The Java EE 6 Tutorial, Volume I

Types of Web Services

On the conceptual level, a service is a software component provided through a network-accessible endpoint. The service consumer and provider use messages to exchange invocation request and response information in the form of self-containing documents that make very few assumptions about the technological capabilities of the receiver.

On a technical level, web services can be implemented in different ways. The two types of web services discussed in this section can be distinguished as “Big” web services and “RESTful” web services.