What is SOAP?

SOAP is an acronym for Simple Object Access Protocol. It is an XML-based messaging protocol for exchanging information among computers. SOAP is an application of the XML specification.

Points to Note

  • SOAP is a communication protocol designed to communicate via Internet.

  • SOAP can extend HTTP for XML messaging.

  • SOAP provides data transport for Web services.

  • SOAP can exchange complete documents or call a remote procedure.

  • SOAP can be used for broadcasting a message.

  • SOAP is platform- and language-independent.

  • SOAP is the XML way of defining what information is sent and how.

  • SOAP enables client applications to easily connect to remote services and invoke remote methods.

Although SOAP can be used in a variety of messaging systems and can be delivered via a variety of transport protocols, the initial focus of SOAP is remote procedure calls transported via HTTP.

Other frameworks including CORBA, DCOM, and Java RMI provide similar functionality to SOAP, but SOAP messages are written entirely in XML and are therefore uniquely platform- and language-independent.