Why is PHP dying? or is it here to stay?
15th February 20196 mins
Even though PHP will successfully celebrate its 27th birthday in 2022 while its latest version was released in November 2021, questions like “is PHP dead” or “is PHP dying” are still being pitched.
Many web developers believe that PHP has fallen victim to an outdated approach or strategy. Furthermore, they firmly stand on the point that it is not doing enough to reduce the complexity with consistent syntax, namespaces, uncomplicated debugging, etc.
To this degree, will PHP die in the near future?
Most definitely not!
We have explained PHP’s deductions and relevance in the following article.
We could go on and on about how PHP is not dead, but why would you believe us? So, we have some stats that back our statements.
According to w3techs.com, 77.9% of websites rely on PHP. Out of that lot, 89.3% of the website use PHP version 8.0 while 10.7% use version 8.1.
Do those numbers signify that PHP is dying? We don’t think so.
Here are some more stats to help understand the relevance of PHP.
PHP is used in 34.48% of the top 1M websites. Moreover, 42.04% of the top 100k websites use PHP. Lastly, 48.67% of top 10K websites have PHP as their scripting language.
It should also be noted that PHP is being used by several global and well-established companies like Facebook, WordPress, Slack, Wikipedia, Tumblr, MailChimp, and Etsy.
If we just consider WordPress, it powers 455 million websites. Those 455 million websites stand proof that PHP is here to stay.
But it is also important to look at a different side of the story.
While PHP might not be dead yet, the trend seems to be edging towards a declining stage.
According to W3Techs, if we just consider a time gap of one year, the usage of PHP dropped from 79.2% in March 2021 to 77.9% in March 2022.
While this might seem insignificant to some, it is crucial to understand the changes in the game in the long run.
PHP was the server-side language for 80.1% of websites in 2017. This dropped to 79.6% in 2018. Furthermore, it declined even more and clocked in at 77.9% of websites in 2022.
So, maybe we are addressing the wrong question.
It shouldn’t be “is PHP dead?” The correct question that needs to be addressed is, “is PHP dying?”
There are several reasons why PHP is considered to be a dying language. Since we are completely unbiased to the situation, it is necessary to understand its drawbacks as well.
The chances of code vulnerabilities stand since PHP’s open-source nature. These vulnerabilities can fall victim to any programmer with vicious intent.
It is believed that PHP handles errors poorly. Due to its lack of debugging tools, as compared to other programming languages, some errors or warnings might get overlooked.
There are several more reasons, like PHP not being a competent modular or a complex language to learn. They might be the cause of all the backlash that PHP is getting its way.
As mentioned earlier, the main reason why people think PHP is dying is its Avengers-level of competitors.
This makes both the languages accessible for freshers as well as experienced developers.
As we mentioned earlier, around 79.2% of websites use PHP as a server-side programming language.
The numbers are enough to denote that both languages have a huge chunk of the market share.
Now that we have covered the similarities, it is time to jump to the differences.
A server-side programming language delivers dynamic content to the users. On the other hand, a client-side programming language employs scripts on the web server to produce a customised response for every request on the site.
As far as PHP is concerned, some things might be case sensitive, while others might not be.
For example, PHP variables are case sensitive, while the PHP functions aren’t.
Yes, PHP has an advantage in the form of WordPress that makes web development easier and cheaper.
Au contraire, PHP is a backend development language. Developing a web app with PHP will require the know-how of CSS as well as HTML.
Languages never die. One such fine example is COBOL. People believed that it would die down soon. Fast forward to today where successful companies like Citi and Blue Cross Blue Shield still use COBOL.
While there are several other scripting languages, PHP is here to stay! With its latest and updated versions, PHP has a long way to go!
Hence, the next time somebody asks you, “is PHP dead?” back your statements with the aforementioned points and statistics.
Lastly, if you are a business or a company willing to kickstart your website, Creole Studios has your back. So, wait no more to build your dream website. Contact us today! We’ll be glad to hear from you and help you out!