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Vidyo's VP of Solution Engineering Talks APIs

By Alicia Young
July 18, 2016

In today’s mobile and cloud driven global economy, the Application Program Interface (API) is not an after-thought anymore. On the contrary, while companies are investing in the UI/UX for the delivery of their product and services, the strategy for the APIs to deliver the same technology has become much more crucial.

In preparation for the All About the API event next week in Las Vegas, TMC interviewed Vidyo’s vice president of solution engineering Chetan Gandhi. Vidyo has become the global leader in video collaboration by changing the way people connect. It is easy to use and manage, and its technology puts HD-quality, multipoint video communications within reach of anyone using any device, anywhere. All you need is an Internet, LTE, or 4G connection to get going. The full interview with Chetan Gandhi can be seen below.

What new business opportunities are being driven by the growth of the so-called API economy?

Having productized APIs available to developers opens up the possibility of having an entire community of developers who can now collaborate and think of new workflow applications across a wide variety of verticals. Developers come in various shapes and sizes. They can range from independent developers to small groups to larger enterprise developers. These developers are now using the same APIs and consuming the same services many times over, versus applications developed by the same company over the same set of APIs. The potential opportunity created by this exposure is almost impossible for a single company to do on its own.

Is there a market for APIs you would consider the low-hanging fruit?  Which markets are the next to leverage APIs extensively?

As real time communications is evolving, WebRTC technology is leading the industry towards even simpler real-time communications using browser technologies. New markets and verticals, as well as new workflows in existing markets, are already reaping the benefits of real time communication APIs. Innovative applications using APIs not only enable real time communications in traditional telephony and video conferencing use cases, but in newer verticals like healthcare, financial services, insurance, human resources and field services.

What are the major challenges API developers face?

For APIs to be adopted by a wide community of developers they must be: simple to use, well documented and have clear examples across each platform they are intended to be used for. Without these three key points, it can be very challenging for API developers to use, adopt and leverage APIs to their fullest potential.

Who, within an organization, should businesses target when marketing their APIs (i.e., business leaders, C-Suite, developers)?

Developers are generally the first adopters and develop the buzz around APIs. However, the marketing efforts through C-Suite can garner the bigger deals that are generally the significant revenue producers.

How do you measure ROI of APIs?

As a consumer of APIs, time to market and reduction in overall capital investment are two major criteria to get the ROI.

Who is responsible for security?  Is API security more challenging than securing other applications, hardware, and networks?

While the APIs are being designed, security must be as important a criterion as the features that are exposed via the APIs. Security in the APIs deserves the same attention as security around all aspects of the product or services. With that being said, If the APIs and underlying web services are constructed for secured access, then API security should be no greater a challenge than security for the application itself.

Which is better, SOAP or REST?  Why?

It depends on the use case. Whereas REST is easier and generally the best choice, SOAP becomes more relevant when positive acknowledgement and transactional atomicity are required.

How often are APIs changed or updated?  How is this accomplished while ensuring minimal disruption to users and their customers?

From the beginning stages of any API design, API versioning becomes a key principle to consider. APIs have to be managed like any other product with appropriate lifecycle milestones and good communications between the API provider and its development partners. It is very difficult to predict the length of the application’s life cycle for the various applications being built using the APIs. Forward compatibility and easy migrations become important criteria as newer versions of the APIs are published. This ensures minimal disruption for the developers and the end customers.

What kinds of standardization are still needed to drive successful mass development and adoption of APIs across verticals?

Common agreement on data formats will be important.

How important is building an ecosystem around your API(s)?  Can your API(s) be successful without it?

An ecosystem raises awareness and brings complementary products and like minded developers together. To be able to achieve mass adoption, a community and an ecosystem are important.

Why should attendees at All About the API make sure to attend your session/booth?

VidyoWorksTM APIs enable rich collaboration with premium-quality video capabilities for virtually any device and network. To meet the deployment needs of various businesses today and in the future, Vidyo’s combined solution is optimized to be deployed in public, private or hybrid cloud environments. Attendees should visit Vidyo booth 413 to learn more about how Vidyo APIs are being leveraged today. 



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