The best AI APIs everyone should know about

From image recognition to natural language processing, we'll look at the top APIs for each use case and what makes them stand out.

The best AI APIs everyone should know about

From image recognition to natural language processing, we'll look at the top APIs for each use case and what makes them stand out.

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Everyone can now observe how Artificial Intelligence has evolved from being just a buzzword to an indispensable tool for driving innovation across industries. As a result, at this point, today's fast-paced digital world straight-up compels businesses to use AI to stay competitive. And there's nothing wrong with that. Change is the only constant.

However, building AI systems from scratch is nothing short of challenging, requiring a deep understanding of machine learning and related technologies. This is where AI Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) come in.

They provide pre-built and ready-to-use solutions for various AI-related tasks causing the barrier to entry to significantly drop for businesses looking to leverage AI. In addition to common use cases, AI APIs also offer a range of other functionalities, such as chatbot functionality for customer service and custom AI solutions for specific business needs.

What’s more, healthcare AI companies have also been leveraging AI APIs to develop solutions for disease detection, diagnosis, and treatment. So, explore with us the best AI APIs available today that can help you take your applications to the next level.

From image recognition to natural language processing, we'll look at the top APIs for each use case and what makes them stand out.

Our favorite AI APIs

Let’s now dive into the top AI APIs that can help you supercharge your applications with cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence capabilities. These selected APIs are the cream of the crop, selected based on their features, ease of use, and overall impact.

Our favorite AI APIs
Our favorite AI APIs

IBM Watson

IBM Watson AI API is a comprehensive suite of APIs that provide a full range of AI-powered services to help businesses build intelligent applications. A broad range of capabilities like natural language processing, speech-to-text transcription, text-to-speech conversion, and sentiment analysis makes it an excellent choice for improving customer experience, automating processes, and enhancing decision-making.

One of the most impressive features of the Watson API is its ability to understand unstructured data, such as text and images, and make sense of it using machine learning algorithms. It is also designed to be very easy to use, with straightforward documentation and sample code available for developers.

IBM frequently updates and improves the Watson API with features like Watson Discovery, providing advanced search and content analysis, or Watson Studio, enabling data scientists to build and deploy machine learning models.

Microsoft’s Azure Cognitive Services

Microsoft's Azure Cognitive Services AI API is a set of pre-built machine learning models and algorithms that empowers developers to integrate intelligent features into their applications. The API is capable of speech recognition, computer vision, natural language processing, speech-to-text transcription, image and video analysis, etc.

An essential feature of Cognitive Services is its ability to integrate with other Microsoft products like Azure Data Lake, PowerApps, and Power BI, simplifying end-to-end development and machine learning. Developers can quickly start with the easy-to-use API, supported by code samples, tutorials, and other resources.

The new features and capabilities of Azure Cognitive Services also include Personalizer, which enables businesses to create personalized experiences for their customers using machine learning models.

Google Cloud AI

Google Cloud AI APIs are machine learning APIs provided by Google Cloud Platform. They offer quite a helping hand in building intelligent applications because it includes pre-built models for tasks such as natural language processing, image, and video analysis, speech-to-text transcription, etc.

Google Cloud AI is also easy to use, like most APIs on our list, similarly offering clear documentation and code samples. However, one of the most notable features of Google Cloud AI is its ability to scale dynamically, enabling businesses to process large amounts of data in real-time.

Google Cloud AI also excellently integrates with other Google Cloud Platform services, such as Google BigQuery and Google Dataflow, to provide end-to-end machine learning solutions. One of the best features of Google Cloud AI is AutoML because it helps businesses build custom machine-learning models with little-to-no coding.

Amazon AI Services

Another great suite of machine learning APIs is offered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), and it’s called Amazon AI Services. Amazon AI Services AI API, just like others, helps build intelligent, AI-powered apps thanks to natural language processing, chatbots, demand forecasting, speech-to-text transcription, and image and video analysis.

In a similar fashion, Amazon AI Services also easily integrates with other AWS services, such as Amazon S3, Internet data repository, and Amazon EC2, a data storage infrastructure, making it easy to build end-to-end machine learning solutions.

Amazon SageMaker, for example, its one of the most popular features, provides a complete set of tools for building, training, and deploying machine learning models at scale. Other features include Amazon Personalize, a machine learning service that allows businesses to create personalized recommendations for their customers, and Amazon Rekognition, a tool to detect objects, scenes, and faces in images and videos.

