Learn More about Chat SDK and API

Hi! Last December 28, 2017, my friend in college, Clara, offered me a chance to write as one of freelance content writers at Qiscus, a local developer based in Indonesia and Singapore, which provides Chat SDK (Software Development Kit) and messaging API (Application Programming Interface), usually for business.

"Well, what is Chat SDK and messaging API?" 

That was my first reaction after learned about the core business and product. As an alumna of Communication Studies, it is easy to write in any type of format, for any usability and occasion, but understanding about the topic is always be a difficult one. Particularly, when it comes to (specific) technology such as SDK and API. However, I found it interesting to know more about this technology ☺

Basically, SDK is a developer kit (devkit) to create a chat apps while API is an interface that interact between the software, libraries and OS (operating system), to make the chat apps run well. Particularly, when it is embedded to empower a web/ mobile (business) apps. In its current development, some organizations also perceive the need to add bot in chat apps. Thus, it becomes a chatbot, which is more sophisticated yet complicated to create. 

Please kindly write my article about Chat SDK and API here (though I will also re-write the published article below). This is my second article after helped Clara finished the Wikipedia article, in English version, about Qiscus and their products, but before I helped her to write article about Chat and AI C-Levels Must Know (she interviewed and edited the article herself). Enjoy! 

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Learn More about Chat SDK and API

Copyright: Qiscus.com

Understanding developer’s lingo such as Software Development Kit (SDK) and Application Programming Interface (API) might be complicated for commoners. Here is what you should know about these terms and how they have changed today’s tech industry.

SDK, A Magic Kit for Developers

The last word in the term SDK says a lot about its function. SDK is a kit, or developer kit (devkit), used by developers to create a system or any software application. It has a set of tools, libraries, relevant documentation, code samples, processes, and guides. With these features, the developer can easily create a system or software application that matches a specific platform. (Read more about it here)
You can imagine SDK as an all-in box that creates something out of nothing. The box contains the materials, tools, instructions and manuals that allows you to create things that you want. There is no longer the need to search for separate components individually, since it all comes in a package and all of the parts are compatible with one another.
API, An Interface that Interacts One with The Other
As indicated in its acronym, API is simply an interface that allows software to interact together. However, it can also be used to interact between libraries and operating systems (OS).
API provides standard commands to perform conventional operations without having to be developed from scratch. It can be used for copying and pasting on the computer or interacting on social media (from uploading to commenting and deleting photos).
On top of that, some organizations are anticipating to collaborate their core online businesses to create a bigger value using API. According to Accenture, a global management consulting and professional services company, 71 percent of organizations expect their partners’ APIs to be broadly adopted across their industries by this year.
The organizations can rely on API, which has many shapes and sizes, to create a bigger value, by connecting the presence platform with one another or by building an entirely new platform which combines two or more functions that the organizations have.
webrtc, in app chat, omnichannel,
It is like connecting the transportation service an organization has in its apps with a software of virtual payment or combining the transportation and education function in an entirely new apps (for examples).   APIs variant, which has many shapes and sizes, can make this goal possible. It helps today’s users to combine APIs cautiously so as to improve their functions (read more about the process).
As complicated as it sounds, how API works remain the same everywhere: It brings a set of rules that define what programmes should do in order to interact with software, libraries, and OS. Its consistent codes allow you to replicate the functions regardless of where you submit it from.

The Difference between SDK and API

Sometimes, the functions of SDK and API overlap. However, remember this: SDK is usually API, but API does not contain any SDK.
This is because SDK is a devkit that creates the system or software applications. So in order to make the system or software application works, SDK might bring its API along with it.
However, considering API’s ability to interact with software, libraries, and OS, it can be combined with other APIs to improve the function of the programme. However, the API itself cannot be used to create a brand new system or software application. It is a function only SDK can carry out.
The Implementation of SDK and API in Chat Apps chat 
The unstoppable development of technology has forced organizations to move their core activities to be online-based. Regardless the business and industry type, companies bring their services online by empowering their webs and apps, with embedded chat. The chat will help customers drop the enquiries, make an appointment or seek consultation in real time.
chat sdk indonesia, messaging sdk indonesia
This function can only work with the help of Chat SDK and API. Referring to the earlier function of SDK where in this process, Chat SDK is needed to create the chat application itself (which contains several features) that matches specific platforms. Meanwhile, Chat API is used to express a specific usage and communicate between the chat and the software app.
Here comes the problem: building a chat app takes a lot of efforts and it will surely be costly. You need around 4-5 dedicated engineers to create chat apps which fulfill user needs of a real-time communications. Besides, chat feature nowadays is expected to have facilities beyond the text. Thus, additional feature such as voice and video calls, supporting facilities to help user shares files, locations, contacts, etc. require.
In addition to that, some organizations perceive the need to add bots in their apps chat. Perhaps, the simplest example of chat apps which fulfill those needs (but without bot) is WhatsApp. However, Yalantis.com stated, it takes $35,400-$370,000 and 1,770 to 2,466.7 hours to develop WhatsApp.

So, What If An Organization Wants to Build Chat Apps but It Is Constrained with Cost and Has No Technical Resources?

Qiscus Chat SDK allows you to personalize the chat apps through the out-of-the-box features, by adding the typing indicator, attachment, emoji support, private and group chat, online presence and delivery indicator. This stressed the customizable character Qiscus has, while its flexibility allows Qiscus Chat SDK to be used in iOS, Android and web. The chat apps also can be integrated with other Artificial Intelligence (AI)’s product, such as bot. Qiscus local Architect Team makes it possible by collaborating with local bots developer, including Kata.ai.  
While individual or organization who has no technical resources can choose the End-to-End Packages. In this package, client is free to discuss the concept, including the personalization of chat apps and if they want an in-built payment gateway to collect from customers. Qiscus local Architect Team will make it possible and help you to maintain it. Kindly review our stories here or simply drop us your enquiry at contact.us@qiscus.com.


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Meet The Author

Inez Hapsari media & public relations enthusiast | children stories writer | jazz lover | I live to the fullest to be young and in love.