2019 Stats on Top JS Frameworks: React, Angular & Vue

Javascript (JS) is by far the most popular programming language out there. According to the 2019 Stack Overflow Report, JS is used by 67.8% of developers. It’s also the most complex programming language, with 8.36% of JS code being deeply nested. It’s clear: there’s a lot going on with JS. Today, we’ll untangle the statistics surrounding JS frameworks, so that you better understand the coding landscape. Specifically, we’ll focus on the “Big Three” of JS frameworks in 2019: React, Angular and Vue.

GitHub Stars

The JavaScript Rising Stars report, which tracks the number of stars added on GitHub, listed Vue, React and Angular as the most popular JS frameworks in 2018, outpacing the other frameworks by a lot:

Vue had the top star count with 45.3k+, showing how it’s increasing in popularity. For the first time, it surpassed React in the ratings. However, GitHub stars aren’t the only way to understand JS frameworks. While they give a sense of the trend, other statistics suggest a fuller picture of these top three frameworks.

Program Downloads

Unlike GitHub stars, the number of downloads show React in the lead in terms of sheer bulk of use. These downloads are a good indicator of what developers are actually using, instead of hot trends. The most surprising part of this data? Vue comes in last, after React and Angular:

Also, note that React is well above and beyond Angular and Vue in terms of downloads. This happens with both monthly trends and yearly trends. As you can see with the downloads per year below, React has consistently outpaced Angular and Vue since 2016:

These numbers show that these frameworks have taken on different types of popularity. React is a go-to framework and Vue is a trendy new possibility.

Stack Overflow Questions

Another good measure of JS framework usage is the number of questions that appear on Stack Overflow. Questions show that developers are working within certain frameworks, though it’s also telling of their level of complexity.

In this case, questions in 2019 about React just slightly beat Angular questions for the first time in history. Meanwhile, Vue questions are trending upwards but are still low. Angular.js (the older version) questions have plunged as expected.

This chart makes it clear that React and Vue are seeing more and more questions on Stack Overflow, which is a sign of high usage.

Google Search Trends

Google search trends can be tricky for showing interest in certain topics. For one, you have to make sure that the terms are on equal footing. In this case, we looked at keywords “React javascript,” “Vue javascript” and “Angular javascript” to make sure we weren’t comparing unequal variations of keywords.

The trend shows that React is on top after surpassing Angular in 2017, with Vue lower on the searches. While these numbers aren’t conclusive, they give another perspective on React’s consistent popularity.

Job Opening Numbers

 The job market is another measure of the importance of certain JS frameworks over others. While this fluctuates constantly, there are some clear trends:

This data comes from Hacker News Hiring Trends and shows the percentage of posts for developer job openings. React takes the top spot, while the other two are in the same ballpark. The only difference is that Angular shows a decreasing trend and Vue a slight increase.

Regular Usage Percentages

There’s also something to be said for how often developers use these frameworks. For example, developers’ “favorite” frameworks may not actually be the ones they use most.

According to the 2018 State of Developer Ecosystem Survey, regular usage seems to overlap with popularity for the most part. The most regularly used framework was React at 60%, then Vue at 33% and Angular.JS and Angular at 21% and 20%. There’s also a bunch of other frameworks thrown in there, which shows that the framework landscape isn’t as simple as the “Big Three.”

Developer Framework Satisfaction

Developers’ satisfaction with React is confirmed by the 2018 State of JS Report as well. In this case, the chart reflects the developer satisfaction of the framework, based on whether they would use it again:

React beats both categories, with 64.8% saying they would use it again, compared to 28.8% for Vue and 23.9% for Angular. However, there’s a big jump in satisfaction between Vue and Angular. 46.6% of developers would like to learn Vue, while 33% would not use Angular again. That’s quite the difference.

Web Penetration

To measure how often web companies make use of these frameworks, it’s also useful to look at web penetration. The site Similar Tech has kept a running tab on the number of websites and domains that use these frameworks.

Once again React is in the lead, but isn’t far behind Angular in terms of unique domains. Vue lags both in the numbers, though all three show growing trends.

Most Loved and Wanted Frameworks

The 2019 Stack Overflow Developer Survey also measured what frameworks developers love versus which are most wanted. Like GitHub stars, this shows how developers feel about these frameworks. The results aren’t too surprising:

React and Vue were head-to-head in the most loved category, while all three appeared in the top most wanted frameworks, with React in the lead with 21.5%.

This is another way to show that React takes the top spot in many different statistical areas.

Top Framework Salaries

Like job demand, the average salary for these three frameworks shows how valued programming skills are. According to the State of JS Survey, all three were pretty close in salaries:

React was only about $10,000 higher on average than the other two, which makes sense given its popularity for top websites.

Top Website Market Share

When you break down how each framework is used on the web, there are also some differences between the three. By putting the websites into categories - Top 10K sites, Top 100K sites, Top 1M sites, and Entire Web - we can see that Angular actually beats React in every category but the Entire Web.

This is an important distinction and likely stems from the fact that Angular runs Google and YouTube, while top sites for React include lesser-trafficked Yahoo, BBC, and Paypal. If you’re curious about how Vue stacks up, it lags behind React in all categories:

Top clients for Vue include Stack Overflow, PopCash and Zoom, which aren’t quite in the same league as the other two frameworks.

Most Liked Aspects of Each Framework

Finally, let’s take a brief look at why developers like these frameworks. We found the most liked aspect of each in the State of JS Report:






The most liked aspect for each of them was unique, which drives home the point that no one framework is better than the other. They all have unique features and aspects that make them stand out among the rest.

Final Takeaway

All JS frameworks have their ups and downs. While Vue seems to be growing the most, React is the most popular in terms of usage and Angular has captured the top web market share. They each have different strengths and all of them are top JS frameworks being used today.

Jobs in programming are only skyrocketing and there’s plenty of work as a React, Angular or Vue developer - or even in different languages altogether, such as Python, Ruby or Node.js. Before you interview at a tech company, be sure to prepare since the competition is fierce. If you’re a Node.js programmer, you can check out our Node.js interview questions to help you out.

Whatever language you choose to specialize in, be sure to understand the programming landscape by taking a look at stats like these. You’ll be better prepared to take on the coding world with these numbers in hand!

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