Two of the most common API management solutions are Amazon API Gateway and Google Cloud Product (GCP) Apigee API Management. They both provide essential services for distributing APIs, but their approaches differ significantly from each other.
Let's look at how these differences for you to make an informed decision.
What is Amazon API Gateway?
Amazon API Gateway is a cloud-based web service that makes it easy for developers to create, publish, maintain, monitor, and secure APIs at any scale.
This gateway handles all of the tasks involved in accepting and processing hundreds of thousands of concurrent API calls.
Amazon API Gateway lets you easily manage APIs that allow applications to access your backend services. Use this tool for creating RESTful APIs or WebSocket APIs with real-time updates that enable communication between applications.
Features and Functionality
Amazon API Gateway provides many features and functions, such as:
Security: Keep your API safe from malicious attacks by utilizing several security features, such as SSL/TLS encryption, OAuth 2.0, and native OIDC. Ensure only authorized and authenticated users have access to your API by using AWS Identity Access Management (IAM) and Amazon Cognito.
Traffic management: Use features like rate limiting to prevent your API from being overwhelmed by too many requests.
Amazon CloudWatch: View performance metrics and information on API calls from a dashboard, giving you clear visibility over your services.
Versioning: Manage different API versions independently to effectively develop new features and update existing ones.
Pros and Cons
The main advantages of using Amazon API Gateway are:
Scalability: Amazon API Gateway lets you seamlessly scale to handle millions of requests per day. Easily add or remove capacity as needed, ensuring you only pay for the resources you use.
Flexibility: Amazon API Gateway supports various protocols, including HTTP, HTTPS, WebSockets, and TCP. It also supports multiple integration types, such as Lambda functions, HTTP proxies, and AWS Step Functions.
Support: With dedicated support teams, your issues are sure to be resolved in a timely manner.
The main disadvantages of using Amazon API Gateway are:
User interface issues: It's often difficult for multiple users to manage and configure endpoints.
Cost: Amazon is a pay-as-you-go service so If you have a lot of traffic or a complex application, Amazon API Gateway can be expensive. The price is based on the number of requests and the amount of data processed.
Minimalistic developer portal: While Amazon API Gateway now has a developer portal, it lacks advanced features and is difficult to setup.
What is Apigee?
Google's Apigee is a true API management solution for building and scaling your API programs with full life cycle capabilities, giving developers the freedom to create innovative solutions.
This lightweight gateway provides multiple services, such as an integrated developer portal and analytics tools, which are used to drive API consumption and access actionable insights about assets in circulation.
Apigee also makes it easy to monetize your APIs and maximize the value of your digital assets while ensuring the integrity of your data.
With an easy-to-use platform that provides you with all the features you need to get started, it's no wonder why Gartner named Apigee as an industry leader.
Features and Functionality
Apigee offers a number of features and functionalities to help you manage your API operations. These include:
API Monetization: Apigee supports various API packaging options that let you monetize your digital assets, unlocking new revenue streams for your business.
AI-Powered Analytics: Use real-time monitoring capabilities to give you visibility into how your API is being used, so you can optimize performance and troubleshoot issues.
Developer portal: A solid starting point that makes it easy to manage API documentation, community forums, and other resources for developers. For organizations looking to for more flexibility and greater access control, Apigee also provides an open-source portal they call Kickstarter.
Multi-layer security: Apigee provides many features to help you secure your API, including OAuth 2.0 support, Cloud Armor, and CMEK.
Scale: Apigee's scalable architecture can handle millions of API requests per day.
API-first integration: This unified platform takes advantage of cloud-native architecture principles to help enterprises build their operations and accelerate developer velocity to deliver new features faster than ever before.
Pros and Cons
Apigee has its own set of pros and cons that should be considered before implementing it as part of your API strategy.
The main advantages of using Apigee are:
Flexible deployment options: Businesses have the flexibility to choose between different ways to deploy their API ecosystem.
ApigeeX is a fully integrated GCP cloud product.
Apigee Edge is an on-premises product for companies with high volume or those that have not yet realized the benefits of the cloud.
Apigee ODPK is an exclusively on-premise product of the classic Apigee platform.
Aipgee Hybrid is a Google managed core management platform with on-premise components to reduce latency.
Robust feature set: As an end-to-end solution, Apigee provides everything you need to build, secure, scale, and manage your APIs. This includes an intuitive interface for building APIs, robust security features, scalability options, detailed analytics, etc.
Flexible pricing: Apigee offers a variety of pricing plans to meet the needs of organizations of all sizes. There are free plans for new developers who are just getting started, paid plans for enterprises that need more features and support, and a pay-per-use plan (coming soon).
Alternative dev portal solutions: The Drupal Kickstart distribution is perfect for the DIY crowd. Organizations that are looking for more advanced features and access control turn to Apiboost, offered in both a SaaS and On-Prem model.
The main disadvantages of using Apigee are:
Increased expense for high volumes: Apigee's pricing is quite reasonable for a medium-sized enterprise, but high volume users find the cloud version prohibitively expensive.
Complexity: The Apigee platform can be complex, particularly for those not familiar with API management tools. There is a steep learning curve associated with using the platform, and it can take some time to master all of its features and functions.
Deep knowledge required for customization: While Apigee does offer a wide range of features, the required knowledge needed for customizations and a limited dev portal may not meet specific organizational needs. This is a problem for organizations that are looking to expand their API program to their partners or new markets.
Which Solution Should You Use?
There are a number of factors to consider when deciding whether to use Apigee or Amazon API Gateway. Here are some key considerations:
Functionality: Both platforms offer a variety of features and capabilities. However, Apigee is a full API management product that provides more out-of-the-box functionality. Amazon API Gateway, on the other hand, is simply an API gateway that relays requests and supports integration with other AWS services.
Flexibility: Apigee provides a robust set of tools to facilitate separating your external API exposure from your internal APIs promoting an API First approach to digital transformation. In contrast, Amazon API Gateway can’t match Apigee in terms of flexibility since it’s not an end-to-end API management platform.
Ease of use: This is a subjective criterion, but in general, Apigee is considered to be easier to use than Amazon API Gateway. This is due in part to its user-friendly interface and comprehensive documentation.
Cost: Both platforms can be expensive, but Apigee generally costs more than Amazon API Gateway. This is because Apigee is a commercial product, whereas you only pay as you go with Amazon API Gateway.
Performance: Both platforms offer good performance, but Apigee tends to be slightly faster and more scalable than Amazon API Gateway. However, with its limited dev portal solution, Amazon API Gateway prohibits the use of an outside-in approach to offer a full management product.
Ultimately, the decision of which platform to use will come down to a number of factors unique to each project.
The best way to determine which is best suited for your specific use case is to consult with an expert who can assess your needs and make a recommendation.
Enhance Your API Management with API Portals
API gateways provide you with some basic API management capabilities; however, with the rise of citizen development and API productization, you need to be able to make your APIs accessible to developers and non-technical users alike.
To do this, you'll need to deploy an API portal that provides you with an API ecosystem that helps you drastically boost your API adoption rate and accelerates your digital transformation.
Achieve Internet is the expert when it comes to building and managing your API portals.
Having built 100+ developer portals for our clients, we created Apiboost, a cloud-based API portal solution that eliminates the need to build your proprietary platform from the ground up.
Ready to boost your API management strategy? Reach out to a specialist.