12 Best PHP Development Tools For Developers In 2023

A Guide to PHP Development Tools

The programming sector is wide, as there are numerous programming languages which have been in existence for a long time. Each programming language is unique in its own manner and serves different purposes. In this blog, we will discuss one of these programming languages that is PHP, broadly known as Hypertext Preprocessor, which is among the oldest programming languages. We will also cover various PHP Development Tools, which are very useful for 2023. 

An Introduction to PHP Language

The server-side programming language PHP, or Hypertext Preprocessor, was originally created as Personal Home Page and is available as open-source software. And a lot of people love it. As of October 2022, PHP was still being used by more than 75% of all websites, and this number isn’t likely to decline any time soon. It can run some of the largest websites on the web and is capable of running them for free.

Since 1995, PHP has been among the most well-known and established online programming languages. PHP web app development frameworks have been around for a while, and there are now several high-quality solutions available, including Laravel, CodeIgniter, Symfony, and others. To make developing PHP code simpler, there is a robust community of frameworks available. 

Here is a collection of 12 most popular PHP tools that developers might utilize in their work. Your efficiency and productivity will go up with the assistance of these technologies. The list covers code editors, debuggers, testing tools, and integrated development environments (IDEs), which could lead to the best PHP web development in the technical sector. 

Also Read: Types Of Application Software In 2023 [With Examples]

What are PHP Development Tools used for? 

Uses of PHP development tools
Do you know the uses of PHP Development Tools?

For a variety of reasons, PHP tools are regarded as being very easily accessible for web development. Running server-side apps is simple to deploy because it is inexpensive and straightforward to set up. It is also regarded as being user-friendly, making it easier to find talent skilled in it than in certain other, more specialized programming languages.

Much of PHP has been upgraded and maintained throughout the last couple of decades to keep it updated and highly capable. Even more recently, the PHP development team modified the language to include object-oriented programming, putting it on par with Javascript. 

Additionally, there is a substantial foundation of tested features that may be used to create a wide variety of server-side plugins and applications.

Also read: 10 Best Usability Testing Tools For Great User Experience

How to choose the right PHP Development Tools? 

By using the proper PHP web development tools, developers may instantly improve their code’s quality while also maximizing their output. There are many tools being developed perfectly in the present day and time. Most businesses influence advanced helpful values. The PHP development tool typically has excellent features such as valued syntax and auto-completion built in. These features can also include debugging tools for fixing problems and facilitating effective navigation.

PHP tools have fascinating features that are 100% responsive, user-friendly, and interactive. In this huge setting, speed is the most important aspect. It works with a variety of OSes, including Windows, macOS, and Linux. It is essential to confirm that a tool is compatible with your technical stack platforms and coding languages before adding it. Techies can give users quick access to several benefits with just one click by integrating third-party products. In the current market, freshly improved tools can make the correct choice that significantly affects the whole business.

Also read: 12 Best Free Wireframe Tools For UX Designers In 2023

Top 12 PHP Development Tools To Use In 2023

PHP Development Tools in 2023
List of top PHP Development Tools in 2023
  1. Laravel

Laravel has become the most popular free and open-source PHP framework since its release in 2011, thanks to the fact that it handles complex web projects safely and much more quickly than other tools. It also emphasizes developer experience and has a beautiful syntax.

Through the enhancement of routine activities like networking, sessions, caching, and authentication, Laravel streamlines the development process. You may use it in conjunction with JavaScript frameworks like Vue.js or React, but it also contains a PHP template engine known as Blade.

Features and Advantages of Laravel

  • Whether creating small or large applications, Laravel is appropriate for sophisticated backend requirements.
  • It is a feature-rich PHP framework that will enable you to customize sophisticated applications. Seamless data movement, support for the MVC architecture, security, routing, the view template engine, and authentication are a few of the features. 
  • Laravel is extremely expressive and meets standards for a contemporary web application in terms of speed and security.
  1. Codeigniter 

CodeIgniter is a PHP framework that’s known for having a minimal file size which is only about 2 MB in size, along with the documentation, making it ideal for creating  web pages. It provides many pre-built modules that make it easier to build reliable and repeatable components.

Features and Advantages of Codeigniter 

  • CodeIgniter is an extremely simple and lightweight PHP framework that is easy to set up. It’s ideal for novices because of its simple setup process and well-written instructions.
  • Major features include an MVC framework, excellent error handling, built-in security measures, and straightforward and comprehensive documentation. You can develop scalable apps with CodeIgniter as well.
  • CodeIgniter is a great deal faster than competing frameworks. It offers dependable performance and is a fantastic choice if you want to build lightweight apps that can run on underpowered servers.
  1. Symfony 

The Symfony framework has been around for far longer than many other frameworks, having been introduced in 2005. It is a dependable and established foundation. The only tool known to adhere to PHP and standards of web to the letter is Symfony, a comprehensive PHP MVC framework.

