Results from Python Software Foundation & JetBrains

Python Developer Survey: 84% use Python as main language

Sarah Schlothauer
© Shutterstock / Sanatana

Python excels in a number of different sectors, from machine learning and data science to web development. The third annual Python Developer Survey reveals what people use the language for, what tools and frameworks they love, and more.

The third Python Developers Survey conducted by the Python Software Foundation and JetBrains released the survey results.

To call Python a popular language is an understatement. Earlier this year, Python tied with Java in RedMonk’s quarterly rankings and a survey from CodinGame in 2020 revealed it is the “most loved programming language”.

Let’s see what developers around the world have to say.

SEE ALSO: The Connected IDE is the gateway to increased developer collaboration (Part 1)

Python uses

Python shines in computer science, machine learning, software development, and data analysis. Its versatility is just one of the reasons for its widespread usage. It excels in the enterprise, as a hobbyist language, and in the classroom.

58% of respondents said that they use the language both at home and for work.

The most common Python usage is for data science with 59% of respondents. Web development (51%) and machine learning (40%) follow.

Most respondents use Python as their main language (84%). When asked about what languages they use in tandem, the report states:

Scripting languages like JavaScript, TypeScript, HTML/CSS, and PHP are used much more often among those who identified Web development as their purpose for using Python than among Data Scientists. Conversely, C/C++, Java, and R are more popular among Data scientists than among web developers.

Most-loved Python features

The survey asked participants about which tools and features of the languages they used the most often. 90% of developers use Python’s version control system “at least sometimes”.

Code refactoring is used by 89% and autocomplete is used by 88% of developers.

Top tools and technologies

What are the most commonly used frameworks, cloud platforms, development tools, and databases by Python developers? Let’s take a look at the top three in each category.

Web frameworks

  1. Flask (48%)
  2. Django (44%)
  3. Tornado (5%)

Data science frameworks & libraries

  1. Numpy (63%)
  2. Pandas (55%)
  3. Matplotlib (46%)

Top Databases

  1. PostgreSQL (47%)
  2. MySQL and SQLite (tied with 39%)
  3. MongoDB and Redis (tied with 20%)

Top editors & IDEs

  1. Pycharm (33%)
  2. VS Code (24%)
  3. Vim (9%)

Operating systems

  1. Linux (68%)
  2. Windows (48%)
  3. MacOS (29%)

Cloud platforms

  1. AWS (55%)
  2. Google Cloud Platform (33%)
  3. DigitalOcean (22%)

According to the survey, running code in containers continues to become more popular each year. This year 47% of developers run their code via containers, compared to 40% last year.  Containers are currently more common than virtual machines.

56% of respondents develop for the cloud locally using virtualenv, while 41% use Docker containers. As for virtual machines in the cloud, the technology has decreased in popularity this year with just 22% of respondents using it.

SEE ALSO: “Julia is comparable to Python for simple machine learning tasks and better for complex ones”

Misc. facts and figures

Some interesting figures from the survey:

  • Even though Python 2 is no longer supported, 10% of developers still actively use it.
  • 11% of respondents do not use any other language besides Python.
  • Some uncommon uses for Python reported by devs: Building Discord bots, astronomy, ethical hacking, and music.
  • 12% of respondents claim that “they don’t update”.
  • While only 13% of respondents use Python for computer graphics, this usage saw a small amount of growth compared to last year (9%). Let’s keep an eye on this use case and see how it fares next year.

Review the results and check out more statistics about developer demographics, company size, and experience.

Sarah Schlothauer

Sarah Schlothauer

All Posts by Sarah Schlothauer

Sarah Schlothauer is the editor for She received her Bachelor's degree from Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey. She currently lives in Frankfurt, Germany with her husband and cat where she enjoys reading, writing, and medieval reenactment. She is also the editor for Conditio Humana, an online magazine about ethics, AI, and technology.

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