Kotlin vs Go in 2023
If you want to work on web frontend, server-side applications, multiplatform mobile apps, Android applications, and Data Science projects, you should learn Kotlin.
Kotlin is a cross-platform, general-purpose, high-level programming. It is designed to interoperate fully with Java, and the JVM version of Kotlin’s standard library depends on the Java Class Library.
On the other hand, Go is a statically typed, compiled programming language that makes it easy to build secure, scalable systems.
If you are interested in building command line interfaces, cloud & network services, web applications, DevOps, and Site Reliability, you should learn Go.
Choosing which programming language to learn can be tricky, there are many factors to consider when learning a new technology or programming language.
Popularity, opportunities, types of projects, salaries, resources, learning curve, etc. are some of the factors that many people consider when choosing to learn a programming language or a framework.
POPULARITY AND OPPORTUNITIES
If you want to learn a programming language or framework solely for its popularity among developers, you should learn Go.
Generally, Go is more popular than Kotlin. According to a Stack Overflow survey of 2022, Go is the 13th most commonly used programming language, it is used by 11.38% of professional developers.
On the other hand, Kotlin is the 14th most commonly used programming language, it is used by 9.92% of professional developers according to the same survey.
Further, more developers love Go than Kotlin. As of 2022, Go is loved by 64.58% of developers versus 35.42% of developers who dreaded it
Kotlin on the other hand is loved by 63.29% of developers versus 36.71% of developers who dreaded it.
So, if your choice of which programming language to learn depends on popularity, you should learn Go over Kotlin.
Another popular criterion that many people use as an incentive to learn a new programming language is salary.
Salaries for developers differ from one company to the other and from one country to the other.
Experience is another factor that comes into play as far as salaries are concerned. The more experience you have with a certain technology or programming language, the more likely you are of getting a higher salary.
Generally, Go developers get higher salaries than Kotlin developers. According to a Stack Overflow survey of top-paying programming languages, Go developers get an average salary of $89,204 per year and Kotlin developers get an average salary of $69,313 per year.
Further, Glassdoor reported that in the United States, Go software engineers with 1 – 3 years of experience get a base salary of $122,744 per year.
On the other hand, Kotlin developers with 1 – 3 years of experience get a total salary of $98,405 per year.
So, if the salary is your major incentive for learning a language or framework, you should learn Go over Kotlin because you are more likely to get a higher salary as a Go developer than as a Kotlin developer.
Here are some of the jobs you can get as a Kotlin developer.
Some programming languages can be learned more easily than others. Both Kotlin and Go are beginner-friendly languages and you will not struggle much with learning either of them.
Go is easy to learn and work with as well. It is also easy to maintain a Go codebase even when the project is huge.
If you are familiar with systems programming, networks, and database interaction, you will find Go very easy and straightforward.
Kotlin is easy to use as well, especially when you are working on Android apps and server-side applications
The good news is that there are many helpful resources for both Kotlin and Go to help you learn the languages.
The Kotlin and Go communities are very active and helpful, in case you get stuck with something.
FEATURES AND APPLICATIONS
Kotlin is a modern programming language that makes it very easy to write server-side applications and develop Android apps.
In 2017, Google announced that the Kotlin programming language is now its preferred language for Android app developers.
Another great feature of Kotlin is its interoperability with other languages like Java. This makes it easy to call JVM frameworks and libraries in a Kotlin codebase and vice-versa without issues.
As a result, developers can add more functionality to their Kotlin projects seamlessly using Java libraries and frameworks.
Kotlin powers some of the complex applications developed by companies like Google, Atlassian, Corda, Amazon, JetBrains, Pinterest, Under, Netflix, Duolingo, OLX, Evernote, Coursera, Gradle, Spring, and many others.
On the other hand, Go is also a highly performant language. Go programs are compiled into native binaries bound to the operating system, this makes Go programs faster and more efficient than Kotlin programs.
Go has great unique features that make it suitable for building command line interfaces, cloud & network services, DevOps & Site Reliability, etc.
Although its performance cannot be compared to that of C, C++, Fortran, or Julia, Go stills remains a popular choice for applications that require good performance.
Go has features such as built-in concurrency, memory safety, garbage collection, structural typing, and a robust standard library that makes development quick and straightforward.
Go powers some of the complex applications made by companies like Twitter, Uber, Cloudflare, American Express, Capital One, PayPal, Meta, Wild Life, Allegro, Dropbox, Netflix, Trivago, Microsoft, Salesforce, Twitch, Stream, Google, Riot Games, Target, and many others.
Once you have evaluated all the factors, you can choose which programming language to learn depending on the factors that are on your side and what you want to build.
If you want a language that can help you work on Android applications, server-side applications, web frontends, and multiplatform mobile applications, you should learn Kotlin over Go.
If you are interested in building command line interfaces, cloud & network services, web applications, DevOps, Site Reliability, and potentially get a high salary, you should learn Go over Kotlin