2020 and 2021 have seen more explosion in app and web development than the last 10 years combined. For reasons you know well, web development is at a pivotal turn in history where every business, no matter how big or small, is striving to make a space on the World Wide Web. Sophisticated websites that pack impressive feature and yet are easy to build and deploy are the need of the hour. Businesses that till now hadn’t even thought about going online now feel the pressure to mark their presence on the web. Businesses that were tech ahead compete for top spots. And it all comes down to choosing the right technology.
What Is Web Development Framework?
A web development framework is a set of tools, resources and technologies that help software developers build and manage web applications websites. The framework provides system-level services and foundations for web developers to build web experiences from the ground up.
The purpose of a framework is to save developers precious time and energy coding every element from the scratch. Instead of re-inventing the wheel, they can focus on the core value of their application while the framework provides predesigned templates, codes and more for the basics of web app development. This frees up developers to focus on building unique features for their web applications.
Why Are There So Many Different Web Development Frameworks?
Every web development project comes with a unique set of needs and hence, different frameworks suit different projects. Developer preferences matter too and most importantly, modernization of technology paves way for new breakthroughs. There’s constant evolution and developers want newer ways to do things easier and faster. Also due to the Expressive nature of programming languages itself that constantly evolves and grows.
So What Are The Best Frameworks In 2021 And What Should I Choose?
What you choose depends on what you are building. Here’s a list of the hottest web development frameworks of 2020 and you can decide which one is best for you by weighing the pros and cons of each framework as discussed here. This list is in no particular ranking order and any of these frameworks should perfectly suit your needs well.
1. Ruby on Rails
Despite the advent of younger, shinier kids on the block like React and Vue, Ruby on Rails remains a darling of the developers. Hardcore developers still swear by this robust and highly mature web development framework that has held its place firmly since it first came out in 1995. It is a framework that is “natural, not just simple to understand”.
After a good two decades, Ruby on Rails has not become boring. Instead, it has ‘matured’. It has become more stable and refined, letting developers build websites that are much easier to maintain.
Unlike some new frameworks that storm the tech world and become trendy and all the rage, mature frameworks are in for the long game. New frameworks can help developers perform interesting stunts and build things new and unheard of. But they can become a pain to maintain as the technology quickly becomes obsolete and something new comes along and becomes all the rage.
Ruby on Rails however is one of those matured, reliable frameworks that does what it needs to do, and does it well. As a result, Rails websites are as much as ten times faster, more stable and a joy to maintain.
Some of the best websites built on Ruby and Rails are GitHub, Shopify, Hulu and Airbnb.
Laravel is a web app development framework created by Taylor Otwell whose main goal was to make complex coding simple, faster and better. It is Expressive, elegant and enjoyable to work with. It eliminates all pain points experienced by developers handling complex PHP code and makes common tasks like routing, authentication, sessions, caching and more. With all the tediousness taken care of, developers can reserve their creative energies for the project they are building.
Best Laravel features that developers love include:
MVC architecture: Laravel helps keep the presentation layer well separated from the business logic, imparting a smooth user interface and high performance.
Elegant ORM: Developers working with Laravel have the pleasure of ActiveRecord implementation that allows them easy and faster interaction with databases.
Blade Template Engine: Laravel’s simple yet powerful Blade template engine adds zero overhead to apps with convenient shortcuts for the more general PHP functions.
Object Oriented Libraries: Laravel PHP framework offers developers a bouquet of built-in object-oriented libraries that have far-reaching benefits.
Faster time-to-market: Modular development and pre-built functions give developers a faster time to market, endowing significant edge over competitors.
Laravel provides developers a peace of mind like none other. Even though it came around in 2011, it still continues to wow developers well into 2021 and can easily be your top choice of web development frameworks to build with. Great set of libraries, pre-defined architecture, easy and convenient coding style and a strong community, that is always ready to support make Laravel a pleasure to work with.
Django is a powerful open source web development framework originally written in Python. Some of the best things about it include a pragmatic design that encourages rapid development and obliterates much of the hassles associated with web development allowing developers to focus on building a unique app instead of writing basic code from scratch.
A number of famous companies including Instagram, Dropbox, Reddit, and Spotify use Django to build exceedingly scalable websites.
From building E-commerce websites and email systems to CRM systems and graphQL API servers, you can build pretty much anything web based with Django. Like a high tech toy that comes with batteries included, Django comes with amazing built-in features that are pre-packaged with a ton of code that does all the heavy lifting freeing up developers to focus on their creativity and business logic.
With its powerful ORM, Django automatically gives you a database abstraction API as soon as you create data models.
Database migrations are super easy with Django
Inbuilt session handling makes everything easier and URL routing is handled as well.
One of the best things about Django it’s the thriving community that is constantly evolving tell my developing new solutions and eager to help.
Another attractive feature of Django is its own inbuilt templating system that only adds to the speed with which you can build websites.
It is highly customizable allowing you to take up just about any web app development project no matter how simple or complex. It works with multiple database management systems and is fully loaded with extras allowing you to make applications that are easy to scale and can handle heavy traffic and high volumes of information. Having been built around Python, it allows you to build apps faster significantly shortening your time to market.
