March 31, 2022

The State of PHP in 2022: Predictions and Trends

State of PHP
PHP Development

What is the current state of PHP, and where is it heading?

In our recent 2022 PHP Landscape Report, we looked at the results of an industry survey of PHP development professionals to find what tools they’re using, what they’re building, the challenges they face, and trends in the PHP ecosystem.

In this blog, we discuss the key takeaways and answer some questions about the state of the PHP language. For the complete analysis, download your free copy of the 2022 PHP Landscape Report.

Editor's Note: The 2024 PHP Landscape Report is now available. Get the latest on the state of PHP by downloading the 2024 edition of the report.

What’s in the PHP Landscape Report?

In the 2022 PHP Landscape Report, you will find:

  • PHP Development Priorities
  • PHP Version and Upgrade Statistics
  • Development Technologies
  • Orchestration Technologies
  • Async Programming
  • PHP Outlook for 2022

Key Takeaways

We surveyed professionals across the PHP ecosystem — representing a range of job roles, company sizes, and years of experience — to get their insights on the trends that are shaping PHP today and in the future. The highlights include:

Increase in PHP Application Modernization Efforts

77% of respondents indicated usage of (or plans to use) containerization, and another 62% indicated the same for orchestration.

Larger Organizations Adopting More Container and Orchestration Technologies

Digging in further on the adoption of containerization and orchestration technologies, higher adoption rates are seen as the company size grows — reversing the trend of the general software application industry.

PHP Is Driving Business

PHP has clearly become part of the enterprise ecosystem, with more than half (59%) of respondents using PHP for business-critical applications, 81% for APIs, and 41% for the backend for mobile applications.

PHP Monitoring Remains a Challenge

76% of respondents discover issues in their production application via user reports, indicating a need for stronger PHP monitoring capabilities.

Mix of Current and EOL PHP Versions in Use

Most respondents are using currently-supported PHP versions, with PHP 7.4 the most popular at 65% of respondents. However, there is also a large number still using EOL versions of PHP.

Looking for the Latest Data and Analysis on PHP?

2023 PHP Landscape Report

Download our 2023 PHP Landscape Survey -- it's packed with industry data and expert analysis on the top technologies and trends shaping PHP development today. 

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Development Priorities

In this section, you’ll gain insight on where respondents rank their development priorities, such as building new features, improving application performance, security, improving code quality, and deployment automation.

We also asked about:

  • What they’re developing with PHP.
  • Where they are deploying their applications.
  • Most valuable PHP features
  • Compliance requirements.
  • Solving issues in production.
  • Maintenance vs. feature development.
  • Containerization.

PHP Version and Upgrade Plans

In this section, we asked what PHP versions our respondents use to get an idea of how quickly (or slowly!) the ecosystem is adapting to PHP release schedules.

You’ll learn about:

  • Most used PHP versions.
  • Most used PHP-based applications.
  • PHP version upgrade plans.
  • PHP upgrade hurdles.

Development Technologies

For this portion of the survey, we asked respondents to share their most-used PHP development technologies.

Specifically, we asked respondents to share their currently adopted framework, web server, and development methodologies.

Orchestration Technologies

Industry reports have indicated an upward trend in orchestration at a dramatic rate the last few years, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.

We were curious to see if this is true within the PHP ecosystem as well, as the technologies could have a huge impact on repeatability and scalability of PHP application deployments.

This section asks about usage of, or plans to use, orchestration technologies, as well as what specific technologies they use.

Async Programming

We were interested to find out if our respondents were aware of PHP’s async capabilities, what they are using, and what sorts of applications they are finding benefit from async processing. 

In this section about asynchronous PHP, we ask what async framework they are using, and how they are using async programming in their current application.

PHP Outlook For 2022

We’ll leave you to the complete report (or on-demand webinar) to paint the full picture of the state of PHP in 2022 and beyond, but suffice it to say, the language has made huge strides.

For one, the language has adopted a number of features of more “enterprise” languages. Secondly, PHP developers are adopting technologies like containerization and orchestration faster than others in the software industry. Lastly, PHP is being used more and more in business-critical applications.

PHP is thriving and evolving, and will be building tomorrow’s businesses.

Download the PHP Report

Get the full survey results and analysis with your free copy of our annual PHP report below.