Welcome!

CRM Authors: Xenia von Wedel, Ian Khan, PR.com Newswire, Steve Mordue

Blog Feed Post

Netflix goes Private: Is this the end of the Public API golden age? And is that a bad thing?

ProgrammableWeb has published a story about how Netflix is taking its API private. In the article, Patricio Robles writes that:
"Effective immediately, Netflix has stopped issuing new public API keys to developers and is no longer accepting API affiliates. It is also putting the message boards on its developer portal into read-only mode"
So what is Netflix doing instead? It is focusing on the known developers who wish to use its APIs. As the ProgrammableWeb article explains, this "small group of known developers" is what is contributing mostly to the usage of the Netflix APIs. This makes perfect sense.

But wait! Doesn't the API world revolve around Public, Open APIs? As anyone who has ever been to an API conference knows, most presentations show the famous upward-growing chart of Public, Open APIs listed in the ProgrammableWeb directory.

But there is another chart, the infamous "iceberg chart", also used at every API conference, which shows that Public, Open APIs are just the tip of the iceberg.

So if Open, Public APIs are just the tip of the iceberg, then how popular are the other types of APIs? The story quotes Netflix's own Daniel Jacobson, who write back in 2012 that:
“The potential shortcomings surface because this model assumes that a key goal of these APIs is to serve a large number of known and unknown developers,” he wrote. “The more I talk to people about APIs, however, the clearer it is that public APIs are waning in popularity and business opportunity and that the internal use case is the wave of the future.”
http://www.programmableweb.com/news/why-rest-keeps-me-night/2012/05/15 
So clearly Internal APIs are also important. But are there more types of APIs than Open/Public APIs and Internal APIs? Yes, and in fact Randy Heffner from Forrester defines four types of APIs:
  • Internal APIs
  • Partner (B2B) APIs
  • Open APIs
  • Product APIs
Public APIs fit under "Open APIs" in this taxonomy. Let's look at the other categories of APIs:

Internal APIs, as the name implies, are used inside organizations. Kin Lane has written that Internal APIs (managed in an internal SOA) are the secret of Amazon's success

Product APIs are provided by vendors, and in fact Axway's own APIs for the Axway 5 suite are a great example. Axway's APIs allow customers to, for example, provision new B2B trading partners via an API. 

Partner (B2B) APIs are used to connect businesses together. In Axway we often see banks and insurance companies connecting via Partner (B2B) APIs (insurance is often "white labled" by banks within a financial product such as a mortgage, and APIs provide the link back to the insurance provider). 

Randy presented a Webinar on API Strategies with Axway last month, which you can catch in the recording on-demand on the Axway website. The webinar had a phenomenal sign-up, showing the huge interest in API strategy. During the webinar, we asked a polling question: "What types of APIs are you using?". The answers were very interesting:



Notice how Open (Public) APIs trail both Internal APIs and Partner (B2B) APIs. At Axway, we are seeing our customers putting significant business through their APIs. Given Axway's B2B DNA, this includes significant B2B traffic which we are enabling through the new medium of REST APIs. All of these business APIs are adding a commercial edge to the API world.

So who is leading the trend towards business APIs? Let's look at two examples. Firstly, CVS Caremark:



CVS Caremark has an API - at https://developer.caremark.com - which is used for prescription lookup. So is this API intended for use by just any developer who is throwing together an app? Clearly the answer is "no". Just like the Netflix API, it's for a smaller group of known developers who have valid use cases for the API, and a business relationship with the API Provider. In fact, CVS themselves write on their API portal:
"...commercial use of the API is allowed only with prior permission. Requests for API keys intended for commercial use are reviewed by staff."
https://developer.caremark.com
Let's look at another example: Dun and Bradstreet:


The Dun and Bradstreet API is a classic example of a B2B API. It's for organizations who have a business relationship with Dun and Bradstreet to use, in order to expand their reach to mobile devices, CRM systems (including SalesForce.com) and others. Again, it's not an Open, Public API for any random developer to use.

What we are seeing with Netflix, CVS Caremark, and Dun and Bradstreet is the API Economy growing up. We are no longer fixated over Open, Public APIs. Instead, we see that Internal APIs, Partner (B2B) APIs, and Product APIs are equally (if not more) important. Think that the initial API gold rush was big? Now that APIs mean business, the real API gold rush is just beginning. 

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Mark O'Neill

Mark O'Neill is VP Innovation at Axway - API and Identity. Previously he was CTO and co-founder at Vordel, which was acquired by Axway. A regular speaker at industry conferences and a contributor to SOA World Magazine and Cloud Computing Journal, Mark holds a degree in mathematics and psychology from Trinity College Dublin and graduate qualifications in neural network programming from Oxford University.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
If a machine can invent, does this mean the end of the patent system as we know it? The patent system, both in the US and Europe, allows companies to protect their inventions and helps foster innovation. However, Artificial Intelligence (AI) could be set to disrupt the patent system as we know it. This talk will examine how AI may change the patent landscape in the years to come. Furthermore, ways in which companies can best protect their AI related inventions will be examined from both a US and...
In his general session at 19th Cloud Expo, Manish Dixit, VP of Product and Engineering at Dice, discussed how Dice leverages data insights and tools to help both tech professionals and recruiters better understand how skills relate to each other and which skills are in high demand using interactive visualizations and salary indicator tools to maximize earning potential. Manish Dixit is VP of Product and Engineering at Dice. As the leader of the Product, Engineering and Data Sciences team at D...
Bill Schmarzo, Tech Chair of "Big Data | Analytics" of upcoming CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York (November 12-13, 2018, New York City) today announced the outline and schedule of the track. "The track has been designed in experience/degree order," said Schmarzo. "So, that folks who attend the entire track can leave the conference with some of the skills necessary to get their work done when they get back to their offices. It actually ties back to some work that I'm doing at the University of San...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities - ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups.
Chris Matthieu is the President & CEO of Computes, inc. He brings 30 years of experience in development and launches of disruptive technologies to create new market opportunities as well as enhance enterprise product portfolios with emerging technologies. His most recent venture was Octoblu, a cross-protocol Internet of Things (IoT) mesh network platform, acquired by Citrix. Prior to co-founding Octoblu, Chris was founder of Nodester, an open-source Node.JS PaaS which was acquired by AppFog and ...
The deluge of IoT sensor data collected from connected devices and the powerful AI required to make that data actionable are giving rise to a hybrid ecosystem in which cloud, on-prem and edge processes become interweaved. Attendees will learn how emerging composable infrastructure solutions deliver the adaptive architecture needed to manage this new data reality. Machine learning algorithms can better anticipate data storms and automate resources to support surges, including fully scalable GPU-c...
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...