The versatile programming language PHP has dominated the web development market for over two decades. Also, it has successfully established itself as an intuitive and reliable option for web development. However, this extensive coding language is gradually losing its popularity when favoring the optimized counterparts. So, it’s important to discuss the faults and benefits of PHP in web development.

Let’s take a quick look at this worthwhile technology and list the advantages and disadvantages of PHP by understanding its area of use and comparing it with other rival development tools.

Table of Content

  • Introduction to PHP
  • Advantages of using PHP
  • Disadvantages of using PHP
  • Scope of PHP in future

Introduction to PHP

PHP or Hypertext Preprocessor is a server-side scripting language. It means that the apps developed on it run only on web servers and are not dependable on the web browser. Although, within a few years, PHP’s area of usability has taken a shift. In this modern era of technology, the PHP coding language ranks among the best and most famous programming tools for web development.

Advantages of Using PHP

The main reason behind PHP’s popularity is the numerous advantages it has for a product owner. Following are the benefits of PHP that makes it an excellent choice for web application development:

Cost-Efficient Hosting Services

Lamp stack is one of the typical operation scenarios of a PHP website. It means that a website runs on an Apache HTTP internet server deployed on a Linux system and has MySQL as the database. Every component here is in a free state, which results in a reduction of required development cost and time.

Enhanced Loading Speed

As a product owner, you would need to provide an excellent experience to the users visiting your site, and the first thing to do so is to enhance the loading speed. With PHP, the loading of website pages becomes faster in comparison with several other web-development tools. 

The loading speed and time is also a crucial SEO ranking factor that brings competitive advantages and is beneficial for promoting a website. 

Cloud Service Compatibility

Nowadays, numerous modern products for their various purposes tend to use cloud computing solutions such as Amazon Web Services. Applications developed in PHP are compatible with several cloud services, like AWS Lambda. Thus, you can hire PHP developers to deploy a PHP application on a cloud server to achieve exceptional scalability.

Moreover, other coding languages haven’t monopolized the area of cloud computing, so PHP is still a potential option for such implementations.

Ample Documentation

Hundreds of manuals, tutorials, and other reference materials help facilitate the development and provide assistance in challenging situations. All these are valuable materials for novice developers as they make the learning process easier. 

Easy Availability of Personnel

Being a popular technology, PHP has given rise to a vast community of developers, a significant fraction of which could be potential candidates for hire. The huge number of readily available PHP developers for hire results in great competitiveness and lower required wages. Which eventually gives you the benefit of a reduction in development costs.

Besides, PHP is relatively intuitive and easy to implement, so even new developers can realize the basic functionality of an application effectively.

Effective Flexibility

The key behind PHP’s high-end ability to combine with several other programming languages is its effective flexibility. This virtue of PHP helps the software product to use the most comprehensive technology for each specific feature.

Also, being a cross-platform language, PHP gives you the benefit of using any of the primary operating systems – Windows, Linux, macOS- to develop your application.

Disadvantages of Using PHP

There is no doubt that PHP is exceptionally useful in the web development field, but it also has various disadvantages as the obstructions in its way to dominating that area. To offer you a piece of unbiased information, let us discuss these disadvantages of PHP.

Declination in popularity

PHP has robust support from a large community of its returning customers and excellent reference documentation. Still, you can find some more intuitive programming languages to develop web applications. This is the main reason why novice developers prefer learning Python as their first preference, and most rarely, they add PHP to their set of skills. 

Currently, PHP is dominating the significant segment of web development, but it most likely will change in the near future. The number of PHP developers will decline eventually, and the market will face the unavailability of novice developers that offer basic skills at a low rate, so the costs of the products written in PHP will most probably rise.

Lack of Dedicated libraries for Modern Requirements

Let’s take an example to understand this drawback of PHP: Machine learning is one of the latest trends. It’s definitely going to be a popular technology in the near future. While PHP comprises a set of its libraries, it won’t be able to compete with Python in web application development empowered by machine learning. 

Also, in the current scenario, PHP has no relevant, equally compelling, and fast alternatives to Python’s Scikit-learn. Theano, TensorFlow, and Keras. In case your application needs an ML functionally or may need it in the future when your startup scales up. Then, PHP may not be the best choice for you.

Flaws in Security

Over the years, the security concerns related to applications written in PHP persist due to various reasons. One of those reasons is the open-source nature of PHP. It means that the possible code vulnerabilities can become easily accessible knowledge if found over the web. 

Theoretically, during launching and fixing the new PHP versions, any programmer with malicious intent could exploit those vulnerabilities.

However, we can state this as a general drawback of open-source technologies, as it primarily refers to the open-source model and not PHP in particular.

Another reason for PHP’s lousy reputation at the security level is the low entry barrier to hiring a PHP programmer. This eventually results in many applications and websites being developed by inexperienced programmers, hobbyists, or trainees. 

The inferior quality of their work contributes to the facts and rumors regarding PHP’s overall poor security and performance.

Scope of PHP in Future

Currently, PHP is still dominating the ranking among the best technologies in the web development world. A significant share of all websites run on PHP, and the intuitive CMS WordPress continues to gain popularity through PHP. This is the reason why the near future of PHP looks bright, as it will continue to evolve with other platforms extensively.

However, PHP’s distant perspectives raise some concerns regarding its growth and viability in web development in the future. There are a lot of deals Python and other technologies are offering to customers. Even though PHP lacks some aspects, its comprehensive features like cloud service compatibility, flexibility, etc, make it an attention-worthy technology.

Final Thoughts

Considering all these advantages and disadvantages, we can conclude the following statements:

  • PHP is tremendously popular, so you will indeed find the development team that fits your project’s requirements.
  • It is intuitive and well-documented so that you will get the benefit of lower development time.
  • PHP is an open-source technology that helps you by reducing the costs to develop, deploy, and maintain your product.
  • It lacks some compelling features like machine learning in python but still a great alternative.

Now, we can conclude that PHP helps you provide a significant and dynamic experience to your product users. However, it lacks some of the modern features but is a worthwhile technology to choose for web development.

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