What is SOAP?
SOAP is a protocol that predates REST. The fundamental goal of SOAP was to make data sharing simple for applications written in a variety of platforms and programming languages. Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) is a protocol for transferring data between computers.
What is REST?
REST was created to deal with components on specific hardware devices, such as media components, data, and even objects. RestFul web services are those that are defined using REST principles. For interacting with the needed components, a Restful service would use the standard HTTP verbs GET, POST, PUT, and DELETE. REST is an acronym that stands for “Representational State Transfer”.
What are the differences between these two approaches?
Both of the approaches have both advantages and disadvantages. As a result, it’s always a good idea to know when each design should be employed. This lesson on the differences between REST and SOAP API will go over some of the main differences between the two APIs, as well as some of the problems you could face when utilizing them.
1. SOAP was created with a set of rules in mind. It includes a WSDL file that contains the essential information about web service performs as well as the web service’s location.
2. REST is an architectural approach in which a web service is only considered RESTful if it adheres to the restrictions of being RESTful.
- Layered System
- Uniform Interface
3. Because SOAP is a protocol and REST is an architectural design, SOAP cannot utilize REST. Because REST is really just an architectural style, it may utilize SOAP as the underlying protocol for web services.
4. SOAP exposes its capabilities to client applications through service interfaces. The WSDL file in SOAP supplies the client with the required information to determine what services the web service can deliver.
5. Because SOAP Messages include a lot of data, the quantity of data transferred through SOAP is usually rather large.
6. When sending queries to the server, REST does not require much bandwidth. The majority of REST communications are just JSON messages.
When to use REST?
When resources are limited
Because SOAP messages are more content-heavy and use considerably more data, REST should be utilized when network capacity is limited.
The state is not required
REST should be utilized if there is no requirement to retain a state of information from one request to the next. If you need a good information flow, where certain information from one request must flow into another, SOAP is the better choice.
Caching is required
If you need to cache a large number of queries, REST is the way to go. Clients may make numerous requests for the same resource at times.
When to use SOAP?
The state is required
If your application requires the state to be maintained from one request to the next, the SOAP 1.2 standard includes the WS* structure to help you out.
When there are security concerns.
If the client requires a certain level of reliability and security, the new SOAP 1.2 standard offers a number of extra capabilities, particularly in terms of security.
The final answer to the debate of REST vs. SOAP is that “it depends.” Each has its benefits and drawbacks. The programming language you choose, the environment you use it in, the needs, etc. all play a role in deciding between SOAP and REST.
Also Read: Advantages and Disadvantages of RESTful APIs