When comparing Knockout vs Inferno, the Slant community recommends Knockout for most people. In the question“What are the best React.js alternatives?” Knockout is ranked 10th while Inferno is ranked 14th. The most important reason people chose Knockout is:
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Easy data binding
Pro Easy to learn
Has a low entry barrier and an easy learning curve. It's especially easy to learn for beginners.
Pro Built in templating
Bindings in Knockout can also be used to control the generated structure of the HTML. There are bindings provided to allow for iteration and conditionals. The structure of the html reflects the structure of the data so iterative elements are bound to arrays in the data model. Having the HTML structure maintained by bindings keeps the templating simple, easy to read, and maintain.
Knockout also allows for string based templating so you can use whatever templating library you prefer.
Pro Legacy browser support
Supports a large number of browsers, including IE6.
Pro Great documentation
The excellent tutorials with built-in exercises are a great learning experience, even for people without prior MVVM and data binding experience.
Pro Lightweight and plays nicely with other libraries
Pro Dynamic models help with keeping the code simple and clean
Models in Knockout can be watched to keep the page data up to date by using observable objects. The observables notify Knockout when data is changed and automatically updates the page when this happens. By having Knockout maintain this relation, it keeps the front end code cleaner and simpler, and by enforcing a consistent pattern with observables the methodology can be more robust.
Pro Very flexible
One can do a lot of things and it keeps self references and other types of loops under control.
Pro It's only a library
Knockout does one thing, and does it well. It doesn't try to take on more than one area. It does MVVM data binding and that is it.
Pro Simple manageable modules
Using components is a great way of breaking up large modules into simpler ones.
Pro Pretty light-weight
Inferno weighs in at 9kb gzipped, which is light-weight.
Pro Fast performance
Inferno is one of the fastest UI libraries around and widely considered the fastest.
Use it however you want in a framework of your own custom design. When things change in the industry, swap things out instead of being locked in by someone else's design.
Pro React compatability
Using the Inferno compatibility package ("inferno-compat"), Inferno can support the vast majority of React codebases.
Con Slower than others when amount of objects grows
Knockout has a bad performance when the dealing with large amount of objects. You can see more here.
Con Can become complex once the application grows large
Knockout leaves the application structure to the developer and it can become quite complex and unmanageable in the hands of a beginner once the application grows large and complex.
Con Two way binding requires a little extra work
When allowing users to edit existing data, the two-way binding of observables means you'll need to have to save original values before they're edited, to make comparisons or revert if the user cancels the action.
Con Some React components may not work with Inferno
Inferno and React have different public and private APIs. If 3rd party components use a private API then it's almost certainly going to break when you use it with Inferno.
Once React Fiber is implemented, even libraries that are currently working will break and will not be supported by Inferno.
Con Not very popular
Which can hinder one's opinion of its future, but the future of all "frameworks" is to break things into smaller pieces, so inferno very well might get used by the big names in the future.