What Kotlin Is Used For? How Kotlin Is Different From Java?

What Kotlin Is Used For? How Kotlin Is Different From Java?

Hello and welcome to Kotlin Institute Blog! As Kotlin Institute team, we are happy to share our knowledge with you – not only with our high-quality courses but also in this blog. Today, let’s talk about Kotlin. We will answer your possibly first question: What is Kotlin and why should you learn it! If you are a Java developer, don’t forget to take a look at the end of our blog post where we will be discussing the difference between Kotlin and Java languages.

What is Kotlin?

Kotlin is a free, general-purpose and open source programming language with type inference. Although this cross-platform and statically typed “pragmatic” language was built by JetBrains to work smoothly with Java, Java Virtual Machine (“JVM”) and Android, its’ type inference allows for more concise syntax.
The famous Czech software development firm JetBrains announced Kotlin Project in July 2011 as a new and better language for the JVM. Kotlin quickly became quite popular around the world and in 2019 Google has declared that they started using Kotlin for Android app development. 
Kotlin’s most current version Kotlin v1.6 was launched in November 2021.
What Kotlin Is Used For?

Especially after Google’s official announcement in 2019, Kotlin has steadily gained in popularity over the last years. Let’s see the functions of Kotlin.


Android Development : Kotlin is a modern programming language preferred by over 60% of professional Android developers today. Learn more about it here


Web Development : Although Kotlin has become an approved Android development language, it is also a full-stack solution. So, Kotlin is completely suitable for web development. Since Kotlin runs on the JVM, it can be used to create web apps utilizing various Java frameworks.


Kotlin NativeKotlin Native was created to allow compilation on systems where virtual machines aren’t ideal or feasible – for example while working with iOS. Kotlin Native is preferred by developers when they need to create a self-contained software that doesn’t require a separate runtime or virtual machine.

Kotlin Institute Kotlin Native

Data Science : Python is the leading programming language for data science, there is no doubt. But Kotlin is also making its appearance. Especially developers who want to take use of the JVM’s features and performance while keeping their code short, prefer Kotlin. 

Backend Development : Kotlin is very suitable for front-end development but it’s also used for backend development by many developers. 

Kotlin vs. Java

First things first, what exactly is Java. Java is an object-oriented programming language that is free and open-source. Java is a multiplatform language that can run on nearly any device, operating system or server. It can also run on every Java Virtual Machine (JVM) because it is compiled to bytecode.

The differences between Kotlin and Java:

1. Null Safety is available it Kotlin, not available in Java. 

2. Extension Functions are available in Kotlin for the developers to enhance the functionality of classes without needing to inherit from them.

3. Coding is less-required in Kotlin. This feature simplifies the developers’ job and allows less code error. Java requires more code lines and knowledge. 

4. Static Members are always available in Java, while Kotlin doesn’t have static member for class – so you can’t create static method or static variable in a Kotlin class.

5. Kotlin provides Coroutines Support, unlike Java.

6. Java offers Wildcard Types and a wildcard is simply a question mark (?) in code that suggests an unknown type. As opposed to Java, wildcards are not available in Kotlin. Alternatively, Kotlin uses a declaration-site variance and type projections. 

7. Smart Casts are available in Kotlin but not in Java. The smart casts function in Kotlin takes care of casting checks. While in Java, the programmer must examine the type of variables in relation to the operation.

8. Kotlin removed Checked Exceptions while Java still provides checked exceptions support.