Case Study: Kwarter Gains Comprehensive View of its Entire Platform with New Relic for Mobile Apps

Kwarter logoKwarter provides broadcasters, brands and advertisers with an end-to-end mobile solution that embraces social TV and turns TV watching into a social experience. In 2012, the company introduced three major TV gaming experiences for iOS and Android in partnership with major networks and national brands. And with a recent round of funding, the company continues to grow as it builds interactive applications for upcoming sporting events.

The Kwarter platform requires a highly elastic infrastructure. With clients building apps for major events like the Super Bowl and World Series, the company needs to keep a huge number of servers on deck to meet extraordinary spikes in demand. “We have about 20 servers right now,” says Dustin Whittle, CTO at Kwarter. “Depending on the size of the event, we might scale up to 200. Leading up to game day, it’s very important for us to proactively address issues in production and prepare for every possible scenario — because we can’t afford to crash during the Super Bowl.”

Kwarter screenshot

Enter New Relic
To maintain high performance even with the heaviest traffic, the company needed to track and analyze performance data on all the company’s servers in real time. In 2012, the company deployed New Relic Pro across its entire production environment. The software runs on all of Kwarter’s AWS machines, with New Relic for Python on all frontend servers to monitor app performance under production load. “We have far more insight into our AWS environment than before,” says Whittle. “New Relic gives us total visibility into the performance and health of those machines. Is the disk full? Is the CPU being maxed out? Is there free memory? All of that information is now available to us in real time.”

However, the challenge of monitoring mobile apps remained a major pain point for Kwarter. “Mobile is just a whole different ballgame,” says Whittle. “It’s one thing to look at performance from a server perspective. It’s another thing to look at it from the client’s perspective, seeing how long each interaction actually takes on a mobile app. We had almost no visibility into the user experience, and we had very few options for troubleshooting issues in production. We needed to find a better approach.”

New Relic for Mobile Apps
When Whittle heard about the beta version of New Relic for Mobile Apps, he decided the Kwarter team should give it a try. The company has deployed New Relic for Mobile Apps for iOS in dev and test, with a production release scheduled soon. A full deployment of New Relic for Mobile Apps for Android will follow close behind. “With the mobile solution, New Relic is pretty much the only game in town,” say Whittle. “We now have a truly comprehensive view of our full environment: from a server infrastructure perspective, from an application server-side perspective, and from a consumer client-side perspective. We can monitor the load on the servers, the response time on the server side, and the latency on the client side. For the first time, we have a holistic view of our infrastructure.”

With New Relic, Kwarter can better optimize its platform for maximum performance in even the highest-pressure circumstances. “New Relic gives us real time alerting so we know right away when performance issues emerge,” says Whittle. “That alone is hugely valuable to us, because we can identify when users are suffering. And with our latest expansion to New Relic for Native Mobile iOS Apps, we’re getting that same level of intelligence across our entire environment.”

New Relic for Mobile Apps empowers Kwarter’s developers to be more effective in troubleshooting performance issues. “This software helps us focus our efforts on the problem at hand,” he explains. “That way, developers can spend less time hunting for the source of an issue and more time building a platform to support our big upcoming events. They appreciate being able to focus on solutions more than problems — and of course that’s a benefit to our clients as well.”

Read the Full Case Study
To see how New Relic for Mobile Apps helped Kwarter gain a comprehensive view of its entire platform, read the full case study. And if you’re an AWS customer like Kwarter, you get New Relic and New Relic for Mobile Apps Standard free. Go to newrelic.com/aws for more information.

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