As of 2020, there were approximately 700 programming languages available. While some of these apply only to specific technologies, some only exist to question their existence, and others are widely used in a variety of applications. Yet, it seems that there’s always room for more, as new languages are constantly emerging. The main concern is which of them works best in the market or which is the most popular and/or most suitable for the development of different projects.
The following list reviews predictions for the “best” and most in-demand programming languages of 2021 to help company leaders make educated choices for future projects.
Java - Although many developers claim that Java is “losing its charms,” it continuously ranks as one of, if not the most in-demand languages in the tech industry. Given the enormous amount of Java developers across the globe, there is a huge online support community for problem-solving.
This object-oriented language works with the “write once, run anywhere” principle of development. This makes it widely used amongst app and website development communities and makes Java development companies quite in demand.
- Ruby - Created in 1995 by Yukihiro Matsumoto, Ruby is a simple language that reads like English. It’s for general use mainly to create web applications, although it also has other applications that include prototyping and data analysis. Ruby is the basis for the Ruby on Rails web application framework, which is very popular due to its ease of creating web applications in a very short time.
Ruby is one of the most popular programming languages for startups. Twitter, Airbnb, Bloomberg, Shopify, and many other big companies have built their websites using Ruby on Rails at some point. That’s because Ruby's simple syntax allows flexibility in approaches and approaching things from alternate angles.
- Python - Created by Guido Van Rossum in the 1990s, Python is perhaps the easiest programming language to use. Python's syntax is often said to be clear, intuitive, and almost English-like. It features a variety of applications that make it a versatile and powerful option when choosing the best language for a project.
Python is currently the fastest-growing programming language in 2021, with Django and Pyramid as its most popular frameworks. The simplicity of coding even complicated structures is one of the main reasons why web application development with Python is on the rise. In 2008, the language grew a significant amount after its developers released major updates and new functionalities.
What’s more - the language recently gained even more use cases in parallel with the rise in demand for artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data science. Many popular sites, such as Mozilla, Instagram, Spotify, YouTube, and Pinterest, have used Python to build their websites. In short, its syntax, ease of progression, and versatility make Python one of the most popular coding languages.
- Swift - Apple created Swift in 2014. It’s the main programming language used by the company for developing iOS applications and has a very simple, concise syntax. Swift is scalable, flexible, and can easily adopt a secure programming pattern to add smart functions to any application. Lyft, Linked In, Hipmunk, and more are some of the famous names that use Swift.
Not only does iOS run on all iPhones and iPads, but it’s also the foundation for other operating systems such as watchOS (for Apple Watches) and tvOS (for Apple TV). That turns Swift into an invaluable ally for developers, who can rely on the language to reach a wide range of devices.
Rust - Mozilla Corporation sponsored the development of Rust. This language has a syntax almost similar to C ++ and provides agility alongside security without reducing performance. However, what Rust adds to the mix is a focus on speed and safety. It emphasizes writing "safe code" by preventing programs from accessing parts of memory that they shouldn't, which can cause unexpected behaviour and system crashes.
Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, Mozilla had to fire a large part of its Rust team to focus on its commercial products. Assuming it can overcome these difficulties, it’s estimated to continue to become more popular year after year, becoming the most popular coding language in 2023 or beyond.
Go (Golang) - Golang is a technology created by Google in 2012. Known as “Go”, it combines the simplicity and productivity of Python with the power of C. It’s a language designed for large projects and helps companies with large projects and tasks requiring tremendous performance. This makes it an attractive language for many large companies aspiring to undertake projects of this scale.
It’s now used by several major companies in addition to Google, including Uber, Twitch, Pinterest, and Dropbox. According to its creators, Go is pragmatic, easy to learn, and highly scalable. Despite being a relatively new language, it became very popular in a very short time. Without a doubt, it’s a great example of a programming language of the future.
Although the market is somewhat flooded with programming languages, there are some “oldies” out there that continue to withstand the test of time. Some technologies, such as Java and Python have gained a perpetual place on the list, while other programming languages such as Swift, Rust, and Golang have grown at an exceptional rate and have quickly made it as top programming languages.