PHP is a scripting language that can power everything from a blog to a website, and yesterday the PHP development team announced the immediate availability of PHP 7.0.0. This marks the start of a new major PHP series, bringing faster response time and the ability to serve more users, the team said.

The release is an outcome of the almost two years of development, according to PHP.

(Related: Rogue Wave adopts Zend)

PHP 7 also comes with a new version of the Zend Engine, as well as several other improvements like:
• Improved performance: PHP 7 is up to twice as fast as PHP 5.6
• Significantly reduced memory usage
• Abstract Syntax Tree
• Consistent 64-bit support
• Improved Exception hierarchy
• Many fatal errors converted to Exceptions
• Secure random number generator
• Removed old and unsupported SAPIs and extensions
• The null coalescing operator (??)
• Return and Scalar Type Declarations
• Anonymous Classes
• Zero cost asserts

Zend, a Rogue Wave company, has been using PHP from the beginning, and it said this new release will bring performance improvements that Web developers can benefit from.

“With this release we essentially started from scratch,” said Zeev Suraski, cofounder of Zend and CTO of Rogue Wave. “We knew we had to do something big with PHP.”

The Zend team has been working on making it easier for programmers to develop, debug, monitor and deploy modern Web and mobile app in PHP 7. Developers can now use Z-Ray, a new debugging and productivity tool, on PHP 7 code.

Zend is also offering PHP 7 training classes so developers can get familiar with PHP 7.