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IBM API Connect OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

IBM API Connect is #2 ranked solution in top Integration Platform as a Service providers and #4 ranked solution in top API Management tools. PeerSpot users give IBM API Connect an average rating of 7.8 out of 10. IBM API Connect is most commonly compared to Apigee: IBM API Connect vs Apigee. IBM API Connect is popular among the large enterprise segment, accounting for 75% of users researching this solution on PeerSpot. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a financial services firm, accounting for 20% of all views.
IBM API Connect Buyer's Guide

Download the IBM API Connect Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: September 2022

What is IBM API Connect?
The IBM API Management family of products gives you software tools to create, manage and share application programming interfaces (APIs) in a secure, scalable environment. Available in both on-premises and cloud solutions, its detailed analytics and operational metrics allow you to monitor API usage to ensure that the developers' needs Ð and applications using the API Ð are being met.
IBM API Connect Customers
M2M Technologies Inc.
IBM API Connect Video

Archived IBM API Connect Reviews (more than two years old)

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Team Manager at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Provide APIs, manage their exposure, and affect monetization all in one product
Pros and Cons
  • "It is a complete all-in-one solution."
  • "It needs to be less taxing on compute resources."
  • "It is expensive within this class of products."

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case for this product was doing a  project for the banking industry. We had to use it to help comply with PSD2 (Payment Services Directive) regulations.  

What is most valuable?

It is a complete API solution for everything having to do with application development. It is an automated and all-in-one solution. It helps provide the API, expose the API, manage their exposure, and affect monetization. I have the operator portal, management portal, and analytics. This is the product I wanted, because I can do everything that I needed to with this one solution.  

What needs improvement?

One place that I think the product could improve is that it could be lighter on computing resources and cheaper. We did not expect to have to add additional services for data processing.  

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using IBM API Connect for about one year.  

Buyer's Guide
IBM API Connect
September 2022
Learn what your peers think about IBM API Connect. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: September 2022.
633,184 professionals have used our research since 2012.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We had one problem with the security and data resources early on when beginning to use the product. The problem was mostly due to the fact that when we started using the product, we did not have any knowledge of its requirements or experience using it.  

How are customer service and support?

We are mostly satisfied with the Technical support that we received. We did not have to interact with them a lot. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I do not deal directly with the area of budgeting. We are partners with IBM, so maybe we get different pricing. I do not know about standard prices other than that this product can be expensive. We did not need to pay them anything extra for support or add-ons. It may not be the same for clients who are not partners.  

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Initially, we did not do any exhaustive research on competing products. We are looking at the market more in-depth now. I think that API Connect is too expensive for us. For some companies that have a higher demand for using this type of product, this may be a good solution. We do not have a lot of projects of this type, so we are looking for some other solution that is cheaper for the long-term. It has to be good enough and have the proper security constraints to meet client needs. Our research into other products has not really narrowed the field yet.   

What other advice do I have?

On a scale from one to ten where one is the worst and ten is the best, I would rate IBM API Connect as an eight-out-of-ten comparing what I know to other products.  

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
PeerSpot user
German Villar - PeerSpot reviewer
Director of Development and Innovation - CTO at Cofares
Real User
A scalable platform with a powerful interface

What is our primary use case?

We use this solution for managing APIs.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the interface.

The capabilities are very good.

What needs improvement?

It would be helpful to have access monitoring.

The initial setup is complex.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have used IBM API Connect in several projects over the past couple of years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

IBM API Connect is very scalable. Our integrations are typically with enterprise-level organizations or SaaS providers.

How are customer service and technical support?

We normally rely on our internal team for support.

How was the initial setup?

Most of the time, the initial setup is complex. Implementation will take from a few hours up to days.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution a nine out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Buyer's Guide
IBM API Connect
September 2022
Learn what your peers think about IBM API Connect. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: September 2022.
633,184 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Alexis Aguiluz - PeerSpot reviewer
Senior Technological Architect at Banco de Chile
Real User
Top 20
Provides a variety of visualizations of the APIs but doesn't include an online method to pay through a web system
Pros and Cons
  • "The centralized management: this provides a management module that can deploy and apply security policies to all APIs, including all the gateways that are deployed on-premises and on any cloud because the gateway component can run at a VMware or in a Kubernetes cluster."
  • "The integration of an API gateway that implements the sidecar pattern, which can be deployed in cloud applications, and expose the microservices directly in each pod, this can be more decentralized components."

What is our primary use case?

The API manager of the enterprise exposes common functionalities to the front-end applications, beginning with the frontend of the executives who access clients' information.  The exposition of the functionalities of transferring funds and AFP which need to transfer the money from your account to a client's AFP.  The exposition of the core functionalities to the module of the sale of a product installed on the cloud of AWS, to create an onboarding platform for the client's prospect of the enterprise.

How has it helped my organization?

The product has a little use at the enterprise because the APIs have functionality with low use. The next steps are to enforce and grow the use of APIs through the creation of a governance department that aligns the construction's standards and defines the classifications of APIs. 

This is the main goal, to finally integrate the applications that will deploy on the cloud consuming the backends on-premise through IBM API Connect. Having the centralized management of APIs.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable features are:

1. The centralized management: this provides a management module that can deploy and apply security policies to all APIs, including all the gateways that are deployed on-premises and on any cloud because the gateway component can run at a VMware or in a Kubernetes cluster.

2. The analytics module: this provides a variety of visualizations of the APIs, products, subscriptions, and applications that can be defined for a second, a day, a week, a month. This module is deployed beside the gateway and collect all the traffic.

What needs improvement?

The product can be improved in the following  areas:

1.  The monetization because it doesn't include an online method to pay through a web system or with a credit card, where the analytics can be calculated.

2.  The integration of an API gateway that implements the sidecar pattern, which can be deployed in cloud applications, and expose the microservices directly in each pod, this  can be more decentralized components.

All of these areas can be improved. 

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using IBM API Connect for six months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It's very stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution offers horizontal scalability. The power of the product is the high performance in security tasks done with dedicated hardware.

What about the implementation team?

We implemented it with the official vendor of the product.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Another team selected the product.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Hybrid Cloud

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Other
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Enerprise Architect and Chief Architect - Security and Cloud at a consultancy with 11-50 employees
Real User
Has good gateway features and good stability
Pros and Cons
  • "The gateway is the most valuable aspect of this solution."
  • "In terms of what needs improvement, some of the product documentation could be better."

What is most valuable?

The gateway is the most valuable aspect of this solution. 

It has a good interface, dashboards, and monitoring tools.

What needs improvement?

In terms of what needs improvement, some of the product documentation could be better.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using IBM API for around a year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't had any issues with the stability. There are around 1,000 users using IBM API in my company. 

How are customer service and technical support?

Their technical support is okay. 

What other advice do I have?

I would rate IBM API an eight out of ten. 

I would recommend it. I'd say that you need some time to negotiate the documentation and the conflicting support that's on their website. The website will day to do one thing and in another place, you do something else. You need some time to negotiate that.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
PeerSpot user
Irshad Ahamed - PeerSpot reviewer
Assistant Manager at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Consultant
The technical support and scalability are good

What needs improvement?

Extracting the data could be improved.

My team members sometimes find it difficult to get something out of this solution.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using it for the last year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We have no issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is good.

How are customer service and technical support?

The technical support is good. Whenever we need anything, we have our IT team work with IBM to change whatever requirement is needed.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I previously used the IBM Tivoli Monitoring tool before joining my company.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was straightforward.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The pricing is too expensive with IBM. Sometimes, we prefer to go with an open source or something more lightweight.

What other advice do I have?

I can recommend this solution and would rate it as an eight (out of 10).

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
CTO at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Proficient tool allows our customers to expose their tech to external stakeholders
Pros and Cons
  • "It allows enterprises to expose some of their tech to outside stakeholders."
  • "I would like to see automation of the installation. If there could be a single-click function where you could automate everything, that would be helpful."

