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January 11, 2019updated 14 Jan 2019 8:40am

Sports App Strava Ditches Redshift for Snowflake

"We had more users hitting the database with both ad-hoc SQL and BI tools"

By CBR Staff Writer

Popular sports app Strava has taken its 120 TB data warehouse, 13 trillion GPS data points, 15 million uploads/week and 1.5 billion analytics points to data warehouse Snowflake, after running into scalability issues with its existing AWS Redshift service.

Strava, based in San Francisco, has over 35 million cyclists, runners and other athletes in 195 countries using its service.

It started using Snowflake in early 2018 after running into concurrency issues, the company said; making the move after noticing that Redshift was taking more than 20 minutes to respond to hundreds of queries per week.

strava snowflake

A heat map of Strava users

Redshift vs Snowflake?

Snowflake, founded in 2012, has a growing reputation among those seeking a cloud-based data warehouse.

The San Mateo-headquartered company scales faster than Redshift and doesn’t assume your data is in Amazon S3 buckets, with extensions to JDBC, ODBC and dbAPI to simplify data ingestion processes and, unlike Redshift, XML support, its advocates argue.

Strava’s Senior Director of Analytics and Data Science Cathy Tanimura told Computer Business Review in an emailed comment: “We ran into challenges with scaling Redshift due to our data volumes as we continue to grow, as well as query performance as we had more users hitting the database with both ad-hoc SQL and BI tools.”

A cloud data warehouse benchmark test by Fivetran suggested a hugely competitive field, but had Snowflake performing strongly on speed: Full test is here

The move allows it to consolidate all data in one place, supports rapid analytics, and easily loading, integrating and analysing all data formats – structured and semi-structured, Snowflake said in a release touting the client win.

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““Strava came to us with data warehousing needs that went well beyond what legacy products and cobbled-together solutions could support,” Snowflake VP of Product, Christian Kleinerman said, adding that Strava is a “great example of why we started Snowflake, and we’re looking forward to growing alongside them.”



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