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Digital building blocks for innovation

Innovation is happening faster and smarter, because we’re sharing and combining ideas and because organizations are making use of each other’s expertise and solutions. APIs play a key role in this: they are the digital building blocks for innovation, because they make valuable data easily accessible.

What if you want to show a digital map on your website, but first have to make the map yourself? What if you sell airline tickets online, but first have to search a database of twenty airlines for every customer request? Without the digital sharing of information and functions, innovation is slow and difficult. That’s why we believe in the power of APIs.

How APIs work

An Application Programming Interface (API) is how different types of software and systems shake hands with each other. It is the digital agreements that allows diverse systems to communicate with each other. This way, companies can use each other’s information or functionality. Online, so without having to buy a completely new digital system. There are APIs that share data, for example from the Central Office of Statistics database or from weather forecasts. And APIs that share functions. Think of video-call software that you no longer have to develop or install yourself, but which you can directly incorporate into your website or app via an API.

Reusable building blocks

The quick handshake between software systems is useful: it makes information easily accessible. But perhaps more importantly, it makes innovation possible: APIs are reusable building blocks. Anyone who wants to expand their own software or system can use one of more APIs for this. Do you want to show the collection of the Rijksmuseum in your app? Do you want your customers to be able to login via Facebook? Do you want to convert a telephone call into written text? There are APIs for all these things. This way developers share their solutions and not everyone has to reinvent the wheel.

The KPN API Store

De API market is experiencing explosive growth. Ever more organizations are giving access to their functionalities via API links. KPN is embracing this development. To make APIs easily available, we’ve launched the KPN API Store, an online marketplace for APIs. For links in areas such as communication: video calling or SMS alerts, and for security, with APIs for passwords, pin codes, or telephone number recognition. With the KPN API Store, we’re making our own services, and those of our partners, accessible and you can try them out immediately!

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