At Netflix, we have a range of engineering teams who focus on specific problem sets. Some teams focus on creating rich presentation layers on various devices. Others focus on metadata and algorithms. For the streaming application to work, the metadata from the services needs to make it to the devices. That is where the API comes in. The API essentially acts as a broken, moving the metadata from inside the Netflix system to the devices.
AWS Re:Invent 2012 - Chaos Monkey & The Netflix Simian Army
2B requests per day into the Netflix API 12B outbound requests per API day to API dependenciesPersonalizatio Movie Movie Similar A/B Test n Engine User Info Reviews Metadata Ratings Movies Engine