ECMAScript and All Its Versions – A Complete Overview

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As we all know that JavaScript is widely used in the world of web development not only as a front-end development language but also as a back-end language as Nodejs. To add some major functionalities to it ECMAScript is used.

ECMAScript is nothing but just a simple standard for JavaScript which makes JavaScript more advanced by adding new features to it. It is basically the engine of not only JavaScript but also for ActionScript and JScript.

Do you know who developed this? The answer is Brendan Eich of Netscape. It was initially named as Mocha, then changed to LiveScript and then finally named as JavaScript. Then this JavaScript was shoed up to ECMA International. They then added standards to it and was named as ECMA-262 or as we say ECMAScript.

Now, Let’s Know About All the Versions of ECMAScript:

1. First Edition

It was developed in June 1997 by Guy L. Steele.

2. Second Edition

It was introduced in June 1998 by Mike Cowlishaw. In this edition, some editorial changes were made to let the specifications fully aligned with the international standard ISO/IEC 16262.

3. Third Edition

Introduced in December 1999 by Mike Cowlishaw. In this edition, a lot of new things were added such as :

  • Regular Expressions
  • how to handle strings
  • Some new control statements
  • exception handling use try and catch
  • Strict use of errors
  • numeric output was formatted
  • and many more

4. Fourth Edition

This version was abandoned because of some complexities. The new features that were added to this edition were either dropped completely or were added to the sixth edition

5. Fifth Edition

It came after a very long timespan i.e. in December 2009. “Strict Mode” was added to it which made error checking much better. Made the ambiguities in the 3rd edition crystal clear and shows the behavior of the real world.

Added some new features such as:

  • Getter and setters
  • Library support for JSON
  • Better view on Object Properties

Then in Jun 2011 Edition 5.1 was introduced which was completely aligned with the 3rd edition of the international standard ISO/IEC 16262:2011.

6. Sixth Edition

ECMAScript 6 came into existence in the year 2015 and become the next generation of JavaScript. Now ES6 could not be compiled directly by the browsers. Now there is the need of compiler to compile it from ES6 to ES5 with the help of babel. This compiler produces the JS that is compatible with the browsers.

Here is the list of new features added to ES6:

  • arrows
  • destructuring
  • iterations
  • string templates
  • unicode
  • modules
  • module loaders
  • proxies
  • and many more

7. Seventh Edition

The seventh edition came into existence in 2016 though there were no such big releases such as that in ES 6.

Only 2 new features were added:

  • i. array.prototype.includes()
  • ii. exponentiation operator

8. Eighth Edition

It came into existence in the year 2017 by Brian Terlson. It included async/await constructions which is supposed to work with the help of generators and promises.

Its features included concurrency and atomics also the integration of syntactic with promises.

9. Ninth Edition

Also known as ECMAScript 2018 was finalized in 2018. Its new features included rest/spread. With this edition, we also saw some additions to Regular Expressions.

10. Tenth Edition

Officially known as ECMAScript 2019 was finalized in the year 2019 in the month of June.


This is an anonymous name given to whatever next version. Its features are officially called the proposals because their definitions are not finalized yet.


I hope after going through this blog, you are familiar with all the popular versions of ECMAScript that have been introduced till now. If you are planning to learn everything about ECMAScript or JavaScript in detail then ADMEC Multimedia Institute is the best JavaScript training institute in Delhi to pursue a JavaScript Course.

For any queries feel free to visit them or contact them on 9811-8181-22 or 9911-782-350.

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