PHP 8: After 4 years, only 30% of PHP websites use it. But why?

Originally published at: PHP 8: After 4 years, only 30% of PHP websites use it. But why?

Two years ago, one of our online community members discussed some of the reasons behind the slow adoption of PHP 8. One member stated that it’s due to PHP compatibility issues across new releases. In contrast, another put it down to the fact that important software/frameworks did not support PHP 8 until recently. I think…

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Microsoft not supporting PHP 8 is a pretty big deal in and of itself.

I think it comes down to people mostly using shared hosting and the previous would be the most stable for them. For people who self-host, they are more likely to use 8.0/8.1 and have a fallback in place if something doesn’t run on the newer version.

Yea, that’s definitely part of it as well.

I was going to say similar to Glitch.

Most people I know don’t host themselves but use a provider who does it for them. Even businesses do this. Heck, I would for a company which manages websites for people and we up-sell those hosting services and make a profit from it.

I think things will change though and maybe they are anticipating it.

Companies are hesitant to upgrade for anxiety of compatibility issues and service disruptions, so they delay upgrades instead.

No this is not the main reason. The process of upgrading the PHP version is an engineering investment that virtually doesn’t pay off but a risk management. The whole process of converting or porting the codebase, setting up new environments, testing it, etc. is NOT cheap and it doesn’t change anything to the end-user nor the clients using the served website. Basically, there is no time for this.

Knowing that, I think PHP historically did a great job of minimizing compatibility issues between PHP versions, especially between minor versions. But going to PHP 8.x from 7.x comes with a set of now removed deprecated features and a new set of deprecations.

Anyway, case in point, the ratio of cost vs gain here is completely in the RED.


Thanks for your insight. Welcome the community :handshake: