined. Since the introduction of Node.js in 2009, JavaScript is quickly growing as a server-side technology as well. PHP and Python can only work in the server-side while it is now possible to work on both client and server-side using JavaScript. JavaScript is also used to build SPAs (Single Page Applications), which have been one of the latest trends in web development.


Trend Analysis




For the trend analysis, we will be using the PYPL and the TIOBE index. The PYPL (PopularitY of Programming Language) Index is created by analyzing how often language tutorials are searched on Google. TIOBE ratings are calculated by counting hits of the most popular search engines.

From the PYPL index, we see that Python is in the 2nd Position. However, in the US, UK and France Python is in the 1st position as per the PYPL. Python currently has 14.7% developer share in 2017 which has increased by 2.8% from 2016. PHP, ranked in the 3rd position, currently has 9.4% share which has decreased by 1.2% from 2016. JavaScript, which was ranked 7th in 2016 has now risen to 5th position with 7.7% developer share and an increase of 0.4%.

From the TIOBE index, we see that Python, PHP and JavaScript are in the 5th, 6th, and 7th position with 4.043 %, 3.072 % and 2.872 % ratings respectively. Since 2016, the ratings of Python have decreased by 0.14% whereas the ratings of PHP and JavaScript have increased by 0.30 % and 0.67 % respectively. The positions of Python and PHP have not changed whereas JavaScript was in the 9th position in 2016.

From the given statistics, we see that Python and PHP have maintained their positions in the PYPL and the TOIBE index. PHP and Python are used for the development of wide range of applications and this trend is mostly likely to continue for the rest of the year. The popularity of JavaScript is continuing to rise and it has become an essential component for web development. The use of JavaScript is expected to is for the rest of the year and the upcoming years.