Case Studies

Ballr.com

Driving new era of realtime fan engagement at live sports events

Case Study

About Ballr.com

Live Fantasy Sports - Find out how Ballr helps player get ahead of the game using realtime game stats.

Ballr is a mobile fantasy gaming platform for fans to connect, compete and communicate during realtime sporting events. Within its pre-defined scoring structure, there are 83 unique types of events a soccer player may experience during a game (e.g., a pass, foul, goal, etc.).

During a live football match, Ballr captures this realtime data related to thousands of micro-moments and converts each discrete event into a points value. This forms the basis of the mobile fantasy sports game where millions of fans select individual players every five minutes to earn points and compete against each other in realtime through global interactive leader boards.

Ballr Use Case

Accurate realtime updates deliver a seamless gaming experience

Ballr is a micro-gaming app platform in which players make rapid game decisions based on live events from actual football matches. The effectiveness of the game play correlates directly with how responsive and up to date the app is throughout the game, presenting the realtime sport stats on a player leader board.

As such, when Ballr designed the architecture of their platform the focus was heavily on the player experience during live games, specifically in regard to ensuring low latency of live updates and spot-on accuracy of the live sports updates.

Additionally, as mobile devices are frequently on unreliable networks and have changing network conditions, Ballr wanted to make sure players have a seamless experience throughout the game in spite of the connectivity problems and ensure that the live player stats get delivered in a guaranteed order and without any exceptions.

Key Technologies used

  • Pub/Sub messaging
  • Globally distributed data centers
  • Connection state recovery
  • Guaranteed delivery and ordering
  • Presence

Ballr challenges

The team at Ballr knew that the more successful the platform becomes, the harder the challenge would be from an infrastructure perspective as the load increased on their systems. It was imperative, that where possible, Ballr built the service upon reliable 3rd party service layers that shielded their infrastructure from the problems of scale whilst maintaining constant performance and reliability of their platform.

Due to the global number of players, participating across more than 200 countries and engaging in the game every other second, the key challenge was maintaining an instantaneous and reliable realtime update as every gaming interaction of data requires realtime updates to the player leader board globally.

The Ably Solution

Rock solid realtime partner guarantees Ballr’s players engagement globally

After evaluating several realtime solutions on the market, Ballr chose Ably as the only globally distributed and scalable WebSocket based solution on the market. This choice enabled Ballr to scale without limits and unpredictably as football games around the world are played, whilst delivering data reliably and as efficiently as possible.

By choosing Ably as the Data Stream Network for all devices, Ballr can remain focussed on engineering tasks that are unaffected by the load, such as publishing an event to Ably instead of potentially millions of devices, or allowing millions of devices to remain connected and receive data throughout an event.

Furthermore using Ably’s smart message routing combined with the presence feature it is able to deliver engaging realtime updates showing other players’ moves and presence in realtime and make sure that all player stats are reflected on their realtime leader board.

Choosing Ably was an easy decision.Their technology platform offered unique features combined with scalability and performance which shaped how we build our gaming infrastructure and realtime features. As from the beginning we knew we could rely on Ably as we grow, their pricing supported our growth, and their team deeply understood our technical challenges and helped us at every step along the way

Sam Jones

CEO / Ballr

Ballr relies on Ably for

  • Group and one-to-one channels

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  • Connection state recovery

    When devices lose their connection, they don't need to lose message continuity and data integrity.

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  • Device and user presence status

    Be notified when users and devices go online or offline.

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  • Realtime user state

    Know when users are typing, or get updates in realtime as a users GPS position changes.

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  • Chat history

    Use our message history to persist conversations or a user's state such as their GPS location.

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  • Direct message routing

    We ensure users in the same region are routed using the most efficient path, which means it's fast.

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  • Guaranteed delivery

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  • Encryption

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  • Token-based access control

    Channel access control is managed by tokens you issue, so your chats are private and secure.

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  • Mobile Push Notifications

    Alert users with a native OS notification even when they are not using your app.

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  • Consistent client libraries on every platform

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  • Privacy and compliance

    We are a registered ICO processor. For organizations wishing to keep their data in a region, we can offer that

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