Gaming Company Embraces the Cloud to Improve Service, Simplify IT, and Reduce Costs

Gameizon

Gameizon, a subsidiary of Mactores Technologies, is an online gaming company established mainly with the mission of connecting people through sports. With more offerings being added to its product list, the start-up company needed to find a technology solution that could help it avoid the costs and operational overheads of traditional IT infrastructures. After ruling out competitors’ offerings based on scalability limitations and maintenance requirements, Gameizon developed its solution on the Windows Azure platform. As a result of using Windows Azure, the company gained the scalability it wanted, while avoiding capital expenses. It has also reduced the entire turnaround time by 30 percent and is now projecting a savings of 40 percent on costs.

Situation

Gameizon is dedicated to developing online social games and to extend sports entertainment. It is all about connecting people through sports. The idea is to raise the excitement level of sports watching through a make believe gambling experience. It offers games accessible to everyone without involving real money or having any type of monetary value attached to it.

Gameizon realized it didn’t have the computing power to meet the demands of the large number of users playing games on its network. For this to happen, the company needed a platform that included hardware infrastructure, storage infrastructure, a development environment, and an application environment. “As a start-up venture, we wanted to avoid the huge capital expenditures that go along with hardware, software, and maintenance necessary to meet the scalability required,” says Balkrishna Heroor, CEO, Gameizon. “We wanted to focus on improving our services for our customers.”

The company decided to seek a better, more cost-effective hosting platform that could lower its own costs and infrastructure overheads. At the same time, it wanted the solution to scale up and down easily to accommodate fluctuating customer demands. “We required a computing solution with maximum elasticity that would be capable of providing an entire environment as a service according to the demand,” says Balkrishna Heroor.
Solution

Gameizon decided it would focus on cloud computing, which is the hosting and management of applications and services on the Internet through data centers. It considered several cloud computing platforms, including those from Amazon, Google, and VMWare. But all had limitations. Ultimately, it chose the Windows Azure platform from Microsoft. Windows Azure is a cloud-based services operating system that provides development, service hosting, and a service management environment on its platform. It provides developers with on-demand compute and storage to host, scale, and manage web applications on the Internet through Microsoft data centers.

“We wanted a Platform-as-a-Service offering,” says Balkrishna Heroor. “Windows Azure gave us exactly what we needed, a cloud platform that offered service management and not just an infrastructure for virtual machines.”

Gameizon does most of its development on the Microsoft .NET Framework with the Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 development system. This was another important reason to choose Windows Azure over competing platforms.

The company also uses Microsoft SQL Azure, a cloud-based, self-managed, relational database service built on SQL Server technologies. Balkrishna Heroor says, “The automated management capabilities, built-in data protection, self-healing features, and disaster recovery capabilities in SQL Azure were attractive to us. All these issues were taken care of, and we don’t have to worry about any of them.”

Gameizon began development in December 2010 and completed implementation in March 2011. The first product to be launched was CricGamble, a social game based on cricket. It involves speculation on live cricket matches. Users can do virtual betting, challenge friends, and brag about their successes. It also has various interesting gaming components like banks and anti-gambling agencies, which help to accelerate and decelerate the progress in the game.

With the Windows Azure platform, Gameizon has created an end-to-end solution for back-up services, storage, database management, and system management. The solution is highly scalable, and the company pays only for services consumed. As a result, it can scale up or down as needed without the distraction of implementing new infrastructure.

Benefits

By making use of the Windows Azure platform, Gameizon gained a highly scalable, flexible, cost-effective and secure platform. The company has not only reduced its development time but is also benefiting from a simplified IT infrastructure.

Improves Scalability

By using Windows Azure, Gameizon can quickly scale up to handle the heavy computational and storage needs it has for its online gaming platform. “With Windows Azure, we have a flexible solution at an attractive price, without having to invest more in computing infrastructure,” says Balkrishna Heroor. “Windows Azure gives us the greatest level of comfort when it comes to scalability.”

Reduces Overall Costs by 40 Percent

By deploying its solution on the Windows Azure platform, which eliminates the need to acquire hardware infrastructure, storage, software, and personnel, Gameizon is not only reducing costs but also avoiding prohibitive capital expenditures. The company realizes additional savings because it pays only for the infrastructure resources it uses.

Balkrishna Heroor says, “By avoiding enormous investments in infrastructure, we are significantly lowering our expenses. The platform’s pay-per-use policy has resulted in cost savings of over 40 percent.”

Improves Agility

By using the Windows Azure platform instead of another provider’s cloud services offering, developers have found that having a robust programming environment based on familiar tools has made development simpler and faster, and reduced required IT resources.

In addition to the agility it gains from the dynamic scalability of the Windows Azure platform, Gameizon is using application programming interfaces (APIs) in Windows Azure to reduce the time to develop, build, and deploy Windows Azure solutions. The company also found that the Microsoft tools used, most notably the Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 development system, interoperated better with Windows Azure, leading to faster, smoother development.

“With Windows Azure, we are reducing the entire turnaround time of our application by 30 percent,” says Balkrishna Heroor. “It saved us a significant amount of money, very significant for a start-up company.”
Windows Azure Platform

The Windows Azure platform provides an excellent foundation for expanding online product and service offerings. The main components include:

Windows Azure. Windows Azure is the development, service hosting, and service management environment for the Windows Azure platform. Windows Azure provides developers with on-demand compute and storage to host, scale, and manage Web applications on the Internet through Microsoft data centers.

Microsoft SQL Azure. Microsoft SQL Azure offers the first cloud-based relational and self-managed database service built on Microsoft SQL Server 2008 technologies.

Windows Azure platform AppFabric. With Windows Azure platform AppFabric, developers can build and manage applications more easily both on-premises and in the cloud.

AppFabric Service Bus connects services and applications across network boundaries to help developers build distributed applications.

AppFabric Access Control provides federated, claims-based access control for REST Web services.

Microsoft Codename “Dallas.” Developers and information workers can use the new service code-named Dallas to easily discover, purchase, and manage premium data subscriptions in the Windows Azure platform.

To learn more about the Windows Azure platform, visit:

www.windowsazure.com
For More Information

For more information about Microsoft products and services, call the Microsoft Sales Information Center at (800) 426-9400. In Canada, call the Microsoft Canada Information Centre at (877) 568-2495. Customers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can reach Microsoft text telephone (TTY/TDD) services at (800) 892-5234 in the United States or (905) 568-9641 in Canada. Outside the 50 United States and Canada, please contact your local Microsoft subsidiary. To access information using the World Wide Web, go to:
www.microsoft.com

For more information about Gameizon products and services, call +919820966818 or visit the website at:www.gameizon.com

This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY

One thought on “Gaming Company Embraces the Cloud to Improve Service, Simplify IT, and Reduce Costs

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