React vs Angular: Two Sides of JavaScript

09 Feb 2017
8 min
author avatar
Vitaly K.
Technical writer

In the world of deadlines, the right choice of technology takes crucial part. Having years of experience behind, we were involved in coding on dozens of languages, frameworks, and libraries. Bringing our knowledge together, we decided to shed some light on React vs Angular question and share some thoughts with you.

Thus, in this article, we are going to transform our front-end development experience into something that will help you to determine the technology that fits you better.

Angular 2 vs React: How to Make Your Choie

Why Angular 2?

Angular is an open-source JavaScript framework providing everything needed to create a client-side of a website.

During Angular 2 development, you can see that its second version got rid of unnecessary complexity that was present in previous one. For example, Angular 2 team has removed or replaced nearly all the concepts from the first version. I am talking about modules, controllers, scopes, directives etc.


Broaden not only your programming skills but also the knowledge of software development methodologies in our related article

However, they have not stopped only on making their framework simpler. They also added new notable features and some improvements. Among features, we would like to single out native app support and server-side rendering. Talking about improvements, we cannot omit the fact that Angular 2 performance increased dramatically.

How did it get popular?

  • The fact that Angular is Google's creation inspires trust by itself
  • Designed in such a way allowing coders not to injure their psyche while learning Angular after other languages
  • Many coders point out that if your Angular code looks complicated - you are doing something wrong 

Websites built on Angular: YouTube (for PS3), GoodFilms, Freelancer, Upwork

So, why Angular 2 can be helpful? Let's consider its main pros and cons in our view.

Angular 2 advantages and disadvantages

Angular pros and cons by Cleveroad

Why ReactJS?

Unlike Angular, ReactJS is a JavaScript-based open-source library with a JSX compiler. It is mainly focused on the user interface allowing to create reusable UI views components.

Using React you should always remember that it is not one more MVC framework but just a library for rendering your views. This way, React is an interface-focused solution since your users get a highly responsive interface with smooth loading.

How did it get popular?

  • Facebook stands behind this project
  • ReactJS solutions are SEO-friendly
  • ReactJS performance and flexibility are high 

Famous ReactJS websites: Netflix, Feedly, Airbnb, Walmart

Now, let's consider why ReactJS can be useful for certain needs in our view.

ReactJS advantages and disadvantages

React pros and cons by Cleveroad

How to make your choice?

Now, let's dive deeper into details that may be quite important during technology selection.


You should be acknowledged with a kind of a license the framework is disturbed under. Most licenses are pretty flexible to work with and you can use them to create commercial apps without any problems. However, there is a variety of licenses that do not give you such a freedom of actions.

It is better to do simple research than to learn about having no rights on the commercial distribution of your product, right?

Note: One of the Angular and ReactJS advantages is that they are both open-source with no restrictions towards the usage. Worth to mention that Angular uses MIT license against 3-clause BSD used in React. However, the only visible difference of BSD is a ban on usage of right holders' name for advertising purposes.

MVC pattern

The Model-View-Controller pattern allows to split the project's data into three components: model, view, and controller. This way, the modification of each component can be conducted independently leading to tighter code and increasing the quality of the final product.


Do you want to learn one more programming language? Discover Top 20 Most Popular Programming Languages for 2017 

Except for MVC patterns, there are also Model-View-Presenter (MVP) and Model-View-View-Model (MVVM).

Note: Among all the Angular 2 features, the availability of MVC pattern out-of-the-box is a significant advantage over React. Since from three letters of that acronym it has only 'V' - view. In case you need 'M' and 'C', you should look elsewhere to solve this problem.


Talking about Angular 2 benefits, worth to mention its ease of display templates writing. Having really straightforward UI for your data, Angular allows you to get the end result with the more intuitive approach to the user interface that demands less code and seems to be more 'obvious'.

In case with React, it requires special functions in order to manage data display. Mostly, it means that you should define the way your data is represented before it will be coded into the DOM. That may cause a disconnect during its attempts to determine how a certain element will be rendered.

Note: Up to 80% of what you are doing while online service creation is writing its UI. So, you better weight these technologies' templating approaches in order to figure out that one, corresponding to your coding preferences.

Data Binding

Angular uses two-way data binding. With its help, the framework is able to connect DOM to Model data via the Controller. In a nutshell, when users interact with inputs and give a new value to your app - not only View can be updated but the Model too. Accordingly, you do not need to write any method for tracking this changes within the app.

