.NET vs Java: What Is Better in 2022?

dotnet-vs-java

Which technology is better to choose for development: .NET or Java? In this article, we will consider their concepts, major pros and cons, and will find out which of their aspects are different. Continue reading to find out more.

Overview

When comparing these two technologies, it’s important not to overlook the fact that they are not entirely in the same category, with Java a programming language and .NET a framework. Nevertheless, they repeatedly undergo comparison. When considering which one is the right technology for your project, you have to pay attention to a number of characteristics and technical features, as follows.

What Is .NET?

It is a platform-agnostic framework that is implemented by developers to create and run Windows apps. It comprises development instruments, languages, libraries for the development of desktop and web applications. Companies use it for projects of different scales and domains. Most often it is implemented for the development of websites and web services, and in the gaming industry.

What Is Java?

Java is a popular multiplatform programming language that is often preferred by software developers due to its simplicity, security and active community support. It is mostly used for mobile, desktop and web development, analytics, web and application servers, in such innovative spheres as the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence.

Differences Between Java vs .NET

dotnet-and-java-differences

.NET vs JAVA: Speed of Coding

When software engineers choose Java programming language, they use a variety of threads, which simplifies the management and procession of instruction in the sequence. Nevertheless, when it comes to the speed factor, .NET framework is the indisputable leader in the field.

Due to its object orientation, it offers a number of components that can be reused, so when you compare the time it would take to develop identical apps in both languages, it will be less time-consuming.

.NET vs Java: Performance

Which language is more performant? It possesses numerous instruments for scaling capacity, but it does not perform as fast as .NET framework. It happens due to .NET’s usage of more memory-efficient software development languages such as C#. In addition, it allows effective code optimization, while the code is more compact, which makes it highly productive.

It is also far easier to maintain and debug. Regarding performance, .NET framework wins over its competitor for sure. It should be noted though that, due to JIT compiler optimizations, it can be even faster than .NET framework.

.NET vs Java: Scalability

When it comes to development of complicated large-scale apps, both technologies will be equally effective. Given this, both .NET framework and Java are often implemented to create enterprise-level apps. The choice of technology in this case is usually influenced by personal preferences and peculiarities of the project.

.NET vs Java: Cross-platform

Cross-platform or platform-agnostic characteristic implies that the software can be used by various computer systems such as macOS, Windows, Linux, Solaris. .NET framework has lacked this feature in the past, but both Java and .NET now have it and can function on any operating system.

.NET vs Java: Integrated Development Environment

Integrated development environment (IDE) streamlines the work of software engineers and assists in writing code, carrying out tests, creating documents and eliminating bugs. Java is versatile and can work with several IDEs.

The most popular are the following: Eclipse, IntelliJ IDEA, Oracle NetBeans, and Oracle JDeveloper. They are built-in add-ons. In the case of .NET framework, software engineers implement Visual Studio with features that are specific to the language used, and VS Code.

.NET vs Java: Popularity

Let’s compare how popular the two technologies are. Software engineers tend to choose Java more often. The explanation is simple: currently, Java specialists are in greater demand than .NET ones.

When you research the job market on websites such as Indeed, you will notice that Java specialists are in much higher demand than .NET specialists. The demand for Java has however been reduced over the last years, because of the increased popularity of C#.

.NET vs Java: Community

Java is an ‘older’ technology that emerged in the 1990s. By today, it attracts a large community of users who are actively involved in sharing their experience with novice developers. .NET framework was invented in the 2000s, actively influenced by Java itself, and has a smaller community.

.NET vs Java: Talent Pool

At the moment, Java has more adherents than .NET framework. Globally, there are currently around 10 million Java developers and 2 million .NET developers. At SaM Solutions, the Java community is also much bigger.

.NET vs Java: Ease of Learning

Both technologies have a comparatively steep learning curve. Nonetheless, Java offers more documentation and educational material to study. This can be viewed as an outcome of the larger user community and longer presence on the market.

.NET framework hasn’t achieved the same level of recognition yet, but at the same time with its documentation and educational material from Microsoft, it continues to attract new supporters.

.NET vs Java: Security

Both .NET and Java have a high level of protection. Initially, Java had troubles with some of its security features, but these have been resolved by now. At the moment, it provides extra security measures, making it difficult to make mistakes that can lead to drastic consequences. .NET in the past had more protective characteristics than today, as its source code was not open to the public.

.NET vs Java: Cost of Development

The estimated annual salary of a Java software engineer with 4-6 years of experience is $112,440 per year in the United States. For a .NET developer with the same experience, this figure is $114,503 per year. However, these numbers can vary significantly depending on location, other technical skills, years of experience and employee’s tenure at the company.