What is our primary use case?

We have done many implementations using API Connect. We work with some of the largest financial institutions in India, including life insurance companies and some of the banks. 

We have done most of them on-premise. The customers, because they are financial institutions and insurance companies, prefer to have this on their own premises and their own data centers.

How has it helped my organization?

It allows enterprises to expose some of their tech to outside stakeholders.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been implementing solutions with IBM API Connect for five to six years.

How was the initial setup?

I would like to see automation of the installation. If there could be a single-click function where you could automate everything, that would be helpful. There should also be tools to automate the migratation from the older versions to the newer version. That would be another point that would bring my rating of it closer to 10 out of 10.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

IBM sets the pricing, but it would be a good idea to bring down the pricing by at least 20 to 30 percent.

What other advice do I have?

I would certainly recommend IBM API Connect for clients who are going with an enterprise version of implementation and when they have enough budget. Of course, if they have budget limitations, they can consider open-source solutions.

As implementers, we have a big resource pool here in India. All our associates have expertise with API Connect as well as IBM App Connect.

As of now, it is serving the needs of our customers. It is quite a proficient tool. It satisfies all of our requirements.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
PeerSpot user
AdemolaOsindero - PeerSpot reviewer
CEO at Lopworks Limited
Real User
Reduces costs with faster integrations
Pros and Cons
  • "Our version supports containerized integration. I can write APIs, which can be moved into a testing environment without needing a forklift. It can check if APIs are compliant before moving them into production."
  • "There are issues with upgrading in the cloud version. The cloud version is extremely buggy. We prefer to use the on-premise version."

What is our primary use case?

We have implemented this for four or five banks in Nigeria. The bulk of our clients are banks. We need determine if there are transaction capabilities from their back-end applications. If so, then we consume their APIs. For example, we have a logistics company who uses the bank's back-end API to complete their payments.

We specialize in application and cloud integration. 

We have clients deployed on-premise, on the cloud, and with hybrid cloud.

How has it helped my organization?

The workflow allows for different parties to work independently of each other, e.g., business people can work independently of the developers. 

If the rules are well followed and aligned, an organization can run a constant API ecosystem.

Our version supports containerized integration. I can write APIs, which can be moved into a testing environment without needing a forklift. It can check if APIs are compliant before moving them into production. 

API Connects has absolutely helped to reduce the time it takes to deliver new integrations to my clients. Integrations are a lot faster, which is a big selling point, as it reduces cost on the front-end.

What is most valuable?

The developer can connect to the back-end services and exclude APIs through API Connect. It is very robust, e.g., I can exclude web services. We can paste the code into the UI interface.

Pre-built connectors are good if you need more security, though it depends on the extent to which you use them, as they are not necessary to use.

The solution is very simple and straightforward.

What needs improvement?

There is room for improvement in the reporting and monetization. With monetization, I want to be able to provide my own pricing and platform.

I would like them to add hooks into the API. E.g., it should be able to check credit, then limit access to people who don't have credit anymore.

They need to have more training for people. 

For how long have I used the solution?

Since 2017.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

There are issues with upgrading in the cloud version. The cloud version is extremely buggy. We prefer to use the on-premise version.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It's redundant so scalability is not much of an issue.

How are customer service and technical support?

I would rate their technical support as a five out of 10. They are very slow. IBM has been working on this for three years. 

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Some of our clients tried to use a customer design. They switched to API Connect because it is more advanced.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup and development are straightforward. The cloud is already available, so the development is what takes time. Deploying the cloud just takes clicking. It can deployed in minutes. The on-premise deployment takes two or three hours without issues to set up. if there are issues, it could take a day to set up.

What about the implementation team?

It takes one person to set up, max two, as it is straightforward. There is not a lot to do. The system admin will probably spend one to two hours on it to maintain it.

It takes us a week or two to set up 50 services in API Connect. The only thing that might take extra time is portal design because that requires us to go into the back-end.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

API Connect is quite pricey.

The developer builds the API and determines what should be put together. However, the business people determine the price.

The product plan and pricing needs improvement. It is confusing to the client based on the way a business might put it together. E.g., I have to be able to pick out different APIs, then group them together. I then have to explain to the client if they subscribe to this API product all the services available. Many clients want a variety of price groups based on their API selection.

I haven't seen anyone go from on-premise to the cloud. In fact, I am seeing people go from the cloud to on-premise because the costs can quickly grow on the cloud. 

If you want to small small, start with the cloud.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

The integration is quite fast compared to others. Other companies combine their API platforms, but API Connect is as straightforward as you can get it. 

Oracle doesn't understand the different personas that need to be defined. This is why API Connect is superior to it.

Microsoft is extremely cheap compared API Connect. We are reviewing their solution in comparison to API Connect.

What other advice do I have?

The client needs to understand the service to use it. They need to make sure that they have the back-end infrastructure to support API Connect.

API Connect is known for its light front-end system. Therefore, it depends on what system it connects to on the back-end. It is important to know how it connects to the back-end.

We are not using Cloud Pak, as it is still too new. We are using it in the lab.

I would rate the solution as a nine (out of 10). 

Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Business partner.
PeerSpot user
Augustine Ayo - PeerSpot reviewer
Middleware Solution Architect at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Its dashboard allows us to see where transactions are coming from
Pros and Cons
  • "It is quite stable. We've not had any problem. It has made for a good buy because we are finding that other companies that have similar set ups go down maybe once a month."
  • "I would like to see support for non-Java based services. We struggle a bit to be able to deploy and connect our .NET services because of things like data types. We had to map a couple of things. For one solution provider, we had to move them to .NET Core before we could use it properly. I would like to see more agnostic tool service platforms rather than moving it more towards Java or open source."

What is our primary use case?

We are a financial services provider. We have services that we expose for things like investments, policy management, and so on. We have put this on an API Gateway to be able to aggregate all the things that we do for different types of clients with whom we engage.

What is most valuable?

The exception and error management have been the most valuable feature.  

We take steps for how many transactions we can create. It has a dashboard that allows us to see where transactions are coming from, which clients use it more, etc. This makes it very endearing for us.

What needs improvement?

I would like to see support for non-Java based services. We struggle a bit to be able to deploy and connect our .NET services because of things like data types. We had to map a couple of things. For one solution provider, we had to move them to .NET Core before we could use it properly. I would like to see more agnostic tool service platforms rather than moving it more towards Java or open source.

For how long have I used the solution?

Two years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It is quite stable. We've not had any problem. It has made for a good buy because we are finding that other companies that have similar set ups go down maybe once a month.

Our transactions has been escalating. We're doing an average of about 1.2 million transactions every week now, and it's stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have not tried to scale it. If we go beyond two million transactions a week, we may find more reasons to start exploring scalability.

Right now, we have three clients. The intention is to be able to go to the big investment managers and insurance managers in our sector in South Africa to be able to onboard them. If we have our way, we should have 30 clients, not three.

How are customer service and technical support?

We don't have a dedicated support with them. However, whenever we send an email, we always get a response back, sometime immediately but maximum 48 hours. They have been very quick.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Previously what we used to do is deploy different endpoints for different clients that we have onboard. In the last two years, what we've been doing is using API Gateway Manager so we have only one endpoint with different uses.

How was the initial setup?

The setup could be made more simpler. We have had to deploy in three instances. The first one had a huge learning curve, though the second one was easier. We find that if we move environments, it takes time to set up. This should be made simpler. We need to do move our BI environment and we have not done that yet because of the setup time. 

The first deployment took almost five days. Right now, we are averaging around a day or two, then we are up and running.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We've played around with other API managers, like Tyk, and the setup is much simpler. 

The reason why we took IBM was because of its resilience and name brand. Our clients trust the fact that we are not just going for an open source or free solution.

