eBay has been running a series of splashy TV commercials with various constructions of the word "it" popping up -- in the shape of toys, and even pieces of steak. The online auction site's latest motto is "whatever it is, you can get it here."
Perhaps, the online auction site is actually referring to "it" in the "IT" sense, that is information technology -- which was what propelled Meg Whitman's dream into an electronic global empire.
eBay isn't forgetting where it came from, either. In a move similar to the Amazon Web services strategy, eBay just announced that it is offering access to its Web services for free, as reported here in InformationWeek. Until now, the eBay Developers Program charged a fee for API calls, a fee for membership, and a fee for certification. Tech support will still remain at $75 an hour, however.
"To existing developers, this is a big thank-you," Greg Isaacs, director of the eBay Developers Program is quoted as saying. "For new developers, it's an incentive to join. We are extending the global reach of eBay by enabling third-party innovation." Isaacs also estimates that the potential savings for major developers might range from thousands to tens of thousands a month.
The article notes that eBay Web services supports some 2.5 billion API calls per month, and that approximately 45 percent of all listings on eBay involve eBay Web Services In the past year, the eBay Developers Program has more than doubled to reach 21,000 members, and participating developers have produced more than 1,600 applications.
It calls for a lot of IT, doesn't it?