Based on the statistical data, it is safe to say that most developers give their preference to JavaScript, which makes it the most popular programming language out there. The reasons for such wide popularity are various, though we’d like to single out the simplicity and relevance of this scripting language. Needless to say that there are quite a few frameworks and libraries in the web development world that use JavaScript. The article you are about to read will give you an insight into the two widely-used JavaScript tools, Ember and React. Along with the comparison of core features, you will find out what the differences are between them so that you could choose the solution that suits your needs in the best way. Okay, let’s make it happen.

React vs Ember: Background Info 

Since the number of available JavaScript frameworks is huge, the choice of the right tool can become a real headache for web developers who write in this programming language. That is why we have decided to compare two leading heavyweights – React and Ember.

Ember.js is…

A well-structured client-side JavaScript framework that enables front-end developers to build effective massive web applications. Being a fork of SproutCore MVC framework, Ember.js is claimed to be a perfect solution for ambitious developers. The framework comes with lots of useful tools such as an efficient control system, tools for preventing out-of-date APIs, etc.

React.js is…

A powerful declarative JavaScript library that web developers use to create interactive interfaces of websites. It is an open-source tool developed and maintained by Facebook. With this solution, it is possible to build large-scale complex web applications that deal with high traffic and often changing data. React.js puts its main focus on independent components that can be easily reused. One of the crucial React.js features that should be mentioned is the custom syntax, JSX, thanks to which the coding is less complex. 

A Detailed Comparison of Ember.js vs React.js

Now that you know a bit about each solution, it is time to dive deep into a detailed comparison of Ember vs React, single out their differences and similarities, advantages and disadvantages.

Performance

When it comes to performance, React.js really stands out. It should be noted that the library works with the Virtual DOM as opposed to other frameworks that use the Real DOM. Thanks to this approach and the fact that all React components are independent the speed of updates is rather quick. In turn, fast updates provide the capacity for creating an exceptionally dynamic UI. On top of that, since React elements are already bound to the functionality of the front-end, there’s no need to connect DOM to it. With this approach up their sleeve, not only can React developers work with the elements of user interface faster, but they also can use Hot Reload functionality. 

High performance and server-side rendering are among the benefits of the Ember.js framework. The tool groups all DOM updates and bindings which results in increased performance. The tasks that are similar to each other are bundled together and so a browser processes them all in one go instead of re-calculating each task separately. Moreover, all components of the framework are consistent since they come from the Ember Object Model.

Architecture

Default architecture is rich and super convenient, that is why most developers admit that Ember is a pleasure to work on. Thanks to its scalable and clear nature, the architecture pattern is easy-to-follow. The combination with the Command-line interface and ember-data is the best.

React, on the other hand, provides no default architecture on its own. Due to this, programmers need to look for some architecture on the side. The most common combination would be to use React along with the Flux architecture. Together these tools enrich one another saving the developers lots of time and nerves.

Documentation and Community Support

One of the strengths of Ember.js is its well-structured and easy-to-follow documentation. There are a number of useful guides as well as topic-related forums which can help one to learn and use this framework with ease. Although the community is much smaller than the one of React.

Even though it is under the caring waing of Facebook, React.js still can’t boast of proper documentation. However, since the community of people who use this JavaScript library is rather big, it is easy to find the needed pieces of information on the Internet. The guys from the React team have also announced that they keep working on improving documentation, so there is a decent chance that the new release will solve the problem.

Among companies that use Ember.js are the following: LinkedIn, Twitch, Groupon, to name a few. As for React.js, it is preferred by such giants as Facebook, Instagram, Netflix and Uber Technologies. 

Ember vs React: Weighing Pros and Cons 


EmberReact
ProsClear default architecture;Server-side rendering;Focus on high performance;Feature-rich;Top-notch documentation;Great routing;Consistent components;Templates can be updated automatically;Self-configurationReusable components;both SPA and SSR architecturesOne-way data binding;Great for building large-scale apps with frequently changing data;Can be used with other libraries;Fast virtual DOM
ConsThe rendering is a bit slow in the beginning;The community is small;The framework is hard to learn for beginners;HeavyweightProper documentation is hard to find;The need to learn the new syntax (JSX);Can’t be considered as a complete solution which leads to reliance on third-party plugins

The Final Word: Which One to Choose?

If your goal is to develop and prototype web applications fast and easy, you surely need one of the JavaScript frameworks. Nevertheless, choosing one is a hard nut to crack, to say the least. It is due to a big number of available frameworks in the industry. Having read our comparison of Ember versus React, you have probably detected quite a few common things between these tools. Each solution has got its strong points and drawbacks as well. One thing is sure, you won’t be able to find a completely flawless framework. 

The point is, you have to opt for the one that fits under the requirements of a certain project. Not only should you pay attention to the features a particular framework possesses, but you also need to take its pros and cons into account so that you would be able to make them work to your advantage. With an approach like this, you and your project will only benefit. For example, if you need to create a single page web application quickly, Ember.js might be the way to go. However, if you look for a library to build massive apps that will have to deal with constantly changing data and high traffic, we’d recommend you to hire developers who know React.js well and can pair it with other tools.

So, in terms of the Ember js vs React js battle there is no absolute winner and you can go with the solution that suits your needs better after having weighed all pros and cons, read reviews and asked the communities for their opinion.