Despite new comers entering the field each year, React and Vue remain two of the most popular choices. React is a user interface library whilst Vue is a progressive framework.
In this post, we’ll show you a comparison between React JS and Vue JS to help you determine which one will work best for your next project.
Meet The Contestants : React vs Vue
|React Pros||React Cons|
|Great UX||Lack of proper documentation|
|Popularity||The high pace of development|
|Shortened time to market|
Companies Using React
Some well known companies that are using React include:
|Vue Pros||Vue Cons|
|Adaptability||Smaller number of components and plugins|
|Detailed documentation||Language barrier|
|Ease of integration||(Over-) flexibility|
Companies using Vue
Websites of some huge global companies use Vue for their user interfaces such as:
Similarities Between React & Vue
One of the most notable common traits between the two is the use of virtual DOMs. What is a virtual DOM I hear you ask!. With a virtual DOM, instead of re-rendering the whole page as is the case with regular DOM, React and Vue update only those objects that have changed, saving the time and resources that heavy DOM manipulations otherwise consume.
For example, if you receive new notifications on Facebook, the virtual DOM will facilitate the reloading of the notification box only instead of reloading the entire page.
In addition, React and Vue are both lightweight, possess component-based architecture, and expose lifecycle methods. Their performance is fairly similar so those differences are too negligible to discuss. Both technologies work with any existing web application, even if it’s not a Single Page Application. This is the case with the Gutenberg editor. It’s built with React and was recently implemented in the WordPress ecosystem. Similar is the case with GitLab, where the jQuery codebase is being gradually replaced with Vue.
And finally, both React and Vue have large dynamic communities and plenty of libraries and tools available.
The most obvious distinction: React is a library whereas Vue is a framework*.
*The official docs describe Vue as a framework and React as a library. The difference between framework and library is subtle and remains open for interpretations.
Lets look at some comparison points between the two in more detail:
Round 1 – Data Binding
Data binding is the process of connecting information with displayable objects from a programmatic perspective.
Vue.js uses two-way data binding. This means whenever you change any element of the interface, your source code changes automatically too.
React uses one-way data binding. Meaning it renders the change in the interface element, only after the source has been updated first. In addition, whenever you change the user interface element, the model state stays the same with no changes.
If you have a larger project and require a good data overview as well as being able to debug easier, it is better to use React with one-way data binding.
Vue.js templates allows developers to bind data to the DOM. Vue.js compiles the template into Virtual DOM render functions. It can figure out the minimal number of components to re-render and minimise DOM manipulation when data changes.
One of the reasons for newbies to choose Vue could be because of these templates. Templates are used on HTML and are easier for developers to read and write, particularly those you have had previous experience with HTML before.
Round 3 – Popularity
React clearly won the battle on this round. It is not surprising that it has a bigger community and popularity, because Facebook created and uses this technology.
Google Trends shows that React JS has proven to be more popular than Vue JS over the last 5 years.
The 2020 Developer Survey made by Stack Overflow, listed React as the second most popular library after jQuery. Vue.js is listed as the seventh one.
The State of Developer Ecosystem 2020 report by Jet Brains lists React as the most popular front-end library.
As stated in the report:
React is still the most popular framework. Moreover, its share has grown by 10 percentage points since last year. Meanwhile, Vue.js has lost 7 percentage points over the last year, but it still occupies the third position.
React has clearly way more downloads, but here is a chart that compares the two libraries. Still, Vue is growing fast and has already exceeded Angular in terms of downloads.
Round 4 – Performance
Since React and Vue share many of the same elements, their general performance is about equal. If you wanted to make a decision between the two based on performance,I’m afraid we are going to have to disappoint you. Both React JS and Vue JS can be proud their similar and impeccable speed. However, if you would like to see specific, visual metrics and numbers, take a look here.
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Round 5 – Desktop & Mobile Development
If you are already using React JS and want to build native mobile applications working on Android and IOS, there is a platform called React Native. React Native offers a huge benefit for React developers as instead of learning a completely new technology, they can take advantage of existing skills.
Although Vue JS doesn’t have a dedicated platform like React Native, that doesn’t mean you can’t develop native applications. You can utilise third party tools such as Weex or plug-ins such as NativeScript-vue to build native applications.
Moreover, if you want to build desktop applications you can use frameworks such as Electron to do so in both React and Vue.
Round 6 – Community and Ecosystems
Developed in 2014, Vue is the youngest of the two but has grown substantially over the years. Vue has fewer companion libraries. However, the functionality that requires you to use a library in React, like props check, is already bundled in Vue. The team behind Vue maintains and supports the core frameworks like Vuex and vue-router. Vue has a smaller market share, yet its community is constantly growing. It has fewer resources, packages, and third-party libraries than React (many of which have no English localisation). However, it has more tools available right out of the box.
React was developed by Facebook back in 2013, it has since grown massively and amassed a large community. React may be the winner in terms of overall ecosystem maturity and component availability as well as community. It also offer integrations with other platforms and tools such as Git & UXPin. Moreover, the library is developed and maintained by Facebook. This pretty much guarantees its long-term support. It’s used on multiple Facebook projects and each team can update the library. There seems to be no official roadmap, however, as updates are based on requests for comments. Unfortunately, React’s community although large, it is a bit more fragmented than Vue’s. You’ll often have to spend more time searching for solutions to common issues.
Round 7 – Server Side Rendering
SSR provides greater visibility for websites when Google crawls sites for its results pages. It can also improve the user experience. Vue has in-built SSR features, and there are clear instructions on how to use these capabilities in its documentation. React requires a third-party library for SSR. This might not bother you, however, as SSR isn’t as important for search engines as in the past.
Round 8 – Scaleability
While Vue is also scalable, thanks to its wide selection of flexible tools, it is more often used in smaller applications (although the size of the app of course depends on the architecture). Due to the dynamic architecture, you will need to take advantage of Vue’s libraries and Mixin elements to overcome the scaling limitations. So if you’re considering a React vs. Vue enterprise application, React may be more accommodating of future growth.
Both technologies offer great advantages
React JS is a battle-tested leader with support from large corporations and a sizeable open-source community. The library scales better allowing you to build complex enterprise-grade applications. Being a library, React gives more control to its users, like the manual re-rendering control. It heavily employs the functional programming principles, indicated in the way the library handles the state and the communication between the components.
Vue is the rising star of front-end development. It has a more traditional syntax allowing you to gradually migrate existing projects to Vue. Its documentation is the best in class. Vue as a framework provides more built-in features and companion libraries from the core team. This makes the development experience smoother.
If you have any questions regarding the above technologies, or need a team of experienced developers o assist you on your next project then please don’t hesitate to contact us.