Ember.js vs Angular Detailed Comparison as of 2021

The success of a web application significantly depends on the chosen framework. It determines web developers’ working style, their ability to quickly complete the project and maintain the code for further application development.

There is a wide range of front-end development frameworks to choose from that offer stable application architecture and keep the codes well-organized. Ember.js and Angular are among them. Web developers can build easy-to-scale and flexible applications filled with versatile, useful, and user-engaging features.

The Changing Scene of JavaScript – Angular vs Ember

Front-end development is undergoing continuous changes. Every day, new frameworks appear with useful and facilitating app creation functionalities, while the long-existing ones get updated to keep up with the development pace. It means that most modern frameworks have robust development tools and strong development communities behind them. This makes it quite challenging to compare front-end development frameworks and find the benefits of one framework over another.

The key difference between Angular and Ember.js is how well they suit a particular development project. To find it out, you need to know about the specifics of the two frameworks and consider which option would work best for building your product.

What is Angular.js?

Angular.js is a JavaScript open-source front-end development framework supported by Google. It’s a full-fledged solution that allows building enterprise-level web applications, Single Page Applications (SPAs), Progressive Web Applications (PWAs), mobile solutions, desktop applications for Mac, Windows, or Linux, and others.

This framework ranks among the first three most popular web development frameworks and has a strong community of web developers and tech experts with 73.5k start and 19.3k forks on GitHub.

Today, there are 323,580 websites run on AngularJS with 9.63% in Computers Electronics and Technology, 4.73% in Arts and Entertainment, 3.78% in Science and Education, 3.26% in Finance, and 81.30% in other industries. The world-known businesses that use the Microsoft Angular framework in their digital solutions include Microsoft Office, Gmail, Forbes, Deutsche Bank, Upwork, PayPal, and many others.

Pros and Cons of Angular.js

Like any software development framework, Angular has its own advantages and disadvantages. Let’s have a look at both of them to understand this framework better.

Angular Pros

  • Declarative UI. To define the user interface (UI) in a web application, Angular implements HTML instead of JavaScript. It makes UI creation less complex, more stable and allows to separate presentation logic from the imperative one.
  • Use of POJO. POJO is a data model in Angular that substitutes the getter/setter functions. This data model allows adding or changing object properties and looping over these objects when needed. As a result, web developers create clear and intuitive code.
  • Simplified implementation of MVC design. Angular has a Model-View-Controller (MVC) architectural pattern at its core. Though unlike most MVC frameworks it doesn’t require splitting an application code into three different components. This allows web developers to write less code, making the app lighter and faster to perform.
  • Two-way data binding. With two-way data binding, Angular automatically retrieves and updates the data store and the app UI. This results in a seamless projection of models to the application view and a simpler code structure, making application performance smoother and more interactive.
  • Modular structure. Modular structure organizes JavaScript code in Angular into buckets or modules. Web developers can reuse these buckets several times and write an application’s code much faster. Also, the modular structure makes the code easier to test and maintain as its components are independent of each other.
  • Code consistency. In Angular, code consistency is handled by the Angular Command Line Interface (CLI), components, and documentation style guide. With the CLI tool, web developers can initiate projects, perform code tests, and integrate various features into the project. Components include the same style of interface elements. And the documentation style guide contains the standards on using syntax, conventions, and how to structure Angular applications.

Angular Cons

  • Steep learning curve. Angular is packed with components, programming libraries, integrations, coding languages, and other features that require thorough studying before using it. Moreover, it has its own rules that developers need to follow. Therefore, Angular isn’t the best solution for beginners to start with.
  • Limited SEO. The Angular web apps with client-side rendering tend to have difficulties with search engine optimization (SEO). This happens because web crawlers of search engines can’t see the entire structure and content of the web pages rendered on the front-end layer. As a result, web developers need to keep SEO in mind and use additional tools to tune it up, e.g. Angular Universal tool. The tool helps to render Angular apps on the server-side and show its content to search engines.
  • Lengthy migration from AngularJS to Angular. Angular has a vast number of versions from AngularJS to Angular 12. If web developers move from Angular 5 to Angular 6, they won’t experience any trouble. However, migrating apps from AngularJS to Angular 2-12 requires much work. The Angular team has even released an article with successful upgrading from AngularJS to Angular.

