Although REST has been a much-wanted breakthrough in the domain of API-based architecture, it is yet to fulfil the aspirations of the developers. After Facebooks started hunting for an alternative in collecting date from their server, the experts were striving to solve the hassles of over-fetching and under-fetching with the existing API protocols. In SOAP or REST, when a developer Software development process requested for certain data, all the related properties were obtained. For instance, when you wanted to know the prices of a certain list of products, their images and descriptions would also be obtained. On the other hand, REST is programmed to process HTML, JSON and XML. While building an API, developers generally consider two of the most common paradigms, SOAP and REST.

difference between rest and soap

It allows different messaging formats, such as HTML, JSON, XML, and plain text, while SOAP only allows XML. REST is also a more lightweight architecture, so RESTful web services have a better performance.


REST is less complex and considered a smaller learning curve than compared with SOAP. Most modern programming languages have libraries and frameworks to facilitate REST services, such as C#, Python, Java, and Perl. SOAP only uses XML for messaging services over the internet, and XML message requests can be very complex and if Agile software development developed manually, careful attention is required because SOAP is inflexible with errors. SOA is becoming more and more favourable to improve on development quality and time, and improve application performance and scalability. An application built on executable processes is based on a Service Oriented Architecture (“SOA”).

difference between rest and soap

Each request should contain all the information the server needs to know. Uniform interface – Requests from different clients should look the same, for example, the same resource shouldn’t have more than one URI. SOAP and REST are two API styles that approach the question of data transmission difference between rest and soap from a different point of view. Many popular websites provide public APIs for their users, for example, Google Maps has a public REST API that lets you customize Google Maps with your own content. There are also many APIs that have been created by companies for internal use.

Difference Between Rest Api And Soap Api

Having a very small footprint and making use of the widely adopted HTTP standard makes REST a very attractive option for public APIs. Further note that the URI, which also had to be included in the SOAP request, but there it had no meaning, here actually takes on a meaning. The body of the message is significantly smaller, in this example there actually isn’t one.

While developing customized software, you have got no universal solution in choosing the right protocol. Business firms, while developing web API architecture, count on experienced mobile app developers, who determine the paradigms, based on individual projects. Besides, different API protocols can be combined to optimize the results.

While making any query with GraphQL, it is possible to specify exactly what is needed. However, the data remains defined on the side of the server in REST. GraphQL is used to leverage two types of requests, including mutations that change data and queries that retrieve data from server. These days, most developers that build public APIs opt for Rest given the increasing popularity of this technology. All of the big social media services provide Rest APIs, allowing developers to easily integrate their apps with the platform.

difference between rest and soap

This overview will help you understand the differences between REST and SOAP APIs, and how they are used in integrations. This communication system can be categorized into two types, namely Simple Object Access Protocol or SOAP, and Representational State Transfer or REST. Tighter security since SOAP uses WS-Security, as well as SSL support for enterprise-level security. No matter which technology you use, the most important part Software Engineering Body of Knowledge of building a good API is designing it using best practices to make it easy to use and understand for clients. A well-designed API can greatly increase your delivery speed and future-proof your technology stack. There’s a little more overhead with SOAP out of the gate because of the envelope-style of payload transport. Because REST is used primarily for web services, its being lightweight is an advantage in those scenarios.

The protocols and operations linked with them redeploy the updatable and manageable components without effecting the system adversely. The calls provided by SOAP can be utilized by all programming languages that are supportive of web services. Security measures are inherited by REST web services and not defined by them. The security measures are inherited by the underlying transport layers in REST. Lesser bandwidth and resources are required by REST in comparison to SOAP. It is common for SOAP APIs and web services to define different types of standards and protocols that have to be followed strictly.

This concept or technique can be used in all those languages which normally support web services. SOAP APIs always take the advantage of making or developing basic web based protocols such as HTTP and its XML data which are already operating within all operating systems. This is the one of the main reason why developers can easily manipulate web services and retrieve the responses without considering about language and platforms.

RESTful web services utilize URL to identify the desired resources to be accessed while SOAP uses XML messages to identify the desired web procedure or resource to be invoked. Since SOAP messages are wrapped in a SOAP envelope it can be sent over to any transport mechanism like TCP, FTP, SMTP, or any other protocol. On the other hand, RESTful Web services are heavily dependent upon HTTP protocol. Processing a RESTful web service request is much faster than processing a SOAP message because you need to less parsing. Because of this reason RESTful, web services are faster than SOAP web service. In SOAP, the client-server communication depends on WSDL contracts, which implies tight coupling.


On the other hand, REST can handle the endpoint requests efficiently. As a result, this protocol has proven to be a better choice among developers who work on open API architectures.

By contrast, SOAP APIs require XML, as the standard is built upon the format. Both can understand XML web documentation and can use XML in requests and responses.

  • According to Nordic APIs, REST is almost always better for web-based APIs, as it makes data available as resources (e.g. user) as opposed to services (e.g., getUser) which is how SOAP operates.
  • This is the one of the main reason why developers can easily manipulate web services and retrieve the responses without considering about language and platforms.
  • This can be an issue if your web service requires stateful operations consisting of a chain of messages that rely on each other for information.
  • Those application programming interfaces that are backed by the architectural style of REST architectural system are called REST APIs.

It would be also more difficult to implement caching, as SOAP requires a dedicated cache module. As mobile technologies have been refined, this method has proven to be inefficient, as it hinders the performance of the software.

Rest And Json

The choice between them depends upon application requirements, environment, and the programming language. Those constraints are – Uniform Interface, Client-Server, Stateless, Cacheable, Layered System, Code on Demand. While opting for an API protocol, the developers also need to consider data caching.

difference between rest and soap

However, you should note that REST is an architectural design, while SOAP is a protocol. Just like a REST API can utilize HTTP, it can use the SOAP protocol. Evidently, the package type is supposed to be different and the developers incorporate these in different situations. We create your business website with finest information architecture using WordPress. Just how better one is compared to the other largely depends on an organization’s needs.

Soap Is A Protocol, Whereas Rest Is An Architectural Style

It uses a resource identifier to identify the particular resource that’s required in an interaction between components. When HTTP is used in a transition, as it most commonly is, the GET, HEAD, POST, PUT, PATCH, DELETE, CONNECT, OPTIONS and TRACE operations are available.

Therefore, JSON can be easily integrated with any language. Nowadays, REST is the most popular choice of developers to build public APIs. You can find many examples all over the internet, especially since all big social media sites provide REST APIs so that developers can seamlessly integrate their apps with the platform. These public APIs also come with detailed documentation where you can get all the information you need to pull data through the API.

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