Top 5 Best PHP Frameworks of 2022

By on June 6th, 2022

PHP is a popular general-purpose scripting language suited to web development. Fast, flexible and pragmatic, PHP powers everything from your blog to the most popular websites in the world. A few stand out as being particularly well suited for web development when it comes to PHP frameworks. One of the most popular is Laravel, which offers an elegant syntax and a variety of tools to make everyday tasks easier. Other popular options include Symfony and CodeIgniter. Each framework has its strengths and weaknesses, so it’s essential to choose one that will fit the needs of your project. However, these frameworks are powerful tools that can help you create complex, robust applications quickly and easily.

PHP is a programming language that was introduced in 1995. PHP was designed to make it easy to create dynamic web pages. PHP code can be embedded into HTML code or used as a standalone programming language. PHP is free to download and use, and it runs on all major operating systems. PHP is a popular language for web development, and it powers some of the world’s largest websites, including Facebook and Wikipedia. PHP frameworks are libraries of code that provide developers with a structure for building PHP applications. Frameworks save developers time by providing a standard way to build applications. Some popular PHP frameworks include Laravel, Symfony, and Zend Framework. PHP frameworks can make development faster and easier, but they can also make applications more complex. As a result, PHP developers must carefully consider whether a framework is suitable for their project before using one. So let’s discuss and understand some of the most useful and trending PHP Frameworks available in 2022. You can see the list of best PHP Frameworks here. 

  1. Laravel: Laravel is a PHP framework for streamlining the development of web applications. It is open-source and provides an expressive syntax that simplifies common tasks, such as authentication, routing, sessions, and caching.
  2. Phalcon: Phalcon is open-source software released under the New BSD Licence. Phalcon was first released in 2012 by Andres Gutierrez and Nikos Dimopoulos and is currently maintained by Phalcon Team.
  3. Symfony: Symfony is a PHP web application framework and a set of reusable PHP components/libraries. It was released for the first time in 2005, and Symfony 3.0 was released in November 2015. 
  4. CodeIgniter: CodeIgniter is a powerful PHP framework with a very small footprint, built for developers who need a simple and elegant toolkit to create full-featured web applications. CodeIgniter was created by EllisLab and is now a British Columbia Institute of Technology project.
  5. CakePHP: CakePHP is a popular open-source web development framework. It is written in PHP and follows the Model-View-Controller (MVC) approach. CakePHP was originally released in April 2005 by Cake Software Foundation, Inc.

Laravel

Laravel is a free, open-source PHP web framework created by Taylor Otwell and intended to develop web applications following the model–view–controller (MVC) architectural pattern. Some of Laravel’s features include a modular packaging system with a dedicated dependency manager, different ways for accessing relational databases, utilities that aid in application deployment and maintenance, and its orientation toward syntactic sugar. Laravel also provides integration with multiple back-ends out of the box. Laravel has an expressive, elegant syntax that helps ease the learning curve for developers coming from other frameworks or programming languages. 

One of Laravel’s most distinctive features is its approach to routing: all routes are defined in the app/Http/routes.php file, which contains many routes for different HTTP verbs and URLs. This makes it easy to create RESTful controllers with just a few lines of code. Laravel also includes a blade templating engine, which simplifies separating logic from presentation in views. Laravel’s magic methods, such as __call() and __get(), allow you to access Eloquent models as simple objects, making it easier to work with large amounts of data. Laravel also supports multiple databases, including MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite, and Microsoft SQL Server. Thanks to its comprehensive ecosystem of libraries and tools, Laravel makes it easy to implement complex functionality with little code. As a result, Laravel is a popular choice for developing high-quality web applications. Here you can see the list of all the important features, advantages, and disadvantages of Laravel. 

