Difference Between C and C++ [ C vs C++: A Head-to-Head Comparison]

By | December 10, 2021
Difference Between C and C++

Every beginner has the question that what should be the right choice to start the programming with? Also, many newcomers aren’t aware of the differences between C and C++. Here in this article, we will cover all the differences between C and C++ (C vs C++) and also discuss what language you should choose between the two.

Difference Between C and C++

Before jumping to compare the 2 popular programming languages, let’s briefly discuss each of them

C Programming Language

Designed by Dennis Ritchie at Bell Labs, C is a high-level programming language that first appeared in 1972. C follows the procedure-oriented (procedural) programming approach that makes it different from the other languages that came into existence after the C language.

It, however, has limited keywords, which is not enough to solve real-time problems.

C++ Programing Language

C++ is a high-level programming language, which is developed by Bjarne Stroustrup at Bell Labs. It is the upgraded version of C. Unlike C, C++ ditches the procedural programming paradigm and adheres to the object-oriented programming paradigm, which helps a lot to solve real-time problems.


It is also popular to use for designing graphical applications. One conclusion that we can draw by comparing C++ with C is that the syntax of C is more complex than C++. Compared to C, C++ uses more human-legible code.

What Language Should Beginners Choose?

If we look at the current scenario, C++ is more trending than C language. All the developers have moved to C++ now because of its growth and use in the software industry.


C++ contains all the elements of C and more. Also, it offers more flexibility than C. So it would be a good choice if the beginners choose to start with C++ as their first programming language.

C vs C++: A Head-to-Head Comparison

Area C C++
Basic Approach High-level Language. High-level language.
Data security The user can interface the code so it is not that secure. The user cannot manipulate the code so it is highly secured.
Function Overloading No support is available. Supports overloading.
Variable definition All variables must be defined after the Main function. Variables can be defined anywhere in the program.
Flexibility Less flexible. More flexible.
Class Doesn’t support. It supports the concept of classes.
The basic code for input and output scanf() for input and printf() for output. cin>> for input and cout<< for output.
Object-Oriented concepts It does not support objects. It supports the creation of objects and all concepts of object-oriented programming.
Function inside structure Does not support. Allows defining functions inside the structure.

Advantages and Disadvantages of C


  • The C language is a procedure-oriented programming language, which means it follows the procedure of the program and reads the program line by line. This increases the efficiency of C programs.
  • It contains a total of 32 keywords with an easy syntax that helps the user to understand the program. Moreover, it is very easy to learn for beginners.
  • Portability is another desirable feature of the C language. The output of the C language is stored in the format of a .exe file, which makes it more portable. A C program can be used in any other computer system without making any changes to the code.
  • It is very easy to debug the problem in the C language.
  • C language supports pointers that help the user to understand the concept of memory allocation.
  • As it follows the procedural programming paradigm, the compiling speed of the C compiler is very fast. The C compiler can compile 1,000 lines in just 1 to 2 seconds.
  • The C language is the inspiration behind leading programming languages, such as C++, C#, and Python.
  • One of the main advantages of the C language is that users can extend their libraries. The user can add their own functions to the C library.
  • C is one of the programming languages used for development with which beginners can start their programming journey. Once they have a good working experience with C, it is easy to decide what language they should choose for the future.


  • C does not support the concept of OOPs. Thus, does not support OOPs features, such as inheritance, encapsulation, and polymorphism.
  • The user cannot declare 2 variables having the same name in one scope because C does not support the concept of a namespace.
  • C does not support class, constructor/destructor, and run-time type checking.

Real-World Applications of C

  • C language is the building block of languages like C++ and C#. It helps to develop new languages. Many high-level languages are influenced by the C language.
  • Due to the fast performance of the C language, it finds heavy use in calculation programs.
  • C language was created to script the Unix-Kernel, Microsoft Windows, and Android.

Advantages and Disadvantages of C++


  • It works for both procedural and object-oriented programs.
  • C++ is a portable language and if written in one system, can be run on another without making any changes in the code.
  • Choosing C++ as the first programming language enables learners to understand the concepts of programming easily.
  • You can run C programs on the C++ platform.
  • As it supports the concept of OOPs so the concepts like classes, inheritance, polymorphism, data abstraction, and encapsulation are also available in C++.
  • C++ follows 3 programming paradigms; Generic, Imperative, and Object-Oriented. Hence, C++ is a multi-paradigm language. The programming paradigm refers to the concept that deals with the logic, structures, and procedures of the program.
  • One of the advantages of the C++ language is that one can do graphics programming with it.
  • C++ is one of the programming languages that flaunts a large, active community. A community of a programming language refers to those people who are using it so if you are stuck anywhere in the same you can take help from the community through popular development collaboration platforms and software repositories like GitHub, and Stack Overflow.
  • The syntax of C++ is very easy to understand.
  • It supports the concept of pointers, which helps the developer to understand the concept of program memory. Consequently, it gives more flexibility to the developer over the memory usage.


  • Using the object-orientated programming paradigm increases the complexity of the program. Thus, it becomes difficult to understand.
  • It performs only on a specific platform.
  • If we try to execute the C++ program on other platforms such as the web it becomes very difficult to debug the program.
  • One of the major disadvantages of C++ is that it does not support garbage collection.
  • It provides less security.

Real-World Applications of C++

  • C++ helps to create 3D games.
  • A lot of popular applications, such as Adobe Premiere, Photoshop, and Google Chrome leverage the C++ language.
  • Due to the fast performance of C++, many browsers and web applications like Chrome and Mozilla Thunderbird use C++ scripting.
  • C++ is excellent for physical simulations.
  • The programming language also finds use in high-performance image processing.
  • C++ programming is great for mobile sensor applications.


C vs C++ is a topic of eternal debate. Although C++ is more popular than C, both are among the most popular programming languages. Starting with C++ is good to easily understand the concepts related to programming.

Beginning your programming journey with C is although challenging but it will help you develop a robust understanding of the concepts involved in programming and software development.

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3 thoughts on “Difference Between C and C++ [ C vs C++: A Head-to-Head Comparison]

  1. kapka kassabova

    C is faster than C++. The margin isn’t huge but it’s there. A lot of it depends on how C++ is used or more like abused. It is possible to write deeply convoluted code with C++ that runs like a dog. You can do stupid things with C but C++ introduces a huge layer of runtime problems that are very difficult to detect and fix. That’s where you get that once a year failure that causes your Toyota to suddenly accelerate and nobody knows why. Although there are some limitations to using C in an OOP fashion, it can be done. Inheritance and the mutability that comes with it is probably the worst feature of C++ that causes the most difficult to diagnose problems.

    For all the complexity of C++ it doesn’t pay back for that complexity. Complexity is bad. Mostly I write real time firmware for embedded systems like printers using ThreadX. Used correctly C can produce reliable code that is every bit as bullet proof as Erlang, the language used for banking and communications that absolutely cannot crash.


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