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Undeniably, web development is an art, and choosing what programming language to use is like choosing your muse. Although there are different options available, there are two popular languages that most developers often consider: these are Java and PHP. These two languages have sparked many conversations about "PHP vs Java," with many debating on which of the two is the better option. This article will explore key aspects of both languages and offer insights to consider before choosing between Java v PHP for your web development projects.

php vs java

What is Java?

Java is a computer platform and programming language developed by James Goslin and was first released by Sun Microsystems in 1995. Since then, Java web development has become vital in the programming community. As a result, it has grown to power a significant percentage of the modern digital world. This came to be because Java web development offers a robust Java ecosystem on which developers build numerous services and applications.

PHP vs Java

Features Of Java

A Compiled Language

Java is a compiled language requiring the code first to be compiled into bytecode before it can be executed on something called the Java Virtual Machine (JVM). 


Java has a slogan: "Write once, run anywhere" (also known as WORA). This feature helps ensure that Java stays operational on different platforms without any need for any changes. This basically means that it can run on devices compatible with Java, whether you use Windows, Linux, or MacOS.

Easy To Learn

Amongst developers, Java is relatively easy to learn. It is also a programming language that many find simple to use. This is all because Java has the same syntax as C++ and C. In addition, it also has automatic garbage collection features.


Java is an object-oriented language that can handle large databases. It also uses multithreading and multiprocessing. As a result, Java is a language that can offer scalability to a project, which means it can handle a growing amount of users. 


Java makes use of the Just-In-Time compiler to provide its high-performance feature. The Just-In-Time compiler is a software that translates Java bytecode—a program with instructions that has to be interpreted—into instructions that can be communicated with the processor directly. Since Java's bytecode is "close" to native code, it is faster than other traditionally interpreted programming languages. 


Java is dynamic, which enables developers to alter the code while it's running. This extensibility aids in the development of flexible and scalable software.


One of the best features to enjoy in the Java ecosystem is its versatility. This is evident in how cutting-edge products and digital services created for the coming years continue to rely on Java performance.

Robust Community

One of the other main features of Java, which makes it widely used today and still at its peak, is its robust community. 

What Companies Use Java?

The Java security features that come with this programming language remain one of the main reasons why many companies choose to use it. Java-based ERP systems handle data and operations for businesses that are concerned about the highest level of security. Over the years, as Java's vulnerability score has continuously declined, companies across a wide range of industries feel safe using the programming language. Some of the companies that use Java include those in the e-commerce, energy, manufacturing, healthcare, real estate, insurance, and finance sectors, among many others. These include:


Google and its many products are widely used worldwide. Google uses Java, along with Go, Python, and C++, as one of its official server-side programming languages. Java frameworks aid Google in terms of creating UIs, backend networking, and coding servers.


Undoubtedly, Java tops the list as one of Amazon's best programming languages in terms of web development, big data, and app development. Amazon employs the language for its backend software engineering. This enables the company to ensure customer data security, as well as maintain its legacy systems.


Instagram certainly thought long and hard before it selected its choice of programming language to actualize its ideas. The company adopts a combination of Python and Java. 

Among other companies, such as eBay, Uber, and Netflix, Java popularity is likewise very strong. 

What is PHP?

In the mid-1990s, PHP, a dynamic server-side programming language, first made its appearance. Originally, PHP used to stand for "Personal Home Page," but nowadays, it's known as "PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor." It is a versatile scripting language, which makes it popular amongst both beginners and experts. An advantage of PHP is its regular updates that keep up with current technology advancements. The language is also available on all major operating systems, like Windows, Linux, and Microsoft.

Features Of PHP

PHP vs Java
Open Source

PHP is a renowned open-source general-purpose scripting language, and it is ideal for web development; plus, it can be integrated into HTML.

Interpreted Language

PHP runs as an interpreted language directly executed by the server. This unique feature makes PHP a standout option for web development. 

Ease of Use

It effortlessly enables the creation of dynamic content, enables reliable database connectivity, and provides easy HTML integration.

Community Support

PHP has a substantially large community supporting the language. Online, users can also find an array of information and documentation which provides additional support and guidance. Also, there are numerous free online tutorials to help people learn how to use PHP. 

Low Cost

PHP is considered low-cost because it is open-source and free, which makes it affordable for everyone to use. 

Fast Speed

In comparison to Python, another server-side language, PHP is about three times faster. PHP has the wonderful advantage of speeding up website loading times, which helps boost search engine rankings. 

What Companies Use PHP?

Even after more than 25 years in the IT sector, PHP remains the language used to build dynamic, responsive websites. The key is in the extensive list of benefits it has provided over the years, spread across numerous editions with new features. PHP's influence is undeniable, as evidenced by the adoption of its power by leading companies. Some of these include:


Facebook is a renowned social media giant that has been employing PHP's dynamic content-generating capability since its launch in 2004. Undoubtedly, Facebook's extensive use of the language has contributed to PHP popularity and boosted its adoption in the industry.


