Listen as Hai Thai, Senior Engineer, and Rich Ferrise, Senior Director of Product Development and Technology, at Comcast discuss in-depth how the company went from days-long data sharing processes to just 30 minutes' lead time, all with internal APIs.
Bringing High Speed to the Next Level with Internal APIs
Comcast is one of the world’s leading media, entertainment, and communications companies serving more than 50 million customers across the United States. In order to create the world’s best entertainment and online experiences, part of the Comcast vision is to drive innovation. However, as an enterprise with more than 125,000 employees around the country, it became difficult to streamline the technological processes that keep Comcast on the cutting edge of consumer media products.
“Comcast has been in the high speed business for years, and we needed our internal operations to reflect that,” says Hai Thai, Senior Engineer at Comcast. “Integrating with third-party vendors used to be very painful,” says Thai. It could take more than four weeks to complete one integration. “We’re in a highly competitive marketplace where everything happens fast,” says Thai. “We decided to turn to RESTful APIs to transition to a much quicker, more efficient model.”
Satisfying Enterprise and Consumer Needs with APIs
Comcast created CodeBig, its internal API platform, and began developing APIs to replace some of its legacy channels. Yet, the team knew that if it did not implement API management, the company could easily fall into the same pitfalls it had with VPNs. “We’re a very big company with hundreds of thousands of people working on a multitude of different projects,” says Thai. “We knew API management could help us centralize all of our APIs and reduce a lot of the technical debt and double-work we’d been experiencing.”
An API Program with Scalability Baked In
One of CodeBig’s requirements was a truly distributed API management solution, meaning traffic running simultaneously through Mashery’s enterprise-grade cloud infrastructure and on-premise Mashery Local. “We knew we needed a hybrid solution so we could have the best of both worlds: the flexibility of the cloud, coupled with the security and improved performance of on-premise,” says Thai.
With its traffic controlled, Comcast can focus on optimizing its APIs to increase efficiency among developers. “APIs allow Comcast to offer new and better services to our customers fast,” adds Thai, “it’s all about saving time.”
Comcast also uses Mashery’s OAuth 2.0 Accelerator to ensure secure data exchanges between partners and with its customers. And with APIs, the appropriate data can be shared instantly. “Comcast went from about four weeks’ lead time to just a few hours to onboard partners,” says Thai. This speed allows the company to create more partnerships faster, thus satisfying customers’ needs for new features quickly and cost-effectively.