Written by:

Ben Haig

Ben Haig

June 20, 2023 at 11:50 AM

Byte-Sized Development Insights

React vs Angular: A Comprehensive Comparison

Let's kick things off by understanding what React and Angular are. They are both popular JavaScript technologies used for building interactive user interfaces (UIs), but that's about where the similarities end.

React, officially known as React.js, is an open-source JavaScript library developed by Facebook. It came to the limelight in 2013, and it's been gaining popularity ever since due to its simplicity, scalability, and flexibility.

On the other side of the spectrum, we have Angular. Developed by Google, it's an open-source, full-fledged web framework that initially released as AngularJS in 2010. However, the Angular we know today, often referred to as "Angular 2+", emerged in 2016 and is a complete rewrite of its predecessor.

Key Differences between React and Angular

One of the significant differences is that Angular is a full-featured MVC framework, whereas React is merely a library. What does this mean? In essence, Angular provides a comprehensive solution for building web apps, while React focuses more on the 'View' in MVC, offering the freedom to integrate other libraries.

React uses JavaScript with the option of JSX, an XML-like syntax extension, which helps to write HTML in React. On the other hand, Angular uses TypeScript, a statically typed superset of JavaScript. It enforces type safety, making the code more predictable and easier to debug.

React boasts a vibrant community and extensive support, given its backing by Facebook. Similarly, Angular, being a Google product, enjoys substantial institutional support and a steadily growing community.

When it comes to performance, React's virtual DOM (Document Object Model) gives it a significant advantage. However, Angular's two-way data binding can sometimes cause performance issues, but with Angular's change detection mechanism, you can control this.

React offers more flexibility, allowing developers to choose the tools, libraries, and architecture for their project. Angular, though, is more opinionated, prescribing specific solutions and structures for building applications.

Similarities between React and Angular

Despite their differences, React and Angular share some commonalities. Both provide component-based architectures, ensuring reusable code and faster development. They also offer robust toolsets for development and testing.

When to Use React or Angular?

React could be your go-to when you need high flexibility and speed. It's perfect for SPAs (Single Page Applications) and mobile app development, thanks to React Native.

Angular is suitable for large-scale, feature-rich applications. Its adherence to TypeScript makes it a solid choice for enterprise-level applications.

Learning Curve: React vs Angular

React has a lower learning curve compared to Angular, primarily because of its simplicity and the fact that it's a library rather than a complete framework. Angular, with its extensive list of concepts and constructs, can be challenging for beginners.


Both React and Angular have their strengths and weaknesses. The decision between them largely depends on the project requirements, the development team's expertise, and personal preference.