Dinesh KumarVP Engineering @ Radiansys
MEAN and MERN are the two best-known examples of full-stack frameworks. These are also referred to as Tech Stacks because they are a combination of technologies commonly used for web app development. To meet the growing digital demands of different industries every day, there have emerged plenty of tech stacks that are developing Avant-Garde web solutions. Full-stack frameworks are one such example that is a proven one-stop solution for rounded web development.
However, to get the best website up and running, choosing the right tech stack is imperative. Failing at this can leave you with not only a poor website but also a waste of investment and time. Choosing between MEAN and MERN can be one such tough decision. There are fewer but very crucial differences between these tech stacks that can tweak the project outcomes significantly.
We are here with a detailed blog on MEAN vs. MERN including the basics and relevant comparison of the two tech stacks followed by parameters for selecting the right framework for your project.
MERN refers to MongoDB, ExpressJS, ReactJS, and Node.js which are also the stack’s main components. The framework relies on Java for faster and simpler mobile and web app development. Let’s see how the components of the MERN stack work:
Now, let’s see how the MEAN vs. MERN works:
It is a pre-engineered tech stack with lesser flexibility. This makes the learning curve steep, especially for beginners who have no experience or prior knowledge of the Angular framework. Angular is TypeScript based and also uses several templates. Alongside, the documentation for the framework is detailed but a bit complex to understand easily.
MERN involves ReactJS which comes with comprehensive documentation and data. This makes the tech stack simpler to learn and operate for developers including the newbies.
MEAN stack becomes a more structured framework due to Angular that supports MVC or MVW architecture effectively. This creates an intermediate layer between the database and UI code that facilitates easier code management and upgrade. As the user interface is not attached to the intermediate layer, it takes away project structure and scalability from the framework.
MERN stack lacks a firm structure as it’s a library after all. This MEANs that codes are stored at different locations. Thus, it can be a task to handle codes and upgrade them. At the same time, the MERN stack allows simpler UI rendering by providing the necessary means.
In the MERN stack, JSX is crucial for the HTML code to be written and added in React. This gives flexibility to the framework, making it suitable for a wide range of projects.
MEAN stack has bi-directional data flow. This MEANs that the model state gets automatically changed upon altering the UI.
React introduces unidirectional data binding in the MERN stack. Thus, the UI can only be changed after altering the model state. The best advantage of this is to improve the data overview. This makes the stack a good choice for building flexible, small-scale web applications or as per requirements.
MEAN stack includes plenty of default functionalities that make using the libraries easier even without any prior experience with programming languages. For example, it enables HTTP calls to the backend simply. Angular has many ready-to-use features that are ready to plug and play. However, due to the strict architecture of Angular, the MEAN stack doesn’t offer much flexibility when it comes to using third-party libraries.
React Native allows the freedom of using as many tools and third-party libraries. However, integrating external libraries in a React-based project calls for further settings and features. Being relatively new, MERN has a long way to go as it lacks default libraries for software development.
It is easy to test MEAN stack applications as it will mostly require using just a single tool.
Testing MERN stack applications require greater effort as well as multiple tools. This is because of the flexible nature of the framework that allows the use of multiple libraries and technologies to build the different building blocks of the application. Thus, you need to use different tools for testing the different parts of the app.
MEAN stack comes with a robust data security mechanism that makes applications securer against different cyber-attacks. This is because the stack utilizes scalable technologies like Angular and NodeJS that come with the JSON Web Token. It encrypts the sensitive user data and related resources in the applications to restrict unauthorized access. The tech stack even allows the implementation of cookie-based sessions for safeguarding the client-side cookie data. It stores the session on the client-end for improved data security.
MERN stack is primarily concerned with faster and streamlined execution of development operations like API backend. While doing so, the stack implements authentication functions for app security. However, these methods don’t provide security from CSRF attacks.
MERN framework allows flexibility but it also MEANs that all settings need separate configurations every single time. Also, the tech stack uses virtual DOM that increases the rendering time unnecessarily. However, the virtual DOM helps in coding faster running applications. ReactJS is an open-source library which gives it a fairly high advantage in terms of performance. It is a favorite of developers for speedy coding.
Angular offers great productivity to the developers as it’s a complete package. It gains the competitive advantage from its Command Line Interface (CLI) feature which simplifies a lot of operations like upgrading the code.
React in the MERN stack makes things a little complex due to the plenty of third-party libraries involved. For upgrading the code, all these libraries have to be dealt with. This ultimately reduces the productivity quotient.
Angular continued to be the most known framework in 2018-20, according to the HackerRank 2020 Developer Skills Report. However, statistics have shown that when it comes to being the developers’ choice, AngularJS was chosen by 28% of developers. The steep learning curve of Angular can be gauged as the reason behind this.
React continues to be the top framework for 32% of developers wanting to learn it next. The Java Full-stack Report 2022 also shows React to be the top framework for web development followed by Angular. Over 40% of survey respondents prefer ReactJS, making it the most used framework. Similarly, in the State of JS report 2021, React topped the charts of usage with 80% of developers preferring it for the web frontend.
|Mobile app development|
Angular in MEAN stack provides you with the benefits of an Ionic framework. You can develop Hybrid mobile applications that cut down development costs and facilitate easy code handling.
React Native in the MERN stack is a great choice for developing apps that give a native user experience.
MEAN and MERN share plenty of functionalities in common owing to their similar building blocks. Let's see all the similarities right here.
We have seen the best features of the MEAN and MERN stack along with a detailed comparison between the two on various fronts. Now, the important part is selecting the apt tech stack for your project that meets all the requirements. Let us help you out here with certain pointers to pick the right framework.
We understand that decision-making can still be hard which is why we are here. We boast a team of experienced web developers that can help you pick the right tech stack for your business objectives and make the perfect development strategy.
We just finished comparing the MEAN and MERN tech stacks on different parameters, finding their similarities and differences. Speaking of the functionalities and capabilities exhibited by these frameworks, both have proven great for effective web development. The structure of these frameworks majorly drives the differentiation between them. Therefore, it would be wise for businesses to choose between MEAN vs. MERN by intelligently analyzing the specific needs of the project.
If you are still not able to decide whether to choose MEAN or go with MERN, the best move would be to speak with experts. We are a top web development company with extensive proficiency in delivering top-notch software solutions. Our consulting team will help you decide which tech stack out of MEAN and MERN will align perfectly with the demands of your project.
Thanks for reading!