University of Marcheal is a subscription platform dedicated to providing a rich collection of video content from Australian comedians Marty and Michael. It boasts an extensive library featuring hours of raw and deleted footage, showcasing the funniest pranks on the internet. The website offers a unique opportunity to explore past deleted content and hours of past livestreams that remain exclusive to their members. Members have access to previews of upcoming uploads and live videos. University of Marcheal sets itself apart as a go-to destination for laughter, entertainment, and an engaging community for prank enthusiasts.
University of Marcheal faced two key challenges. Firstly, they needed to reduce buffering and wait times when delivering new content to the market. Secondly, they were encountering recurring performance issues with the website during periods of high demand, particularly when new videos were released. Addressing these challenges was crucial to ensure a seamless user experience and to meet the growing demand for the popular video content.
University of Marcheal chose Fitzroy IT as their trusted partner for several reasons. Firstly, their expertise in software development, serverless frameworks such as AWS Lambda, CloudFront CDN configuration and video streaming solutions, aligned perfectly with University's requirements for their project. This expertise ensured that Fitzroy IT could provide tailored and effective solutions to meet their specific needs. Additionally, Fitzroy IT came highly recommended through an AWS referral, further validating their capabilities and reliability. This referral provided confidence to the University of Marcheal in selecting Fitzroy IT as their partner, knowing that they would receive top-notch service and support for their project.
To handle sudden user surges on the website, Fitzroy IT implemented AWS Auto Scaling. By dynamically adjusting resources based on real-time demand, the website ensures optimal performance during peak periods, eliminating slow-downs and maintaining a seamless user experience.
After researching what was causing users to see buffering and long wait times for new content, Fitzroy IT identified that the affected users were generally in international (non-Australian) locations, and that the delay was a result of the (large) video file being transferred into an Edge Location close to the user. To address this, Fitzroy IT implemented an automated solution which fires up when a new video file is uploaded to University of Marcheal’s S3 bucket. A Lambda function is triggered, which runs a series of additional functions in AWS Regions around the world. These functions prefetch the file via CloudFront, loading it into the Edge Location cache. As a result, the data and video are readily accessible to end users at Edge Locations when accessed through the UOM website, providing a smooth and efficient user experience.
Implementing AWS Auto Scaling made it possible to handle sudden surges in website usage. It seamlessly scaled resources based on increased user traffic, ensuring optimal performance and availability. This approach maximized cost efficiency by dynamically adjusting resources according to real-time demand, eliminating over-provisioning. Auto Scaling enhanced the website's reliability, provisioned additional resources during traffic spikes, and improved the user experience by minimizing latency and providing swift access to the website, resulting in increased satisfaction and engagement.
Furthermore, the implementation of an automated, serverless application to address the latency associated with copying to Edge Locations, all but eliminated user complaints about buffering times for new content and provided real-time responsiveness while maintaining cost efficiency. The solution seamlessly integrates into University of Marcheal’s existing processes without any disruption. Ultimately, it improved performance and enhanced customer satisfaction, reducing users' wait time by an average of 70%.
Fitzroy IT is working with UOM to create a development (DEV) environment, so that it is easier to test future changes before deploying them to the production (PROD) environment. By conducting comprehensive testing in the DEV environment, any potential issues or conflicts can be identified and addressed proactively, minimizing the impact on the live production system. Furthermore, UOM are looking to transition away from (error-prone) manual deployments, so Fitzroy IT will implement automated CI/CD pipelines. The process will start with an assessment of the current deployment process to identify areas for improvement. Next, Fitzroy IT will design and configure the automated CI/CD pipeline, specifying stages such as integration, testing, artifact creation and deployment. Finally, the necessary tools and infrastructure will be implemented, tested and deployed.