What Are The Most Popular Programming Languages?

most popular programming languages

Some people are fluent in Spanish, some are fluent in Chinese, and others are fluent in programming languages — the languages of all tech. You might be asking “what’s a programming language?” It’s easy! A programming language is what makes tech work. It’s the tools used to build websites, phone apps, software, and the search engine you’re using to read this blog! 

Programming languages work in a way similar to Lego bricks. Each brick is an individual piece of the programming language. When put together properly and you’ll get a brilliant building. 

So what are the most popular programming languages? 

1. Python

Python is the Lego “Star Wars: Millennium Falcon” of the programming world, meaning it’s the most popular and is sought after in the industry.  It is simple (unlike the Millennium Falcon set), has a huge library of resources, and will integrate easily with other programming languages. It’s often the first language students learn! 

Not only that, Python is in high demand. The technology sector is always looking for bright young minds who understand this coding snake inside and out. Based on Indeed job listings, the demand for Python programmers isn’t going to diminish any time soon!

Number of jobs: 19,000

Average US annual salary: $120,000

Python is Growing FAST

Python is one of the fastest-growing programming languages too! In 2019, it was considered to be the third most popular programming language and quickly skyrocketed to first place as the year went on.

What It’s Used For

This open source language is frequently used for artificial intelligence (robots!) and data science, though it has nearly endless uses. It’s not suitable for mobile apps, though…yet. 

Popular Software Programs Written in Python:

  • Youtube
  • Google
  • Instagram
  • Reddit
  • Spotify
  • Dropbox
  • Quora

2. JavaScript

Even if you’re not a programmer, you’ve probably heard of JavaScript. Virtually everyone uses it! 

Although Python has eclipsed JavaScript as the most popular programming language,  JavaScript still holds its own as one of the most popular programming languages used today. It’s literally everywhere online — when your favorite show loads on Netflix JavaScript is running on the hamster wheel to get it going! 

Unfortunately, internet browsers can disable JavaScript code from running, which is partially why it dropped in popularity. But the industry is still booming and looking for professionals who can memorize this script inside and out. 

Popular software programs written in Javascript include:

  • Netflix
  • Candy Crush
  • Facebook
  • Uber
  • LinkedIn

The Javascript Job Industry: 

Number of jobs: 24,000

Average US annual salary: $118,000

3. Java

No, Java is not Javascript, though the two have similar names. Business all over the world use Java for client-server applications. It basically means that the server runs various programs that share resources with and distribute work among clients. Think of it like connecting to a Zoom call for a meeting — you rely on Zoom to remain stable and to keep a stable connection between you and your colleagues, no matter where they are in the world. 

It’s not just a business-based language either. Have you ever heard of Minecraft? Yup, one of the world’s most popular games runs on Java!

Java’s is pretty universal, which is why it’s so popular. It’s known as the “write once, run anywhere” language because if you write something in Java, it can be run on anything that supports Java. It’s also super similar to C++ and C# (other popular programming languages), so it’s really easy to switch between the three!

The Java language does have some drawbacks, though. It doesn’t play nicely with the Cloud or Cloud-based applications. This is why Java is the third on our list — many businesses are pushing to integrate the Cloud into their systems. 

That doesn’t mean Java is dying out, though! Let’s take a look at the numbers: 

Number of jobs: 29,000

Average US annual salary: $104,000

Popular software programs written in Java

  • Minecraft
  • Wikipedia Search
  • Maestro Mars Rover controller (Yes, from NASA!)

4. C#

C# — pronounced as C Sharp — was developed by Microsoft. It’s a faster, more secure, and  upgraded version of C. Fully integrated into the tech giant known as Microsoft, C# is a must-know for anyone looking to be hired by them. 

Number of jobs: 18,000

Average US annual salary: $97,000

C# isn’t just useful for Microsoft, though.! It supports the development of Windows applications, browser plug-ins, and mobile devices. C# offers shared codebases, a large code library, and a variety of data types.

However, it’s not the easiest language to learn and we definitely don’t recommend it for anyone without years of programming experience under their belt. It has a sharp learning curve and is a little unforgiving when you’re trying to solve errors. 

Popular software programs written in C#: 

  • Windows Installer XML
  • Microsoft Visual Studio
  • Paint.net

5. C

We mentioned C earlier and while there is an upgraded variant of it, it’s still in the programming spotlight. That’s not surprising though — C was one of the first programming languages ever created. It’s the grandfather of everything on this list! 

Despite its age, C is still used a lot in tech. 

Popular software programs written in C include: 

  • Microsoft Windows
  • Linux
  • Mac

Since it’s an older programming language, it doesn’t work well with mobile apps or modern websites. You’ll have to lean on your Javascript and Python knowledge if you want to design the next viral game or the latest and greatest website. 

Though great to know, opportunities to make a living as a C programmer are dwindling. 

Number of jobs: 8,000

Average US annual salary: $97,000

Learning the Most Popular Programming Languages

Learning a programming language is exactly like learning a second language — it gets harder the older you get. It’s not impossible for adults to learn to program— thousands do every day — but kids benefit the most by getting introduced to programming languages early. This is their future after all!  

If you want a foundation in programming that can weather any storm, you learn C, Python, and Java. They’re the powerhouses of the programming industry. It also helps that all three of them are easy to test, debug, and maintain. 

Programming can be more than just sitting at a computer screen too. At GenTech Support,we turn coding and programming into a hands-on and fun activity. The participants in KidsTech program learn programming languages through interactive lessons in robotics, circuitry, dazzling designs and more. 

Learn more more about our KidsTech program today and give us a call or visit us online. We’ll be happy to answer any questions.

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