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 datacenters
- Connection state recovery
- Guaranteed delivery and ordering
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.