One of the key selling points is the easy analytics to be able to analyze what we are getting. We played around with Tyk, but we didn't see any analytics with them. E.g., we tried to connect Tyk to our Microsoft Power BI so we could use that. This feature comes standard with IBM, that's why we're sticking to it.

We have not done extensive checks on Azure because our first client that we onboarded was Google. So, we never really explored Azure that much. In the next six months, we may be exploring Azure so we can have everything in the same space.

What other advice do I have?

To cut down on your implementation time, read the documentation. It's long but explanatory.

I would rate this solution as an eight (out of 10).

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Private Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Clement Hsieh - PeerSpot reviewer
Doctoral Researcher at NCCU
Real User
Stable and straightforward to set up, provides a good platform for API development
Pros and Cons
  • "API Connect is a very good platform for the development of APIs."
  • "They seem to have left out a feature for microservices and also a certification module for OIDC."

What is our primary use case?

We help systems integrators and vendors in choosing different types of platforms for building an open API gateway for banks. We evaluate and test different types of API gateways. We follow our internal testing scenarios to make sure that the product meets requirements. This is all we do.

What is most valuable?

API Connect is a very good platform for the development of APIs.

What needs improvement?

They seem to have left out a feature for microservices and also a certification module for OIDC. So it would be a good idea for the authentication module to have OIDC certification.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working with IBM API Connect for about half a year. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

As far as I know, there haven't been any issues with the stability of the solution.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

There are also no issues with the scalability.

How are customer service and technical support?

We don't have any connection with IBM.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is pretty straightforward.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I am also familiar with Xware and WSO2 API Manager. They have a different type of development cycle and features compared to API Connect. It's on the development side that they're different. It depends on the type of application.

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend API Connect to a vendor or financial institutions that are looking at using it. It's a nine out of 10. It's missing the authentication module so programming and customizing that takes a lot of time.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
AIT Solution Manager at a retailer with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Provides good security and scales to quite a large number of products but needs to stabilize Version 2018 rapidly. Still too many fixpacks and outstanding issues
Pros and Cons
  • "The most valuable feature is the security we get from this solution. I know of a bank that uses it to ensure that everything is secure. The second feature I like is the retail environment, where we actually want to be able to provide as many suppliers and consumers with APIs as possible. If you are well-trained in the writing of RESTful API's, you can actually publish an API in a matter of minutes, test it, and publish it."
  • "The new version is very unstable."

How has it helped my organization?

This solution enabled our business to get our solutions quite fast. Instead of waiting for weeks, or even months in some cases, it actually helped the movement from a bimodal to a faster depth of solution in a matter of the rate at which the organization could change. It was not a technological hindrance, it was more a change management aspect of the people that kept the movement back. But, we proved that the technology can keep up, it's the people that have to change faster. The fact that the product can provide both security and scale to quite a large number of products, is basically the reason why we chose it, and that's what we like about it.

What is most valuable?

The most valuable feature is the security we get from this solution. I know of a bank that uses it to ensure that everything is secure. The second feature I like is the retail environment, where we actually want to be able to provide as many suppliers and consumers with APIs as possible. If you are well-trained in the writing of RESTful API's, you can actually publish an API in a matter of minutes, test it, and publish it.

What needs improvement?

It is still a very new product. We're still finding our feet on the latest version of it because it gives you the capability to move into the cloud. We have not yet taken that leap into cloud because of the uncertainty of what the moving parts are, and that's why we'll have to wait and see. I would like to see more stability, however, and I do believe the newer version will offer that.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using this solution for four years now, since 2015.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The new version is very unstable. There are a lot of fix patches and a host of known errors. They've started it on their website. So we're waiting for some of that to stabilize before we continue, but we're working around that as far as possible. The old version 5 was quite stable. We were able to put a lot of business commercial APIs in place. It is actually being monetized, and the guys are making money out of that. 

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

This is a robust system that is easily scalable. When it comes to the amount of users, it all depends on how you tackle the implementation, because in the first case, we basically had people that's running the infrastructure, setting the infrastructure up, and there you need a number of roles to set up the ecosystem itself. Then you must have the API providers. That could be including some business people as well as some testing people. And then obviously the running of it is basically minimal. With the new approach, we have very few people that can actually do the job. You have to, on a case-by-case, request time from people to do some work for you. There's no dedicated staff. The whole business approach and the whole implementation approach varies from organization to organization.

We plan to increase usage because if you want to make a business digital, that is one of the routes to go. Obviously, if you want to get mobility included in your portfolio of services, you have to go that route.

How are customer service and technical support?

We've had no hassles with IBM when it comes to technical support. Whenever I log a PMR, they respond. In one instance they actually drove a guy in from their site to come and do a site visit. In another case they flew a guy in from Germany. They know that they have us as a customer and that's why they provide us with good support.

How was the initial setup?

It is not too difficult to work on the solution itself, but to get it to fit within the organization, is something else. There is a vast difference between business models, between a banking setup and a retail setup. One must, first of all, get the business-aligned, because today business plays a bigger role than in the past. With APIs, it's inside-out thinking, meaning that business owners of the data will have to decide how they're going to do it, which is a change in some organizations where IT normally drives the technology. Now, all of a sudden, you have to tell the business, "You have to make decisions which IT will enable".

We used a team of people to implement the solution, and the first time we installed it, we had to pivot twice. All in all, it took us six months, and we had a dedicated team of about 15 people to do it. Once we'd pivoted twice and experimented with it, it took us approximately five months to get it up and going. The latest product, the new iteration, is run through a project, which doesn't have dedicated staff, and it has been ongoing for almost 13 months now. We're not yet done with pivot one.

What about the implementation team?

We used IBM directly because we bought the product from them. We basically got them onsite to explain what their blueprint meant. The documentation was quite good, so all we had to do is get them to come and agree with the pattern we've selected. Now we're still finding our feet, experimenting and making up our minds.

What was our ROI?

We do see an ROI, because, in the past, we could not monetize services. Now we can sell our data. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The basic appraisal based on the two models is available on their website. The one is PVU-based and the other one is consumption-based. But that is a ballpark figure. Obviously, when you engage with them in a contract, they can negotiate. 

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did evaluate a lot of other options. We were led by Gartner and Forrester with regards to that, and then we did site visits to other companies that implemented products, and we had a look at their solution. We spoke to some of their staff. Based on that, we did the due diligence, and then we selected the product. This solution came out on top.

What other advice do I have?

The product itself delivers on what is documented and we don't need any additional features. Currently, there are some features that are not working because of known errors. I would like to see an improvement in the stability, however. Once we've got it stable, we can push the limits. We can see what works and what doesn't work, and then we can comment on what is required for the future. I will, therefore, rate this a seven out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Open API Consultant at a tech services company with 11-50 employees
Consultant
A very scalable cloud solution but it should be more cloud-based
Pros and Cons
  • "The solution is very scalable because it's on the cloud."
  • "In the next version, I don't know if they've already been included it or not, but the designer and all the tools should be on the cloud. I don't want any external installation or local installation."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use this solution for the regulation of open banking.

What needs improvement?

It still does not support open API 3. Another problem is the designer. I want the whole solution to be on the cloud. For the installation, I have to install locally. There are many improvements it needs if I want to implement a MockServer or sandbox. In the future, I hope it will be more intuitive for building a MockServer.

In the next version, I don't know if they've already been included it or not, but the designer and all the tools should be on the cloud. I don't want any external installation or local installation. The old designer should be less complex and more simple or intuitive for you to search as well.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for a few months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I found the solution to be stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is very scalable because it's on the cloud, adding more resources to improve redundancy or performance is simple and configurable.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've found technical support to be very good.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was not as straightforward. Deployment takes a few days. You don't need too many people for the deployment and maintenance of the solution. 

What about the implementation team?

We were working with IBM for the implementation.

What other advice do I have?

We are testing and I'm working for the Bank of Israel and we have to implement the regulation of the PSD2, the open bank, open banking, open API. We would implement it on API Connect, so it's not a production system, it's just a sandbox.

