What are the features available in PHP 8? A developer’s explanation

Published 1 year ago
PHP Development


PHP's latest version, PHP 8, has been recently launched. This article will provide a detailed analysis of its features so that you can understand its importance.

PHP is one of the top programming languages used for web development, along with Python and Asp.Net. Recently, the latest version of PHP has been launched, PHP 8. It does not take a genius to understand that this version will be better than ever. But the question is, how? We will explore this answer in this blog.

PHP has introduced some new features and updated the existing ones to offer a smooth experience. This includes introduction of new functions, such as, str_contains, get-debug-type, and str_starts_with_and_str_ends_with, etc. According to the best PHP development company in Australia, each of these functions makes programming in PHP a little easier. But, that’s not all.

PHP 8 has these latest features, such as:

  • JIT compiler (Just-in-time)
  • Resource class
  • Reflection changes   

Also Read: What Features Must Be Included Within A Video Chatting App? Explained

1. JIT compiler

First up, we will discuss the JIT compiler and how it changes the whole concept. In PHP, line by line compilation occurs, which can decrease the program's speed of execution. JIT, on the other hand, compiles parts of the code during the run time, thus eliminating this issue. Upon examination, it is found that the JIT compiler can compile a code within 0.053 seconds, which is more than 45%.

2. Resource class   

These classes can act as alternatives to different resources used within the programming language. Some examples are:

  • CurlHandle
  • GdImage
  • Socket/ Addressinfo      

A new instance is also added that will be used to delete resources. These classes can make this language cleaner, more readable, and safer from errors (such as typecasting).

3. Reflection changes  

While using PHP 8, developers encountered significant changes in the language. Like some features are added to the mix, some are also removed. These include some ReflectionParameters, such as getClass(), isArray, and isCallable. Instead, developers get a new reflection class (Reflection API) named getType(), which will display a list of parameters available within the framework.   

But these are not all; there are some other changes as well. These are:

  • LSP enforcement (Liskov Substitution Principle)
  • Display of fatal errors upon receiving incompatible method signatures
  • Behavioural assertion

According to experts, there are significant changes in the syntax too. Let’s take a look at those:

1. Attributes

Using attributes, developers can create and declare meta-data for different functions, classes, properties, and various parameters. These are best used with PHP’s Reflection API. This makes the process of parsing easier, and time-efficient (as the code is not stored in the DocBlock comments).

2. Union types 

These types can be used to declare type declarations (with their return types, parameters, and properties). It supports false values and considers them as special types. Some experts believe that using these types can cause excess time-consumption. However, some experts support the usage of this element, especially during the development of complex web applications.

3. Match expressions

While programming, a developer may forget to provide the break element to the switch case. This unintentional mistake can lead to run-time and compile-time errors. This is eliminated with the introduction of match expressions.

It can compare the two sides of an expression (for particular parameters). If there is no error, a return value will be displayed. Otherwise, it will show errors.

4. Attributes             

Attributes will play a crucial role in improving the power and performance of this language. Also, it will offer a degree of consistency across the entire platform.

5. WeakMaps   

If a developer wants to assign some values to object keys, they would have to use weakMaps. It is quite similar to the feature SplObjectStorage; however, it does not hinder the process of garbage collection.

6. Improved constructors    

PHP 8 allows developers to determine if a particular constructor will be public, private, or protected. This will provide a sense of clarity and direction to the entire platform.

7. Null-safe operator

This operator is used to maintain safety whenever the return of a particular expression is null. In this case, the entire program will be discontinued to prevent errors. 

These are some of the features that are newly added in the latest PHP version. But why do experts stress on choosing PHP over any other web development framework? The list attached below is the perfect answer to this question.

  • PHP is open-source; it means anyone can install and use it, without paying any license fees or buying any activation key.
  • PHP can run on any platform, and developers can use it simultaneously with other programming languages.  
  • The syntax is simple, and it’s easy to understand, even for beginners.
  • It is easy to connect the database with it, and this is why PHP applications load superfast.  
  • It is quite easy to maintain these apps and update the code automatically.
  • PHP comes with a vast community of developers, and designers who are always ready to help others out. This support is not available in any other language.
  • PHP offers the best testing facility for developers, especially for unit testing. Developers can check if the application is performing perfectly, and then make necessary changes to it. It adds a degree of automation to the entire procedure too.
  • Unlike many modern languages, PHP is stable and quite secure. Therefore, these applications will be safe from external security threats, including hacking, data tampering, malicious software, etc.  
  • PHP offers the best performance, so it will not crash down unexpectedly.
  • This programming language is quite flexible, and experts can make the necessary changes to it.
  • PHP offers more control to web developers than any other language
  • PHP is cost-effective and time-efficient                            

If you are looking for a PHP-based application, then you have to choose the right technology partner. My Programmers is the best option when it comes to web and app development. The company provides a range of services, including:

  • Web design and development (including redesign) (PHP, Asp.net, etc.)
  • App design and development (including redesign)
  • Angular development
  • eCommerce solutions   

Like all of these departments, this company excels at PHP development. It has a massive portfolio with several projects with different classifications. The company believes in open and transparent communication and will deliver regular updates. Lastly, it is a cost-effective option than any other companies out there.

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