PHP Vs Python Comparison – What Are The Key Differences

In this tutorial, we will explore and compare PHP Vs Python with important uses, benefits, and coding with examples of Python and PHP:

Through this article, we shall understand the differences between using PHP and Python. The article covers the area of use of each of PHP and Python. It also mentions the names of the websites/tech companies that use PHP and Python. This will give you an idea of the popularity of these languages.

We have included a comparison table to bring out the differences between PHP and Python clearly. We have also discussed the benefits of using these languages.

Moreover, with a small code example, the article demonstrates how a piece of code looks like in Python and how the same code can be written in PHP. This again will help you understand which code is easier and offers better readability.

We shall close this article by answering some of the related FAQs. Let us first find out what is PHP and what is Python.

Understanding PHP Vs Python

PHP Vs Python

What Is PHP


PHP stands for Hypertext Preprocessor. PHP is a scripting language and has been long used for the development of web applications. A PHP file mainly consists of Javascript, CSS, HTML code, and of course the PHP code.

PHP was developed by Rasmus Lerdorf, in the year 1994. He developed it to track the number of visits made to his online resume. However, later more features were added and it was released for use by one and all in June 1995. Gradually over the years, there have been enormous features added to it and what we have today is a totally enhanced version of PHP.

It is open source. It is mainly used for server-side scripting which means that the scripts written in PHP get executed on the server. Being open-source, it can be freely used without the need for purchasing a license.

As mentioned above, the PHP code is executed on the server, however, the output is displayed on the client browser. The output received from the server is in HTML format. This HTML format can be interpreted by the client browser and thus the output is generated.

PHP is thus supported by all the main browsers like Internet Explorer, Chrome, Edge, Firefox, etc. Various databases can also be integrated with PHP. Some such examples are MySQL, Oracle, etc.

Examples of popular applications using PHP are Facebook, Wikipedia, WordPress, Yahoo, etc.

=> Click here to download the latest stable version of PHP (8.0.0)

What Is Python


Python is a high-level programming language that is interpreter-based. This means that this language uses an Interpreter to translate it to machine code for it to be understood by the computer. Python is an Object-oriented programming language that also supports functional and structured programming.

Python programming is used in fields such as Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Data analytics, etc. It was released in 1991 by Guido van Rossum. He was a dutch programmer and is also known as the creator of Python.

Python was released as a successor to another programming language known as ABC programming. It is quickly gaining popularity in RAD (Rapid Application Development).

It supports various programming paradigms. It provides complete support for structured and Object-oriented programming. It also supports limited features of functional programming. It is also to be noted that, by using extensions, contract programming and logic programming are also supported by Python.

Code written in Python is easy to read and understand. This is because the syntax of the Python language is simple and has very few exceptions and special cases unlike other languages like Pascal, C, and the like.

Let us understand this with a simple example: Python, for instance, uses indentation in the form of white spaces for delimiting blocks of codes, however, most of the programming languages use curly brackets for the same purpose.

Examples of popular applications built using Python are YouTube and Instagram.

=> Click here to download the latest stable version of Python (3.9.0) 

Benefits Of Using PHP

These are as follows:

  • PHP is supported by all major web servers and thus hosting a PHP site is cheaper.
  • It provides database connectivity support for a large number of databases like MySQL, Oracle, etc.
  • It is an open-source programming language that can be downloaded free of cost.
  • PHP offers better speed as compared to other scripting languages.
  • It provides some pre-defined Error Handling features to generate errors/warnings.

Benefits Of Using Python

These are as follows:

  • Code writing in Python is easy to understand, and so is the debugging of the code.
  • Python code is platform-independent and can be run on different hardware and Operating Systems.
  • Complex coding can be done easily. It is thus used in a variety of fields such as Data Analytics, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, etc.
  • Python has numerous pre-built libraries which makes writing code an easy task.
  • It offers database integration support for major databases like MySQL, Oracle, etc.
  • Integration with a number of other programming languages like C, C++, Java is possible.
  • Memory allocation and deallocation is automatic, thus providing automatic garbage collection

Also Read =>> Python Tutorial Series

PHP Vs Python: General Comparison

Used for dynamic web application development.Used for Rapid Application Development (RAD) such as in areas like Artificial Intelligence, Data Science etc.
PHP installation is easy.Comparatively difficult to install.
PHP is faster than Python and so is preferred where large data is to be handled.Python is slower as compared to PHP.
PHP syntax is comparatively complex making programming a little difficult.Python syntax provides for easy readability and use.
The Library Management feature is not too good.Python has a powerful Library Management Support.
PHP supports a larger number of frameworks.Python has support for a smaller number of frameworks.
Key features of PHP are: Open Source, Cross Platform support, Dynamically Typed.Key features of Python are: Open Source, Cross Platform support, Dynamically Typed, RAD (Rapid Application Development).
Complex code would involve a higher number of lines of code.Complex code can be written in a lesser number of code lines.
PHP offers connectivity to a large number of databases.Python support to databases is fairly limited.
Security features provided by PHP are not that good when compared with Python.Python provides greater security features.
PHP popularity is declining with time.Python’s popularity has been increasing with time for the past few years now.
Average Salary of PHP developers is lower as compared to Python developers.Average salary of a Python developer is comparatively higher.

