Today, SmartBear announced the general availability of SoapUI 5.0. SoapUI was specifically designed to tame the growing number of undocumented REST APIs on the market today. In preparation for the launch, ProgrammableWeb caught up with Matti Hjelm, SmartBear's SoapUI Product Owner, to learn more.
SoapUI addresses a specific problem in the growing API economy. REST APIs are dramatically easier to build and deploy than more legacy methods. However, such ease has led to a lack of documentation in many instances. Hjelm walked us through SoapUI's creation, from problem identified to solution developed:
The idea was based on users needing a faster way to make serious testing and monitoring of already deployed, but poorly documented, REST APIs—where no WADL or other metadata files existed. While discovering (no pun intended) the Stockholm Archipelago on a kayak trip, we came up with the idea of scanning logs to create the API definitions, but quickly realized that recording the interactions live was much more efficient. Then you could get test suites generated as an important byproduct.
The aim of SoapUI is pretty significant. Discovering any REST API and automatically plotting resources and running tests is a bold ambition. Accordingly, we asked Hjelm if SmartBear uses SoapUI internally; and if so, we requested a self-evaluation. He said:
Yes, we actually use it to create test suites that test SoapUI's own functionality, by mocking an API and then running test suites automatically against that. We can now easily make sure regression tests run faster and cover more than we could cover before using automated tests.
SmartBear initially launched SoapUI 5.0 under beta at the beginning of March. The beta phase enabled SmartBear to find regression bugs and receive critical feedback regarding suggested functionality. For instance, REST Mocking came straight from beta customer feedback. Now, SmartBear is ready to take SoapUI 5.0 to the broader market. Hjelm explained SmartBear's go to market strategy, saying, "[SoapUI 5.0] will be available through our online store and by offline purchase via our sales team or one of our resellers."
Finally, Hjelm laid out its goals for the new release and how SmartBear will measure success:
We are showing REST developers and testers that they can use SoapUI to do serious REST Testing, and we are showing our continued commitment to the REST API Testing market. ... [Success will be gauged on] adoption percentage among current user base and amount of new users—specifically, those based around REST APIs."