Features

  • Laravel comes with an inbuilt ORM(Object Relational Mapper); we can easily implement the PHP active records. These features allow developers to access database tables and apply queries using simple PHP syntax instead of SQL codes. 
  • Laravel is built with MVC architecture support which makes development fast and organised.
  • The Laravel framework comes with a unique testing method as unit testing. This framework has several checks that ensure whether the changes are harmful to the web app or not.
  • Laravel framework provides an easy way to integrate email services. You can integrate many email service providers like SMTP, Mailgun, Amazon SES, and Sendmail. 
  • Laravel provides an effective and innovative template engine that allows us to create complete dynamic websites.
  • It provides a full proof and secure migration system, and Laravel can expand the database without making much effort on changes.
  • Each Laravel version comes with its own documentation, including step-by-step descriptions. You will find all the detailed methods, classes, and code styles within the documentation.

Pros

  • The Laravel ORM provides quick and easy integrations between developers and data tables by providing specific data models.
  • As we know, Laravel supports MVC architecture. Each developer can work on specific elements, as an example, one developer can work on business logic while another can work on views simultaneously.
  • The Laravel framework provides the freedom to create own unit testing codes for better testing and choosing local or cloud base email service providers.
  • The migration process is very secure and effortless with Laravel. It uses the code of PHP instead of SQL queries.
  • The PHP Laravel framework is very easy to learn, with enough documentation and communities available on the internet. Even this framework is very developer-friendly due to extensive documents and solutions. 
  • Widgets provided by Laravel can be used to create strong structures for a web tool.

Cons

  • Laravel framework is a new framework, and there are some issues available within this framework. For example, this framework composer is not strong enough compared to other latest frameworks like Ruby, Node.js, and Python.
  • Some important functions and features are not well designed for the Laravel framework. For example, sometimes it happens when we are working and dependent on the data injections, which becomes complex. To handle these situations, we have to learn all the new and detailed functions to create that type of application.
  • All the PHP Frameworks show some basic issues at the time of upgrade. To solve the issue, we have to be prepared and securely backup all the important files before upgrading.

Phalcon

Phalcon is a PHP web framework based on the model-view-controller (MVC) architectural pattern. Phalcon is optimised for high performance and is used by sites such as composed.com and gorgias.io. Phalcon offers asynchronous programming, integration with her caching backends, template engines, and auto-loading features. Phalcon provides an object-oriented architecture that makes it easy to develop complex web applications. Phalcon is written in C and Zephir. Phalcon is inspired by frameworks such as Ruby on Rails, Sinatra, and ASP.NET MVC.” Phalcon has been praised for its speed, ease of use, and flexible routing. Phalcon has also been noted for its low overhead memory footprint due to its efficient design and implementation.

Phalcon is fast, offers low overhead, and requires few resources due to its efficient memory utilisation. Phalcon also provides security features such as input filtering, CSRF protection, SQL injection prevention, etc. Phalcon comes with its templating engine, Volt, which compiles templates into a cached form to improve performance. Phalcon also has an ORM (object-relational mapping) layer called PhalconPHP that provides ActiveRecord features for working with databases. PhalconPHP can be used with MySQL, PostgreSQL, and Microsoft SQL Server. Phalcon is currently used by organisations such as Yahoo! Japan, DigitalOcean, Parse, BlaBlaCar, and XING. Phalcon has excellent online documentation that covers installation, configuration, and more. Overall, Phalcon is an excellent choice for those looking for a fast and lightweight web framework that provides all the features. Let’s discuss all the features of Phalcon briefly.

Features

  • Phalcon is one of the fastest PHP Frameworks used to create small, medium, and large projects.
  • Phalcon framework is also a full-stack open-source web development framework and runs on PHP 5.4. Phalcon can be used as a Multiuser System where more than one developer works on the same project.
  • We only need PHP code skills to learn the Phalcon framework. This framework is capable of creating an independent framework.
  • Phalcon is licensed under New BSD(Berkeley Source Distribution) and AGPL(Affero General Public Licence). This framework can handle more than 800 requests per second. As we discussed, it’s the fastest PHP framework.
  • Like the Laravel framework, this framework also provides all the necessary PHP features like ORM(Object Relational Mapping), template engines, and routing.
  • Phalcon supports many database options like MySQL, SQLite, Oracle, PostgreSQL, MariaDB, and Microsoft BI.