In terms of advice, I would suggest anyone to verify that the product support is the latest version and to find out the frequency of the new versions of the product itself. I think it's very important to go through a project like this before implementation.

I would rate this solution seven out of ten. I'd like it to be more cloud-based, for the open API 3 because currently all the specifications are published only on the API so you have to downgrade it and then input it into IBM.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Senior IT Operations Engineer at a retailer with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
A good solution for distribution with a good user interface

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for distribution.

What is most valuable?

The technical support and the user interface are good.

What needs improvement?

IBM is also a bit pricey. On top of that, they have bugs that need to be fixed.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for over one year.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution is very stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is not scalable.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support is okay. I had to call once for billing. We also had a connection issue. They didn't answer very quickly unfortunately.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We didn't previously use a different solution.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup isn't too hard, but it's not easy either. We didn't deploy anything. We just added a gateway.

What about the implementation team?

We used a local broker to assist in the implementation.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Right now, we are evaluating other options, including Axway, Apigee, and Tyke.

What other advice do I have?

In the 2018 version, the setup is less complicated, but it takes longer.

I would rate this solution eight out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Oladipupo-Aina - PeerSpot reviewer
Engineering Technology Services Manager at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
The developer portal is a useful feature
Pros and Cons
  • "The developer portal has been the most useful feature."
  • "Like any typical IBM infrastructure setup, you need to learn to set it up yourself. It's not one of those simple zip files or an archive unzip and you're up and running in some few minutes. Knowledge to set it up is key."

What is our primary use case?

We currently use it as our single point of the security catalog for the APIs that the bank has.

What is most valuable?

The developer portal has been the most useful feature.

What needs improvement?

Like any typical IBM infrastructure setup, you need to learn to set it up yourself. It's not one of those simple zip files or an archive unzip and you're up and running in some few minutes. Knowledge to set it up is key. 

A more user-friendly portal could be helpful. Something you won't really get lost in. For example, other APIs make it so easy to do a couple of things from the portal, not at the management portal itself. Maybe if IBM can improve on that, it would be most helpful.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for two years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The system has not been put through real stress. We use it for our third-party APIs and the connection and so that's not too much stress. I can't give a metrics on its stability. And then at the point of setup, we were already getting a bit of redundancy.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have knowledge of how to add additional APIs to it. With that, if I were to measure on a scale of one to five, I'll put that at four out of five in terms of scalability. Four meaning it's pretty easy. Once you have the knowledge it's pretty easy to add new APIs to your catalog, create a new catalog, etc. As to if the infrastructure itself is it scalable, I'd put at a two because I remember while we were trying to set up a redundancy we wanted to add an additional protecting node and it took us a day or two to get our head around that.

How are customer service and technical support?

In our country, there are regulations that don't allow us to really engage and that requires us to go through a proxy to IBM. I can't evaluate their technical support since I have never used them.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is complex. Deployment takes about two weeks for different portals. The knowledge takes up time and then there are some other internal processes, but if I were to take out the internal process I would put implementation at about a week.

The way our organization is set up, we have a team that is responsible for infrastructure setup. We also have a team that is responsible for activation setup. So, a three-man team should be able to do the setup.

What about the implementation team?

During the setup, we had to get some professional help from IBM itself. We have people that got trained on the solution, and in terms of integration, they got trained on it. And so they will have knowledge on how to create new integrations and new APIs on it and how to expose APIs on it going forward.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Before choosing IBM API Connect, we looked at 3scale API and API G-Box.

What other advice do I have?

Infrastructure setup was a bit painful. Knowledge up-take was not too painful if you are not doing anything complex. But when you start getting into complex APIs then maybe you need some bit of patience if you decide to use this solution.

At the end of the day, it's a great product, I can't fault it for now. We haven't extensively used it, so I really can't say how it would perform over time, or what kind of issues it would have if it was enterprise-wide. I can't find fault with it, for now, it's doing good.

I would rate the solution of seven and a half out of ten.

My point of view is a bit stiff because I'm a developer. I don't mind going through some tech rigors. But looking at it from a more general standpoint, I don't think anybody wants to go through the process of some technical learnings. In terms of the knowledge base, it's not too fun for developers. In terms of setup, it's almost definitely not fun. Usage is working well and based on the architectural principles we are already facing some bit of redundancy on that.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Manager at ANDD Techservices
User
API Management is the most valuable feature

What is our primary use case?

Building APIs.

How has it helped my organization?

Still working on it.

What is most valuable?

I have found the API Management to be most valuable.

What needs improvement?

Business applications could be exposed to users.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:
PeerSpot user
Amnesty International at Gfi Informatique
MSP
The ability for all of our web applications to share standard functions and documents easily is valuable

What is our primary use case?

This solution is primarily used for workflow applications. Specifically, it is used for web applications with complex workflows that have many users.

How has it helped my organization?

The solution helps. We have Domino servers for all our web applications.

What is most valuable?

The ability for all of our web applications to share standard functions and documents easily is valuable.

What needs improvement?

Automation for our Domino applications could be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
PeerSpot user
Vijay Kattula - PeerSpot reviewer
Director at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Well integrated with other products and quick to put into production
Pros and Cons
  • "This product is well integrated with other products. Its ability to interact with IBM Secure Gateway and other integration products is the core feature. Also, the lead time to put it into production is relatively short ."

    What is our primary use case?

    We have been using this product for banking, insurance, and government use cases. Perfromance-wise it is very good. It has been improved a lot from the beginning, from API Connect 4, 5, and now we have the latest version of it. The product is available in various forms which gives us the flexibility to propose solutions to our customers.

    How has it helped my organization?

    Any new company starting with APIs, this product is very helpful for learning how they can export their business functions and data to the outside world. It's easier for them to expose their business functions for various use cases.

    What is most valuable?

    This product is well integrated with other products. Its ability to interact with IBM Secure Gateway and other products is the core feature. Also, the lead time to put it into production is relatively short and that is something customers are pleased with.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    In terms of stability, I think it needs some improvement when it comes to externalizing the analytics data. The analytics collected with this product are part of the product database. If we could push the analytics data to an external data source, the customers could use it for historical purposes.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    It is scalable.

    How is customer service and technical support?

    Technical support is very good, helpful.

    How was the initial setup?

    The setup is pretty much straightforward.

    What other advice do I have?

    I rate this solution a nine out of 10. It has all the core features that allow any small company to start with the API calls. There are Essential, Professional, and Enterprise versions. The product is in many forms, like docker, for example.

    I recommend this product. Take a look at it.

    Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: IBM Partner.
    PeerSpot user
    Chief Architect and Distinguished Member at Wipro Technologies
    Consultant
    Easy to configure security and generate API keys

    What is our primary use case?

    • API management
    • Securing enterprise APIs
    • Metering
    • Throttling
    • Transformation
    • Analytics
    • Deployment on AWS

    How has it helped my organization?

    • Single entry point for enterprise APIs
    • Basic OAuth
    • Keys management
    • Policy configurations are pretty easy.

    What is most valuable?

    • Ease of use
    • Security
    • GUI is pretty intuitive.
    • Easy to configure security and generate API keys.

    What needs improvement?

    Components, like caching, should be implemented as policies, not requiring dependency on an external solution. Apigee provides caching as a policy.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    Less than one year.
    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user579336 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Principal Information System Engineer at a financial services firm with 5,001-10,000 employees
    User
    Since it runs on top of Datapower, all Datapower based custom policies can be utilized and exported to API connect but its not straightforward/simple process.
    Pros and Cons
    • "Since it runs on top of Datapower, all Datapower based custom policies can be utilized and exported to API connect but its not straightforward/simple process."
    • "IBM info-center help documentation also needs improvement. Competitive product like Apigee provide out of the box policies to run Javascript, JAVA and better/flexible logging policies."

    What is most valuable?

    For on Premise Solutions:

    Out of the box policies for Gatewayscript, JWT generate and validate. Oauth support .

