The word Api development may sound totally technical. The prompt questions may arise in the mind that what is API and why should your business need API. No matter, whether your business is small or an enterprise big level business. Every business needs an API. If you work with the API, then you already know about it. But for the rest of, it is like wondering. Before we go in deep it is important to understand what exactly an API?
What is API Development?
The definition of acronym API is an Application Programming Interface. API is a set of protocols, subroutine definitions, and tools for building applications and software. It may be for a web based system, database system, operating system, hardware system or software library. It communicates with other software programs. It gives access to use services and resources of other software or application. An API provides access to work with backend or raw data of the database. So Api development is also connected with backend development. Application developers are responsible to design a software product that can easily communicate with other application or software through the API. Sometimes APIs also called as web services.
Usually API does not provide user interaction, but it provides software to software interaction. The main benefits of APIs are simplification, standardization and hiding the complexity. A Simple example is when you copy and paste a text from one software application to another.
Basic Types of APIs:
There are many types of APIs like Java API, Android API and Web API. Web API includes SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol), RPC (Remote Procedure Call), and REST (Representational State Transfer).
We can classify it into basic types – internal and external.
Internal: It is used within a company or organization. REST is growing among all industries and it can wrap an existing SOAP/HTTP or .NET services.
External: It is available externally for consumers. Generally, external APIs are written based on REST/JSON. They are easier to use and have integration capabilities, leveraging web services such as WSDLS.
We can also classify it into other categories. Such as Partner to give access for business functions because of business relationship or partnership. It is mostly used for reconciliation, ordering and online catalog.
Examples of APIs:
Amazon Product Advertisement: To advertise Amazon products, it gives developers access to select Amazons products.
Google Maps: To embed Google Maps on a web page, it also designed to work on mobile devices.
Twitter: REST API allows developers to access core data, while the Search API gives methods for developers to search and trend data.
Why should you need an API?
API development is not a new concept, but as the complexity of business requirement and computer system has increased, the actual need of APIs has increased. As more companies requirement increased to connect their information technology assets to online portals and mobile apps, adoption of API is growing rapidly.
To save hours of works, APIs can help you automate many aspects of your business. It also helps you to become more data driven to automate dashboards and create powerful reports.
These days B2B and B2C companies are sharing information and reaching new customers using APIs, which represents a business tool to generate substantial revenues from usage fees and referrals. Imagine, can a business survive without the use of APIs? May be, but it can miss a lot since the rise of cloud era.
Google has announced that it is going to acquire Apigee, which is the enterprise API management company. Google will pay $625 million to Apigee, which is one of the largest acquisition by Google. It shows the importance of cloud business along with API management. Apigee has a substantial enterprise footprint with an impressive clientele such as AT&T, eBay, Adobe, Citrix, Honeywell, and AccuWeather. API management plays a significant role in the API economy.
Besides, the maximum use of APIs you can find it on Facebook. The business growth of Facebook is due to APIs. In Facebook, everywhere they use APIs like login with Facebook ID, Share button, to imports friends, and to market your content and your online presence.
There are not only business benefits of APIs, but they also have some operational benefits. To fulfill business functionalities, developers can easily discover from the available APIs for their web and mobile applications.
Finally, opportunities exist for business for all the industries to unlock their own growth potential.