Home Tech

What Languages Do You Need to Know for App Development

Want to get into app development but aren’t sure which programming languages you need to know? There are tons of languages out there right now – but some are definitely more popular and important than others.

To be clear, the ‘best’ language for app development will vary – mostly based on what type of app you want to build and what platform you want to build it for. In general however there are some programming languages that are extremely versatile and tend to be used frequently when developing modern apps:

  • JavaScript

As the longstanding number one language of the web, JavaScript is definitely one of the best languages for app development. It is a full-stack development language that you can use to create both the front end and back end of an app, and frameworks such as jQuery, Angular and React.js have made it all the more popular.

Being an object-oriented language, JavaScript is relatively easy to learn. The only difficulty beginners often have with it is the fact that its syntax tends to be case-sensitive which can be a slight stumbling block until you become more familiar with the language.

  • Python

Over the years Python has grown to be one of the most widely-used programming languages in the world. It is said to be the easiest programming language for beginners because of its object-oriented nature as well as the fact that it is open source and has a massive community of developers.

Due to its libraries, Python is incredibly versatile and can be used to develop all kinds of apps. It’s only drawbacks are that it is slower than other programming languages and requires a lot of RAM comparatively.

  • Java

Although Java is fairly old, it is still powerful and effective. In app development it is one of the most popular languages for server-side backends, and is also widely-used for web apps and Android apps. However it is often paired with other programming languages for the frontend and user interface.

It should be noted that Java is not suitable for iOS app development and cannot be used at all. That being said, because of how potent and versatile it is, Java is an excellent language for anyone interested in app development.

  • Swift

Being Apple’s native language for iOS development, Swift is definitely popular in its own right. It is object-oriented, easy to learn, has built-in security features, and is one of the fastest programming languages out there.

While Swift’s Xcode IDE is impressive, integrating Swift apps with other IDEs or third-party tools is not easy. Additionally for developers it may be difficult finding a job with an app development company if Swift is the only language you know, simply because it is only ever really used to develop iOS apps.

  • Kotlin

Similar to Swift, Kotlin’s main advantage is the fact that it is the official Android app development language. It is supported by several IDEs, and is a very modern programming language that is clear, concise, and has numerous features including null safety, data classes, extensions, and more.

Although it lags behind Java when it comes to compilation speed, Kotlin has proven to be a reliable language that can improve the efficiency of apps. It is worth noting that it shares many similarities with Java and if you already know one of these languages it will be easy to switch between them.

That should cover the most important languages for app development, but always keep in mind that there are others that it may be useful to know. Some examples of languages that are quite popular include C++, C# (or Objective C), Rust, Ruby, Scala, GoLang, Perl, HTML5, and more.

Once you know what type of app you’re interested in developing, you can work backwards and figure out which language would be the best fit. The five listed above are normally the best starting point however, as they are so versatile that between them you should be able to build practically any type of app you prefer.

In fact, because of how popular each of these languages is – there are tons of resources available that you can refer to if you need the extra help.