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'Tis the Season: Going Shopping for Retail APIs

By Ashley Waxman on .

Today’s retail scene is a shopper’s paradise—from one-click purchases to customized web experiences to personalized in-store experiences, it’s become easier than ever to spend money on yourself and loved ones. As consumers buy more via mobile and other devices, and IoT becomes more than just a buzzword, retailers rely on robust sets of APIs to bring consumer data in and make these in- and out-of-store experiences unique and consistent.

A report from RetailMeNot and Forrester says that sales via mobile moments will reach $689 billion in 2017. The study explains that receiving the right data from customers and...

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Categories: customers, community, api ecosystem, apis, microservices

Beyond Black Friday: 3 Tips on Preparing Your APIs for a Major Event During Any Season

By Ashley Waxman on .

Black Friday is around the corner, signaling the beginning of the holiday crunch. For retailers, this is make-it-or-break-it season, a crucial revenue period when they absolutely can’t afford to their apps or their website break or fail. Part of that means making sure their APIs are rock solid. Even a short outage on Black Friday or Cyber Monday can mean huge losses for retailers and their partners. During last year’s holiday season, mobile accounted for 45 percent of all online traffic, a year-over-year increase of more than 25 percent.

But retailers are not alone, and many businesses will encounter a time in which they can’t afford even the slightest breakage: the Super Bowl for media, tax day for finance, a big event or launch announcement, or the close of a long release cycle. You want your code to be functionally complete and...

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Categories: apis, api ecosystem, community, howto

What's Revving in Auto APIs?

By Ashley Waxman on .

When it comes to cars, the amount of data we have on them is immense. We’re hearing more about intelligent cars, connected cars and even cars that drive themselves. Accessing the intelligence inside cars involves putting that data up in the cloud and making it available to third-party developers via APIs.

Let’s take a look at some of the public vehicle APIs out there now.

A Database of Car Options

Buying a car is a major decision for most people. As such, there’s a lot of data about cars on the market. You’ll find plenty of APIs in this space offering access to vehicle makes, models, availability and more.

Take for example, the Vehicle API, which allows developers access to prices for new and used vehicles, dealer incentives and rebates, as well as vehicle reviews, and tips and advice on all aspects of buying and owning a car.

If you’re shopping for a car Down Under, has an API that provides access to the service’s huge database of used cars in Australia. You can find out what’s available from well over 2,000 dealers and tens of thousands of private sellers.  

AutoWeb is an auto search company with a social media twist. The services aims to make car shopping fun, engaging and enjoyable. The platform also contains a library of content written by a professional editorial team. All of this data is accessible to developers via an API.

And the Autotrader API gives developers access to a gigantic online marketplace for buying and selling new, certified and used cars from thousands of dealers and private sellers. The service also provides automotive reviews, shopping advice, and comparison tools for car financing and insurance information.  

Connected from the Inside-Out

The amount of software inside vehicles is growing exponentially. Several companies are looking to pull data from a car and make it available to developers who want to create their own innovative apps and services. The latest Ford GT is even built on 10 million lines of “mission critical” code.

The Carvoyant platform involves a transmitter that plugs into a car’s onboard diagnostic port (ODP) to capture and analyze the data stream from a car’s computer. The company has an API for developers who want to use that data to help car owners figure out, among other things, why their engine light is on and spot car problems early.

Meanwhile, the Dash Chassis API provides real-time data on a car’s diagnostics so developers can build apps to help users evaluate their driving habits, the health of their cars and provide real-time alerts for things like hard braking and speeding.

And if you’re looking for manufacturing data on a car, the VIN Decoder API will return the manufacturer’s address, product type, make, check digit, model year, plant code and sequential number—as well as data from police databases.

Of course, this is only a short list of what is happening in the vehicle API world. Vehicle APIs provide a number of other opportunities as well, including those for roadside assistance, crash notifications, pay-per-drive rental data, driving behavior for insurance providers, improved fleet management and more.

Full Speed Ahead

There is no doubt APIs are transforming the relationship between vehicle owners and their cars. A key factor in keeping all of these APIs and their downstream apps running smoothly is API monitoring. Make sure you're keeping yourself in the driver's seat of your APIs, whether they power cars or not, with continuous proactive and real-time monitoring. Sign up for Runscope for free to get started, and check out a Live Demo of Live Traffic Alerts to get started with real-time API monitoring on Tuesday, Nov. 3 at 10 a.m. PT. If you can't make it, register anyway and we'll send you the recording.


Categories: api ecosystem, apis

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