Symfony vs Laravel: Which PHP Framework Is the Right Fit for You?

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PHP developers use development frameworks while building top-quality web apps.

PHP developers use development frameworks while building top-quality web apps. The usage of these frameworks during the development process significantly simplifies the maintenance and management of an online project. Nonetheless, it’s important to understand that each PHP-based framework has its own unique coding standards, styles, and methods. Thus, you should think twice before choosing a framework for your project.

And that’s not as easy a task as it may appear at first sight. The variety of available options is truly impressive and includes such frameworks as Slim Framework, Netter, Kohana, and many others. Luckily, only two of them are considered to be the best ones – Laravel and Symfony.

In this article, you’ll discover the most important information about these frameworks as well as get acquainted with their main advantages and drawbacks. It’ll help you to deal with the “Laravel VS Symfony” issue and choose the best option for your online business.

What is Laravel?

Laravel is a PHP-based framework developed by Taylor Otwell in 2011. The main aim of its developer was to create a better alternative to the popular CodeIgniter. After that, Laravel evolved to a top-quality MVC framework designed with different out-of-the-box core features, including Dusk, LTS, Artisan, and others.

The most popular Laravel version, 8.3.0, was released in 2020. It provided its users with such great features as model factory classes, Tailwind CSS, migration squashing, etc. All these enhancements, in combination with an amazing ecosystem, significantly contribute to the rising popularity of this framework. Currently, it’s one of the best options used by specialists for the development of solutions for online businesses.

In addition, it’s worth remarking that Laravel is an open-source framework approved by MIT. It significantly simplifies the work on different tasks necessary for the development of a successful online project, including cashing, routing, and authentication.

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What is Symfony PHP?

Although Symfony was released in 2005, its stable version was developed only in 2007. After that, the world saw other versions, and the latest of them, 5.3.7, was released in May 2021.

The Symfony PHP framework is supported by SensioLabs. It also holds the MIT license as well as can boast great popularity. According to the latest statistics, nearly 600,000 developers from different countries use this framework.

Its components are used in popular projects such as PrestaShop, Magento, and Drupal. Right now, Symfony is a reliable PHP framework perfect for the development of complex online projects.

Laravel versus Symfony – Internationalization

Both frameworks offer different translations. You can discover some localization features in Laravel. At the same time, Symfony provides its users with an advanced translator configuration option.

Nevertheless, you should take into account a significant difference between Laravel vs Symfony2. The first framework uses JSON and PHP for storing the localization data. Meanwhile, Symfony supports a much larger number of translation formats, including INI, PHP, JSON, CSV, and others. Additionally, this framework supports such standardized formats as XLIFF.

Laravel vs Symfony – Routing

There is a difference in the routing systems of these frameworks. For example, Laravel’s routing system works only in PHP. But Symfony’s routing allows its users to define routing in PHP, YAML, or XML.

Symfony vs Laravel – Scaffolding

A scaffolding tool can automatically generate the code to CRUD from the available database. Plus, it treats the templates as scaffolds on which developers will be building the apps.

Although Laravel doesn’t have a native scaffolding tool, it’s still possible to integrate it into this PHP framework. For instance, you can choose InfyOm Laravel Generator.

At the same time, Symfony has Sensio Generator Bundle. It provides the commands for various scaffolding bundles. Moreover, there is a possibility to use the generator-Symfony package for scaffolding out a Symfony PHP app.

Symfony vs Laravel – Performance and Scalability

You’ll find a variety of unified APIs for caching views in Laravel. On the other hand, Symfony can cache source code and views by default. And that’s the main reason why this framework has a longer website loading time.

Since we’ve started talking about the average loading time, we’d like to admit that, as a rule, websites developed with Laravel need nearly 60 milliseconds to load. Meanwhile, Symfony-based sites load in 250 milliseconds.

Besides, consider that Laravel allows its users to do PHP programming without advanced coding skills. Moreover, you can do it without affecting the performance. In case you want to launch a web app to reach your online business goals, Laravel may become your ideal choice. But don’t forget that it’s important to find the best Laravel development company, which will ensure fast and efficient delivery of your project.

If you choose Symfony, you should understand that this framework will require more resources and coding efforts in the initial stage of your online project. Besides, the developers may need to spend a lot of time trying to configure its elements. However, you’ll get such a great advantage as the possibility to deliver a complex web project designed with custom functions. If you want your ambitious web app to meet all your expectations, it’ll be a good idea to pay attention to Symfony.

Laravel vs Symfony – Database Support System

Although both Symfony and Laravel use ORM for data access, Laravel’s ORM uses Eloquent while Symfony’s ORM uses Doctrine to handle the data. In addition, database migrations in the Symfony framework are automatic (but it’s still necessary for developers to define the fields within the provided code). The specialists that use Laravel database don’t need to define the fields.

Thanks to ORM-supported databases, both PHP frameworks simplify data processing and management. Besides, the noteworthy fact is that Symfony provides its users with a bigger number of options for database support:

  1. MySQL
  2. Oracle
  3. PostgreSQL
  4. Drizzle
  5. SQLite
  6. SQL Anywhere
  7. SQLServer
  8. SAP Sybase

Laravel can’t boast a similar variety. It supports only four options, including SQLServer, SQLite, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.

Due to many available databases, Symfony offers simpler data manipulation and management processes. Nonetheless, we’d like to admit that Laravel’s features help its users avoid using large code blocks. As well as efficient data management, this advantage saves a lot of time and resources. Finally, Laravel has many tools and functions that simplify the delivery of online projects and automate different processes.