Are you looking for C++ vs Java? What are the main key factors for comparing C++ vs Java?

In this article, we’ll start with the basic comparison between C++ vs Java and then move on to the big differences and some notable similarities between them.

C++ and Java are both among the biggest names in the programming world. The reason behind their popularity is their wide application in the business sphere.

Learning C++ and Java can help a beginner understand the basics of programming. This is why novice programmers are generally recommended to learn one or both of these languages before moving on to other languages and technologies.

This is why schools and colleges that teach programming have C++ and Java as compulsory subjects so that students can get a good understanding of what programming is all about.

Java vs C++ : Language Reviews

C++, developed by Bjarne Stroustrup, is a multi-paradigm programming language that combines object-oriented, imperative, functional, procedural and general-purpose programming. It is an extension of the C language and was previously referred to as C with classes. C++ offers high-level functionality and the ability to perform low-level memory manipulation.

Java, created by James Gosling of Sun Microsystems, is a high-level, object-oriented, general-purpose, imperative, and class-based language. It is reflective and supports multiple paradigms. However, compared to C++, Java does not provide much freedom for low-level memory manipulation. Sun Microsystems was acquired by Oracle in 2010.

Key Comparison

Ease of use and development speedGeneric libraries and frameworks for C++: BDE, Boost, JUCE, Folly, Ultimate++, CommonPP, Loki, APR, ASL, Cinder, Dlib, GLib, ETL, uSTL, STLport, MiLi, Windows Template Library, etc. Standard libraries include C++ Standard Library, GNU C Library, Standard Template Library, POSIX C Library, and ISO C++ Standards Committee.
There are also various libraries and frameworks for Java that allow developers to speed up their application development speed, making their programming job easier.
Some famous and developer-friendly Java Frameworks include GWT, JHipster, Spring Framework, Grails, Dropwizard, JavaServer Faces, MyBatis, Hibernate, Play, Tapestry, PrimeFaces, Wicket, Vaadin, etc.
PopularityAccording to the reports, since 2004, Java language has always been ahead of the C++ language in terms of search queries. Hence Java is more popular among developers. Although, in contrast, the trend of the total volume of requests for both languages is going down. This is because of the fact that many competitors have appeared (Python, JavaScript, Swift, etc.).
Real-life UseJava vs C++ : Both are general-purpose programming languages, which suggest that developers can create almost any type of software application for almost any platform using the right set of tools, IDEs, libraries and frameworks for those languages.
C++ is utilized for a wide range of applications, including operating systems, web browsers, desktop applications, graphics-intensive programs, machine learning libraries, databases, embedded systems, and more. It is also used in the Internet of Things, set-top boxes, automation, and the automotive industry.
Java, on the other hand, is commonly used for application servers, web applications, smartphone apps, corporate software, unit tests, e-games, cloud-based applications, and web APIs. Currently, Java is also being adopted for the Internet of Things, self-driving cars, and data analytics.
Popular Application: C++ vs JavaSome of the world’s top companies, such as Amazon, Apple, Adobe, AT&T, Bloomberg, Autodesk, Facebook, HP, IBM, Intel, Google, Microsoft, and Mozilla, use C++.
Some of the most popular C++applications include Illustrator, Photoshop, Acrobat, Maya, Chrome, InDesign, Java VM Core, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows NT, Windows 9x, Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Visual Studio, etc.
The most popular Java applications include JPC, NASA World Wind, ThinkFree, Tommy JrUltraMixer, Project Looking Glass, Blu-ray, BD-J, Sun SPOT, Eclipse, Netbeans IDE, etc.
Program executionThe compilation process distinguishes the use of Java and C++. Java compiles to intermediate code, which then needs further interpretation or compilation, while C++ focuses on compiling directly to machine code for a specific platform. This results in Java being less suitable for low-level system programs due to its use of intermediate code The Java execution engine helps create programs, even those compiled (into bytecode), completely portable.
The standard environment and runtime allow developers to run Java programs on any compatible hardware platform and on any Operating System, without any changes, the efforts required to port programs are minimal (if the developer follows the recommendations for developing portable programs, they are completely zero).
Cross-platform applicationsA C++ program compiled on one operating system will not run on another operating system. In order to make it work, developers need to recompile the program for a different operating system.
On the other hand, a Java program will run on any platform where the JVM (Java virtual machine) is installed, so there is no need to recompile the program.
Memory securityOver the years, it has been established that C++ is not a memory-safe language. Developers can manage memories, which is a massive advantage. However, memory errors and severe problems, such as crashes, can occur anytime during program execution.
On the contrary, Java does not allow you to manipulate memory, and this feature is controlled by the system itself. So there won’t be any memory-related problems, which makes Java a memory-safe language.
PointersC++ entirely supports pointers, whereas Java has limited support for pointers.
PerformanceIn general, C++ programs run faster since they don’t require interpretation. On the other hand, slower run time of Java programs is due to the requirement for interpretation before execution, which consumes time. However, be aware that JVM will automatically optimize your code, which helps in increasing the performance of the program.
Proximity to equipmentCompared to Java, C++ is a low-level programming language and is much closer to the hardware. Java programming language is not close to the hardware.
Runtime Error CheckingA well-optimized C++ program will run faster than a Java program, but if the C++ program lacks optimization, it may run slower than Java.

Which language developer earns the most? : C++ vs Java

According to jobs and recruiting site, a Java developer can expect to earn around $88,100 per year or nearly $7350 per month. It is estimated that a C++ programmer earns over $95,000 a year, which is approximately $8,000 more than the average yearly salary.

The data suggest that C++ developers make more money… Why is that? The complexity of C++ makes it one of the most challenging programming languages in the world, and this difficulty in mastering it earns it the reputation of being one of the hardest languages to master.

Similarities Between C++ and Java

Both the programming languages are somewhat similar in syntax and language features.

Consider the following points among similarities:

  • Both in C++ and Java, the syntax is very similar.
  • Both the languages are object-oriented.
  • Main function is the entry point for both programming languages, that is, execution starts from it.
  • The data types are identical.
  • Primitive data types, conditional statements, loops, arithmetic statements, classes, variable initialization, variable definitions, value assignment, etc., are similar.
  • C++ and Java code comments are identical.


From the article, one can easily comprehend that both C++ and Java are powerful languages. Beginners can learn both of them to get a solid understanding of programming.

However, if you need to choose one of the two, ask yourself which sort of applications you want to develop. For example, C++ is the ideal choice for developing applications on Windows. Moreover, you can go for Java language if you need to create applications servers, enterprise applications, etc.

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