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Core Java Interview Questions and Answers

Ques. Why use an abstract class instead of an interface?
Ans. The main reason to use an abstract class rather than an interface is because abstract classes can carry a functional "payload" that numerous subclasses can inherit and use directly. Interfaces can define the same abstract methods as an abstract class but cannot include any concrete methods.

In a real program it is not a question of whether abstract classes or interfaces are better, because both have features that are useful. It is common to use a mixture of interface and abstract classes to create a flexible and efficient class hierarchy that introduces concrete methods in layers. In practical terms it is more a question of the appropriate point in the hierarchy to define "empty" abstract methods, concrete methods and combine them through the extends and implements keywords.

The example below compares a "Spectrum" type defined by an interface and an abstract class and shows how the abstract class can provide protected methods that minimise the implementation requirements in its subclasses.
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