Frontend development is evolving very fast, and sometimes it’s hard to keep up with the tools it offers. However, there are undeniably two frameworks that stand at the very podium of popularity and that are used most often for software development. These are Vue.js and React.js, which have been playing in the same league for a long time. Unfortunately, when dealing with tools that are almost as good, you have to face a dilemma – which one will be better? 

To help you decide, I have prepared this article. You’ll learn what are the similarities between Vue.js and React.js, how they differ, and which one to choose for your digital product.

Vue.js – what is it and what advantages does it have?

Vue.js was launched in 2014 by a former Google employee, a developer named Evan You, and at first, it was only used in China. It is an open-source project and primarily owes its popularity to allowing developers to quickly and seamlessly migrate previous projects. Vue.js is a progressive framework using JavaScript, and it may be used to create UI (User Interface) as well as SPA (ingle Page Applications). It is also loved for its affordability and accessibility. 

It’s not hard to learn how to use Vue.js, especially since it offers separate options for simpler projects (Options API) and more complex ones (Composition API). The main advantages of Vue.js include its functionality, speed, and lightweight files. It also has many libraries and tools, such as Nuxt (which is a framework for improving SEO metrics), and Vuex (a library for managing application state).

Unfortunately, compared to React, the Vue.js ecosystem is not large. Another feature, considered by many as a disadvantage, is that the framework is not supported by any business giant like Google or Facebook.

React.js – all the essential knowledge 

React.js was released in 2013 by former Facebook employee Jordan Walke. Although it is said to be a framework, in fact, React is an open-source JavaScript library, and it is used to create interactive elements for websites and user interfaces. React is component-based and is only responsible for the “V” in MVC (Model-view-controller), or view layer. 

Undoubtedly, a big advantage of React.js is that, by using it, you can supplement the code with HTML elements in a direct way. This makes it possible to simplify the code and shorten it dramatically. Another great advantage is the simple and controlled data flow. The unidirectional flow of data in web applications makes it possible to reduce errors and increase application performance. Moreover, React also provides great time savings. Developers can use the same components at different levels, which greatly increases productivity. Facebook’s support is also an advantage.

There are some downsides to React.js as well, among which the most common is the architecture. The fact that there are no general rules of what an application should look like can cause some chaos, which can generate problems, especially for beginners. 

React also uses JSX, a syntax extension that allows HTML and JavaScript to coexist. For some, this is a disadvantage because it makes the learning curve of this tool very complex.

Are there any similarities between Vue.js and React.js?

There are many similarities between Vue.js and Reac.js. Among them, the following are the most striking:

  • Virtual DOM;
  • Flexibility, speed, and performance;
  • Using JavaScript programming language;
  • Large, active communities;
  • A wide range of libraries and tools;
  • Component-based reactive structure;
  • Ability to code with TypeScript;
  • Backward compatibility;
  • Support for PWA (Progressive Web Application).

How do React and Vue differ from each other?

The main differences between Vue.js and React.js include the fact that Vue is used to create web applications, while React.js allows you to create not only web applications, but also mobile applications (using additionally React Native, which enables cross-platform development). Vue.js, uses SFC (Single File Components) to build components, while React uses JSX as a component format. 

Vue.js definitely has better memory allocation and faster startup, as it doesn’t need rendering and supports higher frame rates than React(up to 10 frames/second). Also, Vue.js allows you to edit data via data properties, making local state unnecessary. However, this will only work well for smaller applications – for large ones you will need a separate library. React, on the other hand, has a faster runtime and simplifies debugging with the ability to modify state in one place. 

What also makes Vue.js and React.js different is the approach to application design. Vue allows for a far more complex approach, providing front-end tools, while React focuses on creating reusable components. Vue is also much easier to learn thanks to its template syntax, which is simple HTML and uses less code. 

Which one to choose?

Use React.js when the UI requires a lot of user interaction. Coding interactive UI elements can be complicated, and React makes the process much easier. Also, when users are facing the problem of a hanging website, React will be just what you need. Virtual Home will make sure you avoid page reloads. 

Vue.js, on the other hand, should be used when you want to deliver your MVP quickly. Templates from Vue are characterized by simplicity and allow you to code very quickly. You can reuse existing components, which speeds up development. Also, you should use Vue.js if you need seamless cross-device integration because Vue does a great job not only with SPAs (single-page apps), but also with existing multi-page apps.  It’s also a good tool for prototyping without advanced skills because components can be written in pure HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. 

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Choosing the right front-end framework  

The two tools are actually very similar, and both provide dynamic and fast-loading user interfaces. It’s impossible to clearly determine whether one is better or worse – the choice should be made based on an analysis of your product needs, which we at Applover are happy to help you with. 

Vue.js is used in its projects by companies such as Netflix, Adobe, WizzAir, and even… NASA.  Behind React for that, there are equally powerful businesses such as Facebook, Instagram, PayPal, and Barack Obama’s website

What we can be sure of is that with a carefully chosen design, both tools are therefore able to present amazing potential and contribute to the release of a great interface.