What Is API Management?

Original: https://www.nginx.com/blog/what-is-api-management/

At NGINX Conf 2018 in October, we announced the new API Management Module for NGINX Controller. With this product we build on our position as the industry’s most‑deployed API gateway – millions of sites already use NGINX Open Source and NGINX Plus to secure and mediate traffic between backend applications and the consumers of the APIs which those applications expose.

But efficiently handling client requests is only one aspect of a successful API (albeit a crucial one). You also need to manage your APIs across their full life cycle, which includes defining and publishing them, and securing and managing traffic. You need to monitor and troubleshoot performance to ensure customer satisfaction, and analyze traffic to maximize business value. Comprehensive API management is essential to the rapid adoption and continuing success of your APIs.

API management covers the full life cycle of your APIs

Like many of our customers, you might find the thicket of concepts and terminology surrounding API solutions rather daunting. In this blog, we discuss key API concepts and explore the relationship of API management to API gateways.

Key API Management Concepts

API management comes with its own concepts and terminology:

NGINX API Management: Building On The Industry’s Foundational API Gateway

NGINX is already the industry’s most ubiquitous API gateway – in a recent survey we conducted, 40% of our customers reported that they deploy NGINX as an API gateway.

The new API Management Module for NGINX Controller, to be released soon, combines the raw power and efficiency of NGINX Plus as an API gateway with new control‑plane functionality. NGINX Controller enables Infrastructure & Operations and DevOps teams to define, publish, secure, monitor, and analyze APIs, while keeping developers in control of API design. Rich monitoring and alerting capabilities help ensure application availability, performance, and reliability. NGINX Controller provides deep visibility into key metrics, enabling Infrastrastructure & Operations and DevOps teams to avoid performance issues in the first place and quickly troubleshoot any issues that may arise.

Our approach to API management is different from traditional solutions. Unlike those solutions, the NGINX Plus API gateway (data plane) does not require constant connectivity to NGINX Controller (control plane), so API runtime traffic is isolated from API management traffic. NGINX Controller eliminates the need for local databases or additional components that may introduce needless complexity, latency, and points of failure for NGINX Plus API gateways. This maximizes performance by reducing the average response time to serve an API call and minimizes the footprint and complexity of the gateway. Decoupling the data plane from the control plane gives you the flexibility to deploy as many or as few API gateway instances as needed by your application architecture. NGINX Controller gives you the freedom to choose the right deployment for both internal and external API needs with a lightweight, simple, and high‑performance solution that fully leverages the power of the NGINX Plus data plane.

NGINX technology powers Capital One’s developer portal, Devexchange. It has enabled Capital One to scale its applications to 12 billion operations per day, with peaks of 2 million operations per second at latencies of just 10–30 milliseconds. NGINX also powers Adobe’s developer portal, Adobe I/O. Adobe I/O enables developers to integrate, extend and create applications based on Adobe’s products and technologies using APIs. The platform handles millions of requests per day with negligible latency.

Retrieved by Nick Shadrin from nginx.com website.