What is Java?
Java is a class-based, general-purpose, and object-oriented programming language. It is one of the most popular languages widely used in industries today. With the new improvements in features in 1.8, the popularity of Java has skyrocketed. It’s been 29 years since the release of Java, but the language has stood the test of time.
Java is in high demand in the job market. Still, top tech giants like Google, Amazon, Netflix, and Microsoft search for seasoned Java developers. Speaking of facts, according to Wikipedia, there are around 9,000,000 Java developers worldwide. In the US, Java developers can make $105,452 annually. Statista reports show that 30.55% of software developers use Java.
But Java’s ability to seamlessly work and execute its program on any platform is what sets it apart from other programming languages. Today, in this article, we will give an overview of what Java is used for. So, let’s dive right into it!
What is Java used for?
With a large variety of applications and use cases, Java will still be one of the most popular programming languages in the world in 2024. You can use Java primarily in the following areas:
- Mobile App Development: Java’s robust security and cross-platform compatibility makes it a preferred choice for building Android apps. More than a million people use Android worldwide. With tools like Xamarin and PhoneGap, Java can be used in cross-platform mobile development.
- Desktop GUI Application: During its inception, Java was used to build desktop GUI applications. Java is still widely used to build desktop GUI applications and offers libraries like Swing and JavaFX with per-built components. This helps Java developers create fully featured desktop applications today.
- Internet of Things (IoT): Since IoT is making the buzz everywhere, Java fits perfectly with features like portability, scalability, and security.
- Enterprise Applications: Java’s high-security features make it an attractive choice to develop enterprise applications for the banking, healthcare, and finance sectors. In addition, it also provides plenty of frameworks, such as JavaServer Faces (JSF), Java Persistence API (JPA), and Java Message Service (JMS), for the seamless development of enterprise applications.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML): Almost all industries and companies are opting for AI and ML to carry out different tasks. Java stands out as one of the best languages for AI and ML and is used for developing data analysis and processing tools. It provides frameworks such as Apache Spark, Deeplearning4j, and H2O.ai for this purpose. Moreover, Java is used to write and respond to the commands of smart devices like the Amazon Echo.
- Web-Based Application: Java is also an excellent choice for building web applications. It works well with tools like Servlets, Hibernate, Spring, Struts, the Apache HTTP web server, Apache Tomcat, and Thymeleaf to create a wide range of web-based applications. Numerous big companies use Java to build web-based applications; prominent examples are Gmail, Google Sheets, and Google Slides.
- Big Data: Other than Python, Java is well-liked by programmers to work with big data. Plus, big data tools like Hadoop and Deeplearning4j use Java. Thus, Java is extremely beneficial for working with massive amounts of data. One can easily track reports and make meaningful visual representations of them.
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Companies that use Java
Top companies prefer Java as one of the most potent languages for their applications. The following are examples; let’s take a closer look at them.
- Airbnb: It uses Java for the backend development of its website and Android app development.
- Amazon: A renowned e-commerce site that uses Java for software development that includes Amazon Web Services (AWS).
- Meta: It uses Java for backend programming and Android app development for its social media platforms, such as Facebook and Instagram.
- Google: It uses Java for the Web Toolkit, Android apps, and Gmail.
- Microsoft: It heavily relies on Java to develop its web browser Edge and its Visual Studio Code.
- Netflix: It is the second most popular video-streaming website. It uses Java for running the backend of the website.
- Pinterest: It relies on Java for data processing and web-based applications.
- Spotify: A popular music streaming platform that uses Java for backend development.
By going through its diverse use cases in mobile development, IoT, big data, web-based applications, AI/ML, and enterprise-level application, we can say that Java is without a doubt a dominant player in the software development world. Numerous big organizations hire Java developers today. So, if you’re a beginner and want to enter the world of programming, then Java may be the best to start with. Or if you’re an experienced developer looking for a remote job role, sign up with Olibr.
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Yes, we can create high-performance applications using Java. Java’s robust architecture, Just-In-Time (JIT) compiler, and automatic memory management make it a perfect fit for applications that need high performance for enterprise and scientific applications.
Java is used for back-end development. However, with technologies like JavaFX and Swing, we can use them to create graphical user interfaces (GUIs).
Java’s features, such as platform independence, robust security features, and scalability, contribute to its IoT development. Apart from that, it can run on a variety of devices, from large-scale servers to small, embedded devices, making it an ideal choice for IoT applications.
Java has a relatively straightforward syntax combined with a large standard library and strong community support, which makes it a good starting point for beginners in programming. Also, it doesn’t have the concept of pointers or multiple inheritances. However, it still depends on the individual. If you’re completely new to programming, it might take a longer time to master.