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Advantages and Challenges of API-driven Development
API-driven development not only enables the leveraging of API to build applications but also make API the very foundation of the developmental strategy. According to a recent report, an average of 220 API is published every month, marking a 30 percent increase over the previous four years
Fremont, CA: Embracing the application programming interface (API) as the foundation of the entire software architecture and delivery strategy is increasingly getting popular today. As mobile application development, software as a service (SaaS), and cross software integration are becoming pivotal for organizations in this digital era, API-driven architecture is dominating the developmental strategies as they drive innovation and provide rich end-user experiences. API-driven development not only enables the leveraging of API to build applications but also make API the very foundation of the developmental strategy. According to a recent report, an average of 220 API is published every month, marking a 30 percent increase over the previous four years.
While API-driven architecture has been in use since about 2010, the recent years have witnessed software architects getting more and more inclined towards it. There are multiple benefits of API-driven development. While the traditional approach has had chances to leave out an application component that is not compatible or accessible via API, one obvious yet critical benefit of API-driven architecture is that it avoids API incompatibilities within the application. It’s easy to run into situations that make an application hard to reconcile with an API in the traditional approach. However, it’s very unlikely in API-driven development. It also naturally encourages distributed and modular architectures that maximize application flexibility and scalability.
Another benefit of API-driven development is that it leads to inherent cloud-friendly applications. As they are built for connectivity, they can easily integrate with external applications and resources in the cloud. Split stack development, modular continuous integration/ continuous delivery (CI/CD) pipelines, and central point of reference for delivery are some other benefits of the API-driven architecture.
While there are a lot of benefits, the ever-increasing rush to develop and publish APIs can put forth some challenges as well. For instance, one of the biggest challenges in API design is the management of infrastructure costs. Similarly, organizations often overlook the requirement to manage scalability, which can prove costly in the long run and lead to diminished user experience. APIs also come with security risks as they can give a glimpse of the back-end of the application implementation and the database. Strategic API design can overrule such challenges and can be critical in an organization’s quest for the long-term success of API development.