Main Pros and Cons of Each Technology

Java.NET
Java ProsJava Cons.NET Pros.NET Cons
  1. Simplicity. Java is easier to grasp, implement, maintain and fix errors in than other software development languages. With a steep learning curve, it is highly recommended for novice developers. Its syntactical characteristics are similar to those of other programming languages, so it is the perfect choice for software engineers proficient in another language.
  2. Cost-effective. Comparatively it is not expensive to build and maintain the apps, and they can be used across different platforms, which can reduce the additional expenses.
  3. Java is stable. The programs are more stable compared to programs made in other popular languages. Moreover, a new version can be released in no time when needed, with more advanced features, which makes the apps more stable.
  4. Memory allocation efficiency. With effective memory allocation, it is possible to divide the memory into heap or stack area.
  5. Variety of execution environments. It is agnostic to multiple IDEs, building tools and application servers, which makes it suitable for any kind of platform. The execution environments are also mainly open source, which gives a variety of options to choose from.
  1. Mediocre user interface. Despite the fact that it offers several instruments for GUI improvement, it is far easier to build an appealing interface with dot net, because of its built-in tools.
  2. Code not easily readable. The apps can often include lengthy code, which makes it hard to read. It is not easy to comprehend massive chunks of code, especially without proper documents and materials.
  3. Complicated concurrency. The convenient threads that were introduced initially were later substituted by difficult abstractions. With the project Loom, it will be possible to drastically decrease the complexity of creating efficient concurrent apps.
  1. Rich caching system. It is capable of keeping the data for a while, making retrieving if necessary.
  2. Speed. The virtual machine component CLR is faster than JVM. It can give instructions directly to the computing machine. It therefore doesn’t need to show updates for the OS, and therefore it acts in a more speedy way.
  3. ASP.NET auto monitoring. This useful feature helps prevent errors going unnoticed. Should anything go awry, thanks to the auto monitoring, there is no way it’ll be missed. Programmers receive notifications as soon as the system notices any issues.
  4. Easy deployment and maintenance. The variety of development instruments makes it easy to carry out deployment and maintenance. Designed with modules, apps can be literally separated into parts, fixed or updated, and then brought together again.
  5. Universal standard. Currently, there is no need to redevelop applications with the instruments for different platforms, as the libraries consist almost any function that a developer may require. This is particularly useful when you need to render graphical data or interact with a database.
  1. Some cloud services may have limited support. Not all cloud services have the full support of all versions. Usually support is limited to a few most recent versions of the .NET core. For example, AWS supports only the latest .NET Core 6.0.
  2. Dependence on the vendor. The so-called vendor locking influences the functioning of .NET projects. Software engineers have no control over this. When Microsoft decides to introduce any kind of change or limitation, it will inescapably affect your project.
  3. The .NET community is smaller than Java. .NET was invented in the 2000s, reinvented with .NET Core in 2016, and has a smaller community.

Conclusion

As you can see after reading this article, both technologies have specific technical characteristics. Each has distinct peculiarities, strengths and challenges. Java is more suitable for projects that require more flexibility, and .NET will help you to thrive in the cases, when you deal with complex infrastructures.

Java is optimal for mobile applications, multi-user utility programs, embedded development and IoT-based systems. Companies choose .NET when they need to create server (web) multi-user applications, complex software solutions with alluring GUIs and computer games.

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FAQ

When should I use Java?

Java is versatile. It can be used for the development of mobile and web applications, embedded systems, enterprise-level apps, middleware, web servers, GUI development, working with big data, cloud-based software, artificial intelligence and machine learning. It’s used in such groundbreaking technologies as driverless vehicles, smart cities and even the programs used for space exploration.

When should I use .NET?

With the help of .NET, software engineers can build lots of different applications with the help of compatible languages and libraries. The most common use is in the development of web and mobile applications. Areas such as gaming and the Internet of Things have also greatly benefited from it.

What is the difference between the Java and .NET architecture?

Java is a programming language, while .NET is a framework. Java Virtual Machine, Java Runtime Environment and Java Development Kit comprise the Java architecture. .NET is a framework which is implemented to develop software apps with the help of different languages.
The .NET architecture includes language, framework class library and common language runtime. The Java ecosystem actively relies on many open source projects.

Is Java or .NET better for mobile applications?

Java is a more common solution for mobile applications. .NET supports the development of mobile apps with extensions such as Xamarin, etc. Part of .NET’s popularity is due to Kotlin, which is designed to interoperate fully with Java, and the JVM version of Kotlin's standard library depends on the Java Class Library. Kotlin has become widely used in Android app development.

About the author

Maryia Shapel
Maryia Shapel

As a content writer, Maryia strives to create enlightening blog posts and technical articles based on the latest technology trends and established best practices. Her aim is to tell more about SaM Solutions and promote the company’s expertise.

7 Comments

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  • I have many years of experience working with both technologies. As far as I am able to judge, .NET is better because it provides a higher speed of development. I understand it is a matter of taste, but this is my preference. Lots of my colleagues like Java more.

  • Although they are different in nature, one being a framework, and the other a language, I think it is good to know about the differences between these technologies.

  • I appreciate the thorough comparison that you have created. It was particularly good to learn the advantages and disadvantages of both technologies, which now makes it easier to pick between them.

  • I don’t think it’s a good idea to compare these technologies. One is a framework, the other is a language … I don’t understand why they need to be compared?

  • I am a Java software engineer. I find this language the most convenient, and my specialization offers lots of opportunities on the job market. But I want to study .NET as well. Thank you for the article.

  • I think, in the modern world, it doesn’t hurt to learn both technologies. Why choose only one? I’m sure that people who have expertise in both have better career prospects.

  • Thank you. I enjoyed reading your article. The most valuable information was about the major differences between these technologies. I’ve learnt a lot!

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