Features and Advantages of Symfony 

  • For creating complex enterprise projects, Symfony is ideal. On the majority of platforms, installation and configuration are simple.
  • The use of reusable PHP elements is one of its main advantages. Additionally, it claims stability, adherence to the majority of web guidelines and designs, database engine neutrality, and support for integration with other commercial libraries.
  • Additionally very flexible, Symfony may be integrated into larger projects like Drupal.
  1. Laminas Project

Laminas Project, the open-source replacement for Zend Framework is a complete project-oriented framework that can be expanded thanks to the use of ideas like inheritance and interfaces. It was developed utilizing the Agile methodology, which enables you to provide enterprise clients with high-quality apps. Developers should be aware that Laminas Project is highly customizable and adheres to PHP best practices if they want to build project-specific capabilities.

Features and Benefits of Laminas Project

  • Complex initiatives at the corporate level are a perfect fit for Laminas Project.
  • Major features include data encryption, session management, simple cloud APIs, and MVC components.
  • You can utilize just the elements you want from this framework, and it can integrate with other PHP libraries. Laminas Project has a sizable network and substantial documentation.

Also read: 15+ Best API Tools For Testing API {REST & SOAP}

  1. YII Framework

Yii, which stands for Yes, it is!, is an evolving and straightforward framework. It is a high-performance PHP tool for creating contemporary web apps. Yii is a universal web programming framework that can be applied to any PHP project, but it is especially recommended for the speedy development of substantial web applications.

Features and Advantages of YII

  • Yii is a framework that is excellent for high security projects like e-commerce ventures, websites, CMSs, communities, etc. because of its simple installation procedure and strong security features.
  • Developers can represent the database information in terms of objects, which allows them to eliminate the difficulty of writing repeating SQL queries. It also has good speed and performance.
  • A large number of knowledgeable contributors and the core developer team make up Yii. On the Yii forums, you can submit problems and quickly receive assistance thanks to the large user base.
  1. CakePHP 

There is no need to search any farther if you want a straightforward and stylish toolbox. You can create functional, aesthetically pleasing websites and applications with CakePHP.

Because it is a CRUD (Create, Read, Update, Delete) framework, CakePHP is also among the simplest frameworks to learn. The early 2000s saw the release of CakePHP, and over the years it has improved performance and added a variety of additional components.

Features and Advantages of CakePHP 

  • Since all you need is a web browser and a copy of the framework, CakePHP is straightforward and easy to install.
  • Fast builds, appropriate class inheritance, authentication, and security are a few important features.
  • Excellent documentation, numerous support portals, and professional assistance are all offered by CakePHP. 
  1. Phalcon 

Phalcon, a full-stack PHP framework first created in C and C++ and launched in 2012, uses the MVC online schematic design paradigm. You don’t need to bother about understanding the C programming language because it is offered as a C-extension, yet you can still benefit from the low-level performance optimization employed in native programs.

Features and Advantages of Phalcon

  • Phalcon is excellent for building highly flexible web apps that follow enterprise development best practices and is simple to set up.
  • A global autoloader, asset management, faster implementation, and the highest levels of security and caching are some of the key characteristics.
  • Phalcon improves performance in contrast to certain other web application tools because of its effective memory management. Give Phalcon a shot if you want to build a website that loads incredibly quickly.
  1. Lumen 

Developed by Taylor Otwell and the Laravel community, Lumen is a PHP micro-framework for Laravel. Lumen is a leaner and speedier toolset with fewer configuration and various routing options in comparison to Laravel, a full-stack PHP framework. The attractive syntax of Laravel is used by Lumen, although it lacks a PHP template engine and offers fewer third-party interfaces.

Features and Advantages of Phalcon

  • Lumen is a popular PHP framework for building high-performance APIs and microservices with loose coupling.
  • Lumen is a more lightweight option if you have familiarity with Laravel but don’t want to employ a full MVC framework.

Also Read: Important Tools For App Development

  1. Fat-Free Framework

A simple-to-use PHP micro-framework designed with simplicity in mind is called Fat-Free Framework (F3). You may use it to build effective Apps that load quickly and have a straightforward set up procedure that increases developer productivity since it minimizes application complexity.

F3 is a trustworthy framework because it has existed since 2009 and is a mature one. It has a vibrant community and more than 2,600 stars on GitHub. Because MVC is enabled but not required, F3 is adaptable and compatible with outside classes.

