What is C++ used for? (2023)

C++ can be found almost everywhere. It supports search engines, virtual reality applications, air travel, film production, and even Mars exploration! In fact, C++ is one of the most used languagesprogramming languagesThere is.

In this article, we'll look at what makes C++ unique and dive into a variety of real-world applications. If you want to learn more about the fundamental programming concepts behind C++, read ourlearn C++Introductory course.

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What makes C++ unique?

C++is a universal programming language,Created by Bjarne Stroustrupand his team at Bell Laboratories in 1979. Over the decades, C++ has become the language of choice for certain types of applications.

C++ is most commonly used to build large software infrastructures and applications that run on limited resources. Because C++ can directly manipulate the hardware (or the machine) it runs on, programmers can optimize their code to run efficiently in any environment, even when there is limited hardware memory or power to run the application. This results in applications running quickly and reliably on a wide range of devices, making C++ ideal for forming the foundation layer of many important applications.

For these reasons, C++ is an excellent choice for creating software that is fast, efficient in managing system resources, and reliable in performing critical tasks.

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What is C++ for?

C++ can be found in a wide variety of industries. The following list contains some of the most notable, interesting, and even surprising real-world C++ applications.

operational systems

C++ plays an important role in popular operating systems, from macOS and Windows to mobile operating systems like iOS. In general, operating systems need to be fast and efficient in managing system resources. With the low-level (machine-code-like) features of C++, developers can structure their code to make even the smallest details of an operating system fast and energy-efficient.

game development

C++ is one of the most used programming languages ​​in game development. It has been used to create games like World of Warcraft, Counter-Strike and StarCraft, game engines like Unreal Engine and game consoles like Xbox, PlayStation and Nintendo Switch.

The game involves many resource-intensive functions, be it generating graphics or facilitating multiplayer sessions. C++ helps optimize resource usage, for example by allowing programmers to customize exactly how data structures and memory allocation are handled.

IoT devices

Internet of Things (IoT) devices include embedded systems that often rely on C++. Some examples of these devices are home appliances, cars, smart watches, televisions, and medical devices. Because hardware is often embedded in an object, these devices must work with limited computational resources and stringent performance requirements. C++ helps programmers control how these resources are used to run programs more efficiently.


C++ is used to power popular database tools such asMySQLEMongoDBGenericName. These databases form the backbone of many popular applications, including those created by Google, Netflix, YouTube, Adobe and others. C++ is ideal for helping structure databases to support efficient storage.

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web browser

C++ plays a role in browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari and Opera. It is used to develop back-end services that pull information from databases and process code into interactive web pages. C++ helps web browsers perform these tasks quickly and with minimal delays, which means we don't have to wait long for content to appear on our screens.

machine learning tools

Machine learning tools likeTensorFlow, rely on C++ as their back-end programming language. For example, while data scientists can use TensorFlow with Python, core machine learning calculations are performed using C++ code. In fact, C++ has a large collection of libraries that support these sophisticated calculations that train machine learning models.

AR/VR Applications

C++ is widely used to develop augmented reality and virtual reality applications. In fact, many of these apps run on the Unreal Engine built with C++. AR/VR apps must process massive amounts of data that continually adapt based on input from camera sensors and user interactions. C++ is ideal for handling all this data while creating seamless virtual experiences.

Scientific research

C++ plays a notable role in scientific research, from space exploration to high-energy particle physics. At theCERNScientists use C++ to analyze data about subatomic particles that can help answer questions about how our universe came to be. At NASA, C++ was used to build autonomous driving systems thatMars-Rovernavigate into uncharted territory. Many parts of the International Space Station are also built using C++.

financial instruments

Many banks and financial institutions use C++ to build their software infrastructure that supports banking, trading, and financial modeling applications. C++'s speed and reliable performance are ideal for processing millions of transactions daily, enabling high volume and frequency of trades and creating data simulations for large portfolios.

software de voo

C++ is a commonly used flight software language that powers commercial, military, and defense aircraft (such as the F-16 and F-35 planes). C++ is used to create much of the safety-critical software, which must adhere to strict coding standards to ensure that the wings, engines and other critical parts function predictably during each flight.

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Google search engine

Google's search engine relies on C++ to ensure that search results are displayed quickly and with minimal response time. C++ also supports machine learning and other complex algorithms that ensure that we get the best possible results for our searches. Google's crawling and indexing infrastructure is also implemented in C++.

medical technology

C++ can be found in a variety of medical applications, from MRI machines to laboratory test equipment and systems that process patient data. C++ is also used to model data and run data simulations for bioinformatics research, as many advanced algorithms written for medical and life sciences are implemented in C++.


C++ is widely used in building telephony, internet and other telecommunications infrastructure. It is ideal for managing resources to handle tons of simultaneous communications quickly and efficiently.

film production

Many of the graphics and special effects you see in movies were created using C++. C++ is excellent for this role, as it can handle large files of high-quality footage and perform many of the advanced calculations that make special effects possible.


Almost everywhere you look, you'll find C++ involved in some way! If you want to explore even more real-world examples of C++ in action, check out this list.C++ applications.

And if you're feeling inspired to learn more about the world of C++, check out ourlearn C++Course to introduce you to the fundamental concepts behind one of the most used programming languages ​​in the world.

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