PHP is one of the most widely used open-source programming languages, powering over 80% globally active websites. CakePHP, Laravel, Symfony, Zend, and Yii are a few of the PHP development frameworks employed by companies across industries today, and of these, Symfony and Zend Framework are two major PHP frameworks used to create high-performance web applications using the MVC pattern. They are distinctively different in terms of their performance, advantages and disadvantages, and the approaches and solutions they employ, but they both enjoy popularity with developers. To help ease the confusion of whether to hire symfony developers or go for Zend, we will look at the pros and cons of each framework.

Both Symfony and Zend are open-source frameworks. Open-source frameworks have been highly instrumental in providing customizable, free, and economical platforms for application development, and both frameworks enjoy all the inherent benefits of this universal model. Constant research and development have helped these two gain recognition as the next-generation web development frameworks. They both use almost the same naming, auto loading conventions, and coding, and both are decoupled and component-based.

Partners and Sponsors

Symfony is sponsored by SensioLabs, a French Company, and offers a full range of professional solutions, innovative products, and custom-made or pre-packaged services. Zend is sponsored by Zend Technologies, its corporate sponsor, with Google, Microsoft, Adobe, and IBM among its valued partners, and this has further increased its popularity.


As earlier discussed, both Zend and Symfony are PHP-based open-source frameworks. However, while Symfony is licensed under MIT, Zend was released under the flexible BSD License.

Learning Curve

Symfony wins the battle against the Zend framework with ease of learning. The availability of many guides, provided by both communities and authors, makes it very easy for the newbie developers to get into Symfony development. Zend Framework doesn’t have such support, coupled with the fact that its documentation is also created keeping in mind the skilled professionals. This makes it quite difficult for a newbie to create applications using the Zend framework.


While Zend has loosely coupled components, modularity, and advanced Model View Controller (MVC) aids in developing high-quality web applications, the object-relational-mapping (ORM) model is the basis for the flexibility of Symfony. For coding, Symfony supports YAML, PHP, and XML.


Both frameworks display their competence and capabilities in this criterion. Zend comes with a vast library of built-in code snippets to support searching, sending mails, handling data, caching, and many more in web applications. Symfony’s basic library is equally proficient and comes equipped with very elaborate and supportive documentation to find solutions for many development issues.


The templating capabilities of the Symfony framework are much more robust when compared to the Zend framework. Templating capabilities in the Symfony framework are quite impressive, with caching helping to provide immediate delivery of the content. Layout scripts allow developers to easily customize the templates in a much easier way in Symfony.

Database Modules

While Symfony allows developers to use almost any kind of database manager with ease, the Zend framework restricts developers to using only the ActiveRecord model’s database manager.


The Zend framework doesn’t boast an extensive range of plugins, but it allows configuration and a flexible selection of the architecture for web applications. Symfony has a robust and huge stock of user-contributed plugins allowing rapid application development. However, the transition of your application to other architecture can be difficult as dependence on Symfony is hard to break.

Upgrade and Community Support

Symfony regularly provides released updates and newer versions with various enhancements. It also boasts an active support and development community, besides the very detailed documentation. The upgrading process is also quite easy, with well-documented version changes. Zend also provides support and development resources, which helps multiple additional open-source projects. Support will always be the Zend framework, with millions of contributors and users contributing tests, code and documentation.


ZendCrypt contains cryptographic and secure coding components for cryptographic key generation, password management, handling symmetric and asymmetric ciphers, and many other options.


Both frameworks offer the benefit of a framework that provides coding snippets and built-in elements to complete the routine and repetitive tasks as quickly as possible, which will save you a lot of time allows you to spend your efforts, energy, and time in devising rich features or implementing better functionality to give an excellent user experience.

However, as a verdict, we will go for Symfony because of its modular structure, easy routing, bundles, library, fast and annotation-based coding, and complete control over the configuration feature.