PHP framework – The Best PHP Framework for 2013

PHP frameworks help you to write clean and reusable code. It follows the MVC pattern, ensuring a clear separation of logic and presentation. But there is a much discussion all around because some prefer performance, some prefer better documentation, some prefer amount of built-in functions etc.

Here in this article we will discuss few  top php framework based on it’s popularity and Google Trends from 2012.

Yii vs CodeIgniter vs Zend vs Cakephp Comparison Chart



Statistically, currently yiiframework is the best php framework in the market. The main features that makes Yii on top spot is its features and a bit faster than Codeigniter and Zend framework.

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Statistically,  Codeigniter comes on second spot. It’s a choice of most of php developer. It’s relatively easy to learn. Feature wise, Codeigniter is powerful frameworks such as Zend and Cake. Its major goal is to enable you to develop projects much faster than you could, by providing a rich set of libraries for commonly needed tasks, as well as a simple interface and logical structure to access these libraries.

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Zend Framework

Statistically, Zend Framework comes on third spot. It’s a powerfull PHP Framework which is more secure, reliable and allow Web 2.0 applications & web services. It is used in building big applications.

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Statistically, CakePHP comes on 4th spot. It’s a popular framework for web application development. It comes comes with a lot of features: code generation, translations, database access, caching, validation, authentication etc.

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About the Author: Laeeq

A web developer who has a love for creativity and enjoys experimenting with various techniques in both web design and development. If you would like to be kept up to date with our posts, you can follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or even by subscribing to our RSS Feed.

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65 Comments + Add Comment

  • very useful analysis……yii is really fantastic.

  • awesome analysis…thanks :)

  • Thanks guys :)

  • Why symfony not included in list? some specific reason.

    • Thanks Shrayans! we have just compare data of top four php framework.

      • You did not. Symfony and Zend Framework are the 2 top frameworks, Yii, CodeIgniter and CakePHP are clearly behind those 2 if you count popularity and spread.

    • I agree, for serious enterprise development, Symfony or Zend Framework 2

    • I agree, i start using frameworks with Codeigniter first, then switch to Yii… Yii is better than Codeigniter, now i am using Symfony wich is even better yo CI and Yii.

      About Zend i have no experience.

  • Thanks! Now it’s fixed.

  • Symfony is definately a top trender, I would maybe argue that it should be on the top of the list. Then there is also laraval, lithium, FuelPHP etc. This article only lists some of the more well-known frameworks, but by no means does it list the true top trending frameworks.

  • I’m a codeigniter user for last 2 year, I want to try yii now but still waiting for version 2, cause they said won’t be compatible with version 1

  • Nice pick!…..I’ve experience in Zend and CakePHP but Yii is my favourite.

  • There are tons of frameworks to choose from, I really like Yii Framework. You should give it a go.

  • Where is Symfony ? I worked on 2 big big companies in 2013 as consultant, they are migrating from Zend to symfony…

  • Good analysis. I already use Yii and its very easy to customize and build whatever I want.

  • To anyone reading this who isn’t a bot or the author should check out Laravel. It may not be as large on the trends chart, but it’s better than any of these.

  • gr8 php framework analysis….thanks!

  • You should add Laravel, this framework is awesome!

  • Good article. I am thinking to switch to Yii bcoz many people hv praise it in comments..

  • Thanks for these great post. As a new learner what framework can I learn first ?

  • IN 2013 the cool kids are using Quantum PHP Framework:

    It’s super fast, the command line thingy is super handy, i just teleported myself with it, highly recommended

  • why symfoy is included in the list of best php fremworks. i am just developing an application with it and i am very confortable with it. actually i am using symfony 1.4 , but it is still very powerfull framwork. is zer any thing i miss about the the other php framworks. please tell me something about symfony 2.

  • Missing this one:
    Really cool but also really new.
    Anybody else tried it yet?

  • Amazing articles!

  • This is an awesome blog, i really expect that codeigniter will be on its fire. Looking forward for more update in CI.

  • useful information for starter .Know what is php framework and which one you should use

  • It’s nice to see yii on top :)
    Yii is amazing

  • I never try other framework, but Yii help me so much…

    I just ever read other framework problem that should be easy in Yii…

  • Good analysis but I love CodeIgniter over others because its so easy to use and learn.

  • I really have been loving CodeIgniter… robust, flexible, extendable and doesn’t lock you into one way of doing things. I dig having creative freedom to code as the task requires.

