Application Integration vs. Data Integration: Purpose, Pros, Cons & Everything in Between

Application Integration vs. Data Integration: Purpose, Pros, Cons & Everything in Between
Photo by Manuel Geissinger from Pexels

Businesses need to plan and prepare before digitizing operations to survive and thrive in a dynamic business environment. If you want to get things right from the start, it is essential to know the basics of integration technologies. 

What is Application Integration?

Application integration is the fusion of information and workflows from different apps. Digitization of operations exerts a compelling need for companies to integrate cloud and on-premise apps. App integration facilitates seamless interoperability and orchestration of data for generating real-time insights. 

What is Data Integration?

It is the approach of retrieving data from varied sources and collating it to create a unified layout. Data integration solves the complications of merging different apps to stay on top of data assets. It enables users to extract value from the integrated interface. 

Data integration can be further classified into two categories - Operational and Analytic 

Analytic DI is applied to business intelligence and data warehousing. Operational DI is ideal for synchronization, consolidation & migration of active databases. It also facilitates data exchange in a business-to-business situation. 

In simple terms, DI is the mechanism for merging data between databases, and app integration is for handling data between applications. 

3 Key Differences Between AI and DI 

1. Efficiency vs. Effectiveness: 
Data integration is a scheduled, batch mode procedure that attends to the data at rest. It is why it calls for a sequence of data-intensive approaches. It involves standardization, manipulation, duplication, and reconciliation of data in batches. A data integration task can be run once in a day or a week. However, it cannot be run several times in one instance to get accurate insights into business performance. It also takes a considerable amount of computing time to generate compliance data and identify anomalies. 

App integration facilitates real-time communication of live data between apps. The information only changes hands between different apps, following a two-directional orientation. The amount of time taken and data involved in enterprise application integration is modest. It deals with different app connections at the workflow level, with information being the focal point of transference. 

2. Transferable vs. Transformative:
App integration works at a service level framework for the timely movement of data. This data flows between applications through an execution process that may be synchronous or asynchronous. In short, enterprise application integration facilitates business operations that traverse across independent applications. These processes are transactional and entail a level of abstraction between the allied business operations and basal applications.

As opposed to this, data integration is a transformative process. It stems from the deployment of relevant databases and the need to transfer data between them. The main goal of data integration is to colonize a warehouse from different transactional mechanisms. The data is extracted from databases and collated to form a unified system of the collated information for analysis. Data integration creates a layer of abstraction from the rudimentary sources. It also includes extrinsic data that lies within the sphere.

3. Clear-cut vs. Consolidated: 
Enterprise application integration runs in a predefined architecture. This approach is adopted to synchronize the associated apps in real-time. It also facilitates the maintenance of integration until the end of the procedure. For instance, in a P2P business process, a company procures raw materials from vendors. This process starts with the issuance of requisition orders for purchasing raw materials. It further proceeds to the next stage where a purchase order is created. On the receipt of goods, the documents for order confirmation and shipping notice are framed. Finally, an invoice is generated for the payment and the transaction is updated in the accounting system. This complex process spans across several application systems and external sources. As a Procure to Pay business process may involve outsourcing, the events need to be executed in sequential order. It creates interdependence due to which there is stringent opposition to overlapping. And, it is where the clear-cut architecture of enterprise application integration emerges as an ideal solution. 

Data integration runs through the data cluster from end-to-end but publishes only relevant data to the user. Large organizations have scores of integrated applications. It makes access to difficult independent interfaces. Data integration is helpful in such cases for quick and easy data access. 


If you're still wondering which approach to take, it's essential to know that each is a perfect fit for a different purpose. Data integration combines data sets from various sources—app integration, on the other hand, converts and shares data between applications. 

Accordingly, enterprise application integration is ideal for working with data at the application levels. And, data integration is perfect if your business is operating at the database level.

Similar Articles

Localization Testing: A Goal Towards Superior Quality

The software testing technique in which the behavior of any software, mobile & web-based application is tested for a particular locale, region, or culture is called localization testing. For example: If the software is designed for Mumbai in India, the designed project should be in the Marathi language.

Legacy Systems: What You Need to Know About Them

The world and many technologies it has been home to since time immemorial have evolved continually. Of course, this has had several implications for the world in general, especially when it comes to businesses. You see, technology has been an excellent resource, but it is typically an expensive affair.

8 Ways an Event Management Software Can Make Your Next Event a Big Hit

Every event is unique in itself but you can ensure that all the events you plan are a pleasure for everyone. Whether you are organizing an exhibition, planning a wedding, or arranging a conference, event management software can help you make sure that your event runs smoothly

Xamarin.Forms vs Xamarin Native: Which and When Should You Use Them?

Mobile apps are one of the most sought-after tools for any business in the modern world. This is owing to the rapid growth and use of mobile phones and devices in our daily lives — today; people depend on their mobile phones for pretty much everything.

These 5 Retail PoS Tech Trends are Driving Repeat Sales! Are You Leveraging Them?

The global pandemic has triggered a tidal wave of sales tech in the retail industry. With 2021 upon us, it’s high time retail merchants adapt to the latest retail trends for improved safety, convenience & speed of customer service.

How to Outsource Software Development Profitably in 2021

For 2020 and beyond, companies of every size and scope must adapt to the latest tech trends if they want to survive and thrive. Embracing this paradigm shift is crucial to enhancing company capabilities and delivering real value.

8 Undeniable Benefits of Using Property Management Software (Beyond Saving Time & Money)

Why work for hours when you can automate manual tasks in minutes?  The most significant benefit of investing in property is a steady stream of passive income. So, suppose you are spending all your time screening applicants, preparing lease agreements, and collecting payments.

The Impact of Mobile Apps on the Manufacturing Industry

The continued evolution of technology has empowered the manufacturing industry as much as it has benefitted any other sector. And one of the many ways this impact becomes evident is the emergence and growing importance of mobile apps and technology

5 Easy Ways to Amplify Productivity & Profits Using Enterprise Portal Solutions

You are running a business; some processes are on point; other techniques can be improved. You know you want to grow, be more productive, and gain a competitive edge, but how? It is precisely where collaboration portal development can help!