API benefits

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As a developer in the pursuit of a deeper understanding of API's and their role in business processes and the Internet of Things at large, I have been trying hard to understand how exactly APIs save businesses money and foster agility, like apart from in-house dev time?

This is a line I came across:
"...APIs save businesses money and provide new levels of business agility through reusability and consistency."

Now, API's are great when used to build amazing things, but what I seek to comprehend is a risk vs. reward perspective for businesses.

Oct 16, 2018 in IoT (Internet of Things) by Bharani
• 4,660 points

1 answer to this question.

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APIs benefit larger organizations or distributed organizations by providing separate business units or functional units that can be deployed independently, assuming you do API versioning. Thereby giving it a substantial work queuing benefit in a larger organization.

However, in a smaller organization, their benefits can be questionable and APIs should be extracted from systems as and when duplication arises or if new problems are benefitting from old solutions. Having been through this transition, I feel it's unwise to build APIs without existing applications.

Now, in the context of IoT, APIs make a whole lot of sense as you have largely dumb devices (supercomputers by 1980's standards) that connect back to smart infrastructures. Doing them in a bespoke or ad-hoc way can be an enormously tedious task as you'll need to change things as you release new devices. But, with versioned APIs separating the devices and the smart infrastructure, you'll have a greater chance of introducing a change without the need to disable any of your customers' legacy devices.
answered Oct 16, 2018 by DataKing99
• 8,240 points

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