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Post By Admin Last Updated At 2021-02-09
Kotlin vs Java-which is better to use in 2021?

Today, Android applications are leading the mobile market to a great extent. There are a number of tools and programming languages are available to develop Android apps attractively. Using popular coding languages like Kotlin and Java, many developers feel it’s easy to build a dynamic user-friendly Android app. Here, in this blog post, I am going to discuss the key differences between Kotlin vs Java coding languages. 

Many of the users of programming languages, feel that Java is the best one for Android and other types of app building. But the advent of Kotlin to the app development market has somewhat shaken the market. Hence, many programmers started querying on this topic, which is better for different purposes. Like Android app development, device support, etc. In the Kotlin vs Java comparison, it will be clear that whether both are similar to use or anyone is better among them.

In brief, Kotlin is the latest coding language with modern features and mainly useful in developing server-side apps. On the other side,  Java is known to all as an object-oriented coding language that executes JVM. This helps us to run the same program or code across different platforms, devices, machines, etc. 

Let us look into the major points of differences between the two distinct coding languages in Kotlin vs Java. 

Kotlin vs Java- Comparison

Kotlin vs Java: which is better

Before you go further in this segment, here you just need a basic idea of both the programming languages. In Kotlin vs Java, Kotlin is an open-source, free to use coding language that uses JVM or Java Virtual Machine to execute on different platforms and devices. Moreover, Kotlin integrates the OOPs concept and functional coding within a self-reliant and distinctive platform. It is very clear, simple, and comes with lesser formalities, unlike Java. Moreover, it is an improved version of Java language with statically typed and enables to write concise and expressive code to the developers.

Further, it is also easy to compile with JavaScript, Android, and etc. for building code and easily run on the iOS platform. Also, this coding language is fully compatible with Java stacks including a smooth learning system. It’s easier for the users to switch from Java to Kotlin just by installing a Plugin. There are many trending apps that used Kotlin in its development such as Pinterest, Trello, Shadowsocks, Evernote, etc.

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Similarly, Java is an object-oriented, multi-platform supporting coding language and most popular with the existing developers. In Kotlin vs Java, Java programming is mostly useful for standalone applications or backend development purposes. This is of primary importance while coming to developing Android apps. This coding language was introduced in the year 1995 and still continues its development journey. Android developers mostly prefer this language as it is written on the same. Hence, the companies that use Java in their applications building are Signal, Twitter, Spotify, Amaze, etc.

Still, there are many points to discuss for Kotlin vs Java platforms usage, performance, advantages, and disadvantages, etc. Let us move further in this blog.

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Kotlin vs Java - Key differences

There are many key differences between Kotlin vs Java programming language that clear maximum doubts of the users. Here, we go with some points below to know more.

In Kotlin vs Java, Kotlin language integrates the features of both OOPs and functional coding. The language Java is stick to object-oriented programming only.

The language Kotlin allows users to build an extension function for smooth working. Another side, Java programming doesn't provide any such extension functions to its users.

Kotlin doesn't provide any indirect conversions of the programming whereas, Java supports suggested changes.

In, Kotlin vs Java, in the Java language variables of an old or prehistoric type are not objects. In Kotlin, variables of ancient or earliest type are objects.

Kotlin language offers well support to Lambda Expression. On the other side, Java doesn't offer support to Lambda Expressions.

In Kotlin vs Java, the language Java needs variable datatype statements.

But Kotlin language doesn't require any variable datatype statements. Moreover, there are no null variables or objects that exist in Kotlin. But the Null variable or objects are the existing part of Java.

The Java program needs a semicolon to be present in its code. In Kotlin programs don't need semicolons in their code.

The functionalities like language scripting enable users to use Kotlin directly within the Gradle build scripts. But Java language does not provide any language scripting abilities for use.

In Kotlin vs Java, the language Kotlin doesn't support static members, whereas Java supports static members.

Moreover, Kotlin language has a provision for advanced Java frameworks that mostly rely on annotation processing. It needs to add annotation processing to the Kotlin project when using the Java library to a bit extent. In this case, the Java library doesn’t use this. 

Kotlin vs Java for backend

Kotlin language is most preferred for the latest Android developers as it is easy and has very few nuances. Compared to the Java coding language, deployment of the application is much faster and compiles easily. With lightweight features, it saves applications from increased size. Moreover, Kotlin language helps to compile code into a bytecode that is easier to run on JVM. Hence, the users have an option to move their Java libraries and frameworks to run within a Kotlin project.

Thus, all this makes the sense of using Kotlin language for backend developments as it’s simple to use. And the code is written also much smaller than Java codes. Also, it has many great modern features that Java may not consist of. 

Kotlin vs Java performance

Due to the bytecode structure, the Kotlin application performs much faster than the Java application. Moreover, the inline functions that Kotlin supports, makes it run faster applications that allow code to use lambdas. This feature makes it run Kotlin apps much faster than Java. In Kotlin vs Java, performance-wise Kotlin is better, and most preferred amongst developers. 

Kotlin features (Kotlin vs Java)

There are some important features of Kotlin available. These are-

The coding language provides lesser coding to write for the developers.

It offers a faster compilation of the application.