Pros

  • One of the most effective advantages of Phalcon is its speed of code execution and low resource usage. This framework is designed to reduce memory utilisation, which is why this framework is more efficient and reliable.
  • The Phalcon PHP framework does not contain any kernel files as well as this framework is capable of completing more than 1400 requests per second if you develop a structured and organised code.
  • The Phalcon PHP Framework contains the features of PHP and C programming, which makes it more efficient. Even it allows us to use each language’s different modules separately. It increases the speed of data collection from the database.
  • Phalcon is a High-Level Object-Oriented programming language developed using C programming. It uses SQLite technologies in the C language library to make database management easier for developers. The best benefit of this feature is that it creates less memory footprints, enabling more database security.

Cons

  • Phalcon is not that used, and the reason must be its lack of awareness. Many programmers don’t even know about this kind of framework. 
  • Installation and use of Phalcon are very complex and difficult processes. The framework is not beginner-friendly, and the user interface is also complex as we know it was developed with the combinations of PHP and C.
  • The project built using Phalcon can not be hosted on a Shared Hosting. We need a dedicated server to host a Phalcon tool or project, which is more expensive than shared hostings.
  • The Phalcon framework is developed using C Programming Language, which means the source code of this framework contains all the functionality of C Programming.
  • The most effective disadvantage is a small community, so maybe we can not find the answers and solutions anywhere. 

Symfony

Symfony is a PHP web application framework that enables developers to create robust, scalable applications rapidly. Symfony provides architecture, components, and tools to developers for building sophisticated applications with ease. Symfony is used by thousands of web applications and websites, including The Guardian and National Geographic. Symfony is released under the MIT licence, making it free and open-source software. The Symfony community has contributed hundreds of Bundles and libraries that we can reuse in any Symfony project. These contributions make Symfony one of the most popular PHP frameworks. It contains a growing community and an amazing ecosystem. Symfony is used by millions of applications and websites, including big names like BlaBlaCar, Spotify, and Mailchimp. Symfony has advanced features, such as an autoloader, a template engine, and form validation. The original author of Symfony is Fabien Potencier. Since 2012, Symfony has been sponsored by SensioLabs. 

Symfony follows the MVC paradigm and strives to be as decoupled as possible from the rest of the codebase to increase flexibility, reusability, and testability. For example, Symfony ships with its templating system called Twig, but it’s also possible to use other template engines like Smarty. The Symfony framework is bundled with several configured web servers to make it easier to develop Symfony applications. However, any other web server (like Apache or Nginx) can be used just as easily. 

Features

  • Symfony is one of the fastest and most flexible PHP Frameworks, and we can reconfigure and use the components and bundles. It increases flexibility and allows us to break down the structural dependencies. 
  • The most practical issues for new technologies and frameworks are not maintained or incomplete documentation. Using Symfony PHP Framework, we have complete and updated documentation available compared to other frameworks. 
  • Symfony PHP Framework comes with powerful and expandable testing and debugging mechanisms. Using this framework, we have a complete and all-in-one debugging toolbar with all the required information to make testing easier. 
  • Symfony is an Innovative and ideal framework with all the necessary framework qualities like Speed, Development, and best practices. The ongoing movements and productivity of Symfony developers attract other framework developers.
  • Many professionals in the industry adopt this framework. Symfony PHP Framework is known for its Stable Environment and internationally distributed Huge Community. It was launched in 2005, and till then, Symfony has come too far. We have tremendous and active communities with users, integrators, developers, and other quality contributors who are willing to be part of this Symfony framework.
  • Symfony PHP Framework comes with a Huge Community and Complete Documentation. In other words, this framework has an enormous fan following with new and advanced users, so it’s easy to find support and solutions.

Pros

  • The interface and use of Symfony are very user-friendly. Developers and programmers love this kind of language that allows you to reuse the same code under different conditions. So the developers can focus on the actual feature instead of a little configuration.
  • Compared to other PHP Frameworks, Symfony has had the best success. Many excellent examples are built using Symfony Framework components and give the best digital experiences. We have complete CMS systems like Drupal and Magento, and these CMS Platforms were developed using the components of Symfony.
  • Deployment using the Symfony framework is straightforward. We don’t need any manual or waste extra time on automated deployment tools. It already supports separate configurations for the website’s Development, Staging, and Production instances.
  • It’s easy to create and configure a YAML file, and programmers can start immediately working with Symfony. This framework provides multiple methods and caching functions that allow this framework to improve performance. 

