PHP vs NodeJS: Know the complete difference

PHP vs NodeJS

The backend is like the backbone of any development since it ensures that the website is performing up to the market. To successfully implement Backend development, you must choose the right development language and framework. This is where the PHP vs. NodeJS debate begins. Both development technologies work on top of the expectations to deliver top-notch applications.

PHP vs. NodeJs has become a hot topic of discussion among the developer community to determine which technology is defined to meet your development needs.

A Node.js server executes JavaScript in a cross-platform, open-source environment that can run on various platforms. In contrast, PHP is an open-source language for writing server-side scripts. At present, it is one of the most prevalent and most widely used technologies.

What is the most effective of the two? In your next development project, should you use PHP or Node.js? Here’s what you need to know!

The article explains the main differences between them.

About Node.js

With its 2009 introduction, Node.js is relatively new compared to other backend programming languages. Nevertheless, it has become popular for a reason. By using Node.js, JavaScript could be coded on the server side. The new development led to a revolution among programmers, with JavaScript stacks appearing on both front-end and back-end websites.

Pros of Node.js

  • JavaScript programming on the server side is possible
  • An open-source JavaScript runtime environment
  • Run all code instantly with asynchronous code
  • Reaction time is quick on the server
  • It runs coding commands fast

Cons of Node.js

  • Quite new to coding
  • There isn’t much support for content management systems
  • Only 0.4% of the world’s websites are powered by it

What is PHP?

In comparison, PHP has been around since 1994 and is very popular among backend developers. RasmusLerdorf’s creation aimed to help developers create web applications. PHP frameworks are widely used in building websites, largely because systems like WordPress do so. While Node.js is becoming more popular, PHP web development services continue to show their dominance

Pros of PHP

  • A popular language for backend programming
  • Almost all websites are built using this code
  • This is the code used by WordPress
  • Websites using this code are far more prevalent than those using Node.js

Cons of PHP

  • The line-by-line operation makes it slower.
  • Dedicated to the web only
  • Cannot handle a large number of applications

Node.js Vs. PHP: Which is a better choice for backend development

PHP and Node.js are two of the most popular technologies today. Both are in high demand, and several companies offer development services. That’s why it’s hard to pick one over the other. Let’s compare these two to ease this conflict.


PHP is an accessible and fast programming language for beginners to experts. There aren’t a bunch of compilers or converters needed. For developers to write code in a separate text application such as Notes, they can simply type in the code, which will be executed immediately. SQL databases can be accessed quickly and efficiently with PHP without hosting limitations.

On the other hand, Node.js requires more learning and is more complex. Complex server infrastructure and preparation are required for deploying applications and frameworks. The Node.js runtime environment is not a scripting language, rather, it allows the execution of JavaScript code. The Node.js framework is used for real-time, cross-platform, very data-intensive applications.

To get better assistance with PHP development, it is a great solution to choose a php application development company.


Code-wise, one of the biggest advantages of Node.js is that it allows developers to use a single language throughout the development process. The Node.js code will take longer than PHP, but it won’t require switching between multiple languages. Thus, this is a significant advantage.

Compared to PHP, a long-time favorite, it’s super useful and successful. Since then, it has been the foundation of more than 80% of the internet. While it may be easier to program, it does present some disadvantages. LAMP stack knowledge is essential for effectively implementing PHP.


The way Node.js and PHP run programs simultaneously differs significantly. With PHP, an event loop operates in a blocking mode, while Node.js is non-blocking. With PHP, multiple processes can run synchronously on Apache servers. The Node.js event loop is non-blocking, which allows events to run in parallel. Consequently, each platform approaches multitasking differently.

Request Handling

With Node.js, you can process multiple requests simultaneously. As a result, the CPU and RAM are also less stressed. Whenever an error goes unanswered, other requests may be hindered. If you do this, you could develop a pan-system problem.

When PHP is used instead of Node.js, it will only respond to one request at a time. Handling requests one at a time also increases CPU and RAM usage. As such, it works in the opposite direction of Node.js.


Qualified developers can sometimes use specific projects and options to make PHP run faster than usual. Among them, Facebook developed Hack, which is PHP-compatible. PHP code can be made faster with Hack. Having the PHP 8 feature JIT will speed things up even further.

The performance of Node.js, however, is most often better. Although performance is also heavily influenced by the developer’s skills and experience, PHP has many performance advantages over Node.js.

Learning Curve

The Learning Curve is another vital aspect of comparing the two tech stacks, PHP vs. Node.js, and for Node.js, the learning curve is quite decent for those who know JavaScript. For those not well versed in JavaScript, there is a steep learning curve to overcome, and it is recommended to first become familiar with JavaScript before learning Node.js. Therefore, it is clear that Node.js requires substantial learning time.

When it comes to PHP language, it is one of the easiest languages to learn, in other words, it has a very simple learning curve. While PHP is a powerful language for building sites, maintaining a PHP-based site would require the developers to be familiar with CSS and HTML to maintain the site. Given the difficulty of integrating multiple technologies, PHP is harder to learn than Node.js.


Node.js and PHP are among the most popular modern development platforms. Each of them has its advantages and disadvantages. Although PHP is the clear winner in some areas, Node.js has a leg up in others. PHP Vs. Node.js is an endless debate. After all, you should choose the one that’s best for the development projects.

You should consult with a leading mobile app development company for the best advice based on the requirements of your project.

If Nodejs prominence appeals to you, it is great to hire a NodeJs developer and stay on the advantage of getting top-notch development.

You might also like our TUTEZONE section which contains exclusive tutorials on making your life simpler by using technology.

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About the Author: Ranjit Ranjan

More than 15 years of experience in web development projects in countries such as US, UK and India. Blogger by passion and SEO expert by profession.