Svelte vs React: Which Should You Use and Why?


October 26, 2023

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Dive into our comprehensive guide on Svelte vs React. Understand their differences, strengths, and decide which fits best for your project.


Choosing the right framework for your project can be a daunting task. With so many options available, it can be challenging to determine which one is the best fit for your needs. Two of the most popular JavaScript frameworks on the market today are Svelte and React. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the key differences and strengths of Svelte vs React.

By understanding the unique features of each framework, you'll be able to make an informed decision on which one to choose for your next project. 

Introduction to Svelte and React

Welcome to our comprehensive guide to comparing Svelte and React, two popular JavaScript frameworks. In this section, we will provide a brief introduction to both frameworks, highlighting their core principles and significance in modern web development.

Svelte vs React - Svelte logo - Bluebird Blog


Svelte is a UI framework that compiles your code at build time instead of interpreting it at runtime. This approach enables Svelte to create highly efficient JavaScript code and optimize performance, which makes it an excellent choice for building web applications that require high performance and speed. The framework was created by Rich Harris, who also gave us Rollup and the HTMLbars templating library.

Svelte vs React - React logo - Bluebird Blog


React, on the other hand, is a JavaScript library designed for building user interfaces. It is maintained by Facebook and has become one of the most popular web development tools in recent years, with numerous large-scale projects built using the library. React uses a virtual DOM, which enables it to update only the necessary parts of the page, making it an efficient choice for complex, data-driven applications.


Both Svelte and React have their strengths and can be used to build robust and scalable web applications, but they differ in their approach to web development. In the following sections, we will explore the differences between Svelte and React in more detail, allowing you to make an informed decision about which framework is best suited for your project.

How Svelte Works

Svelte operates on a compiler-based approach. This means that it compiles the application at build time, rather than interpreting the code at runtime. When the developer writes the Svelte code, it gets compiled into efficient JavaScript code that the browser can easily understand.

The reactive programming model of Svelte allows for the creation of highly interactive and dynamic user interfaces. The framework detects changes in the state or data of a component and automatically updates the necessary parts of the UI without requiring additional code to be written. This results in a smooth and responsive application that users will appreciate.

One of the most significant advantages of Svelte is how it optimizes performance by compiling components into highly efficient JavaScript code. Unlike other frameworks where virtual DOM is used to update the UI, Svelte generates code that manipulates the actual DOM directly. This results in faster rendering times and better performance overall.

How React Works

In this section, we will explore the fundamentals of React. React is a JavaScript library that allows developers to build user interfaces using a component-based architecture. React works by creating a virtual representation of the user interface called the virtual DOM. This virtual representation is then compared to the actual DOM to determine the difference between the two.

When there is a change in the user interface, React makes the necessary updates to the virtual DOM. It then compares the new virtual DOM to the old virtual DOM and determines the difference. Finally, it updates only the elements that have changed in the actual DOM. This process is known as reconciliation.

React uses a declarative approach to programming, which means that developers can describe how the user interface should look, and React will take care of the rest. This is in contrast to an imperative approach, where developers have to describe each step that the code should take to update the user interface.

Svelte Vs React: Performance Comparison

When comparing Svelte vs React, one of the most important factors to consider is their overall performance. Developers require frameworks that can quickly render UI elements and manage state efficiently.

Let's dive deep into the performance metrics of Svelte vs React.


Svelte's Performance

Svelte's compiler-based approach results in highly performant applications. It compiles components at build-time to create highly efficient JavaScript code, which reduces the need for a runtime library. This approach results in smaller bundle sizes and faster load times.

Additionally, Svelte leverages its reactive programming model to update the UI in real-time. Svelte's compiler optimizes the code to reduce the number of DOM manipulations, which leads to faster updates and a smoother user experience.


React's Performance

React uses a virtual DOM to manage state and update the UI efficiently. It calculates the difference between the previous and current state, and updates only the changed components on the actual DOM, instead of re-rendering the entire page. This results in fast updates and a better user experience.

However, React's runtime library adds to the bundle size, which can result in slower load times. React's virtual DOM model also requires more memory, which can impact performance on low-powered devices.

Below is a summary of the performance comparison between Svelte and React:

Performance Metrics



Bundle Size



Load Times



Rendering Efficiency



Overall, Svelte's compiler-based approach and reactive programming model make it the clear winner in terms of performance. Svelte's smaller bundle size and faster load times result in faster rendering and a better user experience. However, React's virtual DOM model is still highly efficient and is suitable for most projects, particularly those that require a robust ecosystem and community support.

Svelte vs React - Performance - Bluebird Blog

Svelte Vs React: Ecosystem and Community Support

When evaluating a framework, it's important to consider the ecosystem and community support surrounding it. A robust ecosystem indicates a healthy and thriving framework, with ample resources and tools available to developers. On the other hand, a lack of community support could lead to difficulties in finding solutions to problems and staying up-to-date with the latest developments.


Svelte is a relatively new framework, having been released in 2016. However, despite its youth, it has a growing and active community. The official Svelte website provides extensive documentation and an interactive tutorial, making it easy for developers to get started. Additionally, Svelte has a dedicated package manager, which allows developers to easily install and manage dependencies. While the ecosystem is not as mature as React, it is steadily growing, with new libraries and plugins being released regularly.


React has a vast and mature ecosystem, with numerous libraries, tools, and resources available to developers. The framework has been around since 2013, and its popularity has led to a large and active community. The official React website provides detailed documentation and a comprehensive tutorial, making it easy for developers to learn the framework. Additionally, React has a large number of third-party libraries and plugins, which can be easily installed via the npm package manager.




