IBM and PlayFab Apply the Power of IBM Watson to Unlock New Value for Game Developers

LAS VEGAS – IBM Interconnect – 20 Mar 2017: IBM (NYSE: IBM) and PlayFabtoday announced a joint initiative to provide game developers with deeper insights into their players’ behavior. By pairing the IBM Watson Data Platform on IBM Cloud with PlayFab’s backend services for games, developers can utilize the industry’s fastest data ingestion engine with cognitive powered decision support to help improve player experiences and boost engagement.

The interactive gaming market generated more than $91B in revenue in 2016, with more than $41B from mobile gaming1. To achieve projections of $120B by 20201, the industry will need to increase capabilities to understand and act on player behavior in real time. The Watson Data Platform provides game developers with the necessary tools to perform deep, collaborative analytics, including machine learning, across massive data sets.

“Modern connected games offer immense artistic and commercial potential – but to realize that potential, developers need tools to analyze and act in real-time on the massive amounts of data these games-as-services continuously generate,” said James Gwertzman, chief executive officer, PlayFab. “By bringing the Watson Data Platform to our PlayFab developer community, we are democratizing cutting-edge data science – and allowing developers to make better decisions and drive increased engagement and profitability. Our customers are already delivering top 10 games, and now we’re giving them new tools to extend how long they stay in the charts.”

PlayFab provides a backend platform with powerful real-time tools and services for operating games post-launch. The PlayFab platform includes player relationship management, tournaments and leaderboards, in-app commerce, content management, and powerful automation tools to reduce player churn and boost engagement and monetization.

Through this new initiative, PlayFab’s customers can tap into Watson Data Platform to unlock the power of industry leading machine learning technologies. Built on Apache Spark, IBM Watson Machine Learning intelligently and automatically builds models from structured and unstructured data and open machine learning libraries, while accelerating model deployment into business operations. With Watson Machine Learning, game developers can analyze more data about their players and deploy those learnings directly into their games via PlayFab’s platform.

Atari is one of the first publishers to leverage this new partnership between IBM and PlayFab. “Understanding what players experience, and being able to react quickly, has become crucial to success in operating a modern game,” said Sylvain Constantin, executive producer for Roller Coaster Tycoon Touch, recently the #1 game on AppStore. “This is why we are so excited to now be collaborating with IBM, through this initiative with PlayFab. The Watson Data Platform takes us to a whole new level of power and capabilities.”

“As the mobile gaming industry has really taken off in recent years, there is a tremendous amount of data that needs analysis,” said Derek Schoettle, general manager, IBM Watson Data Platform. “IBM Watson Data Platform applies the built-for-data architecture of IBM Cloud and the power of cognitive technology to help game developers unlock insights from their data faster and deploy it quicker to provide new experiences and stickier engagement.”

Additionally, Watson Data Platform provides PlayFab developers the ability to accelerate and simplify data ingestion – potentially up to 43TB per hour (using IBM HTAP with 100 nodes) – then collaborate around the data with a wide range of analytics tools including a variety of machine learning libraries. Watson Data Platform brings together content, data, models, and open source resources from IBM and others, including H2O, RStudio, and Jupyter Notebooks, on Apache Spark in a single, security-rich managed environment.

For more about IBM Watson Data Platform, please visit: https://ibm.biz/BdsWk7

InterConnect is IBM’s cloud and cognitive conference where more than 20,000 developers, clients and partners are being introduced to the latest advancements in cloud computing through 2,000 sessions, labs and certifications. IBM is positioning both enterprise and startup clients for success with a complete portfolio of cloud services and marquee partnerships, supporting a wide range of applications including: big data, analytics, blockchain and cognitive computing.

For more information, visit: https://www.ibm.com/cloud-computing/. For the IBM InterConnect Press Kit, visit: ibm.biz/IBMInterConnect2017. Engage in the conversation through @IBMCloud and #ibminterconnect.

About PlayFab, Inc

Based in Seattle, PlayFab is a backend platform for games, delivering powerful real-time tools and services for LiveOps that help developers boost engagement and make more money. PlayFab currently powers more than 600 games, with more than 45 million players a month, for some of the largest studios and publishers including Capcom, Atari, Bandai Namco, Rovio, and Miniclip. PlayFab offers proven reliability, easy integration, and attractive pricing. PlayFab is backed by Benchmark and Madrona Venture Group. For more information, visit playfab.com.


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