The most popular programming languages in 2021

Firstly, interesting fact: there are almost 700 programming languages but we bet that most developers know and use nearly 15% of the list. 

Different programming languages are suited for various projects (mobile and web applications, game development, distributed system, etc.) And it is important to identify the most appropriate language specifically for your project.

In this article, we will look at each of the most popular programming languages according to PYPL and TIOBE rankings in detail — helping beginning developers and entrepreneurs select the right language for starting their digital projects.

Programming Languages Ranking

We tried to find out the most popular programming languages in the year 2021, using official information from PYPL, TIOBE and Github rankings.

PYPL – The more a language tutorial is searched, the more popular the language is assumed to be. The raw data comes from Google Trends.

TIOBE – The ratings are based on the number of skilled engineers worldwide, courses, and third-party vendors. Popular search engines are also used to calculate the ratings.

GitHub – The ratings are created using a yearly review of programming languages’ popularity.

The popularity of Programming Language (PYPL) Ranking 2021

The PYPLPopularityY of Programming Language Index is created by analyzing how often language tutorials are searched on Google.

The more a language tutorial is searched, the more popular the language is assumed to be. The raw data comes from Google Trends.

The PYPL Popularity of Programming Language index can help you decide which language to study, or which one to use in a new software project.

The popularity of Programming Language (TIOBE) Ranking 2021

The TIOBE Programming Community index is an indicator of the popularity of programming languages. The index is updated once a month. The ratings are based on the number of skilled engineers world-wide, courses and third-party vendors. Popular search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo!, Wikipedia, Amazon, YouTube and Baidu are used to calculate the ratings. 

It is important to note that the TIOBE index is not about the best programming language or the language in which most lines of code have been written.

The popularity of Programming Language (Github) Ranking 2021

GitHub is one of the biggest code repositories that boasts a massive developer community spanning across the globe. The repository is also growing at a blazing speed. Nearly 70% of global fortune 50 companies have lately made contributions to Github’s open-source codes.

Github also shares a yearly review of programming languages’ popularity. Here are the top 10 programming languages ranking according to the latest Github report.

The Most Commonly Used Programming Language

JavaScript is one of the fastest-growing programming languages. JavaScript has become one of the most popular programming languages in the world, and number 1 on GitHub in terms of pull requests. It is one of the best choices the developers can make when they want to develop interactive web interfaces.

Because of its simplicity and speed, more startups and tech businesses are starting to use JavaScript on the backend via the Node.js framework.

The Most Wanted Programming Language

When it comes to the most wanted programming language, Python takes the first position. The popularity of Python has risen over the past 15 years, finally breaking the top 5 on the TIOBE Index a few years ago.

It’s now the most popular introductory language taught in universities and often picked up by experienced developers as a second or third language because of it’s simplicity to learn.

Programming Languages Difficulty Ranking

We also research the most dreaded programming languages because they are difficult to learn and understand. Languages that fall under the programming languages difficulty ranking include VBA (80.4%), Objective C (76.6%), Perl (71.4%), Assembly (70.6 %), and C (66.9%). One of the main reasons why developers dread these languages is that they are ranked as the most difficult to learn since their syntax is complex and hard to read.

Top 5 Most Popular Programming Languages

Coding and programming languages have made life simpler for people. Every aspect of our lives depends on codes. No wonder, coding is one of the main skills required by most well-paying jobs today. Coding skills are especially of value in the IT, data analytics, research, web designing, and engineering segments. 

So, which programming languages will continue to be in demand in 2021 and beyond? We will attempt to answer this question in this article.

1. Python

Pros: Python is regarded as the easiest programming language to learn, because of it’s simple syntax, a large library of standards and toolkits, and integration with other popular programming languages such as C and C++. It is a popular programming language, especially among startups, and therefore Python skills are in high demand.

Cons: Python is not suitable for mobile application development.

Common uses: Python is used in a wide variety of applications, including artificial intelligence, financial services, and data science. It is interesting to know that social media sites such as Instagram and Pinterest are also built on Python.

2. JavaScript

Pros: JavaScript is the main tool of front-end developers for building interactive websites When combined with Node.js, programmers can use JavaScript to produce web content on the server before a page is sent to the browser, which can be used to build games and communication applications that run directly in the browser. Also, one of the main advantages is providing several frameworks that add flexibility. JavaScript allows stress-free integration with third-party apps. It’s no wonder the developer community is increasingly falling in love with JavaScript and using it for web, server, as well as IoT applications.

Cons:  Internet browsers can disable JavaScript code from running, as JavaScript is used to code pop-up ads that in some cases can contain malicious content. 

Common uses: JavaScript is used extensively in the website and mobile application development. Node.js allows for the development of browser-based applications, which do not require users to download an application. Popular apps built with JavaScript frameworks include Slack, NetFlix, GitHub, Facebook, Skype, Uber, LinkedIn, Tidal, and more.

3. Java

Pros: Java is a classic choice of many backend developers throughout the world and the only official language for Android app development. Java is designed to be a loosely coupled programming language, meaning that an application written in Java can run on any platform that supports Java. As a result, Java is described as the “write once, run anywhere” programming language.

Cons: Java is not ideal for applications that run on the cloud, as opposed to the server (which is common for business applications). Slower than some other programming languages;

Common uses: Along with business applications, Java is used extensively in the Android mobile operating system. Many major web apps and systems, such as LinkedIn, Amazon, Twitter, and others are built with the use of Java.

4. C/C++

Pros:  As one of the first programming languages ever developed, C has served as the foundation for writing more modern languages such as Python, Ruby, and PHP. It is also an easy language to debug, test, and maintain. C++ is an extension of C that works well for programming the systems that run applications, as opposed to the applications themselves. C++ also works well for multi-device and multi-platform systems. Over time, programmers have written a large set of libraries and compilers for C++. 

Cons: C/C++ has complex syntax and an abundance of features that can make it complicated for new programmers. C++ also does not support run-time checking, which is a method of detecting errors or defects while the software is running. C is not suitable for more modern use cases such as websites or mobile applications. 

Common uses: C++ has many uses and is the language behind everything from computer games to mathematical simulations. C is often used to program hardware, such as embedded devices in automobiles and medical devices used in healthcare. C/C++ is a sort of basic programming language, which was used for creating most existing operating systems, web-browser, basic Microsoft products.

5. PHP

Pros: PHP is widely used for server-side web development. It is mainly used for writing scripts for websites and web apps, i.e. for creating dynamic pages. As an older language, PHP benefits from a large ecosystem of users who have produced frameworks, libraries, and automation tools to make the programming language easier to use. PHP code is also easy to debug.

Cons: As Python and JavaScript have gained popularity, PHP’s popularity has dropped. PHP is also known for its security vulnerabilities. According to Indeed, most PHP programmers take short-term roles that last less than one year. Websites built completely in PHP relatively slow;

Common uses: PHP is the code running content-oriented websites such as Facebook, WordPress, and Wikipedia. 

How to Choose a Programming Language for a Project?

So, It depends on the type of challenges that you need to find the solutions. Don’t think too much about the Programming Languages Ranking. The best approach is to rely on the choice of professional developers who have experience in this particular sphere. Making the right choice is important for the future of the product, its functionality, security, and scalability.


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