Python Vs PHP: Code Comparison

Below is a code example written in Python and also in PHP. This code adds two numbers that are accepted as user input.

Python: Code Example

// Take User Input
N1 = input(‘Input the first number: ’)
N2 = input(‘Input the second number: ’)
// Add the Numbers
Sum = float(N1) + float(N2)
// Display the Result
print(‘The sum of the numbers entered is:’ ,Sum)

PHP: Code Example

<form method="post">  
Add Two numbers:<br><br>
// Take User Input
Enter Number 1:  
<input type="number" name="num1" /><br>
Enter Number 2:  
<input type="number" name="num2" /><br>
<input  type="submit" name="submit" value="Output">  
// Add the Numbers
       $num1 = $_POST['num1'];  
       $num2 = $_POST['num2'];  
       $sum =  $num1 + $num2;  
// Display the Result
echo "The sum of $num1 and $num2 is: ".$sum;   

By looking at the code written in PHP and Python above, we can say that Python code is much simpler and easy to understand. It is also short involving fewer lines of code as compared to PHP.

Further Reading =>> Differences between PHP vs HTML

PHP Or Python: The Choice

Both PHP and Python have their own advantages. PHP is useful in web application development for server-side scripting, while, Python is useful in areas like Artificial Intelligence, Data Analytics i.e. when Rapid Application Development is needed.

Thus, based on your requirements and knowing the differences between PHP and Python, you can make a decision about the language that best suits your needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q #1) Is Python or PHP easier?

Answer: Python coding is easier to understand and learn, whereas writing PHP code is more difficult. Thus coding in Python is comparatively simpler for beginners as compared to PHP code.

Q #2) Can I use Python instead of PHP?

Answer: Choosing Python over PHP should be done based on the areas of use and also the requirements. For instance, one must keep in mind that Python can be a preferred choice for:

  • RAD e.g. Data Analytics
  • Where security features needed are high
  • Easy code readability is needed
  • Large framework support is needed

Q #3) Is PHP still in demand?

Answer: PHP is still in demand, although the use of PHP has declined over time. Actually, Python use has brought a decline in using PHP but still, there are many popular websites that use PHP like Facebook, Wikipedia, Yahoo, etc.

Q #4) Is PHP faster than Python?

Answer: Yes, PHP is faster than Python and so it is a preferred choice for places that involve large data handling.

Q #5) Is Python front end or backend?

Answer: Python can be used for both frontend and backend programming. But, it is mainly used for server-side programming as a backend programming language.

Q #6) What are the disadvantages of PHP?

Answer: Some of the disadvantages are listed below:

  • Security features provided by PHP are not too great
  • Framework support offered is limited
  • Code is complex and difficult to understand

Q #7) What is PHP so popular?

Answer: The reason why PHP has long been used as a server-side scripting language is because of its features like being open source, its speed, cross-platform support, and its ability to connect to a large variety of databases.

Q #8) Which is more secure PHP or Python?

Answer: Python is more secure than PHP. The security features provided by Python are much better as compared to those provided by PHP.

Q #9) Does Google use Python?

Answer: Yes, Python is used for server-side scripting (backend programming) by Google. In fact, other popular websites like Facebook and YouTube also use it.

Q #10) Can Python run on any platform?

Answer: Yes, Python can be used across various platforms that have Mac, Windows, or Linux Operating Systems.

Q #11) Will PHP die soon?

Answer: PHP has been available for use since the year 1995. Although it is greatly used by developers for developing dynamic web applications, its use has declined. However, it would not die soon as it is still used by many programmers.

Q #12) Is Python good for Web development?

Answer: Yes, Python is definitely a good choice for web development, as it is easy to learn and use. Moreover, it also provides greater security features.


In this article, we covered various aspects like areas of use, benefits, database connectivity support, code complexity, etc. to understand the differences between PHP vs Python. The article also named the websites and tech companies that use PHP and Python.

The article explained, via a small code example, how a piece of code looks in PHP and how the same code looks in Python, to give you the idea of code complexity. We have also tried answering some of the FAQs related to this topic.

We hope, this article has been helpful in enhancing your knowledge and understanding the differences between PHP and Python.