Are Microservices and API the Same?

I am a kind of an individual who always encourage everyone to ask questions whenever something is not clear or something is not well understood. I firmly believe that, asking questions always help to understand things better, and especially, when someone is new to some topic, it may happen that they may have a lot of basic questions self-contained with them and many of the things would not be clear for sure. In such scenarios, it is always a good idea to ask the questions and clarify the things. Now, coming back to our topic of the post today, the question is - Are microservices and API the same or is there any difference between them? And, that's a very valid question to have the complete understanding about. In this post, we will try to explore about it.

are microservices and api the same?

Understanding Microservices & API

One way to understand better about Microservices and APIs is, think of it as - a microservice is providing a functionality specific to a business domain, and APIs are providing a way to access this functionality for other microservices or any external systems. Hope this would have made it very clear what exactly microservices and API are. Now, having understood this, let's take a look at the similarity and differences between both of them.

Similarities between Microservices & API

Well, both these terms are related to software applications. Both Microservices & APIs to simplify the development, maintainability, deployment of modern world applications as much as possible. Furthermore, both of them also have a common goal to enable the applications to achieve high degree of scalability, maintainability, flexibility and so on.

Differences between Microservices & API

In simple words, Microservices are an approach or methodology or an architectural pattern of building modern day software systems wherein each service owns a responsibility of a specific piece of functionality for the business domain. In microservices architecture, all the services are loosely coupled and the benefit that it offers is, services can be deployed and scaled independently. With this, it offers greater flexibility and scalability of the application.

Now, talking about APIs, they are a way for different systems or services to communicate with each other by providing a set of well-defined standards & rules to access a specific service or piece of functionality. APIs allow different systems or services to share data and functionality and that too, without needing to know about the underlying implementation specifics of the other system.


To summarize, both Microservices and APIs are related, however, both are equally different as well. Microservices provide the business domain specific functionality and APIs provides a way or mechanism to access the functionality. Hope this post would have been helpful. If you have some interesting thoughts on this, feel free to drop me them at