Web Development

Is an API a web service?

What is an API?

An API is a set of programming instructions and standards for accessing a web-based software application or web tool. It is an application programming interface that defines the ways in which a program can interact with other software components. APIs are used when programming graphical user interface (GUI) components, such as when creating a web page or mobile application.

What is a Web Service?

A web service is a software system designed to support interoperable machine-to-machine interaction over a network. It has an interface described in a machine-processable format (typically Web Services Description Language (WSDL)). Other systems interact with the web service in a manner prescribed by its description using SOAP-messages, typically conveyed using HTTP with an XML serialization in conjunction with other web-related standards.

API vs. Web Service: The Key Differences

Although an API and a Web Service are both web-based applications, there