Slack is a popular platform that has more than 3 million active users worldwide. The company uses the language for its back development activities. 

Among other companies, such as Wikipedia, Tumblr, and Etsy, PHP popularity is undoubtedly very strong.

PHP vs Java Similarities

Let's dive into a detailed comparison of the similarities between both php vs java performance, covering various aspects that are critical for your decision-making process.

Open-source and Free

Both Java and PHP are open-source and free. This makes both languages a popular choice amongst developers.


Both Java and PHP are popularly used for web development projects. PHP is popular for server-side scripting in web development. On the other hand, Java is commonly used for building web apps and enterprise-level solutions.


Java and PHP support object-oriented programming paradigms. This includes polymorphism, inheritance, and encapsulation.


Developers can easily integrate both PHP and Java with other tech stacks. These include HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and XML. 

Community Support

Both PHP and Java have large and active communities of developers that actively contribute to the development of frameworks, libraries, and resources that enhance the capabilities and ease of use of both languages.

Code Reusability

Both PHP and Java support reusability. This feature in both languages saves time and effort for product owners.

PHP vs Java Differences

Language Type

Java is a compiled programming language, while PHP is an Interpreted language; hence, developers can see results immediately because it doesn't require compilation. 


Historically, PHP performance issues were a problem, but PHP 7 and PHP 8 brought significant improvements. Java, on the other hand, has precompiled code and static typing and often outperforms PHP, especially in complex and advanced solutions.

Coding Efficiency

Regarding PHP vs Java performance, there is a difference in terms of coding efficiency/speed. PHP is known for its fast development capabilities. Java, as a compiled language, although fast, isn't as fast as php. Hence, when it comes to java php speed, writing the same software on PHP takes less time than on Java.


Java has long been renowned for its robust security features, particularly in the world of Java security, compared to PHP. Although PHP is a very popular programming language, Java's latest version offers more advanced security features. Regarding PHP vs Java performance, Java operates better for complex projects.

Learning Curve

Two commonly asked questions about these programming languages are "Is Java difficult?" and "Is PHP difficult?" To put it simply, Java has a steep learning curve for beginners, while PHP is relatively easy for beginners.

What To Consider When Choosing PHP vs Java

Before you decide on which language to opt for, there are various factors to consider. For instance, it is vital that you analyze PHP and Java pros and cons before deciding between them for web development. These factors include:

Project's Specific Requirements

The first step is to assess your project's specific requirements and determine if it is a large-scale enterprise application or requires high performance, in which case Java is a better choice. If it is a smaller web application that requires fast development, PHP may be a better option.

Your Team's Capabilities

Secondly, your development team's capabilities are critical—choose the language they are most proficient in or consider outsourcing to expert developers. There are various companies where you can hire Java developers to help with projects.

Consider Community Support

Think about the strength of the communities and available resources for both the Java and PHP ecosystem. For instance, the community support the PHP ecosystem has can have a big impact on your development process if you opt for that language. 

Development Cost

Budget factors also play a role in any decision-making process. On the one hand, PHP tends to be a preferred choice over Java for companies that want to launch web apps with budget constraints because of its readily available resources and more economic developers. Nonetheless, PHP may not always be the most suitable choice for projects that are complex and that fall within a certain budget. On the other hand, Java has an extensive range of libraries, comprehensive capabilities, and tools that are better suited for complex applications.


Finally, consider your project's long-term viability, as Java web development is frequently seen as a more scalable option, particularly for large and complex systems.

Development Time

Both languages have very fast development times. However, you still need to consider the complexity of your project. Although Java can handle numerous capabilities, PHP is faster for simpler apps. Regarding web application development projects, it is always essential to properly assess the nature and scope of Java and PHP and to seek the advice of experienced developers when choosing a programming language.

Graphical Programming

In addition, in the continuing debate over "Java vs PHP" for web development, the method of programming plays a crucial role. The use of graphical programming adds a dynamic element to the decision-making process, going beyond conventional text-based coding. Graphical programming languages provide a distinct perspective on code development. The ability to visualize code as it is written can be invaluable, especially when debugging or making modifications. This visual method is especially useful in graphics, animation, and game development.


It's important to remember that in spite of the Java v PHP debate, they both have their strengths and have been used effectively by numerous successful companies. Thus, you need to consider the particular needs of your project and your team's capabilities when choosing between Java vs PHP. Don't hesitate to contact us if you are looking to hire php developers. At YouDigital, you can also hire Java developers who are always available to provide expert advice and technical support that can help ensure your project's success.

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