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5 Reasons Why PHP is the Most Popular Web programming Language for Sending SMS Via an API

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PHP is often seen as the ‘go to’ web programming language to use for sending SMS via an API.

It’s quick to learn, fast to implement and is notoriously forgiving.

We wanted to find out why, when there are so many other languages that could arguably do a better job, is PHP so enduringly popular.

Mixed reviews for PHP

Opinion on PHP as a web programming language overall is at best mixed. A Google search seems to strongly suggest a deep sense of frustration.

Despite the mixed reviews, PHP is so important for some people, that they include ‘PHP SMS’, ‘send SMS PHP code’  or similar variant in their search term when looking for an SMS API company.

They’re clearly looking for a solution that will give them a PHP SMS gateway option.

To shed some light on why PHP is so popular, we’ve put together 5 reasons that developers love PHP as a way of integrating SMS.


1. PHP is easy to learn

Who wants to spend months grappling with the intricacies of more precise and demanding languages?

Most people need to get their in PHP SMS API up and running fast, without the need for extensive training to master some of the more challenging concepts that other languages require.

People who are familiar with html can quickly become reasonably competent coders in PHP.

No other language is as easy for a beginner to get visible results. 
Bill Karwin- SQL developer, consultant, trainer 
and author

Trainers and teachers seem to back up this viewpoint.

I taught PHP to more than 100 trainees, out of which 90% of people came from non-technical backgrounds. I literally taught them the abcs of computer programming.

Sunil Thakare – Full Stack Developer

2. PHP is flexible and forgiving

Using PHP with your SMS API allows you to get up and running fast and minor errors don’t cause it to grind to a halt. 

It’s perfect for prototyping where you need to get a proof of concept in a ‘demo ready’ state

Contributing to a stack overflow discussion, Bob Fanger, Developer at NoProtoco commented,

Quick and Dirty is the default. The language is filled with useful shortcuts. PHP lets me express what I want without typing an essay.

Bob Fanger, Developer – NoProtocol

3. PHP has some of the best documentation

PHP is one of most comprehensively documented web programming languages. There are countless libraries and third party tools to help users.

A search on YouTube for PHP tutorials pulls up 3.2 million results. On Google overall, the same search produces 3.9million. 

This obviously presents an issue, with a colossal overproduction of training material, much of it now redundant.

There are a lots of outdated PHP tutorials still floating around the web. That is why it is extremely important to keep a reference for doing and learning PHP the right way.
Ayman Farhat – Software and web developer

I think it’s fair to say that there is no shortage of training material although curating the mountain of literature might be a challenge.

4 PHP is installed on most web hosting servers

PHP comes free with most web hosting servers, so you don’t need to waste time installing new systems and enduring all the hassle that comes with configuring them.

While PHP is far from the best web programming language, it’s the most common in terms of availability in hosting packages.
Rebecca Skinner – Full Stack Developer

Even if PHP is not your web programming language of choice, most people want an easy life and are more than prepared to put up with PHP’s rough edges for the sake of speed and efficiency.

5. PHP Is free

Since the very earliest versions, back in 1995, PHP has always been a collaborative project with no commercial underpinnings.

Rasmus Lerdorf, one of the original architects of PHP hadn’t even intended it to become a new programming language. It grew organically and like wildfire.

I don’t know how to stop it, there was never any intent to write a  programming language.

Rasmus Lerdorf,


As developers added their own functions, PHP became the runaway juggernaut that it is today.

From its rather chaotic beginnings, PHP has emerged, imperfect, often inconsistent but most importantly, free.

PHP – Imperfect, scruffy rascal

In his entertaining article, PHP is the right tool for the job (for all the wrong reasons),  Samuel Levy lays out the case for why PHP is so often the winning language.

He dismisses the purists who whine about the inelegance of the code and its lack of refinement. Instead, he champions its ease of use and ultimate practicality.

He suggests that most developers today take a pragmatic approach to choosing a web programming language.

They approach software like they would approach buying a toaster – they want something that does the job, and doesn’t cost the earth.

Samuel Levy Freelance Software Engineer, writer

PHP – Popular, but not the only show in town

While PHP is the top choice for many developers, it’s by no means the only option.

We’ve put together code wrappers for our SMS API in all the main web programming languages.
We’d love to you test us, regardless of the language that you’d like to use. Help yourself to a free SMS API account. 
It comes with 50 free credits for testing. This is normally plenty but let us know if you need more and we’ll gladly add as many as you need, within reason.

Our code libraries should give you all you need to get up and running. Let us know if there’s anything we’ve not covered. We’d love to hear from you.

All our details are on the contact page.

author avatar
Henry Cazalet Managing Director
Co-founder and Director of The SMS Works, a low cost and powerful SMS API for developers. About Henry