Businesses looking to create and manage their APIs have a wide selection of vendors to choose from. The two main competitors for the top spot are Apigee and Mulesoft. Since APIs are starting to become the preferred method of integration, we thought that it would be interesting to compare and contrast these two API management service providers.
Both Mulesoft and Apigee are established names in the IT world, but they are both owned by parent companies. Apigee was acquired in 2016 by Google and Mulesoft was acquired by Salesforce in a blockbuster deal for $6.5 billion in 2018. Both Google and Salesforce have had their own reasons for buying an API management service. This was a good acquisition for Google because it allowed them to enter the API market and, thanks to Apigee, they don’t have to include any of its capabilities in the cloud.
Now, we can see why Salesforce might want an API vendor like Mulesoft. Salesforce is a pure cloud company, and the vast majority of its clients are combining Salesforce’s SaaS with other legacy apps and systems. Therefore, Salesforce and its customers must be able to smoothly connect both cloud and on-premise apps and data.
What Is API Management?
APIs are the driving force behind many services offered by businesses and allow companies to tap into a pool of skill sets that they might not have in-house. What it all boils down to is that APIs allow two applications to “communicate” and exchange data. For example, you might have a payment platform, CRM, legacy systems and other third-party apps that all collect certain data. You want all of these applications to work together as a cohesive unit, so you use the data collected to get a business advantage.
Mulesoft API Management
Both of these products have dedicated services just for creating APIs. Mulesoft has the Anypoint Platform which is an integrated development environment, but they also offer the API Management Solution which is just for creating APIs and can be used by itself. Since Mulesoft’s main focus is helping companies increase the tempo of their digital transformations, the integrated development environment includes pre-built connectors for systems such as SAP, AWS and of course Salesforce.
Apigee API Management
The Apigee Edge is a single platform for API management. It allows for all of the functions that the Anypoint Platform also offers, but it includes an extra functionality for microservices management. Apigee is available for both on-premise and cloud use, but developers will have to know Swagger in order to use it.
The Pros and Cons of Apigee
The biggest benefit of Apigee is its usability. It is very easy to use and has a visual interface. It allows for branding and supports JMS and SMTP functionality. It will also be easy to integrate Apigee with other platforms and provide constant version updates and troubleshooting options. You will even be able to use machine learning to obtain actionable insights that can provide useful information on scaling your needs.
The key downside of Apigee is its price. While they offer many service plans, the one will cost you $500 a month which gives you 15 million API calls a month. If we compare this with Mulesoft, it comes in two editions: Community and Enterprise. Mulesoft itself is an open-source tool and the Community edition will provide you with the functionality you need to create APIs. If you are looking for more advanced features, we would recommend that you migrate to the enterprise version.
Pros and Cons of Mulesoft
The main benefit of Mulesoft is the Anypoint Platform. You will be able to use it to quickly create new APIs and simplify the API management process. This will make all of the data readily available for mobile devices, web apps, and other connected devices. You can also use the Anypoint Platform to connect your legacy system with any SaaS software that you are using while reducing integration costs.
The downside of Mulesoft is that it is not quite up to date as far as microservice management is concerned. They tried to fix this issue with the latest release in October of last year with Anypoint Service Mesh, but still, Apigee is better in this regard.
Choosing the One that’s Right for You
Since both Mulesoft and Apigee are strong competitors, the decision as far as which one to choose will ultimately come down to the technical capabilities. If your company uses microservices, then Apigee would make more sense but Mulesoft is still far ahead in terms of integration capabilities. You should also consider the parent company that owns these two services. For example, if you use Salesforce or any of its products such as Tableau or Krux, then it would make sense to choose Mulesoft. The same is true for Apigee. If you use the Google Cloud Platform, for example, then it would make all the sense in the world to choose Apigee.