Cons

  • One of the most effective disadvantages of Symfony PHP Framework is the processing time of building and launching a project. It takes time to develop and test or launch the project.
  • This Framework relies on other technologies and components that make it slow to load. When working with Symfony, we have a lack of origin elements.
  • Using the same code with a different configuration will take extra time to test, which is time-consuming. As we all know, we can use the same code with Symfony PHP Framework, and this feature will affect usability.
  • One of the most real disadvantages of the Symfony framework is that all the new developers or beginners find it harder to learn than PHP and Other PHP frameworks. 

CodeIgniter

CodeIgniter is a powerful PHP framework that can help you create dynamic websites. This open-source framework provides tools and libraries that make it easy to develop CodeIgniter applications. CodeIgniter also provides a simple interface for working with databases, making it an ideal choice for developing dynamic web applications. CodeIgniter’s Model-View-Controller (MVC) approach makes it easy to maintain and update your CodeIgniter applications. In addition, CodeIgniter comes with built-in security features that help to protect your website from SQL injection attacks and cross-site scripting attacks. CodeIgnitor is also regularly updated with new features and security fixes, making it a good choice for developing secure web applications.

CodeIgniter is released under an open-source licence and is used by thousands of developers worldwide. CodeIgniter is used by many large organisations, including NASA, Comcast, and Apple. CodeIgniter includes a user guide that helps you get started with CodeIgniter quickly and easily. CodeIgniter also includes a set of libraries that provide commonly-used functions, such as form validation, database access, and session management. CodeIgniter is easy to learn and use, making it ideal for those new to PHP development. CodeIgniter is also community-supported, with a dedicated team of volunteers who contribute their time and expertise to make CodeIgniter better. Let’s discuss all the important features and advantages of the CodeIgniter PHP framework.

Features

  • CodeIgniter PHP Framework is based on MVC(Model View Controller) architecture, just like the Laravel framework. It allows users to divide whole code into specific parts to make them organised.
  • This framework is very lightweight and comes with fully featured database classes that support several platforms.
  • The CodeIgniter PHP Framework comes with a built-in library. This library has the necessary settings and tools to complete tasks like database, validation, sending mail, and manipulating images.
  • One of the most effective features of the CodeIgniter framework is that it can generate SEO-friendly URLs. It is completely search-engine friendly and uses a segment-based approach.
  • It’s completely free to use, as it is available as an Open-source program like all the other PHP frameworks in this article.
  • CodeIgniter also has important feature bundles like file uploading, session management, data encryption, and pagination.

Pros

  • The CodeIgniter PHP Framework is very lightweight at 2 or 3 megabytes. In simple words, it has small footprints, which makes it a faster and most widely used framework in the world.
  • This framework supports MVC-based architecture to build projects. But it is not the only way to create complex and huge projects using CodeIgniter. It comes with a modern separation concept that helps developers use models, controllers, and views in HTML.
  • One of the effective reasons for being a widely used framework is its built-in security. It’s easy to add more features and security using CodeIgniter PHP Framework. 
  • CodeIgniter framework is very easy to extend and customize. The simple and small footprints make it more customizable. While we can extend the CodeIgniter using several ways like class extension and custom libraries.
  • CodeIgniter is one of the easiest and most great PHP frameworks that can be used by any beginner and experienced PHP developer. It has a straightforward setup option which is very user-friendly.

Cons

  • The CodeIgniter PHP Framework does not support modern separation by default. As a result, developers may need to give extra effort to organise all the code so we can maintain it easily.
  • Still, CodeIgniter PHP Framework is a part of PHP, but it’s not that popular or used compared to other frameworks. It can be due to a lack of exhaustive libraries or Support.