    Since it runs on top of Datapower, all Datapower based custom policies can be utilized and exported to API connect but its not straightforward/simple process.

    Export of Analytics data in CSV format.

    API connect is far better, faster and sleek as compared to IBM API management.

    API connect support better error handling scenario with additional policies and catch node.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We utilize API connect to proxy to backed micro services or Datapower. We also do JSON to SOAP mapping / rest to soap apis, which is a very common pattern. We use it for any lightweight rest/soap message processing , analytic gathering and API usage policy enforcement.

    What needs improvement?

    IBM has improved this product significantly in last 2 years but it is still not stable and require further improvements. There are several issues administering the product. Features like , taking manual back up is still not available through GUI. The API manager cmdline is only accessible using one Admin account.

    IBM recently added a feature to do autoback up in recent API connect firmware releases but its not very user friendly.Also the exported backup can not be unzipped and is not readable.

    IBM info-center help documentation also needs improvement. Competitive product like Apigee provide out of the box policies to run Javascript, JAVA and better/flexible logging policies.

    Apigee cloud provides various test tools where APIs performance can be tested from different regions in the world. As of now, as per my understanding IBM doesn't have similar test assist tools in Bluemix cloud .

    Troubleshooting any issue is very difficult as it runs on Datapower so Datapower know how is required. Also you need to log on to multiple VMs/devices including Datapower to troubleshoot if errors are not properly handled.

    IBM definitely needs to improve their customer support process for their new products as it demands more attention from customers because of large number of defects, long learning curve and lack of documentation.


    For how long have I used the solution?

    1.5 year

    What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

    We lost the old configuration during firmware upgrade of API connect.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    IBM API management did have several stability issues, where working in different tabs in browser cause issues saving the configuration changes.

    Also IBM API management is very slow and its inbuilt test tool is crappy as it takes around 1.5-2 mins to test any API after configuration changes.

    IBM API connect is far better but we still haven't stress/load tested apis,so wouldn't comment on it.

    One example of instability, We lost the old configuration during firmware upgrade of API connect.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    For IBM API managment , some times config replication in Management cluster might take as long as 2 minutes so change in one API manager might not be reflected quickly in another API manager. Also API management GUI need to refreshed in browser to see latest state.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Customer Service:

    6

    Technical Support:

    4

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    I have used APIGEE in a different project.

    How was the initial setup?

    IBM infocenter for IBM API management and Connect is still not very helpful.It takes lots of reading and terminology know how to correctly configure it.

    What about the implementation team?

    Initial set up was done by IBM but new VMs are configured by us.

    What was our ROI?

    Not sure.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    Not sure.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    No.

    What other advice do I have?

    Troubleshooting any issue can be very difficult.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user653688 - PeerSpot reviewer
    SAP SD Consultant at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
    Real User
    ​In-built policies and security functions are most valuable.

    What is most valuable?

    In-built policies and security functions.

    What needs improvement?

    Integration with DataPower as its API Gateway. Due to bugs in integration, we have to look for workaround on fixing and using DataPower as gateway. 

    For how long have I used the solution?

    Have been working on this for three months.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We switched to APIC for easier management of APIs and to leverage its inbuilt policies, security features, and usage of DataPower as gateway.

    What other advice do I have?

    Setup an "always and anywhere available sandbox" for experimenting and proof of concepts, because one will need to think and experiment much to use the tool.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user632772 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Architect Advisor at a wellness & fitness company with 10,001+ employees
    Vendor
    It gives a holistic environment for us to set up APIs. We have asked for improved scalability and other features related to API setup and security.
    Pros and Cons
    • "It gives a holistic environment for us to set up the APIs and that's the main value that it adds. It gives end to end for us."
    • "We have asked IBM for scalability and for some other features that we wanted. We had a dialogue with them and in the end, they have agreed to provide us with features related to API setup and security."

    What is most valuable?

    It gives a holistic environment for us to set up the APIs and that's the main value that it adds. It gives end to end for us.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We moved from another manager to this one and latency has improved a lot. It has improved the latency response by maybe 20-25%.

    What needs improvement?

    In fact, we have had a discussion with IBM and it's agreed upon that they would give us the features that we have asked for, just in three months. We have asked IBM for scalability and for some other features that we wanted. We had a dialogue with them and in the end, they have agreed to provide us with features related to API setup and security. They agreed to give it to us in three months, so we are happy.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    In regards to the stability, we are new to it, so it is OK right now. We haven't put much into it yet.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability we have not tested yet; we are testing it now as we speak.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We do use technical support and are in constant contact with them. They are very good.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    Previously, we were using Layer 7. The reason as to why we decided to switch solutions was because the current environment was not working for us.

    How was the initial setup?

    I was involved in the installation process to some extent. I am from architecture, so usually the infrastructure team would be involved.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    There are several other solutions that we evaluated but it depends on the capability that we are looking at.

    Initially, we started off with one solution and then, moved on to another, as we found out that it's not helping us.

    We do several things before selecting a vendor. It's not in my purview, but we do the product evaluation as well. Obviously, IBM is a big vendor and we are a big shop of IBM.

    What other advice do I have?

    Go for it!

    Getting a perfect rating depends on the product and how they give us support or not. We haven't gutted it, thoroughly. It is in production, but it's not perfected. Maybe in six months or more, we'll know more about it.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    IT Integration Consultant at a healthcare company with 10,001+ employees
    Consultant
    Provides integration with multiple services, security, and monitoring. I would like to see more caching and monitoring features.

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable features of this solution are:

    • Integration with multiple services,
    • Providing security,
    • Being able to monitor, and
    • Enabling customers using the secure gateway.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We belong to the healthcare industry, so it is beneficial to implement the API Connect solution to provide APIs that can integrate outside and inside our organization. It also provides overall solutions, i.e., API-based solutions to all the customers that we have.

    What needs improvement?

    I would like to see more caching and monitoring features implemented in future releases. It also needs to be a more customizable and flexible product.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    In terms of stability, we are still prototyping the product. We have the older version, which is now stable, but the current version or the new version, that we are still prototyping, is still not 100% stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability is pretty good.

    How is customer service and technical support?

    We have used technical support. I would probably give them a 7/10 rating.

    How was the initial setup?

    I was involved a little bit with the installation process. I found it complex, as there were lots of configurations involved in setting up the infrastructure and that everyone didn't have experience with.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We looked at several other solutions, i.e., both IBM and non-IBM products. However, since we had already used IBM DataPower, we thought we could reuse the same infrastructure. API Connect has DataPower built-in to it, thus we tried to reuse some of the existing functionalities.

    The most important criteria while selecting a vendor are the product's support and operations.

    What other advice do I have?

    Our company is an early adopter of this product so I would advise, at this point, to wait and then implement the solution.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user632778 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Solution Engineer at Tjx companies
    Real User
    Makes APIs available across different verticals in the company.

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable feature of this solution is to have the APIs available across different verticals in the company. IBM API Connect provides that capability for us, so as to expose the services as APIs.

    How has it helped my organization?

    It provides the use of services at a faster delivery; that's the main, important thing. It is less cost-effective.

    What needs improvement?

    We are evaluating the current capabilities. We have other products such as the IBM WSRR and we are trying to see how it fits with the IBM API Connect. So, we are just trying to evaluate it right now.

    It needs to improve so that we can be successful in the company, as well grow the API footprints in the company.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We are using it for the last six months, so we haven't yet gone into production. We are hoping it will be a very stable solution.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Right now, it's not heavily used. So, we intend to use it in the next year.

    How was the initial setup?

    Initial setup was very straightforward and not complex.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We looked at other solutions, namely Apigee. However, we didn't choose them; we are not taking it.

    We have a lot of other IBM products, so it is much easier for us to have one vendor instead of multiple sets of products.

    What other advice do I have?

    Go for it.

