Discover Performance

HP Software's community for IT leaders // September 2013
Subscribe

Staying ahead of the game

Predictive analytics was a smart bet for online gaming giant Playtech, which has improved performance and knocked out potential crises.

In the highly competitive and fast-paced world of online gaming, downtime is not an option. And nobody understands this better than Playtech, a leading online gaming software supplier with annual revenue in excess of US $133 million.

“Downtime can cost Playtech and its customers significant amounts of money—as much as hundreds of thousands of dollars an hour,” says Eli Eyal, who leads Playtech’s operational support system team.

The 14-year-old company develops software platforms and content for the online and land-based gaming industries. Its products include casino, casual games, sports betting, live gaming, lottery, bingo, and one of the world’s largest poker networks. Flawless performance and 99.999% uptime are critical—especially during peak usage times such as sports races and other special events. Even minor performance glitches can spoil users’ gaming experiences and disrupt revenue streams.

Eyal joined Playtech in 2010, hired to revamp the company’s monitoring systems. Prior to his arrival, Playtech had used very limited diagnostic tools: technicians had to cut and paste event information, then search web pages for instructions on how to handle the alert. “The monitoring system was very basic, lacking support and the ability to develop new features,” Eyal says.

Using predictive analytics to extend monitoring capabilities

Eyal helped Playtech replace its limited, heavily manual infrastructure monitoring system with HP IT Performance Suite software. Recently, Playtech also started monitoring the applications side, using the game-changing capabilities of HP Service Health Analyzer (SHA). HP SHA—a predictive analytics engine—helps to forecast problems and prioritize issues based on business impact. It analyzes historical data to automatically create real thresholds that uncover potential issues to allow action before service is impaired.

“We were pretty much covered with monitoring on the infrastructure side,” Eyal says, “but we needed a whole new perspective on the applications side of the business. That’s where HP SHA made a huge difference.”

Most monitoring tools are reactive—triggered by arbitrarily defined thresholds. Playtech’s new solution, in contrast, performs statistical analyses on historical data to learn system behavior and set thresholds based on what it discovers.

Recently, Playtech noticed unusual changes in gaming activity in Indonesia. System alerts indicated that the number of games being played every five minutes during daytime hours had dropped by half. Playtech called its customer to investigate and learned that nothing was technologically wrong: one of the countries in the region had temporarily shut down its gambling casinos due to a political situation.

On another occasion, the system immediately informed Playtech of a potential denial of service attack, and the company was able to take fast action. In both of these examples, Playtech was immediately alerted that its normally predicted usage thresholds were out of sync—thus requiring IT’s attention.

With advanced monitoring on both the infrastructure and applications side, Playtech is now able to see user behavior, detect and resolve issues quickly, and minimize—if not fully eliminate—downtime. “We get alerts from places we couldn’t even reach before, because we can now monitor the entire picture—3,000 servers on the infrastructure side, and activity on the entire applications side,” Eyal says.

Eli Eyal will discuss Playtech’s success with predictive analytics at the “Power to Change” free virtual event. Check out the 18 online sessions and register today.


x

IT leader assessment

This tool evaluates the correlation between IT attributes and business success and, based on how your answers compare with average scores, will advise you where to invest in IT.

It is based on data HP collected from 650 global companies about a range of IT characteristics (server capacities, approach to information management, security, BYOD, etc.) and how they correlate to revenue gain. This assessment will compare your answers to the average scores in that study.

There are 12 questions that will require an estimated 10 minutes of your time. You'll receive a summary of your rating upon completion.



Let's get started
x

Please select an answer.
x

Analysis:

Your answer:
Your score:
Average score:
Revenue leaders' score:


x

Please select an answer.


x

Results

Your score:
Average score:
Revenue leaders' score:


Get detailed results:

Subscribe

Popular tags

Events

Big Data changes everything

HP CEO Meg Whitman discusses how connected intelligence will drive IT operations, application development, IT security, marketing, compliance—and the bottom line.


The mobile enterprise without compromise

Fast-growing mobility can drive difficult IT choices. Learn how to engage users, partners, and customers with your solutions.


5 drivers for advanced analytics in IT ops

An EMA analyst details the growing power of analytics to solve—and prevent—problems in operations.


Why cloud analytics matters

Speed, reliability, and quality are essential, but hard to balance. Get better insight into resourcing and consumption of your services.


Discover Performance Weekly

HP Software’s Paul Muller hosts a weekly video digging into the hottest IT issues. Check out the latest episode.


Enterprise 20/20

IT Operations 20/20

How can you achieve the data center of the future?

Introduction to Enterprise 20/20

What will a successful enterprise look like in the future?

CIO 20/20

Challenges and opportunities for the CIO of the future.

Dev Center 20/20

How will we organize development centers for the apps that will power our enterprises?

Marketing 20/20

Welcome to a new reality of split-second decisions and marketing by the numbers.

Employee 20/20

What the workforce of 2020 can expect from IT, and what IT can expect from the workforce.

Security 20/20

Preparing today for tomorrow’s threats.

Mobility 20/20

Looking toward the era when everyone — and everything — is connected.

Data Center 20/20

The innovation and revenue engine of the enterprise.

Read more

HP Software related

Most read articles

Discover Performance

Archive

Tweets @ HPITperformance