Tesco unwraps grocery API


Supermarket giant Tesco has taken the wraps off its API project, a new application that combines online shopping with diary and task management.

The latest development project is possibly a first by a supermarket. And it's in the cloud, Microsoft Azure no less.

Tesco has been beta testing a limited API for the last six months with about 150 developers.

Now Nick Lansley, Tesco’s head of IT and new technologies, notes in his blog that Tesco will also be hosting an Innovation Day called 'T-JAM' in central London on the evening of 5 August 2009. Lansley also announced changes based on feedback from developers.

In some of its latest innovations, the upcoming API will include an authentication of customers, providing developer access to a virtual shopping cart. The API will include customer’s favourite shopping items, which could be used to customise the site to provide recommendations, or a quick ordering interface. Another development is the ability to search grocery products, as well as get nutritional information, such as how many calories are in a serving of crisps or biscuits.

The initial API was SOAP-based, but Tesco are switching to a REST-based API.

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