Today in APIs: CoinPlanter Wins CoinBase API Contest, and 9 New APIs

CoinPlanter wins Coinbase API contest. Why launch an API-focused startup. Plus: Amazon, Microsoft & the birth of cloud startups, Backupify expands coverage across the enterprise, and 9 new APIs.

CoinPlanter Wins $10k in Coinbase BitHack API Contest

Coinbase announced the winners of its first online BitHack contest. CoinPlanter captured first place with an app that allows users to plant money for other people to find.

As Coinbase described it on its blog, you can plant tiny amounts, like $5 as a fun activity for family members:

CoinPlanter is a mobile Bitcoin geotagger that allows you to share, store, or hide bitcoins based on location. Once you’ve hidden a few of your own coins get out there and find someone else’s!

Other winners include Aircoin, an app for sending bit coin to a person close by from your mobile device, and Coinery, which makes it easy to sell digital products and accept Bitcoin.

Should You Launch an API-focused Startup?

In case you need a quick run through to convince someone of the virtues of an API strategy, consider pitching these four points. First, you can use them to outsource parts of operations you need done. Second, having others create parts of your application infrastructure lets you learn from them. Third, APIs plug you into an ecosystem of expertise--an ecosystem you can benefit from. Lastly, APIs can open up unforeseen opportunities for your business.

As Adam Duvander writes in The Next Web,

Once you’ve leveraged the API ecosystem to build your app, you have the opportunity to contribute back to the ecosystem (and to your own business) by providing an open API of your own, thus empowering developers to build against your Platform. This creates value for your partners and you win by contributing to the ecosystem and giving customers a seamless cross-application experience.

API integrations have become so popular as a business driver that many companies are starting to launch API-only business. Consider WePay, a company that recently reconfigured its business to focus exclusively on providing an online payments API built specifically for Integration e-commerce, crowdfunding and small business software platforms. In just the last year, WePay has seen its API business increase 600 percent and recently landed a $15M Series C round.

Duvander, Developer Communications Director at SendGrid, was previously the executive editor at Programmableweb.

API News You Shouldn’t Miss

9 New APIs

Today we had 9 new APIs added to our API directory including a voice and sms service, a multifactor Authentication service, a field management service, a live football score service and a public calendar Library service. Below are more details on each of these new APIs.

BandwidthBandwidth API: Bandwidth is a communication service that allows users to add voice and SMS services to software and applications. The service includes access to local numbers, and scalable pricing. The Bandwidth API allows users to make calls to get information about an account, get a list of transactions made on an account, as well as calls for phone numbers, messages, calls, media, applications, errors, and other resources. The API uses REST calls. An account is required with service. Connect API: SecureKey Connect API offers developers a cloud based, password-free, software-only solution that simplifies user login and quickly, easily adds strong, multi-factor device and user authentication into their mobile apps.

Compared to current software market alternatives like out of band SMS codes or hardware and software tokens that add complexity and inconvenience to the user, Connect streamlines and simplifies your users’ mobile experience within your existing fully branded app. Connect replaces cumbersome usernames, passwords and typical out of band codes with a cryptographically authenticated device ID and an optional multi-device PIN, (called QuickCode) for easy login. Similar to a chip and pin credit card, The QuickCode is never stored on the device or on the server, but can be ‬‭cryptographically verified.‬‬‬ The Connect API, is purpose-built to allow developers to quickly and easily add strong authentication to a wide number of workflows, use cases, and applications.

FieldAwareFieldAware API: FieldAware is a field project management service that combines mobile apps, invoicing, business management, scheduling, quotes, and reporting into a single platform service. The FieldAware API is designed to simplify the process of integrating the FieldAware system with existing accounting, ERP, CRM and other business systems.The API uses REST calls to pass data to accounting, ERP, and CRM systems for invoicing, process improvement, payroll, human Resource management, management reporting and other critical business functions. An account is required with service.

FootballFootball API: Football-API provides a live scoring service for a variety of football leagues including the english premier league, 15 European leagues, 50 major world leagues, and 350 competitions including the world cup. The Football-API allows users to make REST calls to get current tournament standings, get scheduled match lists, and get live scoring. An account is required with service.

Schedjoules CalendarSchedjoules Calendar API: Schedjoules is an in-app calendar store that has over 180,000 public calendars that include sports, finance, holidays, and other scheduled events. The Schedjoules API provides users access to the SchedJoules Public Calendar Library. Providing calendars in 40 languages, users can use the API to integrate calendars into applications to further monetizing services. Am account is required with service. The API uses REST calls, returns JSON, and uses SSL and API Keys for authentication.

Street Food AppStreet Food App API: This Vancouver, B.C. based software and app developer company has created mobile apps to locate food trucks in a small but growing number of Canadian and U.S. cities.

The Street Food App API lets developers add the food trucks' scheduled stops to their own websites or applications.

Streetline ParkerDataStreetline ParkerData API: Streetline is a company focused on improving parking in cities around the world. Streetline brings together aspects of parking management technology in one integrated system, street-level sensors, mobile apps, analytics and system management software. The Streetline ParkerData API enables users to build their own parking visualizations on mobile and web apps, or in-car navigation.The visualizations can display an availability count, as well as the total capacity for the facility or collection of spaces. The API uses REST calls and returns XML or JSON. An account is required with service.

TransportTransport API: TransportAPI is a data-as-a-service company that provides transportation data to apps and websites using industry sources like Travelline, Network Rail, and Tfl. The TransportAPI uses REST calls and has a variety of endpoints. Users can make calls to get data on bus routes and times, London underground transit info, and several public trip planners. The API is already being used for live bus departure services, and UK travel option applications. An account is required with service.

VentureDealVentureDeal API: VentureDeal is a database that provides the latest information about venture capital firms and transactions. The VentureDeal API provides customized XML data Feed tracking activity in the venture-backed technology startup arena. The API allows users to customize data feeds by region, industry, and other criteria. Users can set up feeds to follow transactions, watch active investors, and other feeds. An account is required with service.