Accounting software provider MYOB has launched an API (application programming interface) for its software-as-a-service products.
The API allows third party applications to connect to MYOB’s AccountRight and AccountRight Live data files, and follows a three month beta test with developers, many of which had been part of MYOB’s developer community for its desktop product.
“We have 500-plus developers registered on that program and it’s been quite a vibrant community,” said MYOB chief technology officer, Simon Raik-Allen.
“Now we’ve moved our systems to the cloud, it’s a good opportunity to do a refresh and build a programmatic-based API.”
Raik-Allen said MYOB worked with the developers to decide which products required an API. The software company promises more integrations, including one for its Client Accounting product.
Rod Drury, chief executive of competitor Xero welcomed the move, saying it helped to legitimise the industry, but he questioned MYOB’s decision to charge developers for higher level access to the API.
MYOB’s “developer” package costs $996 and includes support, access to API cloud services, and continued access to ODBC driver.
There is also an "open" option with free access to the API, and a "premium" option for $2200 which includes access to events, product certification and marketing tools.
“We don’t charge our partners, we’re trying to build a healthy ecosystem,” Drury said, adding that Xero currently has around 200 applications plugging into its platform.
Raik-Allen said the paid products were there for organisations that would like additional marketing and support.
“We want to open it up as much as possible to provide free access so people can build these tools,” Raik-Allen said.
He said he was looking forward to seeing what developers did with the API. The API has the potential to provide small businesses access to technology previously only available to those who could afford to pay a high cost, he said.