Pushbullet Releases New and Improved API

Janet Wagner, Data Journalist / Full Stack Developer
May. 21 2014, 02:24PM EDT

The San Francisco-based team behind the popular Pushbullet app, has announced the release of the new and improved Pushbullet API allowing developers to integrate additional platform functionality into their applications. Pushbullet makes it possible to quickly and easily push notifications, links, files, pictures and more between devices.

Pushbullet began as a simple Chrome browser app where users could easily push files from their desktop or laptop to their Android phone. Since the launch of the app in January 2013, Pushbullet has evolved into a fully supported application with many new features and the ability to push a variety of items (notifications, files, links, pictures, addresses, and more) between many devices. ProgrammableWeb reached out to Pushbullet co-founder Ryan Oldenburg, who explained to PW the inspiration that let to the creation of Pushbullet and how the app has evolved:

"I started working on Pushbullet because I wanted it to be easier to move things between my phone and computer. Google's Chrome-to-Phone opened my eyes to the possibilities so I ran with what started out as 'Chrome-to-Phone on steroids'. It's since grown a lot from that, but the entire concept goes back to making it a single-click operation to get something from your computer to your phone. Now, Pushbullet makes moving anything between any device as easy as we've been able to make it."

The Pushbullet API was originally launched in February 2013, about one month after the launch of the app. The API was launched due to the number of users that were already writing software libraries around Pushbullet and enabling third-party applications to push to devices. The new and improved Pushbullet API features additional functionality which includes access to the live event and notification stream, push history access, and ability to send pushes to all devices.

There are many applications and services currently using the instant notification functionality of Pushbullet such as IFTTT, Zapier, UptimeRobot, CouchPotato, and Noteboard. Ryan Oldenburg explained to ProgrammableWeb some of the ways developers are using the Pushbullet API:

"The most common use of our API right now is to receive push notifications from their own systems--say when a task finishes or an alert something bad happens. Developers are moving to our service for this because it's both faster and more noticeable than email or SMS, and reaches them on any device. Our API's use is of course not limited to just push notification alerts. Another cool example is a great EventGhost integration that developers are pairing to other input devices like wireless cameras to achieve all sorts of interesting results."

The Pushbullet team is currently working on further improving the API including the future addition of an OAuth interface which will allow third-party applications to easily integrate with the platform.

For more information about the Pushbullet platform and API, visit Pushbullet.com.

Janet Wagner Janet is a data journalist and full stack developer based in Toledo, Ohio. Her focus revolves around APIs, open data, data visualization and data-driven journalism. Follow her on Twitter: @webcodepro and on Google+

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