  • Laravel is about to crush the other frameworks, given the interest in the United States in the past 12-18 months:

  • Great analysis, I’m using codeigniter and thinking to jump for zend, this article really helped me. thnx.

  • Very Usefull Analysis and Information :)

    I’ve used CODEIGNITER , this is really easy to use and to handle.

    but now i start to learning yii, kohana and even zend.

    Iwant to be proffesion on one framework before i go up to jump for another :)

  • Yii is currently top and also my favorite. I have used CakePHP before, some things are very similar, but better implemented in Yii. So, Yii FTW! :)

  • There is a big difference between Symfony 1 and 2, as well as ZF1 and ZF2. I would actually like to see a trend chart how people are picking up the newer versions. Perhaps these have added new complexity too much, so that people beginning development might trend to use yii or cake just to have a faster feeling of success.

  • I love yii framework. its amazing and very compertable.
    and easy to use… i love it.

  • thank you for the article.
    but you missed Symfony which is an amazing framework.

  • Thanks My Friend. This is a very helpful and important analyze.

  • My favourite PHP Framework is CodeIgniter.

  • CI developement helps do more easily and a better way, designer can make code which will be easier to study, you can also save your time, make your web more robust.

  • Wow, great collection…. Thanks for providing those….. I wish for more collections …… :)

  • I am a starter in PHP development. I am doing this with the help of Codeigniter.
    but i heard that wordpress is the most preffered tool of the time. Can you please suggest me if i stick with Codeigniter or migrate to WordPress…

  • CI is the best and easy for CMS based website/application by using grocery CRUD.

  • you missed Symfony which is an amazing framework.

  • Glad to see that Yii took the top spot. It’s my preferred framework due to its speed and ease of use.

  • This is a real good analysis of the frameworks. CI claims that they are faster than any frameworks out there.

  • Thanks Laeeq, very helpful to choose good choice.

  • it will be wonderfull if you can comeup with some new frameworks .. thanks

  • Thanks for this, but what “statistics” are you using to call Yii number one? It’s not number one in the chart, either currently or on average, so…?

    Also, do you have enough understanding of these frameworks to do a feature-by-feature comparison? For example, I use CakePHP, but do any other frameworks have a similar built in code generation tool, or authentication plug-ins, etc.?

  • Good list, and I’ve learnt CodeIgniter and CakePHP, and want to learn Laravel, its its very hyped about now. In terms of speed, which framework do you think is the fast generally? I mean with micro-optimizations, etc considered.

  • Laravel is getting powerful and getting popular among web developers.

  • In my company we were working with Core PHP and now we want to change it to some framework….I want to ask which will be best as a starter..Zend, CodeIgnitor OR Yii..please any body who is experienced and worked in all three do sujjest.

  • I am starting with php frameworks. I wanted you use yii as all comparatives they rise it to the top. But, after working a little bit with Laravel and seeing its power, I will definitely stay on it. Laravel works perfect with RESTful apis, and I have been told that Yii don’t, and it tries you to use web services. I think Laravel will be the best.

  • very helpful.. I agree with all this and Yii2 is coming and that will stay the best php framework.

  • real result analysis !

  • I am not sure that we can rely on Google trends that much. You cannot even add Symphony to that list to get a proper feedback due to it’s name.

  • The choice of frameworks is bizarre. Zend, CodeIgniter, and CakePHP have pretty much fallen out of favor for new development since they’re fairly outdated at this point. They were all fairly good in their time, but someone looking to choose a new framework in 2013 wouldn’t even be considering one of those in most cases.

    At this point, the most significant modern PHP frameworks that a developer would be choosing from are Symfony, Laravel, and Yii. Two of those weren’t even included in your list!

    From looking at Google Trends, Laravel is spiking in popularity and is #1 in most Western countries, while Yii is most popular in China, but also quite popular elsewhere. Symfony’s popularity is still considerable, but has tapered off somewhat.

  • Codeigniter is pretty good………..

  • Codeigniter is Pretty good for me…!

  • Nice analysis, I haven’t experience YII, Symphony but I use Zend it’s very difficult to use. Presently I am using a new framework Zendfox it’s so easy to use, nice architecture.

  • cakephp user in hereee!!! rock and cooking code with rapid developpp!

  • i am currently working with Core PHP ,but i want to move on framework ,which framework is good for me to learn……

  • What about 2014, how the trends look like now?

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