Announcing the Zend Framework 3 Roadmap

Update: ZF3 Released!

Zend Framework 3 was released 28 June 2016! Read the announcement for details!

The most often-asked questions we get around the Zend Framework project include: Where is Zend Framework heading? When will Zend Framework 3 be released? What changes and enhancements should we expect?

Since inception, our goal for Zend Framework has been to further the art of PHP and ensure our users concentrate on the business logic of their application rather than wasting time reinventing the plumbing. The plumbing is Zend Framework’s job. We have continued to evolve ZF with best-in-class web development practices, and have innovated in areas where we saw gaps; as an example, we observed developers struggling with API development, which led us to create the Apigility project on top of ZF2.

We have built an incredibly powerful framework with Zend Framework 2 that met its key goals of flexibility, consistency and testability. However, the world has changed since ZF2 was released, and the project needs to move with the times. With that in mind, we have gathered feedback from our users and core contributors to map the path forward.

Zend Framework 3 will be an evolution from ZF2, concentrating on simplicity, reusability, and performance.

What’s involved?

  • Separating components into individual, versioned projects. This enables broader re-use and higher velocity of innovation.
  • Strong emphasis on HTTP messages, with Matthew leading the PSR-7 specification.
  • Updating our existing full-stack MVC framework to depend on the newly independent components for better reuse and simplicity. ZF2 MVC applications will have a documented upgrade path to ZF3 requiring minimal changes.
  • Embracing middleware runtime patterns as a lighter weight alternative to the enterprise MVC framework stack.
  • Enabling Apigility to work as a middleware stack, for better performance and simplicity, with the same streamlined, powerful user experience.
  • Optimizing for PHP 7, but supporting PHP 5.5 onwards.

We have already done a lot of thinking (and coding!) in this direction, and we intend to release ZF3 in Q3 2015 — yes, this year!

As a community project, we need everyone's help to make our plans a reality. Please join the effort and help us create Zend Framework 3! You can do so in the zf-contributors mailing list, or via the Freenode IRC channel.

We are very excited about the changes to come, and hope you are as well!

— The ZF Team —

P.S. We will be posting some additional, more detailed thoughts regarding our observations, the statement of direction, timelines, and technology choices we are making in more detailed, follow-up posts. Keep an eye on our blog for these updates.



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