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Top PHP Web Frameworks

For the past 20 years, web applications have become more intuitive, dynamic, customized, and gained top-notch features like voice search, big data processing, and much more.

Thus the complexity of developing web apps and web portals is increasing. To build them, software developers should use a wide range of tools, frameworks, libraries, APIs, and others. They help address the most troublesome development parts, focus developers’ attention on the necessary functionality, facilitate and accelerate web app development.

One of the most popular programming languages for building web apps is PHP. It’s been taking the leading position in web development for more than 25 years. In this article, we will look into the most effective PHP frameworks that help to create viable, fascinating, and glitchless web solutions.

1. Laravel

PHP frameworks Laravel

Laravel is a back-end open-source framework created by Taylor Otwell for web app development that follows the Model-View-Controller (MVC) architectural pattern. It’s the most popular PHP framework so far. According to BuiltWith, Laravel’s popularity is growing steadily. Deltanet Travel, Neighborhood Lender, MyRank, Rocket Rubbers, Mack Hankins, Cachet, Asgard CMS are among the well-known web portals built in Laravel.

In September 2020 Laravel had its 8th release with the new features that have significantly improved its usability. By utilizing Laravel software developers create complex, secure, and robust web apps in a simple and well-documented manner. The list of Laravel’s benefits include:

  • support of functional, integration, and unit tests which results in high product quality;
  • development of easily scaled apps that add resources as the app’s audience grow;
  • simple integration with GitHub, CircleCl, Docker, AWS, and other services;
  • open source-code allows software engineers to create tools that comply with the specifics of their development projects;
  • a wide range of APIs for various purposes, including authentication through the most renowned services like Facebook, LinkedIn, GitLab, and others;
  • a set of reusable PHP components help to maintain clean and minimalistic code that is easy to modify;
  • advanced cache system ensures high performance and accelerates development processes;
  • secure codebase due to protection from SQL-injection and cross-site request forgery;
  • minimized number of errors during the development process due to its Artisan CLI (command-line interface);
  • automatization of repetitive coding tasks with Artisan CLI.

Laravel suits best for the creation of complex, customized, enterprise web apps as it ensures security and fast load time. The MVC architecture model helps to separate business logic and presentation layers which makes Laravel-based solutions stable, easy to scale and migrate. Above all, Laravel is easy to install, configure, and provide unit testing on it, therefore, the risk of major errors is kept to a minimum.

2. CodeIgniter

CodeIgniter (CI) is an open-source framework that allows building multifunctional and secure web apps based on MVC architecture. This framework was developed by EllisLab in far 2006 and since then it’s been popular among web developers for its shallow learning curve and simple toolkit with the most necessary functionality. CodeIgniter is the best suit for the development of dynamic web sites based on PHP.

Here are the main benefits of CodeIgniter PHP Framework:

  • easy installation and setup;
  • elaborated documentation;
  • a wide choice of development libraries;
  • inbuilt security tool such as encryption;
  • error-handling tools;
  • simple routing method;
  • easy migration from one server to another;
  • compatibility with third-party plugins.

CodeIgniter is a great choice for building lightweight, fully-featured, fast web sites with robust performance. Unlike Laravel it’s easy to learn for beginners, yet it allows building secure, and easy to scale web solutions. The sites built with CodeIgniter are Casio Computers, Freedcamp, The Mail & Guardian, Nissan, Bonfire, and many more.

3. Symfony

Symfony is another open-source PHP framework that has an MVC architecture in its core. It’s a full-fledged and robust solution for building complex, high-performance web apps such as B2B or enterprise apps. Big businesses such as Spotify, BlablaCar, Vogue, Trivago, NatGeo Play, TED, Swiss Open Government Data, and many others use Simfony to run their web apps.

Before starting a project in Symfony, web developers can define the architectural style of their apps. Furthermore, they can add extra modules to meet project requirements when an app is already in the development process.

Despite its complexity, Simfony is easy to install and configure on most platforms. Some more Simfony benefits are:

  • the Doctrine project, a set of PHP libraries, that allows building high-load websites with a constant flow of users. Doctrine supports a wide range of databases such as MySQL, PostgreSQL, NoSQL, MongoDB, and others;
  • MVC architecture has a strict structure that allows creating well-thought web apps with easily testable codes;
  • the Console component with command-line