javascript framework

5 Best JavaScript Frameworks in 2022

Introduction

Want to kickstart your career as a JavaScript developer? Then you are in the right place. Many JavaScript jobs require you to know your way around JavaScript frameworks like React, Vue, Express, or Angular. This is because frameworks provide developers with pre-written code for routine tasks thus making it easier for you to create applications with predictable code that is easy to debug.

Tell us the skills you need and we will find the best developer for you in days, not weeks.

Hire Developers

As a JavaScript developer, you’ll have to familiarize yourself with a few of them. This is why in this article, we have listed some of the best JavaScript web frameworks to use in 2022. It will be useful as you trudge along the path towards becoming a professional Frontend or Backend developer as well as in improving your existing skill set.

In this post, we’ll discuss:

Let’s dig deeper into the details.

What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is a multi-paradigm scripting language that supports event-driven, functional, object-oriented, and prototype-based programming styles. JavaScript was initially used only for the client-side but, recently, it has also been applied in server-side programming.

Today, JavaScript is among the core technologies of the web. It is popular enough that there is a large ecosystem with a great number of different frameworks available for developers. JavaScript frameworks offer many features, such as safety, structure, accessibility, and good documentation. 

Before diving into the list of top JavaScript frameworks, let’s first find out what a JavaScript framework is.

-Top-


What is a JavaScript Framework?

A JavaScript framework is a tried and tested software for building scalable web applications. A JS framework is made up of a collection of packages and modules that provide pre-written JavaScript code offering the same structure for standard programming features and tasks.

JavaScript frameworks abstract the generic application structure and functionality for developers thus allowing them to focus more on the business logic of their applications instead of routine tasks. The pre-built implementation of common solutions relieves developers from low-level issues such as protocols, sockets, and thread management. 

This reduces the development time and allows developers to easily create applications and services using features that Vanilla JavaScript does not offer out of the box. Rather than having to build the same feature multiple times, frameworks enable you to create components that can be reused multiple times on your application.

-Top-


How Does a JavaScript Framework Differ from a JavaScript Library

JavaScript frameworks and JavaScript libraries are quite similar in terms of functionalities, but they’re quite different in terms of scope. On one hand, a JavaScript library refers to packaged code, methods, and functions that can be called upon to perform specific tasks. 

For example, Moment.js is a library that simplifies the task of parsing, validating, manipulating, and displaying date and time — which can be a huge pain even for seasoned developers. Another popular JavaScript library is D3.js, which streamlines data visualization using web standards. D3 helps you make sense of your datasets using HTML, Canvas, and SVG.

On the other hand, a JavaScript framework is an entire toolset that defines the skeleton/blueprint of an application or website. It defines how a developer should organize the application. 

Often when building apps and websites, you will be using both libraries and frameworks. You will be calling JavaScript libraries in your views to provide specific functionality that the framework doesn’t cover. For example, data visualization or data functionality.

-Top-


Why Should You Use a JavaScript Framework?

As a JavaScript developer, it’s worth using JavaScript frameworks for several reasons. Let’s look at some of these: 

Access to Strong Community Support

JavaScript frameworks are part of many developers’ toolsets. Therefore, when you encounter an issue, it’s highly likely that other developers have already faced the problem before. By reaching out to the developer community on forums, it’s most likely that you will find the solution you’re looking for. The most popular frameworks will particularly enjoy strong community support.

Better Code

JavaScript frameworks can guide you on how to build complex and highly performant applications. They also have built-in functionalities like testing and linting that you can use to help ensure that you’re shipping error-free code.

Offer Code Reusability

Since frameworks have pre-defined functions, you can reuse the same functionality to develop your applications without having to write code from scratch. 

Ease of Use

Frameworks provide enhanced JavaScript functionality without requiring you to write a single line of code from scratch.

Fast Development

JavaScript frameworks provide a prebuilt implementation of redundant activities. For example, the abstraction of the UI elements into components that can be maintained and reused independently, allows developers to build and launch applications faster by saving time. 