Features and Advantages of F3

  • The learning curve for the user-friendly development tool Fat-Free Framework is flat. It doesn’t require any complicated configuration and is simple to install.
  • Fat-Free Framework offers a modular design in complement to its lightweight core, you only add the functionality you require. There are various features for a variety of activities, including templates, unit testing, image analysis, managing geodata, and more.
  • MySQL, MySQL/Sybase, PostgreSQL, SQLite, DB2, and MongoDB are just a few of the NoSQL and SQL databases that F3 supports.
  1. PHPStorm

It is the most well-known PHP web development tool and possesses several qualities including being lightweight, quick, and stylish. Numerous frameworks, including Zend, Symphony, Laravel, Drupal, and WordPress, are functional with PHPStorm. New modern technologies like JavaScript, Cascading Style Sheets, and the Fifth Edition of Hypertext Mark-up Language are supported by the usual tool’s Integrated Development Environment.

The PHPStorm program enables writing codes, debugging, and many testing stages, including unit testing. The techies can also work with the database, distribution procedure, control systems, and list of common tools thanks to this. Code processing, native scripting support, debugging, and other notable capabilities are some of its highlights.

Features and Advantages of PHPStorm 

  • PHPStorm has an intelligent coding assistant which understands your code. 
  • For debugging, testing, and profiling your apps, PhpStorm offers robust built-in capabilities.
  • All of the HTML, CSS, and JavaScript-related functionality of WebStorm are available in PhpStorm.
  1.  Apache Netbeans 

To implement PHP programs, the majority of developers and programmers use the Netbeans tool. It supports numerous languages and a variety of functionalities. This program was initially employed by Java programmers. Its updated form is fast and compatible with various PHP development providers.

This program supports a variety of coding languages, including C, C++, CSS, HTML, and others. Large-scale web programs can be created using Netbeans. It is accessible in a number of languages, including English, Brazilian Portuguese, and Japanese.

This user-friendly tool supports a variety of frameworks, including Zend, CakePHP, Smarty, etc. and is free to use. With the installation of web apps, Netbeans has a number of possibilities. Highlighted syntax, intelligent code completion, code formatting, etc. are some of its appealing characteristics.

Features and Advantages of Netbeans 

  • It enables programmers to upgrade apps quickly and simply by utilizing the sophisticated Java 8 language constructs.
  • The system’s code editor equips users with the tools, code generators, code designs, and coding advice for simple refactoring they need to move forward with their coding swiftly and easily.
  • With the help of NetBeans’ static analysis capabilities, customers can avoid paying for costly bugs in their code.
  1. Zend Studio 

Most developers favor this common tool because of its quick performance. This dependable tool takes little time to execute code. In order to accommodate PHP version 7, debugging is done by merging X-ray and Xdebug in a parallel manner.

This versatile tool launches apps on the cloud server environment and has a wide range of possibilities. Using Eclipse plugins, the improved extension is implemented. Exploring PHP code, support for Docker & Eclipse Plugins, rapid performance, etc. are some of its notable characteristics.

Features and Advantages of Zend Studio

  • With SVN, CVS, Git, and GitHub, improved source control integration makes working with them easier. Collaboration with other members of the team is simple when you import pre-existing sources into your workspace.
  • The following operating systems and public clouds support Zend Studio: Windows, Linux, Mac OS, and IBM i.
  • PHP frameworks like Zend Framework, Laravel, and Symfony are supported by Zend Studio. Therefore, you may create structure apps with the correct structure, resources, and directories using constructed tools in Zend Studio.

Also read: 14 Best DevOps Tools To Use In 2023


The aforementioned technologies undoubtedly have special characteristics that make creating PHP apps simpler. Every company has unique requirements & wants. We must remember to record it. Successful PHP development requires a clear evaluation of the features. Each tool is equipped with the best features and functionality, enabling programmers to create PHP websites.

These PHP tools are for sale and among the greatest ones out there. The best way to choose the best PHP development tool is to weigh the benefits and drawbacks, investment suggestions, general principles, delivery time estimates, and the complete set of needs.


Q1. What is the latest technology in PHP? 

Ans. Although numerous softwares and tools are used for PHP development, Netbeans is widely used by 800K developers globally. 

Q2. Is PHP still in trend? 

Ans. Yes, as of 2023, 49% of people are using PHP.

Q3. Which are the most commonly used programming tools?

Ans. A source code editor, sometimes known as a text editor, and a compiler or interpreter are the most fundamental coding or programming tools. These are constantly and widely utilized. Other tools, such as debuggers and profilers, are frequently used for small tasks and are employed more or less depending on the programming language, development style, and particular engineer.