    We are using the IBM WSRR solution for service-oriented active services. The API Connect is for lightweight services and obviously for customization purposes. We work with IBM a lot, so they recommended to us to go with the IBM API Connect solution because it is the future. That is why we have chosen the API Connect.

    The main criteria while selecting a vendor is support, i.e., after we go live and not just from the product. A stable support customer trust factor is also a very important factor and that is why we have a lot of IBM products.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user634884 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Senior Integration Consultant at a insurance company with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Vendor
    It gives us the ability to distribute work among our API developers. Possible improvement is mainly around having more of the cloud oriented architecture.
    Pros and Cons
    • "The most valuable feature for me is the ability to distribute work among our API developers, so we don't have to do all the work as IBM API Connect administrators and IBM DataPower administrators."
    • "Possible improvement is mainly around having more of the cloud oriented architecture bringing stability in adding new capabilities around security."

    What is most valuable?

    The most valuable feature for me is the ability to distribute work among our API developers, so we don't have to do all the work as IBM API Connect administrators and IBM DataPower administrators. This simplifies the way our partners can access our API's.

    Overall, it brings us closer to better API management in our organization. The next step for us would be to improve the whole solution by going to the cloud. That's what I'm looking at.

    How has it helped my organization?

    It simplifies development and allows us to do more for less money.

    What needs improvement?

    Based on my meetings at this conference, I'm satisfied with their roadmap, where they're going. Possible improvement is mainly around having more of the cloud oriented architecture bringing stability in adding new capabilities around security.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Stability has improved greatly with the latest releases. There were some struggles in the beginning. There were some components that were not stable. They weren't behaving consistently through environments when we moved stuff from development to demo to prime. I think core functionality is pretty stable but there are things on the outskirts that weren't so stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    IBM DataPower is at the core and we can easily add stuff as we need or as our licensing allows. So I think that it's pretty scalable.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    The technical support is good. We got some help from their experts.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We were using IBM DataPower without any additional layer. By adding this new obstruction layer with IBM API Connect, we're simplifying development and improving our interactions with our partners. It becomes more compatible to the industry standard having the API management system in place.

    How was the initial setup?

    The setup is complex but we didn't expect any simple things at such a large scale. It's just too many moving parts - IBM API Connect consists of three main components and they all have to be synced up. There's a lot of setup and networking and then you have to adapt it to your own environment.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    Microsoft, IBM and CA Layer 7. IBM had the most capabilities that were based on IBM DataPower and could fulfill all of our requirements, even though the timescale was longer than we expected it to be.

    When considering a vendor we just go for an industry leader, making sure that their technology stack aligns with our technology stack. We look at their reputation and how good the support is with the other products and what kind of relationship we have with account managers from that organization.

    What other advice do I have?

    You should consider how much value you can derive specifically from the solution with all the features that are available. For instance, the main value for us was in organizing the API's and splitting work among several development teams.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user632808 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Solutions Developer at a retailer with 10,001+ employees
    Vendor
    Provides DevOps integration and a catalog for microservices.
    Pros and Cons
    • "We are able to share those APIs instantly within the organization; even if we want to share it outside publicly, then we can have those capabilities."
    • "We would have more capability to interact with the catalog and inventories, so a more DevOps-friendly solution is needed."

    What is most valuable?

    Most of the business value that we are getting out of this solution, is that it provides DevOps integration and a catalog for microservices. We are able to share those APIs instantly within the organization; even if we want to share it outside publicly, then we can have those capabilities.

    How has it helped my organization?

    There is a trend to move towards microservice-based solutions, where we have to decouple all our legacy SOA-based services, when sometimes it takes an iterative approach to come out with what you need. Instead of that, we have this microservices solution, where you can just enable the required part in quick delivery using DevOps. These are the main benefits of this product.

    What needs improvement?

    Mostly, I would like to see more tools that are DevOps-friendly. We would have more capability to interact with the catalog and inventories, so a more DevOps-friendly solution is needed.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Stability has still not matured. We are still growing with the industry. We will find out after some time how it is going. But, as of now, it's stable.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Right now, in terms of scalability, everything we have is on-premise. However, we have this Bluemix capability, with which we can scale as and when we need.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We have used IBM professional support/premium support. We use them for any of the solutions, such as if we need some guidance on the future roadmap as to how it's going, etc; we engage them. They are excellent. They are always not only there to help us resolve the problem, but also to be able to guide us as to how the trend is going and what we should start thinking in regards to those changes.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We have this monthly inter-tech meeting, where we go through as to what is going on in the market, how the industry is going, and how we can utilize that in order to start serving the business, with an expedited return on the investment. So, this API, DevOps, and microservices are the things which are happening right now.

    The most important criteria while selecting a vendor are that they should be able to help us not just with solving problems, but they also need to advise us in terms of how the trends are moving and how we can be strategic partners, instead of it just being a one-time solution.

    What other advice do I have?

    Advice depends; if you have a preferred technology and IBM has a solution for that technology, then I'd definitely advise you to use more microservices with the API Connect and the DevOps, to provide quick returns for your business. It will be more valuable to you.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user634854 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Chief IT Engineer at Kaiser
    Vendor
    We're using it to replace the old version. What we look for most is security.

    What is most valuable?

    It provides a few features such as security and discoveries.

    How has it helped my organization?

    What we look for most is security. API Connect can provide that. On top of that we use it to replace the old version. The current WSR was for discovery, the web service.

    What needs improvement?

    Additional features probably will be easier to develop. Right now the UI is using quadruples. On the policy, they are using SSLT, but I would like them to convert that SSLT to use scripting language instead.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    We just started. We are converting from the old infrastructure to the new API Connect. We started maybe a year ago, but we'll see the results maybe in six months.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    I think the scalability is pretty good. The API Connect divides by different zones, different domains. So how we can scale depends on organizations. If it is big, we make it big and if it is small, we make it small. It's pretty easy to use.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We used the support quite a bit, because we have to transfer the old WSR into API Connect without rewriting everything. With that transfer or migration, it takes a lot of work, so we talk with technical support. They are pretty knowledgeable, but we still have to go through many iterations, many cycles to get all the technical information out.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    Beforehand there was the older generation of API Connect. API Connect came out maybe two years ago, before that was WSR combined with data power. They are going to retire WSR. WSR is also for my VN. That became AP Connect so we had to move.

    How was the initial setup?

    I wasn't involved in the initial setup process.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I would think customer service and trust are important when deciding which vendor to choose. IBM, Oracle, and Microsoft were on our evaluation list. We've been with IBM for many years now, so we'll stay with IBM. We work very closely with IBM on their product and they're very good support, so when we run into issues, they are there to help.

    What other advice do I have?

    I think IBM is very innovative and maybe that will give them an edge into their industry.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user634788 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Technology Manager at PNC
    Real User
    It combines IBM DataPower being a security gateway with some of the features that are in IIB and IBM App Connect. I think that a subscriber should being able to subscribe to a plan.

    What is most valuable?

    I think the most valuable feature is the fact that it sort of combines IBM DataPower being a security gateway with some of the features that are in IIB and IBM App Connect, to kind of build a complete integration. Also, IBM API Connect being the API gateway is extremely valuable both for internal and external consumers of APIs. Off the top of my mind, those are the big points that I would add.

    How has it helped my organization?

    For full transparency, at this point, we brought the solution in and we've used it for a couple of internal hackathons, but we haven't actually used it for any production work yet. Like any bank, it's really forcing a transformation in the sense of the whole industry related to cloud and related to connections to the outside. We're really trying to figure out, internally, how we want to define that.

    Some of the other growing pains we've had is, how do we operationalize the technology in the sense of ownership internally; to say, which different groups should actually own which component and how we control the security across that. Personally, my side of the house, which is being responsible for delivering solutions on behalf of the businesses, I'm ready and anxious to get going on it. I'm very excited about the possibilities that the technology brings.

    What needs improvement?