Lower Costs

For the most part, popular JavaScript frameworks are free to use and thus reducing the cost of development. This is a key consideration, especially for small business owners.

-Top-


Top 5 JavaScript Frameworks in 2022

So, which is the best JavaScript framework for your project?

Before selecting any framework, make sure that: 

  1. The framework has strong documentation, as well as plenty of tutorials and guides for beginners. 
  2. The framework has been around for a while.
  3. The framework has been adopted by a lot of developers. 

Based on these criteria, here are the 5 best JavaScript frameworks in 2022:

RANKFRAMEWORKGITHUB STARSCREATEDNPM DOWNLOADS
1React191,75610 Years15,420,684
2Express57,71212 Years23,814,867
3Vue31,4869 Years3,345,639
4Angular59,41610 Years522,777
5Svelte60,8686 Years386,261

As you can see in the table above, React is leading the race as the most popular JavaScript framework on GitHub.

Let’s now examine the 5 best JavaScript frameworks in more detail.

1. React

React tops the list as the most popular JavaScript framework, especially when looking at GitHub stars and NPM downloads. Created in 2013 by Facebook (Meta), the React framework garnered popularity quite rapidly. React is a modern JavaScript framework for building interactive user interfaces (UIs). Technically React is not a framework; instead, it’s a library for UI components, but across the web development community it’s seen colloquially as a framework, so I’ll refer to it as so.

This declarative and flexible JavaScript framework supports the View part of the Model-View-Controller (MVC) paradigm. It is mainly used to develop and operate the dynamic user interface (UI) of web pages using a virtual DOM. This makes integration with any application to be more straightforward.

Initially, React was used on Facebook but would later be used for the Instagram news feed. React was the pioneer of the idea of components. Components are self-contained modules of code that are packaged for reuse. Developers can write the component code once and then reuse it across the application thus saving time.

React uses the virtual DOM model for expedited updates of web page content. The virtual DOM is faster at manipulating HTML elements because it only updates the elements that have changed. Vanilla JavaScript, on the other hand, will typically render the entire DOM again regardless of the size of the change. This translates to faster performance for applications that have lots of interactive features.

Features

  • Declarative: React allows you to control flow and state in your application by deciding what your component should look like. Declarative views make it easier to read and debug code.
  • Virtual DOM: A Document Object Model (DOM) presents data in a tree structure by dividing data into modules containing a node for each independent UI element present in the document. For every DOM object in React, there is a corresponding virtual DOM object — a virtual copy of the original DOM. This ensures that when you reload a page, it only refreshes one part of the page rather than the entire page.
  • JSX: JavaScript XML is a markup syntax that closely resembles HTML. It can be processed into JavaScript calls and this enables developers to embed JavaScript objects inside HTML elements.
  • React Native: React Native is a custom renderer for React; it uses native components instead of web components like React as building blocks.
  • Component-Based: Reacts divides your web page into small components. Components in ReactJS have their own logic and design, making them more accessible and faster to reuse.
PROSCONS
SEO friendlyJSX is a double-edged sword
Easy to understand and usePoor documentation
Reusable componentsReact’s fast development pace makes it hard to keep up with new features
Wide range of UI components available in NPMOnly covers the UI layer so you have to combine it with another technology
Virtual DOMComplex state management for large applications
Reactive updates
Scope for testing code using native tools

2. Vue.js

Vue.js is a flexible open-source JavaScript framework that you can use to develop modern single-page applications (SPAs) faster. Since its initial release in 2014, Vue has seen a large growth as it becomes popular in the web development industry. Vue is loved by developers for its simplicity as well as for its ability to scale up the complexity incrementally. 

Vue’s plugin system makes it easier to add features and enhancements to parts of your project. Some of the incremental features included in the framework are the CLI, a build toolchain, a routing solution, and a state management solution. This approach makes it easy to use since you don’t need to understand all its features and capabilities. Developers can therefore code faster and add new features incrementally when the need arises.