Note: Angular's approach affects performance since a watcher for each binding is created.

React uses one-way data binding, where the flow of data is directed only in one way. Due to this, you will always be aware of a place where your data changes.

Note: React's approach is much easier to debug when it comes to large applications.

Worth to say a word about client-side vs server-side rendering. Actually, a server-side rendering was used in the first versions of Angular, creating difficulties for marketing. Since a browser perceives a client-side rendering as a JavaScript with pure opportunities for SEO optimization. That is a significant disadvantage because most of the digital products demand a lot of marketing power to stay alive.

Also, client-side rendering may affect pages loading a lot. However, starting from the second version, Angular developers have fixed that issue transferring its rendering model to the server side.


As you know, Angular creates a watcher for every binding in order to track all the changes in DOM. As soon as the View gets some updates, Angular start comparing obtained values with the initial ones. The matter is that technology checks not only those values that have changed but all of them having watchers.

Note: Angular 2 performance may cause some problems when it comes to massive apps.


Are you fond of JavaScript? Discover Top 12 JavaScrip Libraries of 2017

ReactJS developers have introduced the virtual DOM concept that allows creating light DOM tree saving it on the server. Every time a user interact with the website, for example filling the form, React creates a new virtual DOM for comparing it with the previous one. After the library has found all the differences between these two models - the virtual DOM will be rebuilt. All the process is conducted within the server this way reducing the load on the browser.

Note: ReactJS performance increases when it comes to big amounts of data since there are no watchers.

We have prepared the graph showing the evaluation of these technologies by criteria. These marks are based on our personal experience.

ReactJS vs Angular graph: evaluation of the features

Cleveroad evaluation of technologies

We had a little meeting related to React vs Angular question during which our front-end developers had an opportunity to discuss all the pros and cons of these technologies.

They concluded that Angular fits better for their coding preferences as well as for working tasks they come across with daily.

To sum up all the above-said, we have prepared a graph for you. There, you can find features comparison of Angular 1.X, Angular 2 and React.

ReactJS vs Angular graph: comparison of features

React vs Angular versions

Cleveroad experience

Among these two technologies, our coders prefer Angular web development. Having a lot of groundwork connected with this framework, we are able to work in a more efficient way, reducing the time needed for the project delivery. This way, our clients cut on the project's cost due to reduced development hours.

All our projects based on this technology had a big amount of front-end logic in its structure that changes frequently. Also, the projects implied a number of design changes. The usage of React library could increase development hours raising the total price of the final product.

You may also take a look at our tech stack that we usually apply along with Angular 2 development.

Server-side solutions: AWS, DigitalOcean, Hetzner, Microsoft Azure

Back-end technologies: Node.js + Typescript 2, Angular 2
Databases: MySQL, MongoDB, Redis, PostgreSQL
Cloud storages: AWS S3, Azure storage
Payment gates: Stripe, Braintree
Infrastructure and project management: Webpack 2, Docker and CI, Jira, Bitbucket/Git

Drawing the line

Probably, the issue of choosing between Angular and React in the world of front-end can be somehow comparable with choosing between iOS and Android. I mean, both technologies have advantages and disadvantages, its admirers and haters. Thus, every developer has certain reasons why use ReactJS or some other technology.

In 2017, more and more web projects will be based on Angular 2 due to features allowing to simplify developers' lives. For example, good debugging, MVC pattern, server side rendering etc.

As a result, it will reduce hours needed for development and accordingly reduce pricing on development and maintenance.

In case you have any question - please contact us, it is free!

Like this article? Subscribe to our newsletter to get more! Fill in the form you see on the right or at the end of the page (for smartphones). No spam, we promise. Just one letter a week with the latest videos and blog posts from our team. Our content includes hot topics for developers and entrepreneurs.

Rate this article!

An image An image
An image An image
An image An image
An image An image
An image An image
Love it!
(7103 ratings, average: 4.58 out of 5)
Latest articles
Article preview image
Enterprise mobile application development
Calendar icon
20 Jan 2020
Clock icon
8 min
Article preview image
Top 10 programming languages for 2020
Calendar icon
14 Jan 2020
Clock icon
9 min
Article preview image
How to create a custom CRM and not to fail
Calendar icon
12 Jan 2020
Clock icon
13 min
Back to top
As s part of our team, be ready for:
An image
Competitive Base Salary
An image
Comprehensive Benefits
An image
Great Work Environment
An image
Drug Free Workplace
Tell us more about yourself