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December 14, 2021

Java Trends to Watch in 2022

Java Application Development

Staying abreast of Java trends is just as important for CTOs as it is for developers. And while there are a litany of surveys (ours included) that will release in coming months with data on these trends, there are plenty of credible predictions abound.

In this blog, our experts share their thoughts on Java trends to watch in 2022, including trends in Java itself, and in its supporting development technologies.

Before you jump in, feel free to watch a recording of our webinar, 5 Secrets to Save Java Development Time!

4 Java Trends to Watch in 2022

Every year, we ask leaders from our product team to share their predictions for Java trends in the upcoming year. This year, we asked Curtis Johnson, JRebel Product Manager, and Michael Rasmussen, JRebel Development Lead, to share their thoughts on the Java trends to watch in 2022.

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1. Increased Adoption of Java 17

While increased adoption of a new LTS Java version may seem like a safe prediction, adoption of LTS versions beyond Java 8 have been underwhelming.

Java 11 experienced some adoption, but, according to our yearly Java Developer Productivity reports, Java 8 is still far and away the most used Java version.

Michael Rasmussen

”Java 17 isn’t going to drive adoption at the level of Java 8, but I do think we’ll see adoption at least at the level of Java 11.”

2. VSCode Adoption

Another interesting trend we’ve seen in recent years has been the increase in adoption for the polyglottal IDE, VSCode. In our 2020 Java developer productivity report, 10% of respondents reported using VSCode, while in 2021, 27% of respondents reported using VSCode.

While the survey data is from different respondents, the growth is still significant.

Curtis Johnson

”I think part of the growth for VSCode can be attributed to their team doing a great job of getting the tool embedded within existing communities, and how VSCode aligns with multi-language application development.”

3. Spring Boot Alternatives Continue to Gain Traction

Spring and Spring Boot are still the dominant framework technologies used in Java today. However, there are other frameworks like Micronaut and Quarkus giving Spring frameworks a run for their money – especially when considering microservice-specific frameworks.

Michael Rasmussen

”Micronaut and Quarkus are gaining more market share than people give them credit for. Even with Spring Boot 3 set to release in the second half of 2022, I would still expect to see a heavily fragmented microservices framework market.

4. Decreased Adoption of Non-LTS Java Versions

Non-LTS Java versions have never drawn as much adoption as their LTS brethren. But proposed changes to the Java release cadence and LTS schedule are poised to make that adopted even less.

Michael Rasmussen

”There’s an interesting paradox with this change. The heightened cadence will mean that minor upgrades will be relatively painless, which could draw more usage of minor versions. But on the other side of the coin, because LTS versions will likely be available every two years, it might not make sense to adopt intermediary releases if the next LTS is always less than two years away.”

Final Thoughts

Predicting the future of Java certainly isn’t a science. Changes within the language, within the supporting ecosystem, or within development at large can change the landscape overnight.

For more data on the Java landscape, and analysis on emerging trends, be sure to complete our ongoing Java developer survey, or download previous year’s surveys, here.

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