    I think that some features that would be kind of cool are around the whole idea of a subscriber being able to subscribe to a plan. Not only should that plan include the number of calls per month or per week or whatever but also, I want to subscribe to a plan with an SLA, which gets into response time of an API call. If the response time in the plan that you subscribe is like 200 milliseconds with a 99.9% guaranteed delivery, then I should be able to subscribe to that plan and then be able to go into it and actually see how close I am to adhering to that.

    Internally, this makes for some very interesting conversations right around going from application to application, issuing a connection and they're saying, "Hey, well, we're going to make this many calls a month and this is what we need the response time to be." You could literally say, "Well, we're hitting the SLA." Or, "We're not hitting the SLA." Externally, I think you have the same sort of commitments and when you're negotiating contracts, especially on the larger business partner connection, with the business-to-business connection conversation as well.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Given the fact that it's not operationalized, I cannot really comment too well on the stability because we haven't really had to worry about the stability yet. I'm not really in a place to know. I've heard rumors that there are occasionally some issues related to how it maintains connections with its other pair, but I don't know enough to know.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Based on the architecture, from what I've heard, it's quite scalable. It's just, bring in more nodes and away you go. My understanding is it’s very scalable.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Personally, I have not used technical support.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We did not previously use a different solution. Let's face it: This is a relatively new space and we’re a bank. Of course, we knew that the solution was going on.

    How was the initial setup?

    I was not involved in the initial setup.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    I do believe that there was an RFP process that we went through as part of the selection for this tool. I do not know which other vendors were on the short list.
    Usually, our vendor selection process is quite rigid around that. Everything comes into play. Of course, there's cost but then there's, how well it's going to be supported. What does the product roadmap look like? How well does it conform to our internal technology standards? How well will it play within our environment? There's a lot of stuff there.

    What other advice do I have?

    I think if you're working with IBM and you're looking at possibly using Bluemix now or in the future, the other thing is, if you're using IIB or you're looking at Salesforce, there are a lot of synergies related to these platforms and this tool set, so it sort of makes sense to head down this road.

    Personally, if you're a small startup, you might need to evaluate the entire landscape a little bit differently, but if you're a large enterprise and you already have a pretty big relationship with IBM, I think that it makes a lot of sense.

    My rating reflects the fact that it's not operationalized at this point, and that's not entirely the product’s fault. I see a lot of potential, but there are still some things that need to be there.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user801987 - PeerSpot reviewer
    it_user801987Software Trainee at Miracle Software Systems, Inc at a tech services company
    Real User

    well explained.Thank you

    See all 2 comments
    it_user634806 - PeerSpot reviewer
    VP of IT Strategy at a financial services firm with 501-1,000 employees
    Vendor
    Offers us more flexibility with our application and potentially would allow third parties to come in and develop for us.

    What is most valuable?

    As far as API Connect, I think it offers us more flexibility with our application and potentially would allow third parties to come in and develop for us. It also enables us to streamline our microservices journey.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The main thing is that it just makes app development a lot easier.

    What needs improvement?

    Stability.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    It was a fairly new product so there was, so it took a year or so to really stabilize. But now I'm happy with the performance.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    No problems.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    It wasn't me that did it personally, but I would say good. We have a good relationship with IBM.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We were using a different solution, but we knew that this was the future, so we knew we needed to switch.

    How was the initial setup?

    Fairly straightforward.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    Yeah, I can't recall the name, but we are an IBM facility, so we just figured it made more sense for us to go with this package.


    What other advice do I have?

    When selecting a vendor, trust is important, as well as that they deliver. Just someone you can be comfortable with.

    I rated it an 8/10 because it's not fully mature yet.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user634914 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Solution Architect at Aetna
    Vendor
    Provides a user interface for designing and securing your APIs.

    What is most valuable?

    It provides a good, simplified user interface to design and secure your APIs.

    How has it helped my organization?

    First of all, it gels well with the other IBM products that we have. It resolves some of those integration problems that we earlier used to have. It provides OAuth2 authentication, which is like what we use in our APIs. So, these are the two main benefits of this product, as compared to what we were using earlier.

    What needs improvement?

    A lot of the features require improvement, such as better integration with the other suites of the product and a more secured way to put it on the cloud. Another useful feature needed is to make API development more easier and simpler for development, especially on the management of other artifacts, like the client IDs and other stuff.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    I would rate the stability a seven to eight out of ten; it's still evolving. There are features which are missing, that are there in the other similar product from another vendor. Overall, it's good.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    The scalability is good, it's at par.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We have used a lot of the technical support! We work with IBM on a lot of custom enhancements, that suits our needs. They are really proactive in regards to listening to the customers. So, they also provide a few fix packs to us sometimes.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We have a relationship with IBM. They approached us with this product and as I mentioned earlier, it integrates pretty well with our other IBM products that we use in-house. So that made us to go toward this product.

    IBM are the market leaders, when it comes to integration technology. So, their proven ability and experience is why we chose this vendor.

    Experience is the number one criteria while selecting a vendor. The second factor is the brand and the relationship, of course, it matters.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We do have other vendors that we use. However, the majority of our integration is on IBM.

    What other advice do I have?

    It's good. They have really good use cases. So, it's worth investing time in these products, and if it suits your needs, then you can really go for it. It does support a wide variety of use cases.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user632790 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Manager with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    We were trying to implement microservices and other features and functionality. We haven't achieved success with it yet.

    What is most valuable?

    We've yet to realize real value in the solution. The goals that we were trying to achieve from it were to implement microservices and a lot of the features and functionality that were part of the documentation, but we haven't achieved success with it yet.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The benefits would be that we'd have a great platform for our microservices and API management. But since we haven't had a lot of success with it yet, it's been frustrating.

    What needs improvement?

    I would like greater stability and greater ability to actually administer the product without needing to go to technical support. It's very proprietary and support has secret passwords that they use to get into certain functions.

    IBM has limited the capability for executing typical admin commands and only provide a small list of proprietary commands. Without a secret command line password, clients are limited to what they can view and administer – even in a read-only mode.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Stability is not good.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    Scalability is good.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    I would rate technical support fair, at best.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We weren't using a different solution. This is a new approach. We do have alternatives that we are using, including other IBM products. But we did this one more from a sales relationship, technical sales team pitch.

    When selecting a vendor, reliability and experience are most important; the fact that we had experience with them. We have a lot of IBM products and we had a lot of good relationships.

    How was the initial setup?

    I was involved in the initial setup and it was somewhat complex; medium complexity.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We didn’t look at other vendors.

    What other advice do I have?

    Certainly look at other options that are out there and absolutely go with the latest and greatest version of the product, because there have been a lot of issues and it's going through growing pains. It's not completely mature.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user632796 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Manager of Middleware Application Development at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Real User
    I like how it runs within DataPower, and adds the extra OAuth security.

    What is most valuable?

    I like how it runs within DataPower, and adds the extra OAuth security. It gives me a common place to do security for all my API services.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The biggest benefit is the availability provided to the people that will use my services. They can go to a portal and look for services to identify which ones they'll use.

    What needs improvement?

    We use it for existing IIB services. We call on multiple back ends from the same service where the record layouts are different. It's difficult to describe and use them in the product.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Actually, we're in production for demo purposes, so I really can't speak to this. So far, we've had no issues.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    We have used technical support and we have a good response.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    The decision to switch was made before I had left IBM and went to this company four months ago.

    When selecting vendor, support and longevity are the most important criteria.

    How was the initial setup?

    I was involved in portions of the initial setup. It was complex from the standpoint that there were a lot of components, but it wasn't difficult.

    What other advice do I have?

    Make sure to understand its purpose and what it's used for and not used for.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user487374 - PeerSpot reviewer
    it_user487374VP Product Management at PeerSpot
    Consultant

    What would you recommend for others as they prepare their initial setup?

    PeerSpot user
    Integration Architect at a tech services company with 501-1,000 employees
    Consultant
    It offers GUI-based accelerated API development that addresses advanced use cases in a collaborative environment.