Vue aims to combine the best features of React and Angular. It retains Angular’s template syntax and React’s data binding, props, and component-based approach. At its core, Vue provides a way to build components that encapsulate data or state in your JavaScript and then connect that state reactively to a template in HTML. These components are known as declarative views because the same data inputs will always provide the same output in the visual UI.

Vue is actively maintained by its founder Evan You and along with various core team members. So far Vue has been downloaded more than 3,000,000 times according to NPM making it one of the more popular frameworks on this list. Vue is in use by several well-known companies like Expedia, Nintendo, IBM, GitLab, and Sainsbury’s.

Features

  • Virtual DOM: Vue uses the virtual DOM model, a clone of the real DOM element. This allows for fast updates without needing to reload the page.
  • Standardized Tools: Vue provides official support for several official add-ons for client-side routing, state management, unit testing components, a browser extension for debugging, etc. None of these tools are required and the view can work with alternative libraries such as Redux instead of Vuex.
  • Reactivity: Reactivity is a programming paradigm that allows us to adjust to changes in a declarative manner. Vue’s reactivity features allow web pages to automatically update their views to reflect new data as it’s introduced.
  • Scalable and Flexible: You can use Vue in limited amounts compared to other frameworks that require full adoption. In practice, this means that Vue can be used as a fully-fledged framework for building large applications or as just a library for building small interactive parts to be integrated with a different project. 
  • Ease of Use: Vue JS is simpler in terms of API and design. It has awesome documentation that is very well written and explains a lot of the Vue concepts in detail. Overall, Vue JS is an excellent framework for beginners because it’s quick and easy to get up and running, has excellent documentation, and the learning curve isn’t as steep as the alternatives. 
  • Animated Transitions: Vue has several methods of applying transition effects to HTML elements when adding, updating, or removing them from the DOM. You can also integrate third-party animation libraries for even more interactivity.
PROSCONS
LightweightComparatively fewer components
Gentle learning curveLack of support for large-scale projects
Reactive two-way bindingOver flexibility
Extensive documentation

3. Express

Express JS is a minimal and flexible Node.js server framework that provides a robust set of features for building APIs, Web applications, and cross-platform mobile applications. Node.js is a fast JavaScript run-time environment built to execute JavaScript outside of a browser. However, Node.js does not support request handling, HTTP methods, or serving files, so this is where Express JS comes in.

Express makes the Node.js code easier and provides a wide range of features capable of driving asynchronous I/O for faster loading as well Java-like properties such as threading, packaging, and forming loops. Until now, Express is the most popular Node.js framework. Express is highly performant, fast, lightweight, and un-opinionated (no structured way of writing code which makes it easy to customize and use as per your needs).

Express is used by companies like IBM, eBay, Uber, PayPal, Netflix, and LinkedIn.

Features

  • High Performance: By leveraging the Node.js V8 JavaScript engine, Express can deliver fast code execution.
  • Middleware: Express features a request handler that has access to the application’s request-response cycle.
  • Asynchronous and Event-Driven I/O: Express processes events in an asynchronous manner, this means Express does not wait for the Node.js API to return the data.
  • Single-threaded: Express follows a single-threaded model.
  • Templating: Express provides a templating engine for creating HTML templates on the server using less code.
  • Highly scalable: Express follows an event mechanism that makes it possible for the server to respond in a non-blocking manner, which makes it scalable.
  • Debugging: Express makes it easier to debug as it identifies exactly where the bugs are.
  • No buffering: When it comes to uploading audio and video files, Express cuts down processing time significantly.
PROSCONS
Highly scalableNo structural way to organize code
Easy to learnHeavy reliance on callbacks (which has many issues)
Scalable
Unopinionated

4. Angular

Angular is an open Source component-based JavaScript framework written completely in Typescript. Angular was developed at Google and released in 2016 as the sequel to Angular.js. Angular brings structure and consistency to SPA development. Its main focus is on building efficient and highly scalable SPAs using the MVC (Model View Controller) architecture pattern.

