PHP 7 has been available for a while now, yet there are plenty of website owners who have not yet made the decision to upgrade yet.
If you haven’t upgraded, then maybe now is a good time to think about making that move. Still not sure? Well PHP 7 has a number of significant upgrades on the previous version that are certainly worthy of some very serious consideration.
If you use WordPress, then you should certainly be looking at upgrading. When it comes to the WordPress core the minimum requirements from PHP have increased, so if you are still using an older version you could soon find that a number of the plugins and themes that you use have become incompatible. Don’t be caught out – as this could have implications for the functionality of your website.
As with any upgrade, PHP 7 has taken the opportunity to look at which features from PHP 5.6 worked well and which ones less so. This gives them the opportunity to remove any features that have been a disappointment and replace them with features that are more modern and up to date. In this instance those new features include capabilities such as anonymous classes, and type declarations. These are also updates that help to keep PHP in the running with its competitors.
Performance and Security
And, of course, if that isn’t enough to convince you, then consider the two biggest benefits of upgrading. PHP 7 is faster, it will offer you much faster performance than PHP 5.6 and that has to be a good thing for your website and those who are using it. On the security front, it is worth remembering that it will not be possible for previous versions of PHP to receive security fixes forever. Each version of PHP receives full support for two years, and after this they get an additional year of support during which only critical security updates are available. After this point, the support is no longer available as it moves to supporting the new version of PHP. PHP 5.6 ceased to receive active support last January and the security updates will end in December 2018.
In a nutshell, this means that you could be leaving your website open to the risk of potential hackers; so for this reason alone, can you really afford not to upgrade?