Growing and active

Active and helpful

Community Support

Active and helpful

Large and thriving

Overall, both Svelte and React have strong ecosystems and active communities. While React's ecosystem is larger and more mature, Svelte's growing community and easy-to-use package manager make it a viable option for developers looking for a lightweight, easy-to-learn framework.

Svelte Vs React: Learning Curve and Developer Experience

When considering a new framework, it's important to assess the learning curve and developer experience. The ease of use and availability of learning resources can significantly impact the success of a project.

Both Svelte and React have a relatively low learning curve and offer comprehensive documentation and tutorials. However, Svelte's compiler-based approach may take some adjustment for developers used to traditional frameworks.

That being said, Svelte's concise syntax and reactive programming model may actually make it easier for developers to understand and create components. The absence of boilerplate code can also lead to faster development and a more streamlined workflow.

Svelte vs React - Learning - Bluebird Blog

React, on the other hand, offers a more familiar syntax for developers with experience in JavaScript and HTML. The popularity of React also means a vast array of resources is available, including community forums, video tutorials, and online courses.

One factor to consider is the tooling required for each framework. React relies heavily on external libraries and tools, such as Redux and React Router, to build robust applications. While this can add complexity, it also provides flexibility and allows developers to craft a custom solution tailored to their needs.

Svelte, on the other hand, aims to provide a self-contained solution that requires minimal external dependencies. This can simplify the development process, but may limit the ability to customize and build complex applications.

Svelte Vs React: Use Cases and Scalability

When it comes to choosing of Svelte vs React, it's essential to consider the use cases of each framework and their scalability.


Svelte is an excellent choice for small to medium-sized projects that require high performance and fast rendering. Due to its compiler-based architecture, Svelte generates highly optimized JavaScript code that requires less runtime processing, resulting in faster load times and better performance. Additionally, Svelte is well suited for building web applications that require real-time updates, such as chat apps or dashboards.

However, Svelte may not be the best fit for more extensive or complex projects. While Svelte does have a small bundle size, it may not handle larger codebases or applications as efficiently as React.


React is a popular choice for building large-scale applications. Thanks to its virtual DOM feature and efficient diffing algorithm, React can handle large and complex codebases with ease. Additionally, React provides a wide range of tools and libraries that can be used to build complex applications, making it a top choice for many developers.

However, React may not be the best option for small projects or those that require high performance and fast rendering. Since React is a library and not a framework, developers need to choose and integrate additional libraries to build a complete web application.

Svelte Vs React: Final Thoughts

We have compared and contrasted the fundamental differences and strengths of two popular JavaScript frameworks: Svelte vs React. Through this comprehensive guide, we tackled the syntax and component structure of both frameworks, delved into their inner workings, and evaluated their performance, ecosystem and community support, learning curve and developer experience, as well as use cases and scalability.

While both frameworks share some similarities, such as being highly performant and supporting reactive programming, they cater to different development needs and have unique advantages. For example, Svelte's compiler-based approach streamlines and optimizes the creation of components and reduces the size of the final bundle. On the other hand, React's virtual DOM and JSX enables developers to create complex user interfaces and manage state in a scalable and efficient manner.

When choosing between Svelte and React, it's essential to evaluate your project requirements and consider the pros and cons of each framework. While Svelte may be more suitable for smaller projects that require high performance and low bundle sizes, React may be better suited for larger projects with more complex state management and scalability needs.

Overall, we hope this guide has provided you with a clear understanding of the differences and strengths of Svelte vs React, and helped you make an informed decision on which framework to choose for your next web development project.

Other framework comparisons from Bluebird:


What is the difference Svelte vs React?

Svelte and React are both JavaScript frameworks, but they differ in their approach to building user interfaces. React uses a virtual DOM and updates the UI by comparing the previous and current versions of the DOM. On the other hand, Svelte compiles components into highly efficient JavaScript code, resulting in faster rendering and better performance.

Svelte vs React - FAQ - Bluebird Blog

Which framework should I choose, Svelte or React?

The choice between Svelte and React depends on your project requirements and personal preferences. Svelte excels in performance and bundle size, making it a great choice for smaller applications. React, on the other hand, has a larger ecosystem and a more established community, making it a good option for larger-scale projects with complex requirements.

How easy is it to learn Svelte and React?

Both Svelte and React have learning curves, but they are relatively easy to grasp if you are already familiar with JavaScript and web development concepts. Svelte has a simpler syntax and a smaller API surface compared to React, which might make it easier for beginners. However, React has extensive documentation and a vast online community, offering plenty of resources to aid your learning journey.

Can I use Svelte components in React projects, or vice versa?

While it is technically possible to use Svelte components in React projects and vice versa, it is not recommended due to differences in their underlying architecture and the ways they handle state and rendering. It is generally more efficient to use components specifically designed for the framework you are working with to ensure optimal performance and compatibility.

Are there any notable companies or projects using Svelte or React?

Yes, both Svelte and React have been adopted by major companies and projects. React is widely used by companies like Facebook, Instagram, Airbnb, and Netflix. Svelte is gaining popularity and has been used by companies like Spotify and The New York Times. Both frameworks have proven their capabilities in real-world applications.

Thank you for reading our comparative analysis. We hope that this article has helped you make an informed decision about Svelte vs React frameworks. 

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