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Blockchain vs API - What's the Difference

Blockchain vs API – What’s the Difference?

Since Bitcoin’s launch back in 2009, blockchain has become a more secure and faster method of transferring and storing data. With time, app developers on blockchains have started getting help from APIs (application programming interfaces) as they make the coding of functions a lot easier. Now, why do APIs work so well with blockchains? And what kind of correlations and differences are there when you compare blockchain vs. API? Let’s see for ourselves in this article, shall we?

What is Blockchain Technology?

What is Blockchain Technology
Source : Freepik

What is blockchain technology?’ is something we need to know before getting into blockchain vs. API. As the name suggests, blockchain is made up of digital blocks of data chained together. With blockchains, a distributed database is created amongst network participants (known as blockchain nodes) that can add and verify information on the network. Blockchains are great for transactional purposes, secure information storage, and tracing various products. So far, blockchains find their major use case in cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and more. However, the use of blockchain’s distributed ledger technology has seeped into other industries as well, namely in supply chain solutions

APIs – What They Actually Do?

APIs or application programming interfaces can be called data treasure troves for developers. In our modern-day world, data is money, which is why businesses are driven to learn more and more about customers and make their experiences richer. APIs provide a base layer of protocols and communication routes to app developers for a particular functionality. So with APIs the developers get to scroll through a complete ledger of data collected from all over the world to create their applications and platforms that will provide users with a richer experience because of the data collected. In technical terms, APIs are commands, protocols, or other communication forms that can interact with a company’s or ledger’s database.

API vs Blockchain

API vs Blockchain
Source: Alpaca Markets / Blockchain vs API

A blockchain is about storing and securing sensitive data onto a ledger that gets validated through consensus among network nodes. On the other hand, API is the collection of protocols and data that acts as a base for other developers to modify and create an app.

APIs provide sensitive information to third parties and can lead to a data breach. However, at the same time, hacking information from a blockchain is close to impossible due to its immutable nature. Plus, API integration with blockchains means the coders can access information only after certain validations from the network participants.

Benefits of Blockchain

Benefits of Blockchain
Source: Geeksforgeeks / benefits of blockchain technology

The primary benefits of blockchain technology are:

  • It offers complete security to the user data using a consensus mechanism.
  • Cryptocurrency tokens that function using a blockchain can be used to rent computing power for coders to work upon and build new applications and end-user services.
  • Data sharing is not biased and gets distributed to the complete ledger, meaning that participant coders can access them after due verification.
  • It offers traceability of data from the moment it enters the network to the current block it is stored in, along with all the transactions that have occurred through it.

Benefits of API

Benefits of API
Source: Wits Digital / Benefits of APIs
  • APIs offer ease of operations to the developers as they access a large database and add protocols and communication layers to their applications after reviewing the data.
  • It makes the coders’ work easier by providing developers with various communication components and a base code.
  • Using APIs issued by companies like Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and more, you can add their services to your platform to get a richer user experience.
  • Data immigration and flexibility of services offer the coders adaptability, which is a big plus point for APIs.

Considerations

When we are considering blockchain vs API, we can see that integrations between both are a good area to focus on. Blockchain APIs provide a secure sharing of data with the developers to create a rich user experience and bring benefits to businesses. Do keep in mind though that alongside the advantages, you should consider that the blockchain is not amendable, and so the data must be added very carefully. The best way to avoid a blunder by the automated process is to test the APIs multiple times before they are integrated with the blockchain. In easier terms, it means testing out whether the automation gives correct output no matter the burden so that the blocks store correct information.

Conclusion

After comparing API vs. blockchain, we can say that instead of picking one over the other,  an integration between the two can lead to better usage of data, and it can also better fulfill user requirements. Blockchain and API both have their fair share of advantages and disadvantages, but they can work together efficiently to help coders provide a great experience to the end users with the applications they develop.

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