    What is most valuable?

    • GUI-based accelerated API development
    • Segregation of ownership and control for different stakeholders
    • Self-service Developer Portal: a highly customizable portal based on Drupal CMS
    • Security support for oAuth, basic authentication and keys
    • Analytics
    • High-performance solution when used with DataPower IDG. DataPower IDG can support 8K TPS per appliance
    • Easy-to-implement, configurable API security and analytics
    • LoopBack projects allow API creation using a datasource

    This product has been designed very well and addresses many advanced use cases of API development in a collaborative environment, which are not yet available in other existing products, for example, Layer 7.

    How has it helped my organization?

    • Self-servicing portal allows users to explore APIs, create and manage keys. and manage subscriptions.
    • Advance infrastructure load balancer/cluster management features
    • GUI-based accelerated API development and deployments

    What needs improvement?

    • Production traffic monitoring features can be better.
    • A few advanced API managementfeatures such as monetization and portal syndication are not yet available in the product, but are included in the product road map for the near future.
    • API hosting needs a separate product (for example, DataPower) or Micro Gateway (a node js component). However, in a few cases, this can be seen as a better overall solution.
    • Frequent product design changes were observed during the early stages of this product evolution; however, currently this product is very stable.
    • A few minor quality issues were observed during the early stages of this product evolution; however, currently this product is very stable.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I have used it for 1+ years.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    Current versions are stable. However, a few minor issues were observed during the early stages of product evolution.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    No scalability issues were found.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Technical support is 9/10:

    • Highly responsive
    • Quarterly enhancement/bug fix releases
    • Detailed product documentation

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    We previously used Apigee. We switched due to version upgrade cost issues and a need for performance improvement.

    How was the initial setup?

    Initial setup is very well documented and straightforward. However, please refer to API Management experts for the most-optimized solutions.

    What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

    It's available in SaaS and on-premise versions. This product comes in three offerings: Essentials, Professional & Enterprise.

    As per the required API Management components, pricing and licensing might vary on a case-by-case basis.

    Enables a cost-effective solution when implemented properly.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    Before choosing this product, we also evaluated CA Layer 7, Akana, and Mashery.

    What other advice do I have?

    API Connect is an easy-to-learn, very advanced, reliable, business-to-business API management product. However, understand your requirements clearly and use expert help for the most optimized yet secure solution.

    The API Connect product comes with API management, developer portal, offline API development toolkit and a node js component called Micro Gateway. Licensing can differ for these components.

    From an API development features perspective, API Connect and API Management might appear significantly different. However, inherently both products exhibit a very easy, refined and mature API implementation process. I would personally recommend to everyone to use API Connect over API management.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user487374 - PeerSpot reviewer
    it_user487374VP Product Management at PeerSpot
    Consultant

    What were the reasons you chose this solution over the other products you evaluated?

    PeerSpot user
    Architect at Ness Technologies
    Vendor
    Internal re-usability of APIs are encouraged by cataloguing all the APIs, but the automation of deployments is needed.

    What is most valuable?

    V3 is way better then v2, and v4 has further improvements. We have the ability to secure, control, transform, catalogue and optimize access to our APIs for external and internal partners and developers.

    How has it helped my organization?

    The APIs are exposed to B2B partners in a secured, and better way. Internal re-usability of APIs are encouraged by cataloguing all the APIs.

    What needs improvement?

    It lacks the ability for billing and metering the API usage to invoicing in v3, however, v4 does have this. Automation of deployments is needed.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    We've used it over a year, v3 was purchased in Q2, 2014.

    What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

    Manual steps for deployment is needed.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    No issues encountered.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    No issue with scalability as the run timefor API Management is proven and time tested i.e. Datapower which all fortune 1000 companies use.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Customer Service:

    The IBM customer rep was very helpful in the POC phase, and helped us escalate custom/new features which we requested.

    Technical Support:

    Ir's excellent.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    No other product was used, and the service was just exposed by Datapower.

    How was the initial setup?

    Initial setup was straightforward as 50% of the solution was already in place. IBM API runs on IBM Datapower so the setup was only needed for IBM API Management itself.

    What about the implementation team?

    We did it in house using the same set of Datapower developers supported API Management.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    We also looked at WS02 which was way too complex and needed almost 14-15 VMs to run. As we had Datapower, it was a natural choice for us.

    What other advice do I have?

    If the customer is already using IBM Datapower then it is a no brainer that IBM API Management will complement their existing investment.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user217194 - PeerSpot reviewer
    Head of Development/Integration with 1,001-5,000 employees
    Vendor
    We know that our implementer had some problems while implementing the platform but IBM responded very quickly and professionally.

    What is most valuable?

    The most important feature is, for sure, the security gateway. But if we think commercially, the possibility for easily creating and exposing service plans and charging is also valuable.

    How has it helped my organization?

    We are planning the usage possibilities of API management inside our company, and outside, as well. Plenty of our web services are spread throughout various enterprise infrastructures and we want to control them in a better way with this tool. Of course, the valuable part outside the company is possibility for tracking and exposing telco services, as well as a commercialization aspect, through a developer community.

    What needs improvement?

    We have no suggestions so far.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    After six months testing the platforms we now have a preparation period for commercial usage. The platform is technically ready for use. We are using a Data Power XG45 v6.0.0.4 as the gateway layer alongside API Management.

    What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

    No issues encountered.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    No issues encountered.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    No issues encountered.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Customer Service:

    We have no such information so far.

    Technical Support:

    We know that our implementer had some problems while implementing the platform but the main vendors technical support (IBM) responded very quickly and professionally.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    No, we didn't. This is our first tool with this functionality.

    How was the initial setup?

    Initial setup is very simple. Later implementation is a little bit complex (disagreement of reference in documentation, different recommended OS versions for additional parts of the environment etc.)

    What about the implementation team?

    The implementation team did it with the support of a main vendor team. They have high level of expertise.

    Which other solutions did I evaluate?

    No we didn't. Maybe ESB (Enterprise Service Bus which we already use) is one of the solutions for exposing different kind of web or other services for sharing usage data but we realized that API management will be more useful for our wider purposes.

    What other advice do I have?

    It's a good solution with a simple user interface. It has many different possibilities as a business solution.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    it_user487374 - PeerSpot reviewer
    it_user487374VP Product Management at PeerSpot
    Consultant

    What would you recommend to other companies as they prepare their initial setup?

    it_user211761 - PeerSpot reviewer
    SOA and Security Consultant at a computer software company with 51-200 employees
    Vendor
    Exchange integration would be a good improvement however it has made it very simple to expose new services securely.

    What is most valuable?

    The seamless conversion between rest and soap and service catalog.

    How has it helped my organization?

    I am a consultant so I can explain how this product has improved my customer's organization: it has made it very simple to expose new services securely with a specific general policy in DataPower and also keeping track of their use (amount of calls, etc.).

    What needs improvement?

    Integration with Exchange Server. Also if it could be easier to configure or direct the DataPower policies that would help. I'd like to see a combo box to choose which processing rule to apply.

    For how long have I used the solution?

    I've used it for a few months.

    What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

    Only issue is with connecting it to Exchange Server.

    What do I think about the stability of the solution?

    No issues with stability.

    What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

    No issues with scalability.

    How are customer service and technical support?

    Customer Service:

    I did not require the customer service.

    Technical Support:

    I did not require technical support.

    Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

    It was an addition and not a substitution to anything.

    How was the initial setup?

    It was straightforward.

    What was our ROI?

    Seems good so far, as it saves a lot of time. It used to take a long time to expose services, whereas now it's just a few clicks.

    What other advice do I have?

    It's pretty simple, there's no need for any special advice actually.

    Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
    PeerSpot user
    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free IBM API Connect Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.
    Updated: September 2022
    Buyer's Guide
    Download our free IBM API Connect Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.