The Ups and Downs of API Integration
Application program interfaces (APIs) have changed the way millions of people enjoy their daily lives. Every time you use a third-party app to access Google maps with directions to a specific location, you''re utilizing a product that wouldn''t be possible without API integration. You also use this technology when you share a blog post on your Facebook account without leaving the blog site or pin a picture to your Pinterest board without leaving the website hosting the picture.
If you''re in the process of developing your own software, you have to consider whether you want to utilize APIs left open by other companies. You also have to consider whether it''s to your advantage to create your own APIs, giving other developers the opportunity to sync with your most functional features.
The Benefits of Using API
Consider API a shortcut. You know what features you want to offer through your app or software, but you also know that some of those features are already performed to perfection through other companies. Rather than investing the time and money to create those features on your own, you can use API to integrate those other services into your product.
For instance, if you''re building an app that will allow customers to log in and display all locations of your business within a 100 mile radius of any location within the United States, you probably won''t take the time to map the entire country so that you can display those graphics and mark your locations. You''re better off using Google Maps through API integration.
To determine whether you need to use API, make a list of all features to appear in your final product. If you can match an existing API to any of those tasks, then you may consider it a viable shortcut to creating a functional, dependable final product.
Should You Open Your Code?
API integration allows you to show other developers just enough of your code for them to utilize one of your features, but you don''t give them all of your secrets. The main benefit is the exposure that you gain when other developers connect with your product. Users of other apps and software products may hear about your company for the first time when their favourite products start connecting with yours.
Now that you understand how API integration works, contact us with additional questions. We''re always here when you''re ready to turn your vision into functional software.