The most popular programming languages – South Africa vs The World

According to the Tiobe Index for October 2019, Java, C, and Python are the most popular programming languages in the world.

Other popular languages include C++, C#, and Visual Basic.

Tiobe highlighted that many software engineers are fearful of missing out on new technologies, which is why they are so interested in tracking programming language trends.

However, Tiobe argued that this fear is unwarranted.

“Every year new programming languages emerge and seem to become popular, but in fact not much changes,” said Tiobe.

“If we compare the current Tiobe index top 8 of today with the one of 2014 (5 years ago) and 2004 (15 years ago), there is only one different programming language.”

In 2004, Perl was in the top 8, but disappeared due to the dominance of Python, while in 2014, Objective C found a spot in the top 8 due to the hype around writing apps for iPhones.

The PYPL rankings show Python as the most popular programming languages, followed by Java and JavaScript.

According to PYPL, Python has grown the most of all popular languages over the past years, increasing its popularity by 18.9%.

In contrast, Java has lost the most popularity, dropping by 7%.

October 2019 rankings

The top 10 programming languages for October 2019, according to the Tiobe Index and PYPL rankings, are detailed below.

October 2019
Tiobe Ranking Change YoY PYPL Ranking Change YoY
Java -0.92% Python +4.5%
C +0.8% Java -2.4%
Python +1.93% JavaScript +0.1%
C++ -1.36% C# -0.4%
C# +0.37% PHP -1.2%
Visual Basic .NET -2.14% C/C++ -0.4
JavaScript -0.2% R -0.2
SQL -0.1% Objective-C -0.7
PHP -0.89% Swift -0.1
Objective-C +0.3% Matlab -0.2

Calculating the rankings

  • PYPL – The more a language tutorial is searched, the more popular the language is assumed to be. The raw data comes from Google Trends.
  • Tiobe – The ratings are based on the number of skilled engineers worldwide, courses, and third-party vendors. Popular search engines are also used to calculate the ratings.

Popular programming languages in South Africa

Wits University’s Joburg Centre for Software Engineering (JCSE) and the Information Technology Professionals South Africa (IITPSA) have launched a study looking at South Africa’s IT industry.

This study showed that Java remains the most in-demand programming language in South Africa.

Python has overtaken C# to move into second place, while JavaScript and .NET round out the top 5.

Python continues to travel along an upward trajectory, as it only moved into the third spot in 2017.

The most in-demand programming languages in South Africa can be viewed below.

Top Programming languages

Now read: Building South Africa’s future with 5G and fibre

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The most popular programming languages – South Africa vs The World