What is Web API in asp.net? Why Use it in 2024

Web API is an application or programming interface that supports interaction or communication between the software applications. Web API creates a bridge between the client’s applications and websites to get access to the data.

For accessing data from the database and manipulating and saving that data back, you need to make use of web API. By making use of asp.net web API, you can build up the HTTP services, which has the ability to reach out to a wide range of clients.

Now, you have a basic introduction to Web API, let’s understand what is web API in asp.net. In order to have an in-depth view of it, keep reading.

What is Web API asp.net?

Asp.net in Web API is the structural framework that aids in building up of the HTTP services, which is usually utilized by a wide range of business-oriented clients, including mobiles, browsers, tablets, and iPhones.

It is somewhat similar to the asp.net with MVC because it contains all the specific features of MVC, such as controllers, routing, filter, action results, IOC container, dependency injection, or model binders.

The asp.net in Web API is the extension of the WCF REST-type API. To be precise, asp.net can replace the WCF REST-type API.

It can also be used along with ASP.NET in MVC and several other variants of the web applications, including the WebForms of ASP.NET. It can also be used in the form of a standalone web application service.

Why should you choose asp.net in Web API?

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In today’s world, web-based applications are not very competent enough to reach out to customers. People make use of various devices these days daily, including tablets, mobiles, iPhones, etc. These devices consist of several applications to create a life more accessible for users. We are gradually transitioning from the world of websites to the world of apps.

So, in order to cope up with the constantly evolving world, businesses need to expose their service data to the clients instead of opting for web browsers; they might choose web applications as well. The web applications are a fast and straightforward way to reach out to the audience. However, these web applications make use of web API to build HTTP services. You can make use of web API that is compatible with the web browsers in establishing these devices.

It is one of the most exceptional platforms that can be used to expose the data and services to a wide range of audiences. It is also an ideal platform to establish RESTful services over the framework of asp.net. The asp.net web API services make use of features of HTTP to request/response headers, versioning, caching, URIs, various formats of the contents, and more. You do not have to perform any additional configurational settings for several devices, which isn’t the case with WCF Rest Services.

Some of the reasons to choose web API:

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  • If you need web services instead of SOAP, then we would suggest you opted for asp.net web API as it is regarded as the most compatible option.
  • Unlike WCF REST service, the asp.net web API services are comparatively easier to implement.
  • It is extensively used to establish non-SOAP, HTTP-based services along with the WCF message pipeline.
  • The creation of service is effortless with web API as compared to other services like WCF REST.
  • The web API service is entirely based on HTTP services and thus is more natural to define, consume, and expose that too in a RESTful way.
  • It is an open-source API.
  • The web API revolves around RESTful architecture, which is immensely suitable for devices that have minimal bandwidth similar to that of smartphones.

Some of the features of web API:

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  • The asp.net web API supports all the convention-based actions of CRUD as it works best with HTTP services and goes along with the verbs like POST, GET, DELETE, and PUT.
  • All the responses consist of an Accept Header along with the status prepared out of HTTP.
  • Web API supports several formats of texts, including JSON, XML, etc. You can also use your customized format.
  • It also generates as well as accepts the content, which may not be closely related to objects such as images, files, PDF, etc.
  • It extensively supports IIS Hosting or Self-hosting as well.
  • It automatically supports OData. Therefore, by placing the latest [Queryable] attribute over the method controller, it fetches Iqueryable content, which can be used by the clients as a method for Odata composition query.
  • It also supports all the MVC features of asp.net, such as routing, action results, model binders, controllers, dependency injection, IOC containers, and filters.

The different versions of Web API:

Web API 1.0

  • VS 2010
  • .net framework 4.0
  • Asp.net MVC 4

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Web API 2.0

  • Asp.net MVC 5
  • .net framework 4.5
  • VS 2012, 2013


We hope that this article has helped you to know the basics of asp.net web API. Web API serves as an amazing and latest addition for the classic ASP.NET platform. This platform addresses the need for proper consolidation for the HTTP serviced API-based technologies that were used before Web API. This particular platform brings in the right concoction of flexibility and usability to the scenario.

Web API ASP.NET is set to establish its foot as a favorite among developers in the future. If you are seeking an organization that can help you with asp.net web services, in that case, a firm like Saigon Technology can serve as the best option; you can rely upon the very fact that all your queries shall be answered.