What is an API?

Suppose you are having dinner in a fancy restaurant. You will have to order a meal from a bunch of choices from a menu. You choose your meal but something is missing. You need to communicate with the restaurant’s kitchen to tell your order and make them prepare it. In this case, you need a waiter to communicate and after you tell your order, you get your food. In terms of technology, the kitchen represents the “system” since it is responsible for preparing your order. The food you receive represents the “system’s response” and the waiter represents “API”, aka the messenger. It’s not an unusual case, right? While we deal with many daily life activities, we already benefit from an interface called Application Programming Interface. Application Programming Interface (API) is a messenger that provides the communication between two applications. But what exactly is API?

Definition of Application Programming Interface (API)

An Application Programming Interface (API) defines the interactions between multiple software applications or between a software application and the hardware it runs on. When you use an app, the app connects to the Internet and transfers information to a server. The server then retrieves the information, interprets it, takes the appropriate steps, and sends the information back to your phone. Interpreting the data and displaying the information in a readable format happens with API. Daily habits like using Instagram, checking your mails, or texting someone all require this interface.

Why is API Important?

Application Programming Interface enables businesses to gain access to a wide range of services while still allowing cross-platform communication. Businesses need to handle many background tasks and run continuous maintenance to build up an efficient system. API provides a cost-efficient solution to this maintenance challenge. By utilizing APIs or iPaaS solutions to integrate with your system, your company can take advantage of an outsourced business process that offers cost savings compared to building the same capabilities from scratch.

API integration also provides simplicity that rather than struggling to format a large file in a local program to extract a huge amount of information, API provides the data needed without requiring extra research or manipulation. API integration also allows you to improve your business’s workflow optimization.

Options for mobile growth, partnering and vendor onboarding opportunities, a reduction in time to market for new technologies, the opportunity to retain a sustainable technology edge, compliance with regulatory requirements, and future-proofing a company with an emphasis on creativity are only a few of the API integration advantages.

What are API Types?

Let’s take a look at the 4 basic types of APIs that basically exist:

Open API

Open API, also known as public Internet or over the web, provides services to users using the HTTP protocol.

Internal APIs

Also known as Private APIs. As the name suggests, private APIs are APIs that are used inside an organization or business, not leaked out, and not used outside. In other words, it is not possible to use internal APIs outside the enterprise. An example of this is the management of user accounts within a business.

Partner APIs

Partner APIs, also called B2B APIs, are used across businesses. One organization provides this API Type, while other businesses access the services automatically.

Composite APIs

Composite APIs are a type of API that allows multiple APIs to be combined in one place. It is used when an application needs more than one API to perform a specific task.

What Are API Protocols?

API Protocol is a set of rules that define how data is exchanged between two applications. It is used to ensure consistent and reliable exchange of data. There are many API protocols with different features. Let’s take a look at them now:


REST, which stands for Representational State Transfer, is an API protocol based on the HTTP protocol. Widely supported by web browsers and other software applications, this protocol is both very easy to use and understand.


SOAP, which stands for Simple Object Access Protocol, is a more complex API Protocol than REST protocol. It is more often used in enterprise applications as it provides a secure and robust way to exchange data.


It is a protocol based on the GraphQL query language, which is a new API protocol. GraphQL APIs allow developers to request specific data from the API, which can improve performance and efficiency.

4 Important Tips for API You Shouldn’t Forget

1. API’s efficiency on IT

When you decide to consume API that is hosted by a 3rd party as a business, it will provide crucial benefits to your IT department. It’ll decrease the necessity for labor in IT and the use of third-party API providers will reduce the number of employees needed to gather information and do computation tasks.

API provides you the security you need

With API, your data is never fully exposed to the server, and likewise the server is never fully exposed to your system. Instead, it communicates with small packets of data, sharing only the essentials. As an example, we can give a takeaway order. You tell what you want to order, you learn what they need in return, and in the end, you get the response.

Benefit from API’s speed

Like an efficiency improvement, speed is an important feature for businesses. For that, APIs enable companies to respond quickly to potential opportunities and challenges while preventing outages or security breaches in their core enterprise systems. APIs prepackage key device properties for market consumption while still spawning new engagement systems.

API and iPaaS relationship

In terms of definition, iPaaS tools like MIP already have over 100 readily used integration packages inside. Since these packages are all in different formats, the integration method used for each is also different. Application Programming Interface is one of the methods that are used in the integration processes of iPaaS packages.

Advantages of API

Increased Efficiency

APIs provide access to existing codes or data libraries that can be used within an application. This allows developers to reduce the time and resources required to build an application. This provides increased efficiency.

Low Costs

Let’s say a business uses multiple external services and wants to develop an application to access them. Integrating all these services and data manually would be quite expensive. However, developers take advantage of existing data and services by using the API, greatly reducing costs.

Enhanced User Experience

APIs allow for to easy integration of different services and data sources into any application. This provides a smooth and better user experience. For example, a travel application can enable users to book flights and organize their trips using an API to access airline schedules and reservation information.

More Flexibility and Customizability

APIs can give developers access to specific datasets or services, giving them the ability to customize an application according to user needs.

Want to Meet Your Personalized Solution Today?

API is the integration method of many tools such as iPaaS tool MIP. iPaaS is a cloud-based system service that integrates your applications, data, and processes. iPaaS packages using API as an integration method save your data by transforming your data, moving it across applications and protecting your data with its centralized system with API’s security and speed. You can access personalized solution packages for your company’s disjoint information or microservices with the iPaaS packages using a secure and fast Application Programming Interface provided by the iPaaS tool MIP. Do you want to learn which package provided by MIP, your iPaaS tool, fits your need the most? Sign up and contact us to learn it today!

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