Goo.gl, Google’s fast URL shortener, just got an API that will make it easier for developers to add it to their own applications. Goo.gl launched as a feature for Google’s own apps in December 2009, but only went public as a more direct competitor to URL shorteners like bit.ly in late September 2010. At that time, Google didn’t offer an API for the tool yet, so building it into third-party apps wasn’t yet an option, though some intrepid hackers figured out some of the internals based on how Google’s own toolbar communicates with the service.
Chances are it will only be a little while before third-party apps like TweetDeck or Hootsuite will make use of this new feature.
Why would you want to use goo.gl over its competitors? According to uptime monitoring service Pingdom, it’s the fastest URL shortener around, beating all of its competitors by a huge margin.
For now, Goo.gl doesn’t offer the kind of advanced features that Bit.ly users get to enjoy (custom domains, for example), but Google promises to “work on several usability improvements and to make our auto-detection of spammy or malicious content even more robust. We hope that with the new API, you’ll find goo.gl to be even more useful in your future shortening endeavors!”