Angular offers developers a collection of integrated libraries and tools to develop, test, update, and maintain their code. By combining solid end-to-end tooling, declarative templates, dependency injection, and a set of best practices to solve common development challenges, developers can get a robust solution for developing and deploying enterprise-grade applications with complex functionalities.

One of the major benefits of Angular is that it is heavily reliant on the browser to build the page, shifting the load from the application’s server which leads to faster load times. It also supports if conditions, loops, and local variables inside its templates to control how the web page’s content renders.

Features

  • Document Object Model (DOM): The DOM treats an HTML document as a tree structure in which each node is an object representing a part of the document. Angular uses a regular DOM that updates the entire tree structure of HTML tags until it gets to the data to be updated.
  • Typescript: Angular is written in Microsoft’s Typescript language — a superset of JavaScript which offers excellent consistency. Typescript offers better syntactic structure while making the code easier to understand and maintain.
  • Two-Way Data Binding: Angular’s two-way binding is a process that allows you to manipulate web page elements using the web browser. It employs dynamic HTML and is used in web pages containing interactive components such as forms, calculators, tutorials, etc. Any changes in the UI elements are reflected in the corresponding model state and conversely, any changes in the model state are reflected in the UI state.
  • Dependency Injection: This programming paradigm allows you to write modular services (classes, components, and modules) and have them injected wherever they’re needed. This greatly improves the testability and re-usability of the same.
  • Testing: Angular is built from the ground up with testability in mind. Angular uses the Jasmine framework to write different kinds of test cases and Karma to run the tests.
  • MVC Architecture: Angular is a fully-fledged MVC framework. This type of architecture separates the application logic from the UI layer, thus providing separation of concerns.
PROSCONS
Component-based approachSteep learning curve
Reactive two-way data bindingLimited SEO options
Fast performanceVerbose and complex
Difficult to port legacy apps to Angular-style architecture

5. Svelte

Svelte is the new kid on the block in this list, but it has seen big-time numbers in terms of growth of popularity. Created by Rich Harris in 2016, Svelte.js is an open-source JavaScript framework that compiles your application into mostly vanilla JavaScript/HTML/CSS. Similar to React, Svelte is not precisely a framework; it’s more of a compiler-as-a-framework. It does not display JavaScript at runtime to the browser, rather Svelte converts declarative code into imperative code that works with native browser APIs.

Svelte simplifies the creation of fast, static web apps by compiling raw code into small, independent vanilla JavaScript modules, ensuring that the browser does as little work as possible. By doing so, Svelte can achieve faster performance than Vue or React. If you’re looking for a Svelte framework, you should look at SvelteKit.

Features

  • No Virtual DOM: Svelte works directly on the code without a DOM, and it moves most of the code processing to the compilation stage, achieving faster speeds than other frameworks.
  • Reactivity: Svelte converts components into DOM operations, reacting to data changes on its own and rendering changes as JavaScript code.
  • Requires Less Code: Svelte requires fewer lines of code than other frameworks on this list, reducing the amount of time developers spend writing code.
  • Modular CSS: Svelte ensures design consistency across pages and applications by scoping styles and generating unique class names.
PROSCONS
Less steep learning curveNo cross-platform support
Fast loading timesNot many dev tools
Compilation without virtual DOMSmall open source community
Improved code readability and re-usability

-Top-


Conclusion

So, in this article, 5 best JavaScript frameworks in 2022, we have listed some of the major web frameworks. Now, if we go with the trends, React and Express are the top JavaScript frameworks so far. Among these, React is the most used.

Because it is one of the leading programming languages, there is no scarcity of frameworks for JavaScript. Each framework has its own set of advantages and issues. Hence, choosing a JavaScript framework largely depends on the project requirements and the developer’s experience with the framework. Apart from the framework’s features, you should also take into account the complexity, learning curve, compatibility, documentation, and community support.

At Next Idea Tech, we understand the importance of finding the perfect match for your company and long-term arrangements are a priority. Contact us today to learn more about our IT staffing solutions!

-Top-


Skills

Posted on

July 25, 2022