This language uses JVM (Java Virtual Machine), including functional coding and OOPs concepts together.

It supports some different extension functions without making any changes to the program. 

Moreover, Kotlin uses CLI- command-line interface or IDE for writing codes.

There are many smart features of this language available that help to cut application costs and enhances app performance and speed. 

Java Features (Kotlin vs Java)

There are distinctive features of the Java language that make it different from Kotlin. Such as-

Java allows its developers to write code once and use it across different computing platforms.

This is designed and developed for creating OOPs based apps. 

The language is multithreaded and has a great feature of automated memory management.

Furthermore, there are some other useful features of the Kotlin & Java languages under Kotlin vs Java. More about these features, we will see in detail now.

Null Safety (Kotlin vs Java)

Kotlin language is safe from NullPointerExceptions as a part of null safety. By default, in the Kotlin language, all types of variables are null-nullable. This means users can not assign null values to any of the variables or objects. In case, users assign null values to the variables, the code under Kotlin language will fail while compiling. 

In the Java language, it allows NullPointer Exceptions that cause headaches to the developers. Unlike Kotlin, it allows its users to allow a null value to the variable. But in the case of accessing an object reference including a null value raises a null pointer exception. This exception has to handle by the user only. 

Extension Functions (Kotlin vs Java)

Kotlin offers the developers the capability to enhance the current code class with the latest functions. Hence, this extension of classes is possible with the affixing a prefix name to the class to a name of the new function. 

In the case of the Java language, there are no extension functions available. If the user wants to enhance the functionality of the current class. Then he needs to build a new class and inherit the same into the parent class. 

Coroutines (Kotlin vs Java)

There are some long-running tasks such as CPU-intensive tasks and network I/O. In this case, the corresponding thread may be blocked, and as default Android has a single thread system. Here, the Java language allows building many threads in the background and also run. But the crucial task is to manage them easily.

Whereas Kotlin language allows building multiple threads that help to run these long-running intensive operations. But Kotlin has Coroutines support that suspends execution at a certain level without blocking threads. This makes the smooth running of long-run intensive operations. 

Checked Exceptions (Kotlin vs Java)

In the Kotlin language, there are no checked exceptions available. So, here developers don’t need to declare any exceptions. They have some benefits and cons also. But in the Java language, there is a support of checked exceptions that allows developers to declare exceptions. This finally leads to strong code development along with good error handling capacity. 

Data Classes (Kotlin vs Java)

In Java coding language, to hold data strongly, users need to have Classes. For this purpose, the user needs to describe constructors, many getter and setter methods, hashcode(), strings(), etc. In the case of Kotlin language, to hold data this also needs to have classes. In this case, the user can declare a class through a keyword called “data” under the class definition. Later, the compiler takes care of all the tasks. Such as building constructors, getter and setter methods, etc. for various fields. 

Type reference (Kotlin vs Java)

In the case of Kotlin coding language, there is no need to mention the type of each variable explicitly. Moreover, the user also can mention it explicitly if he wants to do so. 

Here, in the Java language, the user needs to mention the variable type in a clear and detailed manner. Also, this has to do while declaring the variable. 

Functional Programming (Kotlin vs Java)

In Kotlin vs Java, the Java language doesn’t have functional coding support till its version 8. But in the case of developing Android apps, it offers support to the Java programming version 8 features. 

Kotlin comes with a mix of many functional and procedural coding language that includes many useful methods. Such as lambda, higher-order functions, overloading operations, etc. 

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Advantages of Kotlin language (Kotlin vs Java)

The following benefits of the Kotlin language are as follows-

With the help of the Kotlin framework that is multiplatform, a user can extract a common codebase. This common codebase helps to target all others at the same time.

This language also provides in-built null safety support that saves the life of applications, especially on Android. Moreover, this completely includes the old Java-style APIs.

Moreover, it is more concise, simple, and expressive than the Java language. This refers to less space for error.

Kotlin programming language provides a very user-friendly and easy coding process. 

It uses different types of functions and special language structures such as lambda expressions.

This language allows developers to build several extension functions.

It provides a very simple and most automated way of building data classes. 

Moreover, it’s a statically-typed language, hence it is very easy to read and write.

Further, this coding language enables the exchange and use of data from Java in different ways.

Also, it takes very little time to write a new code within this language.

Besides, it's also easier to deploy Kotlin code and to manage it at a high scale.

Advantages of Java programming (Kotlin vs Java)

The following Java advantages express many things. -

Here, the checked exceptions are much useful to improve error locating and resolving.

There is the availability of detailed documentation.

Also, Java has a huge number of skilled developers.

It includes a very large number of third-party libraries.

The language enables the user to build standard programs and reusable code.

It includes exceptional performance and easy to move libraries too.

Conclusion

Thus, based on the above details we can decide the usage of Kotlin or Java languages under the Kotlin vs Java comparison. Both are solid programming languages with many exceptional features. Both have some similarities, advantages, and disadvantages too. Kotlin offers faster app building features in comparison to Java. Moreover, Kotlin uses very little code in writing programs for apps than the Java language. Get more insights on Java language and its uses in detail through the Core Java Online Training program with the ITGuru platform. This learning can help you to enhance your existing Java language skills and also to grow your career.