The Differences Between SOAP and HTTP

Explore the variances between SOAP and HTTP, including data exchange formats and request handling. Learn about their features, applications, and implications for web communication.

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The Differences Between SOAP and HTTP

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SOAP Protocol

SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) is a network protocol used for exchanging structured data between nodes. It uses XML format to transmit messages. It builds upon application layer protocols such as HTML and SMTP for marking and transmission. SOAP enables processes to communicate across different platforms, languages, and operating systems, as protocols like HTTP are already installed on all platforms.

HTTP Protocol

HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) is an application layer protocol created by Tim Berners-Lee at CERN in 1989. It is currently used for the majority of data transfer on the web. It serves as the foundation for data communication using hypertext documents on the World Wide Web. The protocol defines the operations that a server must take when sending information over the network. When a URL is entered into a browser, the protocol sends an HTTP request to the server and receives an HTTP response back to the browser.

Difference Between SOAP and HTTP

Comparison of SOAP and HTTP in the form below:

Data Format Structured data (XML) Plain text (HTML, JSON, etc.)
Protocol Simple Object Access Protocol Hypertext Transfer Protocol
Data Parsing Requires parsing of XML data Can handle various data formats (JSON, HTML, etc.)
Usage Primarily used for web services and integrating systems Mainly used for accessing web resources and APIs
Complexity More complex due to additional features and standards (security, reliability, transactions) Simpler and lightweight
Flexibility Supports complex messaging patterns and protocols Primarily supports request/response interactions
Performance Can be slower due to XML parsing and overhead Generally faster and more efficient
Adoption Widely adopted in enterprise environments Widely used on the web and in web development

Debugging SOAP and HTTP interfaces with Apidog

Both SOAP and HTTP have to be written as individual interfaces for the front end to call, so debugging of the interfaces, i.e. APIs, is very important.

Ensuring smooth functionality of SOAP and HTTP APIs is crucial as they both serve as interfaces for front-end integration. Apidog comes to the rescue by offering seamless debugging capabilities for both SOAP and HTTP protocols.


  • Create a request, fill in the path, method, and name
  • Go to the run page and click send to see the return response
HTTP Create a Request


  • Create a request, and fill in the URL, method, name, and XML request parameters.
SOAP Create a Request
  • Go to the run page and click send to see the return response.