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In Development Last updated: July 13, 2023
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Can you imagine a world in which developers have access to a tool that connects applications to vast types of data, like putting butter on toast? A world where a tool helps developers retrieve what they want with absolute precision? This is no magical world; this is possible today with GraphQL. 

Developed by Facebook in 2015, GraphQL, from the ground up, is designed to make the process of data fetching and manipulation efficient. GraphQL achieves this by a declarative and flexible approach to querying the data.

Unlike traditional methods like RESTful APIs, which end up sending way more data than you want, this allows you to define the structure of the data you need with the help of a query language. Using this query language, you can request specific fields, nested relationships, and much more.


This level of specificity and efficiency was impossible before. Besides fetching data, GraphQL is also very useful for modifying data. Using traditional RESTful APIs to modify data sometimes causes compatibility issues. But with GraphQL, you get a robust type system, capabilities for introspection, and also self-documenting capabilities which effectively creates versionless APIs and provides smooth upgrades.

Simply put, GraphQL is a runtime and query language which allows its users to efficiently receive and manipulate data from APIs while mitigating the issue of under-fetching or over-fetching. Here the client mentions the data they actually need, and the API answers accordingly. 

Through this article, we will unveil the top GraphQL software which will change your development workflow for the better. These will allow you to build more efficient applications than ever and use your resources to their full potential. We will now start our voyage to explore the top GraphQL software.

Apollo GraphQL

Apollo GraphQL is a set of software that includes tools like Apollo Server and Apollo Client. These tools together provide a seamless toolkit to simplify development with GraphQL. This rich ecosystem allows developers to build products more quickly and efficiently.

Apollo Server

Apollo Server is a GraphQL server that allows you to set up and run it easily. The low-configuration nature of Apollo Server makes it very easy to use for professionals and beginners alike. Apollo Server is spec-compliant, which makes it compatible with any client-side GraphQL software.

Apollo Server has support for various back ends, APIs, and databases. It supports REST APIs and frameworks like Express, MongoDB, Firestore, and much more. Besides, Apollo Server has features like schema stitching, which is very powerful as this feature allows you to create only one API that grants access to multiple back ends of different services.

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Apollo Client

Apollo’s got you covered on both the Client and server side. Apollo Client provides you with a simplified way for state management and data fetching. This has an intuitive UI and easy-to-use layout. 

With Apollo Client, you get features like UI updates, real-time data subscription, and much more. Features like these heavily improve the development experience. It also drastically simplifies the process of state management and data fetching. All these features make Apollo Client useful for a lot of developers worldwide.

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GraphQL Playground

GraphQL Playground is a web-based IDE that allows you to compose queries and execute them. This tool is very functional and comes with a friendly and intuitive interface. With GraphQL Playground, you get access to a powerful IDE along with the mobility and convenience of a browser. 

Even though GraphQL Playground is browser-based, it doesn’t compromise anything. You can expect features that you would expect from a full-fledged desktop IDE. It has syntax highlighting, code validation, and many more features. Besides these features, you also get access to real-time suggestions and auto-complete features.  


GraphQL Playground also supports multiple tabs. This feature has won the hearts of many developers due to its convenience. This is because you get the ability to execute and compose multiple queries at the same time. This ability makes the process very time efficient and hassle-free. You also get access to customization features that allow developers to personalize it however they desire.

In simpler words, GraphQL Playground gives you a GraphQL IDE in a browser without losing the features. You get the features you want, like auto-complete, syntax highlighting, and even real-time suggestions.


Prisma is a tool for Object Relational Mapping(ORM). ORM is effectively a bridge between object-oriented languages and relational databases. Prisma provides an abstraction layer between the database and the programming language and makes fetching and handling the data very easy and convenient. 

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With Prisma, you get an auto-generated API. This API is type-safe and maintains this type-safety even in JavaScript. You just need to mention the schema of your data, and Prisma handles the rest for you. It makes use of GraphQL’s own schema definition language, making the job very straightforward. This simplicity is one of the key features of this software.

This tool can be used in many languages and databases as it supports all the major relational databases and various popular libraries and frameworks. Besides, it also supports data migration, model generation, and much more.


Relay is a client library made for React. With Relay, each component can declare what data it needs, and Relay handles the rest. You also have the option to reuse a component, and the queries will also be updated.


With Relay, you also get the option of automatic batching. It analyzes and combines the requests which are similar and also makes sure that duplicate data isn’t fetched. This saves time and network bandwidth and makes the process much faster and more efficient. 

Sometimes developers want granular control, and Relay provides it. Relay is equipped with very useful and powerful tooling. It has a dev tools extension that grants you features like network request monitoring, query inspection, debugging, and much more. This tool is handy, especially when it comes to troubleshooting.

And most importantly, Relay provides a seamless ecosystem. It can integrate with other GraphQL systems and has support for various popular libraries for GraphQL, making it a very good choice. 


PostGraphile provides a way to use GraphQL with your PostgreSQL databases. This is done by exposing your database as a GraphQL endpoint. This way, you can access and interact with your database using GraphQL queries or mutations.


