Chess.com using Azul Platform Prime to improve the real-time gaming experience

Azul announced that Chess.com is using Azul Platform Prime to improve the real-time gaming experience for its millions of users by making it more reliable and responsive.

Anyone who watched the Emmy award-winning Netflix miniseries The Queen’s Gambit knows that chess is highly competitive. Any disruption to the gaming experience, including delays by sluggish software, can seriously impact a player’s concentration and the results of the game. Despite extensive efforts by in-house Java developers to tune the Java programming language code used to build the Chess.com application, users often faced application delays between player turns lasting several seconds, which interrupted the game flow, made the game less enjoyable and hurt user loyalty.

These application delays were the result of pauses in the Java code caused by “Stop-The-World” garbage collection pauses — a process to free up memory on the infrastructure which runs the application. Garbage collection is a responsibility of the Java virtual machines, or JVMs for short, which are used to run Java application code.

Chess.com’s use of Azul Platform Prime checkmated these glitches in their Java applications and Java-based technologies, such as Jetty, eliminating application stalls altogether, and improving reliability and players’ experience. Azul’s solution was also a win for developers, allowing them to be more productive by swapping their underlying JVM to achieve these benefits without any changes or tuning to their actual Java code.

Azul Platform Prime is a JVM based on the open source Java standard, OpenJDK, that adds unique innovations to improve the runtime characteristics of Java workloads leading to better performance and throughput. More specifically, the platform boosts the number of transactions from the same hardware and speeds up Java performance even as loads increase. It can reduce capital expenses for servers by as much as 50per cent, cut operating expenses for cloud services with no over-provisioning and drive continuous value.

“Because Azul Platform Prime powers our Java-based platform, we don’t have to worry about application speed or infrastructure costs.We can focus on our members’ experience and rest assured that Azul Platform Prime will handle thousands of moves a second with the best performance possible on the world’s best chess website,” said Chess.com CEO Erik Allebest. 

Chess.com has over 65 million members and more than 250,000 concurrent users playing more than 10 million games every day online. Azul Platform Prime turbocharges the performance and scalability of Java ecosystems with a hyper-optimised runtime that ensures consistent response times, reduces system stalls, and delivers better customer experiences — all with far less infrastructure.

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