Web Services in RP Part 1: Yehey Payment GatewayJanette Toral
[February 26, 2003] Last year, the concept of Web Services started popping up. In the Philippines numerous e-commerce services are now being offered that utilizes the concept and discipline behind Web Services.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Web Services, I suggest that you read this article, Conveying the essentials of Web services to your CEO, and get the whole thing about it in no time.
I decided to feature 3 stories in this series and ask why these companies decided to exploit the power of Web Services. They are Yehey.com, JobsOnline, and DotPH. All interviews for this article were done last year.
We interviewed Jason Banico, Chief Technology Officer of Yehey.com as we find their Yehey Payment Gateway service to be very innovative. PayPlus+ is a proprietary payment system developed by yehey! that enables Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards to be used on-line for purchases and other financial transactions.
Let’s all learn more about it.
1. Why did Yehey decided to build the Yehey Payment Gateway system as a Web Service?
One of the technical obstacles involving payment gateways is the requirement of proprietary software / code to be installed on the merchant’s server. Web Services eliminate that requirement, thereby making it easier to integrate the payment gateway onto the merchant’s website.
PayPlus+ presents the start of Yehey! to venture into web services technology. As a content, community and commerce aggregator, Yehey! is looking at this technology to perform its job of bringing together online content, products, services suppliers and delivering them to the online Filipino user.
2. What business goals do you want your Web Service to accomplish?
By being more secure, efficient and convenient, we hope to become the payment gateway of choice for merchants.
3. What functions exist in your legacy applications, if any? What new functions did you or would like to create if any?
The legacy applications are with the financial institutions we are working with. All our systems are based on more recent technologies.
4. Who are the users of your Web Service? What are their needs?
Merchants are the primary users of our payment gateway web service. They need to communicate transaction information and status to be able to perform their business processes seamlessly.
5. Is the use of your Web Service mainly ad hoc or automated?
It is ad hoc, executed by the merchants’ e-commerce applications.
6. Is your Web Service accessible by wireless devices? How and why did you decided to integrate it?
No, it is not yet available via wireless.
7. What platform did you use for your Web Service? What made you choose that platform? What were the others you’re considering and why you did not choose them?
Everything is under .NET, which provided the only comprehensive web service tools and libraries back when we were still planning the system (2000/2001). Sun One was not around yet back then.
8. What external standards are you committing to with your Web Service?
Nothing yet as of the moment, except the use of SOAP for communications.
9. Did you ever think that your Web Service was built too early or ahead of its time? What advantage/disadvantage has it given you?
No, it is just the right time. Our clients are forward-looking e-commerce companies, and are also like-minded in implementing new technologies to improve how they conduct their business.
10. What do you think is the future of Web Services in the Philippines? Why should companies consider it at all?
For the near term, web services will be the domain of aggregators and online service companies. Yehey!, as a portal, naturally need to embrace web services to fulfill its role of bringing together content, community and commerce from various suppliers and give it to the online Filipino user. Vertical aggregators, such as travel websites or e-malls, will also be embracing web services technology in the near-to-middle term.
Corporate portals can have some web services available to meet the need of their clients, but it might take them a while considering that they will focus on their core online strategies first rather than cutting-edge technology. Integration of various devices to web services is still at a distant horizon, more dependent on the penetration of .NET or Java devices (cellphones, PDAs) than on the tech providers themselves.
Do you have an interesting Web Services story to share? I’ll be more than happy to get an email from you.