What is Ember.js?

Just like Angular, Ember is an open-source JavaScript-based front-end development framework. It appeared in 2011 and is being developed by Ember Core Team. The Ember developers claim that it’s “a framework for ambitious web developers”. It allows building Single Page Web Applications (SPAs), Progressive Web Applications (PWAs), desktop, and mobile apps.

The most notable web applications built with Ember.js are Apple Music, LinkedIn, Twitch, Live Nation, Disclosure, Wordset, Ghost, and many others. There are over 9,626 websites that run on Ember.js and the framework has 21.9k stars and 4.2k forks on GitHub. Web developers value Ember.js for its lightness, simplicity, and super-fast development speed.

Advantages of Ember.js

Ember.js has a great number of advantages. It has gathered the best web application development practices and obtains outstanding development tools for building effective and powerful web solutions. Let’s have a look in more detail at the features that make Ember.js so good.

  • Use of MVC development architecture. Ember uses a Model-View-Controller (MVC) development pattern for building web applications. It’s one of the most popular ways of organizing the code. It splits the app code into three layers, making it easier to manage and clearer to read.
  • URL-driven approach. Ember.js offers a well-thought-out routing system for URLs. It allows rendering templates, load, change, or transit models used by the templates, and other things. Basically, all the core operations in Ember applications are handled with the help of the Ember router.
  • Convention over configuration philosophy. With the convention over configuration approach in Ember, web developers don’t need to spend hours configuring the framework. Ember provides all the settings pre-configured so that developers can start coding right after the framework installation.
  • Ember CLI. Ember Command Line Interface (CLI) is a useful tool that assumes many development tasks, from organizing code into modules, setting up development tools, to running tests. Using CLI, Ember developers can write their codes much faster and add the needed functionalities or packages in Ember in just several clicks.
  • Well-developed package ecosystem. Ember.js contains a wide range of packages, therefore, web developers can be sure that they’ll find the right one to solve their development issues. Ember creators cared about the Ember add-ons and established a site dedicated to Ember packages with all the needed documentation, and even individual ratings.
  • Stability without stagnation concept. This concept implies the idea that the framework is developed with the layers compatible between different Ember versions. This ensures that web developers can easily upgrade their projects from one version to another and utilize the new framework features the moment they are released.

Single Page Applications: Angular vs Ember

Both frameworks work great for building Single Page Applications. How to choose one for your web application development? We’ve formulated several questions to make it easier for you to decide.

  • Which syntax is easier to work with? For this, you can compare the syntax for similar functions in the Angular and Ember frameworks and decide which one is faster and simpler to use.
  • Which learning curve do you prefer? Both frameworks have a steep learning curve. Though, if you have some experience with Ruby on Rails, then Ember.js might not seem as difficult as Angular. While Angular has its concepts closer to the Java programming language.
  • Which additional concepts, tools, or libraries do you need to learn for effective application development? For example, in Angular, you’ll need to learn what is a UI-Router, Gulp, or Grunt, while for Ember.js you’ll have to get acquainted with Ember-CLI, Broccoli, Ember-data, and others.
  • How complex do you want your web application? Simple apps can be easily built with Angular and Ember.js. Though if you’re building a complex app, then Ember.js works better for this task.
  • Do you like the philosophy of the framework? Angular is a flexible solution that offers a variety of ways to complete the same tasks. On the contrary, Ember.js provides web developers with one correct way to do something.

The Final Call – Which Framework to Choose from?

The choice of the right framework for building your product should always be guided by the needs of your development project. For this, you should have a clear understanding of all the pluses and minuses of each framework and know how they will work in particular use cases.

Angular and Ember.js have many elements in common – they have an MVC development pattern, are open-source, and preferred by a wide range of developers. Though, the most important thing is to know the differences between these frameworks and how they work for different applications. Angular is a super-popular solution used for enterprise web application development. While Ember is fast and offers a development kit already included in the framework and pre-set configurations for a flying coding start.