BT has told CBR that it’s confident the official London 2012 website that it hosts will cope with the imminent surge in traffic, despite a detailed analysis by performance management firm Compuware that found serious failings.
Compuware today released the findings of its performance analysis of a number of Olympics-related sites, which it says found that the official London 2012 site, hosted by BT, performed very badly on a number of tests.
Compuware also compared the results to an Alexa 100 median and again found london2012.com to be performing very poorly – several days before the site even starts to pick up the huge increase in traffic likely to kick in after the official Opening Ceremony on Friday.
For instance london2012.com performed worst in the test group for the number of client/server interactions required to load the content of a web page, at 261. This compared to just 61 for an Alexa median, although this can at least partially be explained by the large number of disparate data sources that a site like london2012.com needs to pull together.
But london2012.com was also the worst performer for average wait time, at 1.9 seconds, compared to a median of 0.1 seconds. The best performer in the control group was lastminute.com, at 0.04 seconds.
But BT said it remains "confident" that the site will stand up to the huge increases in traffic it is likely to see in coming days.
"London2012.com is a wide-ranging website, which contains live information and multimedia functionality from different application and content providers," a BT spokesperson told us.
It also noted that it is not responsible for the site’s architectural design, commenting, "BT is responsible for hosting the london2012.com website only."
It added that, "The website is hosted at two BT data centres in the UK, on dedicated infrastructure set aside for its exclusive use. The infrastructure we’ve put in place is robust, powerful and scalable – so we’re confident that the site will cope with increased traffic."
But not according to Compuware’s Michael Allen, director of IT service management. He said, "On the face of it the six sites are not hugely different, with most using rich content and images. However, there are major differences in the performance of the sites. The analysis shows tfl.gov.uk and lastminute.com have been designed with performance in mind. However, if you look at the KPIs, it’s clear those that did not perform as well, such as the official Olympics site, haven’t been designed with performance in mind, stumbling at many points."
"The official Olympics website, london2012.com, which will arguably be the most frequently accessed site during the games, is the most prolific offender. A number of errors have been made in architecting the site," Allen said. "The user experience is not great at the moment and the analysis shows it will only get worse as traffic to it increases."
Compuware conducted the performance testing between 7th and 9th July.
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