DIRECTV tunes in to AppDynamics Application Intelligence

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Read more about DIRECTV’s work with AppDynamics in the full case study here.

The more I’m learning about application intelligence, the more I’m realizing the competitive advantage that our customers gain with AppDynamics. DIRECTV is one of the world’s leading providers of digital broadcast entertainment, providing a premium experience in television through cutting edge technology and campaigns. And just like every leading company, it focuses heavily on IT and software applications to deliver high valued customer satisfaction to over 39 million customers across the U.S. and Latin America.

Challenge: Upgrading from existing APM with poor performance & adoption

Like many software-defined businesses, DIRECTV faced the challenge of retrieving the right value from its existing APM solution. With over 6,000 physical and virtual servers running a combination of Windows, Linux, and HP-UX, applications built by Java, .NET, PHP, and Node.js, DIRECTV wasn’t achieving the results it needed with it’s existing APM tool. First, it saw a poor adoption rate outside its core operations team. With the multitude of tools and applications its operations team was already using to troubleshoot, there was no window to determine a positive performance impact on applications. Instead, it implemented what Senior Director of IT Operations, Glenn Trattner refers to as “after-the-fact investigation”. When Trattner and his team began to outline what they wanted out of an upgraded solution, they identified the following:

  • Proactive optimization

  • Ease of use for higher adoption across development teams for improved collaboration

  • Ease of deployment with low performance overhead for monitored applications

Solution: Immediate impact and visibility in critical times

AppDynamics came to the table for DIRECTV at a critical time. During its renowned pro football Sunday Ticket offering, which offers subscribers access to watch their favorite teams through second screens (mobile applications, desktop, in-home set top boxes), it started to experience issues with high traffic and load as its demand increased. “Sunday Ticket places a significant load on our website and infrastructure in a very short period of time—especially at the start of the season…We were impressed with the visibility and insights provided by AppDynamics and decided to move forward with our purchase and deployment” says Trattner.

Why DIRECTV Chose AppDynamics

After seeing success with implementing AppDynamics, DIRECTV decided to move forward and deploy a SaaS version of its APM to monitor its Java, .NET, PHP, and Node.js applications. Today, they’re able to produce upgraded alerts and reports with AppDynamics, delivering a much more proactive impact as opposed to its previous after-the-fact reactive performance. They’re also fans of the dashboard and flow maps feature of the tool, which allows them to visualize traffic behavior and transaction flows throughout their processes.

While the features and services made more than a significant impact for Trattner and the DIRECTV team, they also appreciated the efforts by the AppDynamics team. “During our pro football Sunday Ticket rollout, we were doing performance testing on our production infrastructure in the middle of the night. AppDynamics’ experts were on the phone helping us, and we hadn’t even bought the product yet…Not only do they listen, they actually follow up and get back to you with answers. I can’t say the same thing about many other vendors we work with.”

AppDynamics brought the right value and insights that DIRECTV needed to maintain its premium digital broadcast experience, without compromising performance or time. Not only did they achieve the goals listed beforehand, they came fully equipped with the best teams to get the job done.

Saba Anees

Saba Anees

Saba is the Content Marketing Specialist at AppDynamics. She grew up in the SF Bay Area, graduated from UC Berkeley, and joined AppDynamics' Marketing team in 2015. You can follow her on Twitter at @sabaanees.