Senior full stack developer and CTO at Ideamotive.
Frontend frameworks are the pioneers in the software development process. But there are so many options to choose from when it comes to creating visually appealing apps that value user experiences highly.
User experience is the number one priority for any business on the market today. As a developer, even a summary of your project speaks of the simplicity of the UI it should have. No matter how complex functions and operations are performed in the background, what users see and perceive must be flawless. Some of the most successful companies operate on this principle - Netflix, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
Developers are fighting over which frontend framework is better.. it's not like users know or care. They mostly care about the User Experience.— Jad Joubran (@JoubranJad) June 4, 2019
UX should be our focus on the frontend. 🗣️
Take any of these websites and you will find that they are powerful, simple, and have a great user experience. And all thanks to the multitude of frameworks running under the hood. However, with the growing demands of customers and the market, there is a constant need to improve quality in terms of usability and functionality. That's when problems begin to appear.
You may ask: “Why do we need to search for some other frameworks when we have a super solution - React.js?” And you are 100% right!
But why are developers looking specifically for alternatives to React.js? Let's take a look at some of the no-compromise benefits of React JS in web development.
Finding the best alternatives to React.js is not as easy as many people think because it is difficult to find the perfect match, especially given the stability and support of the ecosystem, and the API performance provided by ReactJS.
Hence, to find the best option over React.js, our React experts have compiled a list of the 10 best frameworks that entrepreneurs like you can consider for their future projects.
Talking about the relative popularity of each framework, the graph below shows the overall usage popularity of each framework mentioned in the list of the best frontend frameworks in 2022. We can see that after 2015-16, Vue, Angular, and React were in huge demand.
Source: State of JS 2020
As far as Vue is concerned, it has always been in demand. The reason is that Vue still works great when you don't need to use giant frameworks like Angular and Ember, but need faster development with minimal functionality.
Let's see how each framework defines itself in its current state and how we should select each one for our future development requirements in the next section.
One of the biggest challenges when choosing React JS alternatives is finding a framework that offers the flexibility and lightness of React. Sometimes developers become so attached to the framework that they don't want to leave it.
Choosing the right React JS alternatives can be difficult, however. There are several things you need to consider such as stability, ecosystem support, APIs, performance, and package size.
So, here is the listing crafted by our own experts:
Google released Angular in 2010 to help build feature-rich applications. When choosing AngularJS for web or mobile development, you don't need to look for other options because Angular is a complete framework.
This technology allows you to create Single Page Applications (SPA) in a very convenient and clean way. A SPA can be an application or website that interacts with users not by downloading whole new pages from the server, but by dynamically rewriting the current page.
It allows you to create the fastest SPA that works 100% flawlessly. Moreover, AngularJS is used by brands like Google, Amazon, Udemy, and others.
Another reason AngularJS is the best among React.js competitors is that it empowers developers with a suite of advanced AngularJS frameworks and AngularJS tools to build robust applications.
When to use
Angular improves the performance of browser-based applications by dynamically updating content in no time because it uses two-way data binding. For enterprise apps and dynamic web apps, Angular is the best choice.
On the other hand, Angular is a complete solution as a front-end framework. If you want to build apps with disabilities, you won't be able to use the resources that Angular provides. Also, if you have a small team, choose a smaller structure with less complexity and simple syntax.
Angular vs React
Find more data here - React vs Angular – Which One Is Better For Your Front-end? [2021 UPDATE]
It does a good job of addressing the complexities that Angular developers face. It is smaller in size and offers two main advantages - visual DOM and component DOM. It is also a two-way binding.
Vue is versatile and helps you with a variety of tasks. From building web and mobile apps to progressive web apps, it handles both simple and dynamic processes with ease.
While it is built to optimize application performance and tackle complex problems, it is not very popular with the market giants. However, the users of this framework are Alibaba, 9gag, Reuters, and Xiaomi. Vue's user base continues to grow despite fewer Silicon Valley users.
Find a brief attempt to compare React and Vue below. Otherwise, check out our blogpost - Vue vs. React – Which Should You Pick For Your Next Web Project? (2021 UPDATE)
When to use
Vuejs is recommended for flexible design frameworks. It allows you to create everything from scratch and also successfully develops giant projects.
However, if you think the support community will answer all the complexities, Vuejs is not the right way to go. In addition, applications requiring stable components are not suitable for building with Vuejs, as the framework has exposed component stability issues.
Vue vs React
Svelte is the newest of all front-end frameworks. Unlike frameworks like React and Vue, the framework made a difference by moving the work to the compile stage rather than the browser. It writes code to update the document object model in sync with the state of the application.
When to use
The framework is best suited for small application projects and small teams. Since it does not have a large support community, it is best not to use it for complex projects.
Also, it is best not to use Svelte for larger projects at this time because the frameworks lack tools and community. It is difficult to find answers to questions/bugs that may appear later in the development process due to the small community.
Svelte vs React
Jason Miller has released Preact under an open-source MIT license. You can view Preact as a lightweight alternative to the React library for developing mobile or web apps and PWA progressive web apps.
The 3KB compressed Preact can be a great choice for building websites if performance isn't your biggest concern. This is one of the smallest React JS alternatives.
It supports most modern browsers and IE9+. However, if you are looking forward to a library that supports Facebook's synthetic event system, then this is the wrong choice.
Preact offers several other great features such as rendering properties and states, bound state, and using "class" instead of className.
