King started life as a pure Hadoop player, but the unprecedented levels of data it was receiving placed exceptional demands on its infrastructure and it needed to scale to meet the challenge, and fast. It was at this point that King realised that Hadoop alone was not the solution. "Hadoop was working for us to an extent, but it became clear very quickly that it was not the whole answer", explained Andy Done, Data Platform Lead at King. "Hadoop is very good at some things like cost-effective storage of vast quantities of data, but not so good at rapid analysis. So we went looking for something that could complement Hadoop and address its weaknesses."
Any new technology needed to co-exist with Hadoop and be able to ingest data from the Hadoop File System. It also had to be easy to evaluate as King did not want to waste time or money setting up expensive test infrastructure. Ideally the data had to remain on site and once the database was in operation, King did not want to have to hire database administrators simply to run the database; it needed to run itself. The new technology also had to be fast. After a period of testing, King opted for EXASolution, the in-memory analytic database from EXASOL.
"The other databases tested were, at best, half as fast as EXASOL on equivalent hardware, and while extensive tuning and optimisation may have closed the gap, this was not the path we wanted to take", continued Andy Done. "King is a fast-moving business and the queries required to uncover vital information are difficult to predict in advance, making a self-optimising database a very attractive proposition."
EXASOL has exceeded King's expectations. Andy Done commented: "EXASOL allows my team to serve the business better, providing them with the data they need, in turn giving our players an incredible gaming experience. By using EXASOL to analyse our data, we continue to place the customer at the very heart of everything we do - not just as a philosophy, but as a working practice. We're enjoying our partnership with EXASOL and look forward to seeing what else it can deliver in the future."
Aaron Auld, CEO, EXASOL, commented: "Companies across all industry areas are increasingly acknowledging the benefits that fast analytics can bring to effectively harness rapidly growing mountains of data to make smarter business decisions, enhance customer loyalty and drive new revenue streams. King is an excellent example of how simple, smart and super-fast in-memory, analytics databases make good business sense and we look forward to working with King in a long-term partnership to ensure it remains at the very forefront of the global, mobile gaming world."