If you aren’t someone who works in technology, you may be wondering what API Integration is and why software firms talk about it so often. In short, APIs work behind the scenes to make most digital devices work the way they do. Read ahead to find out more.

 

What is an API?

The technical term API stands for Application Programming Interface. APIs are intermediate layers built to help two or more software components interact. In simpler words, they transfer and convert data from different formats into more fitting ones for others to read and use.

 

What is API Integration?

The API Integration process creates a way for two or more APIs to communicate and share files, enabling automated and seamless data sharing. As a result, APIs can send signals back and forth from servers, proving vital for many digital tasks to quickly and adequately function.

 

Examples of APIs in use

So, what are APIs used for exactly?

  • As an illustration: A shop wants their software to automatically alert their suppliers’ software when stock levels are low to order more products. Suppose the two platforms are in different languages or formats. In that case, the API turns their data into structures which both will understand. Subsequently, the various programs will have the ability to receive and react to each other’s commands.
  • The well-known Google APIs are another example; For instance, when embedding Google Maps onto any website, an API is used for real-time integration on the site.
  • Moreover, E-commerce sites may use APIs for clients to easily send and receive relevant data to and from their servers. This data can be product information, site searching, payment, shipping, and currency conversion.

These examples only begin to scratch the surface of the possibilities of APIs.

API Integration

Benefits of API integration

These “messengers” have a number of perks:

  • Automation

    Automation

    API integration allows data transfers from one application to another without the need for any manual work.

  • Scalability

    Scalability

    With proper systems, businesses can further promote growth as they would have a connected network.

  • Security

    Security

    Public platforms become more secure as APIs delivers the data to the server for the users. Therefore, minimising the risk of anyone gaining unapproved access to the server.

  • Human errors

    Reduces human errors

    Manual input of complex datasets by humans is always bound to have at least a few mistakes. An API system can grant seamless transfers of large volumes of complex data across any software.

  • Speedy communication

    Speedy communication

    Without web APIs, customers would have to contact a shop to check their inventory, prices, and stock levels. The benefit of APIs here is they use real time updates for online details, saving time and effort.

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