Top Web Development Languages of 2017

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Just like that, we’ve come to the end of another year. 2017 was a pretty exciting year as far as technology goes. HoloLens (the developer version) has already been released and we expect Microsoft to come out with a more improved version of their AR flagship product. Even though it might still not be ready for mass production their demos are always worth looking forward to.

AR was not the only winner though. Go through any car review for late model vehicles and the one thing that sticks out in all of them is the amount of technology that is now integrated into your mid-range SUV. It’s evident that Tesla is not the only car company with nifty gadgets.

But enough about that!

Let’s talk about the programming languages that make up the underlying framework for all the apps that blow us away.

There are 100+ programming languages in existence but not all of them are created equal. For the record just because your programming language of choice fails to appear on this list does not mean that we think it’s useless.

Some of the factors that we’ve used include the demand for a programming language and the number of websites that are developed with these languages.



This top spot goes to SQL. The number of job descriptions that required SQL expertise improved by 50,000. Just in case, you didn’t know SQL is a language that is used to manipulate and communicate with databases. There are a number of variants which include MySQL and Microsoft SQL. In 2016, Microsoft released SQL server in 2016 which has proven to be extremely popular. This new variant introduced a number of new features in a bid to make the language more open-source for instance, its integration with R. R is a data analysis programming language that has proven to be very popular with developers.


The number of Java positions advertised on Indeed went up by 30,000. Perhaps this has been occasioned by an increase in the number of Android users. It’s worth noting too that the Java developer community has been steadily growing since 2016.

The fact that Java is a simple yet readily programmable language may have contributed to its rise to the second position.

Surveys show that 90% of all Fortune 500 companies are built in Java not to mention all native Android apps. Even though Java Enterprise Edition has been declining in popularity, the developer community remained excited about the launch of Java 9 which happened mid-2017. It didn’t disappoint.


Python has moved up a couple of spots to clinch third place. The number of job postings that required Python dramatically increased. Python is a programming language whose main focus is to increase developer productivity as well as code readability.

It’s used for various functions including:

  • Data Mining
  • Web apps
  • Desktop apps

So popular is Python that in late 2016, Microsoft included support for its beta version of Cognitive Toolkit which was an open-source framework with a focus on deep learning.


It’s part of the MEAN stack. Even though it has plenty of application both in backend as well as front-end the demand for JavaScript developers has stayed roughly the same. Even though it might not be top on Indeed, it ranked No. 1 on StackOverflow. It is estimated that JavaScript is used in 90% of all web pages so it’s still a major player.

JavaScript 6 adoption and compatibility has continued to grow in 2016. It is used in the creation of progressive web apps which focus more on offline-first functionality. As progressive web apps grow in popularity we’re likely to see a proportionate growth in the demand for JavaScript 6 developers.


In 2016 Pori was ranked 5th based on demand. This, however, is no longer the case as that spot has been taken by C++. It is based on C which is the ancestor of all programming languages. C++ is a high-performance language that is known for the amount of power it packs.

Despite its power, most developers find it more difficult to learn compared to dynamically typed languages such as JavaScript or Python.


Microsoft’s most popular language has not fared well when compared to other programming languages that are not part of the .NET framework.

A factor that might have hindered its growth in popularity and demand was the fact that it could only run on Windows machines. However, since the launch of the .NET Core platform which is open-source, all this has changed. It’s quite likely that this has a positive impact on its demand over time.


Who would’ve guessed it, Perl jumped a number of spots to overtake Ruby, PHP, and iOS. Jokingly known as the glue that holds the internet together, Perl was split into two languages that are, Perl 5 and Perl 6. Perl is mainly used in finance programming, network, graphics, and CGI.

Its popularity can be credited to the fact that it works well with other languages and is versatile. The growth of DevOps has also been quoted as having shone the limelight on the hitherto unknown Perl.


When writing for iOS there are three languages that can be used. They are:

  • Objective-C
  • C
  • Swift

There wasn’t much change in demand for programming languages in the iOS family. It is worth noting that despite the fact that Swift was launched much later than the other 2 languages it has continued to grow in popularity mostly due to its ease of use, speed, and scalability.


You would expect PHP to be more popular than this mostly because it’s featured on 80% of websites across the internet including WordPress, Tumblr, Wikipedia, and Facebook. Despite a poor ranking compared to other websites, PHP is a great skill to have since it’s used by so many websites. Its real power is evident when it’s combined with SQL and JavaScript.

We hope this gives you a good idea of what languages you should focus on learning in 2018.

James Brooks

Over the many years, we’ve been in operation, Tech Launch has built a solid reputation in the web development and cybersecurity space. We are regular contributors to technology blogs.