When to use
Preact is known as the smallest React JS alternative, but it is a great choice for developers to build websites because of its great features. If the performance of your application is not a priority for you, Preact excites you as much as you delve deeper into it. If your goal is to develop an application like Facebook's synthetic event system, then Preact may not be the right choice for your business as it doesn't provide you with the library you need.
Preact vs React
Jeremy Ashkenas, who developed CoffeeScript and Underscore.js, also introduced Backbone.js, which is based on the MVP (Model View Presenter) paradigm and has a RESTful JSON interface. You can use Backbone.js as an alternative to React.js when building single-page web apps so that multiple pages can be synchronized.
When developing applications with Backbone.js, you can also use tools like Thorax, Marionette, Chaplin, Handlebars, and others to make the most of the framework.
The platform also allows you to develop projects requiring different types of users, where arrays can be used to distinguish between models. So, whether you are going to use Backbone.js for frontend or backend, this is the perfect choice as its REST API compatibility ensures seamless synchronization between the two.
When to use
Backbone.js is used for dynamic applications like Trello. This allows developers to build their client models and update and reuse code faster. Hence, it is efficient in dynamically handling updates, serving the client, and keeping it in sync with the server all the time.
Backbone.js provides minimalistic requirements for building a web application when compared to other client-side MVC frameworks. However, you can expand the functionality by supporting plugins and extensions. Thus, if the development team is aiming to create an end-to-end solution in one framework, then Backbone.js should not be aimed.
Backbone.js vs React
Aurelia is written using ES2016. With no external dependencies other than polyfills, it integrates seamlessly with web components.
Aurelia is made up of smaller and more focused media rather than a monolithic framework. You can create applications using all or selected modules.
It also offers two-way data binding to any object. Its extensible HTML compiler allows you to create custom HTML elements, create control templates, and attach new behaviors to existing HTML elements.
When to use
Aurelia vs React
Yehuda Katz developed Ember JS in 2011 for building web applications. Previously called the SproutCore MVC framework, it offers client-side rendering, URL support, templating engine, and awesome functionality. The Ember design has two-way and server-side rendering.
Ember JS is one of the handy alternatives to React JS, with which you can add more functionality with very little code. It contains built-in rudder templates that allow you to complete this process.
Ember.js is component-based and offers two-way data binding similar to Angular. It is designed to seamlessly meet the evolving demands of modern technology. You can develop complex mobile and web applications with Emberjs and expect its efficient architecture to solve problems.
However, Ember's learning curve is one of the few downsides. The framework turns out to be one of the most difficult to learn due to its rigid and traditional structure. The developer community is relatively new and poorly understood. Anyone who devotes time to training without limits can go for it.
When to use
If you want to build modern apps like Linkedin with a rich user interface, Ember.js is a framework with all the front-end technical capabilities like viewing a wide range of application states due to the excellent routing provided by Ember.js.
The framework acts as a complete front-end for large-scale projects as it provides out-of-the-box configuration, useful bindings, and custom properties to render the page as needed.
However, be aware that Ember.js is the wrong choice for a small development team, as the framework requires experience and business logic to solve complexities. The initial cost can be higher with Ember.js. Also, a framework might be the wrong choice for writing simple ajax functions and implementing a simple UI.
Ember JS vs React
Riot JS allows us to create custom tagged user interfaces using a simple and intriguing syntax. It also has a virtual DOM that is similar but faster than React.
If you're looking for a small UI library, Riot is the right choice. These are custom tags that allow you to create complex views using HTML. What's more, it doesn't require any extra HTML root elements, fancy custom attributes, or data attributes.
When to use
It's perfect for building minimal web components without additional overhead and can be useful if you want to modulate and modernize legacy monolithic websites using frameworks like jQuery.
Riot JS vs React
Mithril is a modern client-side JS framework for developing single-page applications. It is fast, small (less than 10KB gzip), and offers a routing utility and XHR right out of the box.
Mithril is known to be pragmatic in that it can easily learn components, routing, and XHR in less than 15 minutes to get started building applications. Mithril is currently used by companies like Nike and Fitbit and other open-source platforms like Liches.
In Mithril.js, components are created using an optional controller and a required view property. Moreover, it provides MVC hierarchical components, URL routing, default safe templates, custom data binding.
When to use
Mithril specializes in the seamless creation of single-page applications.
Mithril vs React
The React developers introduced Inferno in 2017 as an experiment to test if the library can improve the performance, battery, and UX of mobile apps. Inferno can develop client and server interfaces with fantastic speed, performance, and isomorphic rendering.
It supports hyperscript, JSX, and Vanilla createElement method. In addition, it provides support for several popular state management libraries such as Redux, MobX, and Cerebral JS.
When to use
If you are looking to build a high-performance web application, Inferno is a great choice for you as it specializes in performance.
Inferno vs React
So what is the most suitable React JS alternative for your web application? The answer depends on your priority.
If you are developing a complete SPA (single page application), you may need a stable and growing library like React. However, if application performance is your biggest concern, then Inferno or Preact might be the best choice for you.
Still wondering which technology will be the best fit for your new product? Or decided to stick with React.js after all? No matter which technology you will go for, there are hundreds of vetted developers in our Talent Network, ready to work on your project.
Ideamotive can provide you with technical consultancy and experts skilled in any technology, matched with your product and industry.
Drop us a line to consult your idea with seasoned experts.
Dawid is a full stack developer experienced in creating Ruby on Rails and React Native apps from naught to implementation. Technological superhero, delivering amazing solutions for our clients and helping them grow.View all author posts
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