Why is Laravel more famous than Symfony

Why Laravel is the best PHP framework

Why Laravel is the Best PHP Framework

For a while, PHP was no longer in demand. This was also due to the fact that the frameworks Zend and Symfony were good, but did not necessarily meet the requirements of a modern web application.

With Laravel (also abbreviated to LV for short in the article) this trend seems to be reversed. More and more former Zend, Symfony, YII, CodeIgniter programmers are switching to the approach invented by Taylor Otwell.

In the post some information about why Laravel is so popular these days.


It all started with Taylor Otwell, who, in addition to his full-time .NET developer job, came up with the idea for Laravel. In his spare time he wrote on this technology.

Above all, it was important to him to have complete documentation right from the start. In this he also saw the success of CodeIgniter, which also offered complete documentation.

Through his employment with UserScape as a software engineer, he was able to write the software for 40 hours a week or more. That then also helped to accelerate the development.

In 2011 the first version of Laravel came out.

In particular, some features that CodeIgniter did not have and that Otwell considered necessary were available (for example box authentication to log users in and out).

Compared to other technologies

A simple Google Trends analysis compared to other frameworks shows the popularity.

In the picture you can see the terms “Zend” (in red) and “Laravel” (in blue) for the period from 2009 onwards. You can see how LV begins its triumphal march from 2011.

It is rapidly catching up with Zend (also abbreviated as ZD here) and overtaking it in popularity in 2013.

You can see the ZD losing its following in the same period. One can strongly assume that ZD was replaced by LV during this time.

This is actually surprising, because Zend is a robust framework that has also been used in large companies and applications.

Here also the comparison to Symfony. At Symfony, however, the trend is not as negative as at ZD. LV has become better known. But Symfony hasn't really lost any of its followers.

Note: Laravel is based on Symfony.

The search for CodeIgniter is also interesting:

Here too: Otwell’s theory that CodeIgniter (in red) lacks important functionalities seems to have been correct. The framework is used less nowadays.

Here are some reasons why you should choose LV:

  • Documentation: The documentation is well organized and is really helpful. This is appreciated by web developers who can quickly familiarize themselves with it.
  • Modern: Modern web applications nowadays require different features, these are covered by Laravel. Because this technology is also relatively new, these things could be taken into account from the start.
  • For sure: An important thing about modern web applications is that they should be secure. LV provides these functionalities.
  • Fast development: You can develop with it relatively quickly (of course, that's the point of a framework). But it is worth mentioning in this case.
  • High-performance applications: Modern websites must be quick to run and scalable. LV ensures this.

A few more technical things that speak for Laravel:

  • Blade: A separate template engine that provides the framework. So that we use HTML in PHP simply.
  • Artisan: It simplifies development with the help of appropriate commands.
  • Syntax: A simple speaking syntax is used, which also makes reading the written code easier.
  • and many more

Does something speak against this technology?

One thing that may speak against LV is that the founder Otwell is no longer that active. The community is all the more active for this. So that's not necessarily an argument.

However, you should think about the introduction.

  • It's relatively new: Unlike Zend and Symfony, LV has only been around for a few years. If you have any questions, the search for answers can be a little more difficult than with the well-known frameworks.
  • Few developers know about it: When putting together a team of web developers, you may find it difficult to find experienced Laravel programmers as it is relatively new. On the other hand, an experienced Symfony developer or PHP developer will be able to quickly familiarize themselves with the technology. You should also take into account the time that will be required for this familiarization.

Why not something else?

It always depends on the requirement. Sometimes it can even be useful to use Zend.

In some cases the software application is simply so large and long programmed with Zend or a similar technology that the conversion would take too much time.

Examples / references / case studies

Here are some more companies and applications that use the course:

STARTUPS.CO: The platform is built with Laravel and has more than 13 million registered users.

Fundable.com: This company is also operated by STARTUPS.CO and runs on LV. It has enabled more than 140 million in funding for startups (keyword: crowdfunding).

TOYOTAHALLOFFAME: This fantasy football platform has more than 30 million players. It is an offer from Toyota and Yahoo.

RV.CAMPINGWORLD.COM: It is an application based on LV, through which one can buy and sell camping vehicles and equipment.

INVICTAWATCH.COM: It is a web application with which the website of the company is displayed (Swiss watch company) and also contains a product catalog with different content (video, images, texts, etc.).

Laravel CMS: You could also build your own content management system (CMS) based on LV. The advantage over WordPress or TYPO3 is that more individualizations are possible and you are more flexible. At the same time, it is also more efficient.

The framework can certainly also be used to implement e-commerce platforms, internet portals, small to medium-sized search engines, product configurators, ERP / merchandise management systems, HR applications and more.


When you start a new web project these days, the answer can usually only mean Laravel.

It is particularly useful for medium-sized applications. However, this is true of most PHP frameworks.

When do you use Laravel? Why do you still rely on other technologies?

Interesting posts:
More about the framework on Wikipedia
Click here for Laravel's online presence

Images: Canva

The author: Sascha Thattil works at YUHIRO and helps entrepreneurs and companies to easily set up programming teams in India. YUHIRO is a German-Indian company which provides IT companies, agencies and IT departments with software developers.

By Sascha Thattil on May 20, 2021 / PHP, web development / Leave a comment