CakePHP

CakePHP is a great PHP framework for anyone looking to create a website or web application. It offers a wide range of benefits, including being open source, having a large community of developers, and providing excellent documentation. CakePHP also has several features that make it ideal for creating high-quality websites and applications, such as its built-in ORM support, clean MVC architecture, and helper classes. In addition, CakePHP is extremely lightweight and easy to use, making it an excellent choice for those new to PHP or frameworks in general. 

CakePHP is a foundational structure for programmers to create web applications. CakePHP takes the monotony out of web development. Code generation features within CakePHP make it easier for new users to build web applications. It allowed developers to work in a rapid Prototyping style, which was unheard of in traditional PHP development frameworks. Today, CakePHP isn’t quite as novel as it used to be. Michal Tatarynowicz started the CakePHP project on May 28th, 2001. CakePHP 3.0 was released on October 21st, 2015. CakePHP is known for its ease of use, flexibility, and scalability. The framework provides an extensible architecture for developing, deploying, and maintaining applications. CakePHP has been used by companies like the BBC, Express Mail Delivery Service (EMDS), and JeepWorld.com. Here you can see the list of features and advantages of the CakePHP Framework.

Features

  • One of the best features of the CakePHP framework is its user-friendly interface and MVC architecture that allows us to have a quick and easy start.
  • CakePHP is highly secured by the most advanced security, making it capable of handling requests safely and securely.
  • As we discussed, CakePHP follows MVC architecture. Above that, it also followed a layered model approach which helps to keep the business logic clean. In simple words, we can easily interact with databases using it.
  • The most advanced and preferable feature of CakePHP is its testing mechanism. It comes with unit testing, which makes it easy to test apps.
  • CakePHP comes with built-in validation, and it’s highly compatible with all the PHP versions. 
  • CakePHP generates Search Engine friendly URLs to be used for any type of blog or business website. You have many kinds of database connectivity options like PostgreSQL, SQLite and MYSQL.

Pros

  • The best advantage of the CakePHP framework is that it is an open-source program that anyone can use. You can even create personal and business projects using this all-in-one PHP framework.
  • It supports MVC, making database connectivity easy using all the basic crud operations. CakePHP is easy when it comes to managing Email, Cookies and Sessions. It has a templating engine with an easy caching system.
  • CakePHP has only one configuration file, making it easy to quickly make all the configurations. More than then, the code will be organised separately in business and presentation layers. 
  • One of the best advantages of the CakePHP framework is it’s easy to understand the atmosphere. You can quickly learn the mechanism and learn to code using CakePHP.
  • One of the primary features of all the PHP Frameworks is that ORM is also available for CakePHP. Even with ORM, we can easily integrate our Object-Oriented model using it.

Cons

  • CakePHP is new to the web development market, so we don’t have that much powerful documentation of this framework. As a result, sometimes we may get help after a long time.
  • There are many developers and programmers for whom the PHP is hard to learn and implement. CakePHP is just another advanced and modified version of PHP, so they may have some of these issues with CakePHP.
  • One of the most effective disadvantages of CakePHP is its one-way routing mechanism, while other PHP frameworks smoothly work with two-way routing, which is more beneficial.

Conclusion

The best PHP framework is the one that best fits your needs. If you need a lightweight and fast solution, then Symfony may be the right choice for you. On the other hand, if you need a more robust and feature-rich solution, then Laravel may be a better option. Ultimately, the decision of which framework to use is up to you. However, whichever framework you choose, you can be confident that you will be developing with a powerful and stable tool. Thank you for reading! Best of luck in your future endeavours!

One Response to “Top 5 Best PHP Frameworks of 2022”

  1. andrew says:

    This was a very informative blog and I really enjoyed reading it. But I also have a few points regarding it to discuss with you.

    The web development landscape has changed dramatically over the last decade and PHP has continued to grow as a web development language, thanks to its versatility and ease of deployment.

    Let us look at the top PHP development trends that will dominate in 2022:-

    1. Smart AI-Powered Chatbots
    2. Blockchain Technology
    3. Dark Mode UI

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