Talking the Cloud at AppsFlyer’s MAMA Connect Gaming series
Guest blog post by Alexander Grach, Head of Sales EMEA at AppsFlyer.
Founded in 2011, AppsFlyer’s mission is rooted in helping marketers succeed. From the beginning, we’ve been committed to four things: accurate data, unmatched privacy and security, open tech-stack innovation, and an unbiased, customer-obsessed approach. Games customers like Playgendary, Outfit7, Kabam, and Blizzard Entertainment are just some of the brands we empower with a holistic view of every user journey across multiple platforms, channels, and devices.
MAMA Connect and MAMA Connect Gaming was launched as a virtual event series to connect the gaming industry across EMEA and beyond. Each month, we focus on a specific area impacting the mobile gaming community, covering trends, controversial topics, and business challenges. In the most recent edition, I hosted AWS Game Tech and Braze—a leading customer engagement platform, also architected on AWS. Diving into how the cloud is transforming the games landscape, we talked about how cloud computing is enabling game publishers to deliver new features and functionality at pace, while leveraging marketing automation tools to deliver just-in-time insights at scale.
The word ‘cloud’ is often linked to new advanced features in gaming. For example; advanced multiplayer features, allowing for bigger battle royale games, or game streaming, where you can have high-quality games experiences on low-end devices. This is a bit misleading as ‘cloud gaming’ isn’t really a thing. “The ‘cloud’ is an enabler” says Griffin Parry, the AWS Game Tech Head of Business Development for EMEA. “It’s a deployment model that involves on-demand delivery of IT resources, via the internet, with pay as you go pricing. It’s an alternative to traditional approaches which glibly, involve buying servers, putting them in your basement, and maintaining them yourself. That sounds prosaic, but the impacts are huge because it enables game studios to deploy more resources onto what differentiates them, get access to tools and scale that were previously only available to the biggest companies, be faster, more innovative, and think bigger” says Parry.
“Gaming users are individuals, with their own individual capabilities, skills, preferences, and behaviors” shares Ido Bar Oz, the Strategic Cloud Alliances Director at Braze. “To reach them effectively and keep them engaged, you need to ensure you have the right technology ecosystem—one that allows you to slot in best-in-class technologies for all your different customer engagement needs. You then need to be able to connect these together to provide relevant experiences that can effectively increase user retention, improve onboarding, increase gaming session time, engagement and monetization, and convert them to engaged users” Oz concludes.
One of the themes I was keen to get our panelists’ perspective on, was the hot topic of security and data privacy. Some people in the industry still have the misconception that cloud environments are somewhat unsafe when it comes to data processing and handling. I was interested to learn more about each company’s approach to security and compliance, and how they respond to the naysayers.
“We have a shared responsibility model with our customers” answers Parry. “Broadly speaking, AWS manages the infrastructure, and AWS customers are responsible for building secure applications. Security will always be our top priority. The same security isolations are employed as would be found in a traditional data centre. That’s part of the reason why a large number of enterprises, government organizations, and start-ups are running mission critical applications on AWS. This includes sectors where data security is absolutely critical, such as financial services, with customers like HSBC and Barclays.”
Ido Bar Oz comments “First of all, let’s define what data privacy is and what data security is. Data privacy requires developers to ensure that personally identifiable data entrusted to them by consumers are only used by the developers, meaning —and not shared with other parties without consumers’ informed consent. Data security, on the other hand, requires companies to protect the integrity and confidentiality of the user data they hold by preventing hackers and other unauthorized users from gaining access or using the data for malicious purposes”.
“Studies have shown that 68% of consumers have concerns over how brands approach data security” continues Oz. “The real-world need for enhanced, reliable data privacy and security practices and organizations collecting consumers’ personally identifiable information has pushed legislators around the globe to take action. And the new rules set down by the EU’s GDPR and California’s CCPA are already changing the data privacy and security landscape.”
You can still catch the on-demand replay of the MAMA Connect Gaming session, and if you’re interested in learning more about building in the cloud, migrating to the cloud, and the opportunities it presents, you can get in contact with the AWS Game Tech team directly via the AWS Game Tech contact page.