With merchant category filters now active in our product search API, we will be discontinuing our old zanox product category tree and the related API filter on January 1st, 2014.
First, a bit of background on how current categorisation works. Products are assigned to a zanox category automatically, using a machine-learning algorithm, which makes this decision based on keywords in the product name, description and other fields. This approach allows us to categorise products independently of how much information is provided and does not force merchants to adopt (or map to) the zanox category tree. But as with all machine-learning algorithms - it is not perfect, especially when it comes to recognising same items in different languages or spotting a difference between a real item and its accessory (e.g. iPad and iPad case).
Changes and solutions
To address these shortcomings, we have already introduced result filtering by merchant categories and today we are announcing discontinuation of the current zanox product categorisation. Existing clients will continue working without changes until the 1st of January 2014. After that, queries using the old category IDs will return an empty resultset without errors.
We advise you to rely on search keywords and merchant categories if you need better filtering.