SDK Over API: True Value Extraction

sdk over api

When the current systems and processes are built using APIs, the development teams become familiarized with the processes and underlying complexities. However, lengthy logic chaining and hard-to-understand structures are also a part of the chaotic development process. It’s often error-prone and inefficient when it comes to large-scale applications.

In the ever-evolving tech space, transitioning from one concept to another is justified when the new concept is promising and delivers more. SDKs built over APIs deliver exceptional capabilities with improved efficiency and productivity. Migrating from APIs to SDKs can be scary to some developers. However, when presented with evidence about how easy they are to use and how much more they can achieve from SDKs, development teams will adopt SDKs without second thoughts. Let’s understand this concept better in this article.

What Differentiates SDKs from APIs?

APIs and SDKs exhibit similarities when it comes to their capabilities, but functionally, they are not the same.

APIs enable the developers to access the capabilities of the underlying service without an in-depth operational and integrational understanding. With APIs, developers know what each endpoint does and how it will interact with and operate on services. They facilitate simpler integration with components through a standard interface. Developers need to connect the dots and build the use-case-specific functionality.

SDKs are on a whole different level. With SDKs, developers can dive right into creating applications. The upside of SDK over API is that SDKs eliminate the manual work of chaining the services. They offer various pre-built components, modular functions, and much more. The reliability and efficiency concerning performance and security are wrapped into SDKs by default.

Converting API to SDK

APIs abstract the complex logic behind endpoints. To develop an API, multiple libraries and REST principles are required. However, to abstract the APIs behind programming constructs, a clear plan and implementation are necessary.

An in-depth understanding of the API is necessary for building an SDK. The API should be built on OpenAPI specifications, and the specifications should be detailed and aligned with the use case. Custom logic to convert the API to SDK should be built from the ground up. Finally, rigorous testing and validation are required.

Benefits of Adopting SDKs over APIs

SDKs are an efficient choice when the business demands rapid development and deployment. They offer multiple benefits over APIs. This does not imply that APIs are redundant. APIs play an important role in building the base on which the SDKs can operate. Both API and SDK go hand in hand. Let us understand the benefits of SDKs as that is the point of discussion:

Performance Optimizations

With APIs, we get to implement the functionality based on developers’ understanding. Developers will usually generate boilerplate codes. They connect with the API using a production-ready library, derive the payload, send requests, and collect responses. The endpoint will take care of the request behind the scenes and return the request status.

SDKs ensure the wrapper functions and modules are designed and developed with performance in mind. The outcome of the SDK functions will always perform the same when valid inputs are passed. Developers can confidently use the inbuilt functions of SDKs to deliver performant functionalities.

Consistency and Compatibility

Every time the developer builds a new functionality using a specific endpoint, failures are common. Sometimes, the code might not be compatible with other platforms or frameworks. For example, some libraries operate better on a specific compute type, such as GPU or Cuda. When developers try to execute a functionality over those instances with common code patterns, the chances of failure are very high.

For the effort needed to keep the code consistent and compatible with different platforms, developers need to wrap API endpoints into many conditional expressions. This can be time-consuming and error-prone. With SDKs, developers can use pre-built modules to submit their requests to supported platforms. In turn, they get consistent results every time with guaranteed compatibility.

Secure Integrations

The logic developed to integrate with external services using APIs can be insecure. The development libraries only help with some level of security capabilities. Developers have to adopt secure design and development patterns to ensure the integrations are complying with security policies. The probability of developers failing to follow the security best practices is high, considering their work pressure.

SDKs simplify the integration process for developers by offering higher-level abstractions and encapsulating functionalities into secure offerings. Using the language-specific constructs, SDKs will come pre-packed with secure functionalities. A well-tested and validated SDK can be adopted without second thoughts when benchmarks are solid.

Amplified Developer Experience

Developers love to work on tools that offer reusable and dynamic functionalities. SDKs offer a range of pre-built tools and resources, such as bundled components, wrappers, modules, and more. These functions provide a developer-friendly interface to interact with sources and implement efficient solutions. SDKs enable access to lower-level and higher-level constructs of an API. The encapsulation of API complexities helps expedite the development process, reduce maintenance intervals, and shorten the debugging time.


SDKs are the evolved version of APIs where all the functionality and complexities are masked. When it comes to large-scale projects requiring performance optimization with strict deadlines and complex needs, SDKs are a perfect choice. They deliver consistent results across with compatibility support. Also, the time to bring new features will diminish with increased security capabilities.

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