Apigee Launches API-First IoT Solution

Apigee's new Apigee Link offering enables device makers to connect to the Internet of things via REST APIs.

Internet of things

Apigee, an API platform provider, has announced Apigee Link, an API-first Internet of things (IoT) product for connecting devices to the Internet.

Apigee Link enables device makers to build IoT ecosystems via REST APIs that foster connectivity between devices and IoT sensors. In short, Apigee Link helps take the IoT beyond gadgets and enables any device maker to become a digital platform business, the company said.

Device makers face a number of challenges in building a digital platform business: reliably and securely connecting devices to the Internet with minimal latency; enabling partners and customers to orchestrate digital experiences that involve multiple devices; working with app developers; and collecting, analyzing and acting on data from sensors and actuators.

"APIs are a critical enabler for the Internet of things," Chet Kapoor, CEO of Apigee, said in a statement. "With Apigee Link, we are leveraging our core competency in APIs, data and protocol mediation to deliver a new Apigee product that securely links devices with the Internet and helps device makers build powerful IoT ecosystems. Apigee is already working with device makers and solution partners, and looks forward to working with many more to help them become platform businesses."

For example, CentraLite, a manufacturer of control and energy-management devices, is working with Apigee to offer their enterprise customers and partners new opportunities for connected devices.

"CentraLite has long been providing reliable products for a connected world and we're thrilled to collaborate with Apigee to enable new applications in the space," John Calagaz, CTO at CentraLite, said in a statement. "With Apigee, we're able to provide our existing and new enterprise customers with a robust framework for highly customizable IoT solutions."

Apigee Link enables users to access any device using the built-in REST APIs and to stream near-real-time data among physical devices, the cloud and mobile apps using open standards like WebSockets.

In addition, Apigee Link enables users to send data from the cloud to the device or from the device to the cloud, including requests through traditional home routers in either direction, and to communicate with any device by mediating between Web, wired and wireless protocols, including ZigBee, WiFi, BLE, MQTT and more. Apigee Link also will monitor device behavior by streaming and ingesting data in the cloud for storage and analysis, and secure device interactions by authenticating and authorizing users, apps and devices.

For developers, Apigee Link supports mobile and platform SDKs to enable app developers to rapidly develop digital IoT experiences on iOS, with plans to support Android and other leading platforms in the future. The product also can help influence device and user behavior in real time with data-driven rules and Node.js.

"The number of connected intelligent devices will continue to grow exponentially, giving 'smart things' the ability to sense, interpret, communicate and negotiate, and effectively have a digital 'voice,'" said Steve Prentice, an analyst at Gartner. "CIOs must look for opportunities to create new services, usage scenarios and business models based on this growth"

Apigee Link uses the Zetta open-source IoT platform project. Zetta is an open-source platform built on Node.js for creating Internet of things servers that run across geo-distributed computers and the cloud. Zetta combines REST APIs, WebSockets and reactive programming for assembling many devices into data-intensive, real-time applications.

To keep pace with the growing diversity of new and legacy device standards, Apigee Link builds on the protocol mediation capabilities available in Zetta so that all manner of devices can effectively communicate and negotiate with one another. Apigee Link extends Zetta by adding enterprise support and cloud services.

In addition to Apigee Link, Apigee also offers an API management solution in Apigee Edge and Apigee Insights, which delivers predictive analytics on big data. Apigee Link builds on Apigee Edge and Apigee Insights. With Apigee Edge, Apigee Insights and Apigee Link, device makers can use APIs, predictive analytics and IoT to accelerate their move to the digital world.

According to Gartner, 3.9 billion connected "things" were in use in 2014, and that number is expected to rise to 25 billion by 2020. Beyond refrigerators, fitness trackers and connected cars, the real impact of the IoT will come from entire connected systems.

Apigee's new technology provides a secure connection between devices and the cloud, enabling device makers to use APIs to provide new digital experiences for their customers, create new revenue streams with their partners and grow their businesses.