It comes with features like automatic schema generation. This means it will analyze the database schema and generate the wanted schema on its own. It has the ability to go through relational data and analyze complex relationships, views, and procedures. Then it creates an API for you that you can use to access the data.

Safety and data are synonymous. So we have to keep in mind authentications and authorizations. But thankfully, this tool has your back on this. They have support for popular authentication standards. It supports OAuth, and they also have support for JWT(JSON Web Tokens), so you don’t have to lose sleep over security.


GraphiQL gives you an integrated development environment(IDE) within a browser. You get a powerful IDE with the conveniences that come with a browser. It is known for being interactive and intuitive and doesn’t disappoint, providing a clean and simple UI.


GraphiQL has all the features you might want a GraphQL IDE to have. It provides support for query building and execution, syntax highlighting, and also error highlighting. Besides, you also get the ability to use variables in your queries. This is a great feature as it makes it very easy to pass dynamic values.

This tool is equipped with a built-in documentation explorer, giving you a clear idea of your schema’s types, operations, and fields. The documentation explorer is very useful in helping you understand how the API works and what it can achieve for you.

Features like these make GraphiQL sought after. The support for documentation, highlighting errors, and assistance in query building make this a cohesive and smooth experience and provide excellent value in a GraphQL workflow.


Nexus is a tool to make GraphQL APIs just like others. But where it differs is its code-first approach. Unlike other tools, it doesn’t make use of schema definition languages. You can define the schema directly inside the code itself. This approach is more flexible and better for integration with existing codebases.


Nexus is also typesafe. Nexus uses Typescript, which makes it inherently typesafe. You also get access to Typescript’s auto-completion features. It uses a domain-specific language for defining the schema. Therefore, the syntax for defining a schema is concise, easy to understand, and readable. 

Compatibility is essential when it comes to GraphQL. But you don’t have to worry. Nexus has support for major GraphQL Servers like Apollo and Express. You can easily integrate them with the use of provided plugins.

Besides, Nexus is very modular by design. Nexus allows the developers to break down the schema and the resolver into various small components which can be reused. This approach helps with maintaining the code and organizing it neatly.


Altair is a multiplatform client IDE for GraphQL. With its availability on all major operating systems and browsers, It is a great tool for your GraphQL workflow. Altair has support for various features like queries, subscriptions, and mutation. 


Altair integrates with your GraphQL workflow and provides a convenient and visually interactive UI to suffice all your GraphQL needs. You also get inbuilt support for multiple endpoints. This feature is very convenient and allows you to work with multiple GraphQL endpoints at once. In addition, you can easily switch between multiple endpoints, which gives you a productivity boost.

Snippets are a great way to easily reuse a specific request. With Altair, you get inbuilt request history which gives you the ability to save and reuse old queries with ease. Besides, Altair also has features like support for variables, performance monitoring, response validation, and much more, which makes Altair a great addition to your workflow. 

GraphQL Voyager

GraphQL Voyager is the tool you need to easily understand the schemas. It parses the GraphQL schema and helps you understand with a visual representation of the types and fields of the schema. This is a very powerful and friendly tool for experienced users as well as newcomers. From the Interface to the representations themselves are made to be very intuitive and easily understandable.


You also get the ability to choose how you want to see the data. You have the ability to see the data as an image and also in JSON Format. In addition, GraphQL Voyager is equipped with search functionality that allows you to easily identify a specific piece of data. You can search using fields, keywords, and more.

Voyager is made to be simple. With its auto-layout features, you can rest assured the graph will be readable and clutter-free. In addition, the data is organized into clusters which makes the huge data very easy to understand and read.

GraphQL Code Generator

GraphQL Code Generator is a popular tool for generating code for GraphQL. With Code Generator, you can save a lot of time and effort as it is designed to generate code for both the front end and back end. The generated code is very concise and efficient and has type safety.


Code Generator is suitable for generating code for various languages like Ruby, TypeScript, JavaScript, and Java. The generated code is also customizable, as you can easily customize the code generated with its various templates.

The list doesn’t end here. Code Generator has a rich ecosystem for plugins for various frameworks, which extends its functionality and allows you to generate code for a specific framework. Besides, it isn’t limited to GraphQL schemas. JSON, GraphQL documents, and endpoints are supported too. This tool saves developers time by cutting out writing repetitive code so developers can focus on what they do best.

GraphQL Editor

GraphQL Editor is a very powerful tool for GraphQL developers. It is a multipurpose tool supporting features like editing, designing, and even collaborating features. Its visually appealing nature and ease of use make it a great choice for developers.


With its collaboration features, big or small teams can integrate this into their workflow to enrich the development experience and improve efficiency, as developers can easily share their ideas and access the data at the same place.

Documentation is the best friend of a developer. GraphQL Editor understands this and has a dedicated section for you to describe the specific element. This description is later used to create in-depth documentation. This documentation helps other developers understand the code easily.

Validation and error checking is also inbuilt with GraphQL Editor. It highlights errors in the schema as you write it and helps you write error-free code.


