How APIs can connect cargo
Every piece of software built today either uses an API or is an API. APIs – application programming interfaces – have become an essential element in today’s digital ecosystem, and this fact is reflected in the API growth rate which is increasing at an explosive pace. Most of modern consumers’ day-to-day digital experiences – from purchasing goods online to searching for a video to watch in streaming – would not be possible without APIs working in the background and allowing machine-to-machine communication.

Every industry can benefit from APIs. Nevertheless, many industries are not yet taking full advantage of the power of APIs, as some of them are adopting APIs more gradually than others. One of the “slow adopters” is the air cargo industry, that has just slowly, but surely, entered the age of API.

APIs bridge disconnected data
Air cargo companies need to share and access different types of data such as bookings, documents, addresses etc. To facilitate this data sharing, IATA introduced ONE Record. ONE Record is a standard for air cargo data sharing, aimed at creating a single record view of a shipment. It defines a common model for the data that is shared via standardized and secured web API. This global standard allows air cargo airlines, shippers, forwarders, ground handlers, and all the other entities from the supply chain to interact freely and in real-time, to transmit data including rich content, and to get instant notifications and acknowledgment. It aims at transforming the air logistics business to an extent that seems unconceivable in today’s cargo world, which is based mostly on legacy systems and physical paper processes.

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