PhpStorm 2020.1 is Here


April 16th, 2020


PhpStorm 2020.1 was released this week, the next major version of the popular PHP IDE environment. The most significant areas of improvement and new features include:

  • Out-of-the-box Composer Support
  • Improved Type Inference
  • PHPUnit Toolbox
  • Grazie grammar checking

Composer Improvements

All composer-related dependency management is available as you edit the composer.json file, and much more:

You can create a new composer.json file that is backed by a template to get a new project started quickly.

Editing composer.json in PhpStorm is now quite intelligent: you get auto-complete for packages and versions, quick icons and shortcuts for running composer scripts, and shortcuts for installing/updating packages. PhpStorm now has auto-completion while configuring autoloading.

Navigation improvements include click navigation from composer.json to a vendor folder and URL navigation.

Improved Type Inference

PhpStorm will now highlight redundant @var tags and does a much better job inferring types from foreach loops and array functions like array_map and array_filter.

The editor has also improved the ability to track null types, being more intelligent about when a variable can and cannot be null.

PHPUnit Toolbox

PhpStorm 2020.1 adds inspections and quick fixes that help you avoid errors and upgrade to PHPUnit v9 more easily. You can create a test by moving the cursor over a class and using alt/option + enter to select the “Create new PHP Test” action.

Improved Spelling and Grammar Checking Experience

The new Grazie plugin now ships with PhpStorm by default and includes a much better experience for checking spelling and grammatical errors. You need to do a bit of configuration to use Grazie with PHP Files, which you can find in the preferences at “Editor | Proofreading | Grammar.” The experience of fixing grammar and spelling is just like any other code inspection and fixes.

LightEdit Mode and Zen Mode

A few quality-of-life editor improvements include the LightEdit and Zen modes. PhpStorm is known as a full-blown IDE, but as developers, we constantly need to open and edit one-off files. Now, with the pstorm command line you can open a PHP file with “LiteEdit” mode:

Zen Mode combines Distraction Free mode and Full Screen mode, so you don’t need to toggle both individually:

Learn More

This release has some impressive improvements, and it’s exciting to see the growth around the PHP development ecosystem. We only touched on a few of the highlight features in this release—to learn more, check out the official PhpStorm 2020.1 release post.

If you want a short video walkthrough, check out PhpStorm’s video:

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Paul Redmond

Full stack web developer. Author of Lumen Programming Guide and Docker for PHP Developers.