Intel has purchased Mashery, a provider or API management tools, in the chip maker's latest move to expand into software and services.
The Mashery API management service will become a core element of a suite of cross-platform services that Intel plans to offer to enterprises, an Intel spokesman said Wednesday.
Mashery offers a set of tools for managing APIs (application programming interfaces) that can be deployed on-premise or used as a service in the cloud. The package includes a portal that external parties can use to access APIs, as well as caching, security tools, a user dashboard and usage reports. Mashery products have been used by organisations such as USA Today, Expedia, Aol's Patch, Aetna and Best Buy.
An API provides a set of machine-readable instructions that one software program can use to interact with another over a network. By providing an API for its services, a company can encourage wider usage of those services by other parties. Most big online companies like Facebook and Twitter expose their APIs, but smaller organisations do not have the expertise to build and maintain a set of APIs for external use.
Known for its microprocessors, Intel has been expanding into other areas of information technology. It purchased security software vendor McAfee in 2010 for US$7.68 billion. Intel has also developed its own Hadoop distribution, designed to work best with its own processors.
The Mashery purchase fits with the company's plans to offer more IT services. Mashery will become part of the Intel services division, which was formed in 2011 and is part of the company's software and services group. Intel plans to incorporate Mashery's technology into a suite of services to power cloud services, digital storefronts, location services, network services and security, according to an Intel spokeswoman.
Earlier this month, Intel launched a free service called the HTML5 Development Environment, which provides developers with software to develop, test and debug Web applications across a variety of mobile and desktop platforms.
Mashery was founded in 2006 and is based in San Francisco. It has about 125 employees, most of whom will be retained after the acquisition, according to Intel.