Of course, Orbitz is using the enterprise version of Google’s tools, according to its press release. While that paid service offers advanced geocoding and support capabilities, it’s just as much about the licensing requirements that make this type of service work financially for both parties. Also, Orbitz is bound to have considerable traffic for the bandwidth-intensive feature, especially once the site makes it easy to find.
A company paying for using an API is a positive sign for developers and potential API providers. Powerful APIs may be popular when they’re free, but that may not be sustainable. And when something’s free, it’s tough for others to charge. In the end this is a positive sign as the API ecosystem benefits from realistic long-term business models that work for everyone.
KDYKES: As usual, great insight on the API ecosystem from Programmableweb.com – check out the full article at the link above.