In some part an ingenious crowdsourcing ploy and more broadly having the effect of enmeshing even more deeply the interconnected data world, API access requires a lot of coordination.
A new market segment, API management services, has sprung up to facilitate both public and private (white-label) access. Some of the leading companies in the segment include: Mashape, the cloud API platform, offering developer access to hundreds of APIs, Mashery (acquired by Intel in April 2013), an API network with standardized and richly-documented access to over 50 APIs, and Apigee, a leading provider of API services for enterprises and developers. Other related companies include 3scale, WebServius, and Layer 7 Technologies. A related company Zapier enables task-automation between online services like Salesforce, Basecamp, and Gmail.
API management services are growing marketplaces for the management, distribution, and consumption of APIs. Developers gain the ability to have a standard interface for quickly accessing and working with data from hundreds of sources. Web properties and corporations gain a standardized and outsourced management solution to coordinate external developer interactions and extend their ecosystems.