LinkedIn changes up developer program, whittling down APIs

LinkedIn has been fine-tuning its business strategies around more specialized digital publishing, marketing and recruiting solutions -- strategies that appear to be working well thus far.

LinkedIn is making some edits to its developer program with the intent of making it a leaner but perhaps not meaner resource base.

The professional social network is whittling down the number of open APIs it has available to third-party developers, turning the focus to integrations with designated industry partners.

LinkedIn already highlighted a few high profile partners -- namely Samsung, Evernote and WeChat -- to promote the new direction for the program.

Adam Trachtenberg, director of LinkedIn's developer program, posited in a blog post on Thursday that the revamp will provide better "value to our members, developers and business."

Soon, the remaining open APIs available to developers will include the Profile API for allowing members to present professional identities via LinkedIn profiles, the Share API for letting users share professional content from elsewhere online to their LinkedIn networks, and the Company API for similar sharing capabilities.

Access to other APIs will require developers to become members of one of LinkedIn's specific partnership programs.

The changes are scheduled to go into effect starting on May 12, 2015.

LinkedIn has been fine-tuning its business strategies around more specialized digital publishing, marketing and recruiting solutions -- strategies that appear to be working well thus far.

While most analysts and investors were eye-balling Twitter earnings last Thursday, LinkedIn published solid results for the fourth quarter, albeit with a softer outlook than expected for the first quarter of 2015.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based company delivered non-GAAP earnings of 61 cents per share on a revenue of $643 million, up 44 percent year-over-year.

Wall Street was looking for earnings of 53 cents per share with at least $617 million in revenue.

Describing the fourth quarter as one that "capped another successful year for LinkedIn," CEO Jeff Weiner turned toward 2015 in prepared remarks, hinting at more to come for the social media brand's evolving economic graph plan.

CFO Steve Sordello concurred, adding "The fourth quarter underscored a strong 2014 for LinkedIn, as we demonstrated growing organic engagement and solid performance across our three, diverse product lines."