Swagger-to-GraphQL is a fantastic tool that automatically generates GraphQL schemas with the help of preexisting Swagger specifications. This tool is very useful as it gives you the privilege to use RESTful APIs while getting the benefits of GraphQL.

Swagger-to-GraphQL takes the Swagger specification as input and provides a machine-readable form of the API endpoints and payloads, along with other details. Now it generates the schema for GraphQL. 

This tool is very customizable. You can fine-tune it to your liking to get the GraphQL schema and resolvers. Not only that, but you also have the ability to manually edit the schema yourself. The tool is very flexible. 

Along with these features, Swagger-to-GraphQL is also interoperable with various tools in the GraphQL ecosystem. It has support for Apollo Server, GraphQL.js, and much more. 

To sum up, Swagger-to-GraphQL helps to bridge RESTful APIs and GraphQL and makes the process quite simple. If you want to integrate GraphQL into your REST workflow, this might be a great choice.


Stellate makes your API calls faster with the help of caching. It is an edge GraphQL gateway enclosing your API. Stellate is also useful for rate limiting.

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Besides, you can see and understand load patterns and plan changes for the schema with the help of metrics data. Features like instant cache purging, the ability to shield the API, and continuous operations make the tool a must-have.

AWS AppSync

AppSync by AWS is a service that allows you to deploy scalable and real-time applications with ease. AppSync makes trivial things like synchronization, real-time collaboration, and offline support very easy, as they are handled by AppSync while you focus on building more sophisticated applications.

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Besides, you also get features like merged APIs and caching, giving users so much flexibility. Not only that, but it also includes features like observability and enterprise security.


Quicktype is a tool that can generate models and serializers from GraphQL and other formats. It can auto-generate code to easily read, write, and validate. This is very time-saving and boosts efficiency.

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Quicktype can work with multiple languages, such as Kotlin, Java, Dart, Typescript, and more. Quicktype can also automatically change the client libraries. Besides, there are also features like autocomplete and refactoring built-in.


Saleor is an open-source commerce API. It helps you by removing the presentation layer from the core business. You can easily access the API of your instance in Saleor from your browser with the provided GraphQL Playground.

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Saleor also comes with “GraphQL Code Generation”. This means generating requests, typing, and other aspects can be automated easily.


WPGraphQL, as the name suggests, is a GraphQL API made especially for WordPress. This brings all the good things of GraphQL to WordPress and allows for efficient data-fetching and the ability to fetch multiple resources at once. The installation is very easy. You can install it like any other WordPress plugin and easily activate it. 



EdgeDB is a database with support for query languages, data-modeling languages, and more. EdgeDB supports GraphQL with its extensions. It provides a “Graph-like Schema with a Relational Core.”

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Besides, it also provides first-party client support for all the major languages like Python, Java, JavaScript, Rust, and much more.


Dgraph helps you create APIs and graph backends with only GraphQL schemas. DGraph comes with native support for GraphQL, which means there is no need for a GraphQL/SQL translation which makes the process much smoother. Dgraph is also Lighting Fast.

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It supports concurrent queries and features like index-based query optimization, which gives it speed. Besides, there is a single application and database schema which means no schema transformation and no impedance mismatch.


Hasura is a fantastic tool for the auto-generation of APIs. With this, you just have to point it to the database, and it does the rest for you by providing you with an API that is unified, secure, and real-time.

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This tool is equipped with a declarative authorization engine which makes it very easy to control your data with role-based permissions and also things like actions and remote schemas. Besides, it also provides scalable performance and real-time insights.


URQL is a GraphQL client for various JavaScript frameworks. These include Vue, Svelte, React, and even plain JavaScript. URQL is known for its versatility and customizability.

Besides, URQL is very performant even though it’s lightweight. URQL grants you the ability to change how you access the data by customizing the data layer. It also is quite simple, so there are no complex configurations. 



RxDB is a NoSQL database made especially for Javascript applications, and it is also offline first. This makes the implementation much easier, fast, and reliable.


It is also equipped with handlers for GraphQL. This means you can execute the replication process with GraphQL as the transportation layer. This makes the process easy and convenient.


GraphQL is a powerful technology. It makes the process of developing an application easier. The APIs built with GraphQL are more efficient and very flexible. This efficiency and flexibility are required to match the nature of modern-day applications. We discussed various GraphQL software, which has various differentiating features. 

We discussed different types of software. These were integrated development environments, API testing tools, back-end services, client-side services, and also software-suits that provide a cohesive experience. All of these are made to serve various purposes and have their own use cases. As a GraphQL developer or as a general developer, it is quite essential to know about them as this tool helps by increasing efficiency and boosting productivity.

Now, it is your responsibility to choose the proper tool for your specific workflow. According to the level of involvement of GraphQL in your workflow, you can choose which suits you the best. You can also try them out and find out your match.

You may also be interested in reading about GraphQL Vs. REST API.

  • Mouri Roy
  • Usha Romesh
    Usha, the editor-in-chief of Geekflare, is a tech-savvy and experienced marketer with a Master’s degree in Computer Applications. She has over a decade of experience in the tech industry, starting as a software engineer and moving into digital… read more
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