application programming interface

noun
variants: or less commonly application program interface

Definition of application programming interface

computing
: a set of rules that allows programmers to develop software for a particular operating system without having to be completely familiar with that operating system To fix this problem, trustbusters have installed a provision forcing Microsoft to disclose more information about its so-called application programming interfaces, or APIs.Business Week abbreviation API

Examples of application programming interface in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Businesses that sign up as members will be able to connect their existing tools to the data as well through a Web application programming interface (API). Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Los Angeles partnership launches platform to help people catch phishes," 18 Sep. 2019 But on the iPhone, Apple for the most part blocks other companies and developers from using its NFC application programming interface (API) for their own products, including mobile-wallet apps. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "Apple is suffocating mobile-payment rivals," 13 Oct. 2019 The app, currently being rolled out to 10 initial customers, pulls carbon-emissions data through application programming interfaces—pieces of software that enable apps, platforms and systems to connect with each other and share data. Sara Castellanos, WSJ, "Tech Executives Spearhead Green Initiatives," 24 June 2019 In recent years, Safaricom opened up M-Pesa’s application programming interface to simplify integration with mainstream financial transactions. Abdi Latif Dahir, Quartz Africa, "The chief executive who built up one of the world’s leading mobile money services has died," 1 July 2019 Second, electronic health record (EHR) manufacturers should be forced to open their APIs (application programming interfaces) to third-party developers. WSJ, "Enable Medical-Monitoring APPs Via Law," 25 Sep. 2018 Both of the bugs affecting users of the Google+ site this year were found on the same application programming interface, or API. John D. Mckinnon, WSJ, "Google to Accelerate Closure of Google+ Social Network After Finding New Software Bug," 10 Dec. 2018 Related Google makes user data available to outside developers through more than 130 different public channels known as application programming interfaces, or APIs. Robert Mcmillan, WSJ, "Google Exposed User Data, Feared Repercussions of Disclosing to Public," 8 Oct. 2018 According to Motherboard, the hackers were able to exploit an internal API (application programming interface) on its servers that handled personal information. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "T-Mobile data breach FAQ: What happened, how it affects you, and what you should do now," 24 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'application programming interface.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of application programming interface

1968, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for application programming interface

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The first known use of application programming interface was in 1968

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Last Updated

9 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Application programming interface.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/application%20programming%20interface. Accessed 20 January 2020.

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