The PGA TOUR (the TOUR) wanted to establish a centralized location for fans to follow golf - one that would be modern, responsive, and consistent across mobile and web platforms. CapTech was engaged to facilitate a move to a serverless and cloud-native application with the ability to scale to handle any amount of traffic.
The existing PGA TOUR website was static, and thus unable to deliver a dynamic, real-time experience to fans following a live event. In addition, updates to the website and mobile app were time consuming and involved complicated manual deployments that caused downtime. A piecemeal development process had resulted in a fragmented and inconsistent experience for fans and left the TOUR with little transparency into its own technology. Existing data feeds were tightly coupled to the legacy website and were not designed to support multiple platforms.
CapTech was engaged to build a fully serverless-middleware layer between the TOUR’s existing internal APIs and the new web and mobile app, allowing for fine-grained control of data displayed on the various frontends. The TOUR’s data is fetched and placed in the highly-scalable database, DynamoDB, to allow for serving the data at massive scale. All computation is done using AWS Lambda serverless functions and more complex workflows are orchestrated by AWS Step Function State Machines.
AWS AppSync enabled the TOUR to create a flexible API that could serve the precise needs of the various frontends that each show varying amounts of data. The TOUR is also utilizing GraphQL subscriptions via AWS AppSync to send real-time updates to clients and enable users to seamlessly stay up to date with the latest tournament, player, and scoring data. The final infrastructure followed an active/active pattern with two live AWS regions serving clients from replicated data stores. AWS CloudFront was used as the content delivery network to reduce latency around the world by caching web content and data queries and AWS Route 53 provided DNS and balanced traffic between both regions.
The refreshed mobile app and website were deployed ahead of The Players Championship, the TOUR’s highest traffic event of the year. The solutions scaled up appropriately to handle the exceptionally high load, but will also scale down to save costs on non-event days.
Fans now have a consistent experience across all platforms that can be quickly updated via a new middleware layer.
App and website users can monitor their favorite tournaments and players in real-time and stay up to date on the latest scoring data down to the individual shot – often more than a minute quicker than the TOUR’s competitors.
The deployment cycle has been drastically reduced due to the fine-grained separation of concerns employed through the TOUR’s use of hundreds of AWS Lambda functions.
Many cross-platform, front-end changes require only a middleware deployment which can take minutes instead of the previous deployment cycle which could’ve been hours or days.