Apigee's 2016 State of APIs report finds significant increase in API usage
At this point, it's safe to say APIs are pretty much mainstream. More and more businesses are embracing them. Last month, even, Visa released a set of open APIs, enabling developers to connect third-party applications into its credit card transaction systems.
The hundreds of billions of API calls through its Apigee Edge cloud product indicated in Apigee's 2016 The State of APIs report show just how far APIs have spread in the software development world. According to the report, organizations are going through rapid digital transformation as measured by API traffic volume.
Public or "open" API programs are also on the rise. In 2014, they accounted for 57 percent of API programs. It's a figure that grew to 67 percent in 2015.
"Demand for better digital experiences has grown from a murmur to a roar. Across the enterprise today, consumers, employees and partners all want to seamlessly connect with services and experiences at any time – wherever they are, and across multiple devices and platforms," said Apigee CEO Chet Kapoor, in a statement. "We believe that digital transformation has reached an inflection point – that every industry now understands that APIs are the key to corporate survival in our increasingly digital world. The robust growth of API traffic in the enterprise suggests that this change is beginning."
The importance of APIs is shown even more at industry conferences. Last year, API evangelist Kin Lane spoke at GlueCon about the importance of APIs, as well as the politics involved in using them. At the same conference, 451 Research research director for development, DevOps and IT ops Donnie Berkholz also indicated the rapid growth of API usage among businesses.
Apigee's report shows that the trend of API usage has continued. From 2014 to 2015, API traffic volume increased 2.8 times. Although partner initiatives within enterprises drove the most growth (they account for 56 percent of APIs now), customer experiences also boosted traffic significantly (by a factor of four).
Although APIs create a more open environment in many ways, they're also helping enterprises secure their applications, the report indicated. Additionally, enterprises are using APIs to increase both application performance and availability.