Bruno Pedro

What is a “whole product” and how is it related to APIs?

Regis McKenna is a famous Marketer who coined the term “whole product.”

McKenna helped launch the first Intel microprocessor, Apple’s first computer, and worked with several other companies including America Online, Microsoft, and Electronic Arts.

The idea of a whole product is that a customer’s job-to-be-done can’t be delivered by a single generic product. Instead, it needs a combination of several generic products that form a whole product.

Whole Product. Definition of “whole product” by Regis McKenna. Image

A good example is a computer. You don’t buy a computer, you buy the possibilities that a computer gives you for getting your jobs done.

The computer’s “whole product” is, in fact, a combination of the hardware, the peripherals (keyboard, mouse, camera), the applications it runs, and the connectivity to other computers.

I like to think of APIs in the same way where each can become a part of several “whole products” with the help of integrations.