The most popular programming languages in the world

C remains the most popular programming language in the world, according to the Tiobe Index for February 2021.

It boasts 16.34% of market share, while its nearest competitors Java and Python have 11.29% and 10.86% market share respectively.

This time last year, Java was leading the index. However, it is now threatened for second place by the 2020 programming language of the year, Python.

Tiobe noted that thetop 8 programming languages have not changed over the last 7 years, which is thanks to the frequent release of new versions from the top languages.

“For instance C#, which releases a language update almost every year. Or JavaScript, which changes so fast that hardly anybody can follow,” Tiobe said.

“C++ is changing less frequently (once in 3 years), but its latest release contains the introduction of modules, which will cause a major shift in C++ programming.”

PYPL rankings

The PYPL index found that Python is the programming language for which tutorials were searched most often on Google.

Python boasts 30.06% of all tutorial searches and is followed by Java and JavaScript.

The biggest year-on-year growth in the top 10 was held by Objective-C, which increased in popularity by 1.2%.

Java was the biggest loser, decreasing in popularity by 1.7%.

February 2021 rankings

The top 10 programming languages for February 2021, according to the Tiobe Index and PYPL rankings, are detailed below.

February 2021
Tiobe Index Change YoY PYPL Ranking Change YoY
C -0.43% Python +0.3%
Java -6.07% Java -1.7%
Python +1.52% Javascript +0.4%
C++ +0.71% C# -0.6%
C# -1.48% C/C++ +0.5%
Visual Basic -1.53% PHP -0.1%
JavaScript +0.21% R +0.0%
PHP -0.27% Objective-C +1.2%
SQL +0.20% Swift -0.3%
Assembly +0.54% TypeScript +0.0%

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.

Now read: The rise of the Rust programming language

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The most popular programming languages in the world