A lot of people in this thread are missing the point.
XCode is not a “mass market feature”, but it is what enables the rich pool of apps to exist on the iPhone. A small amount of developers create applications which serve specific purposes and can be easily distributed and used by users.
An API does exactly the same: gives a small % of the userbase a powerful toolset.
How many people have used Hootsuite? Tweetdeck? Owly? Twitter Lite? Twitpic? Or even the official Twitter app? All of these apps use the official API to serve different purposes which broaden Twitter’s reach. Many were built by a single person, some by small teams. The Twitter API is not mass-market, but the platforms, tools, and services which sit on top are. The same can be said for just about any other API.
Using the Freetrade API, a developer can put together an app or tool in order to achieve a task or provide value that the app does not.
Many of the “ideas” posted to this very forum could be achieved by means of an API. For example, pretty charts. Alerts that your holdings increased or decreased in a day. Automated portfolio management. The kinds of things that aren’t necessary to have in the Freetrade app (yet), but will be fuel for the Freetrade community.
An API acts as a multiplier. Certainly, we all have faith in the Freetrade team to deliver, but an API multiplies the team’s efforts.
It has been on the roadmap as “near future” (IIRC) for some time. It’d be a real bonus to see this delivered soon, and to see what the Freetrade community can do with it.