What are the best APIs for Hackathons? [Part 2]

Hope you enjoyed [Part 1] of this series! Following up from yesterday, I will be introducing some more APIs that are popular among hackathon contestant.

Today we explore some of the most effective communication APIs as well as the technologies that power the growth of e-commerce.

Communication API

Communication API provide the type of service that is often overlooked but nonetheless central to a product. Programmable communication such as automated phone response, the notification emails from Facebook, the invitation emails from Slack and so on used to be fairly difficult to configure. Fortunately, many APIs are available to help us with that!

Twilio: The cloud communication platform allows developers to program phone and text messages system. Twilio provides a detailed guide that teaches beginners how to implement common functionalities such as how to receive incoming calls and send/receive SMS with various different programming languages.

Yo: Yo is exactly what it sounds like! A push notification service that is unexpectedly popular. Its main appeal stems from its simplicity and versatility. While it’s originally a way to let users “yo” each other, the API allows Yo to be programmed to send a push notification based on a set of triggers or events.

SendGrid: The email version of Twilio. SendGrid is an easy way to for developers to send automated email based/ on pre-programmed events. SendGrid is used by companies such as Spotify and Airbnb to mass deliver emails. Sendgrid also provide other utilities such as spam reporting and statistic

Payment API

Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/andre-averbug/time-for-ecommerce-entrep_b_10162124.html

According to a survey by UPS, shoppers now make over 50% of their purchase online. A secure payment system is almost impossible to build in 24 hours. We recommend you take a look at these widely used APIs instead.

Paypal: Founded in 1998 by some of tech's biggest name such as Peter Thiel and Elon Musk, Paypal remains one of the most well-known online payment system. PayPal APIs support different type of common payment ranging from payment with credit card for online purchase to billing agreement for subscription.

Venmo: A subsidiary of Paypal. While less well-known than Paypal, its ease-to-use for peer-to-peer payment and the social aspect of Venmo Newsfeed led to its popularity among younger users. Venmo APIs support similar functionality to Paypal. Interestingly, Venmo is also free for debit card based transactions.

Blockchain API: This API is pretty self-explanatory. If you want to follow the recent upward trend of various cryptocurrency. This API is worth exploring. Blockchain.info is an easy way for developers like you to integrate bitcoin payment to your platform.
[Bonus! Here’s an excellent explanation of how a blockchain works. Highly recommended.]

Hope this article gave you more ideas on what to do for your hackathons! I’ll be back with some more APIs recommendation tomorrows.

Till then! =)