The Google+ team has officially launched the APIs for public data on the network. The APIs will allow the retrieval of public profile information, including public posts, with the intention to share a Google+ user’s content, profiles, and conversions across applications. There’s been a lot of talk about the significance of the API release, but this is a big step in a very positive direction. As web properties evolve, especially those involved with the social sharing of information, an API (application programming interface) is key to wide spread adoption.
APIs are based on standards, meaning developers don’t have to learn a new programming style, and these standards also include open-source libraries that allow for easier data flow into applications.
In the early days of Google+ we always knew that a developer API was coming. To date, the only effort Google has made to open it up to others has been through its games platform, which launched last month.
With that release, Google had said it was keeping APIs exclusive to select developers to allow for platform based games. With the latest API news, it shows a broader effort towards third-party development, allowing developers to tap into Google+ using their own apps and services, which means the sky’s the limit. The next evolutionary step will be to allow user-authorized inclusions of private data into applications.
Google+ had a huge rate of adoption when originally launched back in June 2011, however that growth has dimmed significantly since then. With the introduction of the APIs, Google is opening new doors to those using the service, and given some innovative features within Google+, we can expect to see some unique third party applications developed, adding to online sharing in a very positive way.