Open AI

Next AI API on our list is probably the most popular as of yet, due to its recent success with ChatGPT. OpenAI’s GPT stands for Generative Pre-trained Transformer, and it enables businesses and developers to build natural language processing applications.

Their API provides state-of-the-art language models that can generate human-like text, summarize articles, perform language translation, etc. OpenAI GPT is thoughtfully designed to be easy to use, with an intuitive API and clear documentation available for developers.

One of the most significant features of GPT is its ability to be fine-tuned on specific tasks and domains, allowing developers to create custom language models for their applications, and it still continues to research and develop new AI capabilities and technologies, intending to advance the field of artificial intelligence and make it more accessible.


ParallelDots AI API is an AI-powered service offering NLP, image recognition, sentiment analysis, and entity recognition. It also provides custom machine learning models, allowing developers to create their own models based on their unique requirements.

One of the standout features of ParallelDots is its advanced natural language processing capabilities, including text classification, entity extraction, and emotion analysis. Another notable feature is its pricing model, which is based on usage rather than a fixed subscription fee, allowing you to pay for only what you use and making it an attractive option for those with limited budgets.

ParallelDots API also offers seamless integration with other platforms, including Google Sheets, Zapier, and Microsoft Excel, making it easier for businesses to integrate AI capabilities into their existing workflows.


And the last one on our list is Kairos API, a face recognition and analysis API that provides developers with tools to build applications with facial recognition capabilities. Their API allows users to detect faces, recognize faces, and measure emotional responses.

Kairos API also provides a liveness detection feature, which ensures that the face being analyzed is not a static image or video recording. This feature is essential if you want to build security and authentication applications.

Kairos API provides support for multiple programming languages, including Python, Java, and Ruby, and is used by businesses and organizations for a variety of applications, specifically the ones in security and authentication, retail analytics, and personalized marketing.

What is an AI API?

So, AI APIs, as you may know, are pre-built software components that allow developers to easily integrate artificial intelligence capabilities into their applications. They work by providing access to pre-trained models and algorithms for tasks such as natural language processing, image recognition, and sentiment analysis.

Developers can now send data to these APIs and receive processed results, allowing them to build intelligent applications without extensive machine learning expertise. Many current AI APIs are also available on a pay-as-you-go basis, making it quite cost-effective for businesses to leverage the power of AI.

In addition to making it easier and more profitable to incorporate AI into applications, AI APIs also enable companies to quickly prototype and test new AI-powered features and functionalities. If you’re a business owner, this will help you promptly respond to changing market needs and customer demands.

Note that since modern AI APIs are constantly evolving and improving, with new models and algorithms being added regularly, many businesses can continue to benefit from the latest AI advancements without continually investing in research and development.

It is only natural, with all these AI technology advancements, that it is highly expected of AI APIs to become even more powerful and ubiquitous, facilitating businesses across all industries to use Artificial Intelligence in new and innovative ways.

However, despite the many benefits of AI APIs, there are also some challenges and considerations you need to keep in mind when using them.

APIs limitations
APIs limitations

Remember to also carefully evaluate and test the APIs you use to make sure they are accurate, reliable, and suitable for your specific use cases. The final touch would be ensuring the necessary technical expertise and resources to properly integrate and manage the AI APIs you are using.


Overall, it’s no secret the extent to which AI APIs have revolutionized how businesses incorporate artificial intelligence capabilities into their applications. With pre-trained models and algorithms readily available, companies can now quickly and easily build intelligent applications without hardly any machine-learning expertise.

IBM Watson, Microsoft Cognitive Services, Google Cloud AI, Amazon AI Services, and OpenAI are some of the leading providers of AI APIs, each with its own unique features and capabilities, and our list can help you evaluate which one you’d like to choose for your project.

AI technology will definitely advance even more, and even now, the possibilities for AI APIs are endless. As a business owner, you can leverage this technology to gain a competitive advantage and drive innovation.

It's also worth noting that Merge is soon set to launch its own AI-related services. This will include our own AI API, which will provide our partners access to cutting-edge AI models and algorithms for various applications.

With our team's focus on innovation and commitment to delivering high-quality, reliable services, we're excited to see the impact our AI API will have on the industry and how you, our clients, can use it to transform your operations.


Pavel Tseluyko

CEO and Founder of Merge

My mission is to help startups build software, experiment with new features, and bring their product vision to life.

My mission is to help startups build software, experiment with new features, and bring their product vision to life.


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