SPA Frameworks – which one is best suited for your project?

January 8, 2021

Anyone working on the frontend side of a project will eventually be faced with a wide range of Javascript frameworks that can make development work much easier. But which framework is best suited for your project?

On the internet, user experience has increasingly moved to the forefront and has become one of the most important success factors for websites and applications. Users should be able to quickly find their way around and easily interact with pages and applications.

With the new technical possibilities, desktop applications were gradually replaced by classic web applications, and these in turn by so-called "Rich Internet Applications" (RIAs), the current standard of web applications. RIAs combine the ease of use, response speed, and offline capability of desktop applications with the availability and easy installation of a web application, thus achieving a better UX.

A special form of RIAs, which particularly well implements these conditions and is already being used by companies such as Facebook, Google, and Instagram, is the so-called "Single-Page Application" (SPA). The single-page principle states that there is no longer a complete page change as is common in traditional web applications, but only a change in the user interface. This allows the app to respond directly to user inputs and reduces waiting times for users. Since in SPAs - unlike in classic web applications - the business logic, which is implemented using JavaScript, is located on the client side, the complexity increases on this side. This makes it more elaborate and difficult for developers to implement.

To counteract this complexity and facilitate the development of SPAs, an important tool called the SPA framework has been established. It provides a programming framework consisting of libraries including their functionalities and methods. As development on the internet does not stand still, in addition to the web applications themselves, SPA frameworks are also constantly being updated and improved. We provide an overview of the most popular SPA frameworks and evaluate them based on predefined requirements.


The open-source framework, Angular, launched by Google in 2016, has been developed with the goal to establish a strong foothold in the realm of cross-platform development. A significant feature of Angular is its platform independence, which allows the framework to be employed across various platforms such as desktop or mobile. This platform independence is also one of the key attributes of Single-Page Applications (SPAs).

Angular operates on a component-based architecture, ensuring a high degree of component reusability throughout the application. It is distinguished by both its high-quality code and remarkable performance, attributable to factors such as hierarchical dependency injection and Angular Universal. Furthermore, Angular utilizes server-side pre-rendering, enhancing search engine accessibility to the application's content and ensuring accurate site previews in social media apps.

However, Angular does have its drawbacks. One notable issue is the dwindling community support, which is often mirrored in the levels of learning interest and user satisfaction. Secondly, the steep learning curve due to the framework's complexity and intricacy can pose challenges.

In conclusion, Angular is ideally suited for enterprise-level applications, with suitability credited to TypeScript's advanced tooling, which includes superior auto-completion, navigation, and refactoring services. Additionally, the verbosity of the SPA framework, though it necessitates a substantial learning curve and time investment, contributes to Angular's robustness for complex applications.


  • Platform independence
  • Component-based architecture
  • Typescript
  • Google Long-Term Support


  • Community Support
  • Complexity
  • Steep learning curve


Contrary to Angular, which is a comprehensive Single Page Application (SPA) framework, React is an open-source JavaScript library, inclusive of a JSX compiler. It primarily focuses on the user interface (UI), facilitating the creation of reusable components. Hence, React provides a UI-centric solution, delivering a highly responsive and seamless interface to users.

Released as an open-source tool in 2013, React rapidly gained popularity due to its innovative approach to user interface programming. It is backed not only by internet giant Facebook but also by a continually growing community characterized by immense development velocity. React solutions are SEO-friendly and simultaneously offer high performance and flexibility, courtesy of the Virtual DOM. Moreover, the reusability of components and unidirectional data flow, which ensures the stability of the program code, render programming both precise and convenient for developers.

Although React has a relatively steep learning curve due to the multitude of React tools, many developers find it simplifies app development and provides a clear understanding, making it ideal for crafting advanced, modern user interfaces.

However, it's important to note that as React is merely a JavaScript library, it is better suited for the development of smaller applications. Selecting and assembling the right tools for larger applications can prove challenging.


  • Virtual DOM
  • Reusability of components
  • Flexibility
  • Unidirectional data flow
  • Community Support


  • High speed of development
  • React Ecosystem
  • Complexity (JSX)


The open-source framework Vue, in its second iteration released in 2016, was developed by Evan You with the goal of integrating the best features of Angular and React. In many respects, he succeeded in this endeavor.

Vue offers features such as bidirectional data binding, server-side rendering, TypeScript and JSX support, and a component-based architecture akin to Angular. These attributes have been amalgamated into a compact, lightweight package, enabling Vue to surpass React or Angular in terms of size and performance.

Thanks to its compatibility with other Single Page Application (SPA) frameworks, its small size, straightforward structure, and comprehensive documentation, Vue requires a notably flat learning curve, simplifying the initiation into Vue. With an effective Command Line Interface (CLI), a Vue project can be created in just a few clicks, and a Vue component can be effortlessly incorporated into existing applications.

Vue also stands out for its flexible data flow, supporting both bidirectional communication, which expedites the handling of HTML blocks, and unidirectional communication, which becomes crucial when working with different components. Like React, Vue leverages a flexible ecosystem that can be customized to meet the needs of an application of any size, granting developers considerable freedom and the option to integrate Vue with various libraries. However, such vast freedom and flexibility can pose a decision-making challenge, as the developer must sift through numerous beneficial libraries to find the most suitable one.

In conclusion, Vue is particularly well-suited for the fast development of cross-platform solutions. It lays the groundwork for sophisticated SPAs and serves as an advantageous solution for applications where the performance of solid code organization or application structure is crucial.


  • Component-based architecture
  • Flexibility
  • Simplicity
  • Small size
  • Low learning curve


  • Community size
  • Vue Ecosystem

Angular vs. React vs. Vue

Since each of the introduced frameworks offers different functionalities and methods, and the advantages and disadvantages also vary, it's not easy to identify a winner or a "go-to SPA framework."

However, to facilitate the decision-making process when choosing one of the presented frameworks, it's advisable to set predefined requirements tailored to the individual use case and compare the SPA frameworks based on these. In this way, a decision can be made for the most suitable SPA framework for a project. Requirements for weighting could include, for example:

  • It should have a modular architecture and be stable
    -> Angular, React, Vue
  • It should be supported by large companies and/or projects
    -> Angular, React
  • It should be flexible and give the developer a lot of freedom
    -> React, Vue
  • It should have a short learning curve and development time
    -> Vue
  • It should have a structure as simple as possible and be small in size
    -> Vue, React
  • It should achieve a high performance
    -> Angular, React, Vue
  • It should have an easy to understand and comprehensive documentation
    -> Angular, React, Vue
  • It should allow the integration of Bootstrap
    -> Angular, React, Vue
  • It should ideally allow reusing HTML and CSS
    -> Angular, Vue

In this list, Vue tends to come out on top, as it fulfills all criteria except for the fact that it is not driven by internet giants like Google or Facebook. If your list of requirements differs or if there are additional requirements in a project, the result may vary. And since the web is evolving rapidly, the landscape of SPA frameworks will soon change, or new heavyweights will emerge.

It's important that the decision for a framework is not made based on subjective preferences. Every project deserves the best solution.

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