Express is a minimalist web framework that is much loved in the node JS community. Currently in its fourth generation, Express continues to wow developers with its raw speed.
Instead of falling for what’s current or trending, express wins with its simplicity and maturity. Being an un-opinionated framework, it has minimal learning curve and allows developers to create new and creative projects with little to no historical burden.
At some phases of your development of course, you might experience that Express’s Lack of Standardization leads to problems and extra work for project management.
Companies like Accenture, Uber, Myspace and more choose Express or their web development needs.
Invented by pivotal software, spring is an extremely popular back and web framework built on the Java platform. It allows developers to build fast, simple and flexible websites that are high performing and vigorous. It has gained immense popularity in the Java community over the years.
In the world of technology, Spring came to light sometime in 2003, just about the time Java enterprise edition was all the rage. Developers loved Java enterprise but nonetheless found it tedious. Spring initially began its journey as an inversion of control container for a Java.
What makes Spring truly easy to choose and enjoyable to work with is the fact that it is divided into modules and can easily be chosen in parts to use in any application. Divided into parts such as core, Data access, web, integration, and testing make Spring highly modular and easy to work with. Add to that a strong ecosystem and you have a perfect web development platform for all kinds of project.
Companies like Zillow, MIT, Intuit, and many more choose Spring for their web development projects.
Straight from the House of Google itself, Angular isn’t open source front end framework helping developers create dynamic modern web apps since 2009. The framework has become immensely popular over the years and is no simple developing lightweight and extremely fast web apps by eliminating the need for unnecessary code and keeping developers lives easier hearing it currently, Angular is used by over 44.3% of developers according to a Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2017. With the dominion like that, Angular is truly hard to miss. Developers can easily build interactive and dynamic single page applications thanks to Angular’s two way binding, modularisation, restful API handling, dependency injections and AJAX handling. Moreover, using HTML as template language for my developers can easily convey the components of the application with extended HTML syntax.
One of the most attractive things about Angular is the support of Google. Web applications built with Angular get to leverage the TypeScript language which ensures highly secure applications that are easy to test and have faster time to market. Improved catching and eliminating errors early on in the process while writing the code ensures that applications are bug free and easy to maintain. The TypeScript code can easily be debugged within the browser itself ensuring improved navigation, faster auto complete and easier refactoring.
Declarative UI – in Angular, HTML is used to define the UI of an application making it less convoluted and much more intuitive. Instead of having to decide which program flow loads first, you can just define what you require and Angular will take care of the rest.
Easy testing- Angular makes testing extremely easy for developers which is a huge win as everybody knows how tedious testing can get. Since the application is built in parts, automatic testing is easier and can be done in modules.
Simplified MVC pattern – Angular framework comes embedded with model view controller software architectural setup. This makes coding with it easier and faster
Features like modular structure, code consistency, reusability, Ease of maintenance and improved readability are just some of the features that make Angular a favorite across the board.
Some of the best websites you’ve probably heard of including Gmail, PayPal, Upwork and Forbes use Angular.
Some of the best features about Ember include its rich ecosystem, convention over configuration, easy error handling, routing, backward compatibility, Ember CLI and of course the very supportive and ever growing community.
Just like the astonishing phenomena it is named after, meteor is best known for its trailblazing speed. With the right development team, you can launch your MVP in as less as three to four weeks, making it one of the highly sought after web development frameworks in 2021.
Convenient- one of the most attractive things about meteor is the fact that it is one of the easiest and most comfortable frameworks to work with offering perfect synchronisation opportunity in real time, Meteor greatly facilitates collaboration. The built in LiveReload feature lets you see the changes you make to your app in real time without any delays or having to continually refresh the browser page. Also Meteor gives developers complete freedom over their project structure. It requires less code resulting in fewer bugs and a faster development cycle with higher quality.
Convenient – Meteor is one of the most convenient frameworks to work with. Using the same language for the entire project, Meteor offers the perfect synchronization opportunity. With all the data being synchronised in real time and LiveReload, collaboration becomes smooth.
Reactive – Meteor’s Reactive UI makes for a highly interactive experience. Any changes, user generated content or updates load immediately.
Easy to deploy – Meteor is particularly fast to deploy thanks to its augmentation with Galaxy – a PaaS solution for hosting Meteor JS apps. Galaxy runs on AWS making it lightning fast and reliable.
Vue’s share in websites (Source)
To begin with, a simple learning curve is one of the most attractive features of Vue. Due to its small size, Vue offers incredible speed even at loading the most complex designs in web apps. Add to that an abundant ecosystem of plugins that immensely help solve critical concerns in app development are another attractive feature of Vue.
Vue’s Virtual DOM and High Frame Rate also contribute to its high performance. Additionally, its flexibility, streamlined integration, systematic documentation, progressive nature and well-defined ecosystem are all features that make Vue immensely popular among developers. Trivago, Nintendo, Behance and Trustpilot are some great examples of companies that trust Vue with their web development.
So those are 10 of the most popular web development frameworks in 2021 that developers are trusting their projects with. Depending on your unique needs, you can safely pick any of these frameworks for your web development.