Introducing The Top 10 Public APIs of 2018 Bill Doerrfeld October 2, 2018 In case you didn’t catch it, we are very excited to host the first ever Nordic APIs Best Public API competition! Over the course of the last few months, we opened the floor and received 10 public web API nominations, all with solid developer experiences. In our effort to find the best API, we’re now putting it to a vote! Vote Here: Best Public API 2018 We decided to crowdsource the voting process because we value our community as a whole. Vote by clicking the blue “Vote” button under the API you prefer. Voting is NOW OPEN HERE. We’ll keep voting open until the final hour of the 2018 Platform Summit, when we will announce the winner on stage as part of our closing ceremonies on day two (October 24th). Voting will be open until 3 pm (CEST) on October 24th. Voting closes at 3 PM on Oct 24th, 2018. We’ve invited all nominees to attend the event, and we’ve offered them space to demo their API in the expo area. For prizes, we will be handing out a trophy and a digital badge to the winning API, and after the event, we will review the API on the Nordic APIs blog. In this article, we thought we’d introduce the nominees and provide some context regarding what we’re looking for in a winner. The Nominees These 10 APIs are all submitted by the creators themselves or by passionate developers who were impressed with the service. We’ve checked them all out and written up brief summaries on each, with links to each developer portal for further investigation. Kloudless Kloudless helps aggregate multiple APIs and integrate these services into an application. The API works over HTTPS, uses OAuth 2.0 for authentication, provides an interactive testing console, extensive API documentation, and offers SDKs in 6 programming languages. Live Objects by Orange The Orange API connects with a platform for managing data from IoT sources. Using the API, developers can utilize a wide range of services, from connecting and collecting information from IoT devices, to storing, securing them, and accessing such data. NASA API The NASA APIs open up NASA data and imagery for developers to create all sorts of spacey applications. With a testing sandbox, quick onboarding process, this API and open data initiative is a great example of American tax dollars at work! RingCentral The RingCentral API enables multi-faceted business communication abilities, including voice, SMS, messaging, meetings, and fax. Their developer-friendly program features extensive docs, sample apps, and a wide SDK library. APItude by Hotelbeds Described as “the world’s bed bank,” Hotelbeds is networking the world’s travel trade. Using APItude, developers can create a travel website or mobile app with instant access to 175,000 hotels and more than 10,000 activities. Healthcare Messenger – KPN The Healthcare Messenger API is provided by KPN, allowing 1–1 chat communications for healthcare scenarios. This HTTP-based RESTful API uses OAuth 2.0 for authorization. They offer a sandbox for testing, a Postman collection for testing, and a comprehensive yet navigable API reference. Avalara AvaTax API Avalara offers a suite of REST APIs to interface with AvaTax, an enterprise tax service. According to an anonymous submission, “The level of confidence and security with their API is top notch. The documentation is also really easy to follow and understand. To top it off they have phenomenal developer support in the rare occasion you do need assistance.” api.video The api.video service provides a way to host and deliver videos using their content delivery network. This could help developers create Netflix-style video broadcast applications. The API is RESTful, has nice public documentation, and offers OAS and RAML specs. Home Connect API Home Connect offers the possibility to control your Home Connect enabled kitchen appliances through its own app as well as its ecosystem of partners that have integrated the Home Connect API, such as Amazon Alexa, Nest, Bosch Smart Home, and others. Monzo API Docs Monzo is an innovative, user-friendly mobile-first bank. Their web API provides an intuitive interface for interacting with Monzo user account information, such as Balances, Transactions, and other data feeds. What Makes a Great API? So what should we look for when voting? Well, we encourage voters to base their decision not only on the functional aspects of what the tech can accomplish but also the surrounding facets of API practice that we discuss so often on the blog. We group these into 6 core Insights: Design: What is the API style? REST, GraphQL, gRPC, SOAP? What does it return? XML, JSON, over data formats? Do these formats fit the needs of its developer users? Security: Is API access secured appropriately? Are we logging in using Basic HTTP Auth, API keys, or is there advanced OAuth mechanisms in place? Business: Is there a solid ROI for the API? Is the monetization scheme appropriate? Does this seem like a successful SaaS business? Marketing: Is the API handling developer relations well? Are there quality code tutorials, walkthroughs, sample apps, and/or SDKs to aid developer onboarding? Are there helpful developer advocates on standby? Strategy: Is the API using the best in class underlying technology? How is it provisioning access – Private, Partner, Public? Is the API providing a unique service to the market? Platforms: How is the API aiding the greater digital platform? Is the API helping the business transform into a SaaS platform? We hope that these questions spark new ways to compare the API nominees, as well as benchmarks for API development in general. Assessing the traits of what makes a quality API helps the overall community since models and case studies such as these are important for propelling the space forward. For more read: The 6 Core Tenets of API Practice Forgot to Nominate? No fear! We will be back with another “Best API” competition next year, and we’d love to receive your nomination then. The best way to stay in-the-know is by subscribing to our Newsletter for our future events and competition announcements. See You At the Platform Summit 2018! We are happy to host the Best of API 2018 and are excited to see new and old faces alike at the upcoming Platform Summit 2018. Held in Stockholm Sweden from Oct 22 – 24th, we anticipate our largest event to date, featuring a curated exposition area, and high-quality keynotes and speakers in 3 tracks! Grab a ticket today to truly explore the API universe.