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Olympics websites get gold medal for performance

16 Aug 2012
BBC Olympics

Key Olympics websites have been praised for their performance during the two-week event, with the BBC and Transport for London (TfL) performing particularly well.

The sites monitored included several specific pages from the London 2012 official site and its Twitter account, the BBC's main Olympics page and iPlayer, TfL's website, National Rail and the Met Office. 

Tests on these sites' availability and page load times by monitoring firm Keynote Systems found that on average the 12 sites monitored had an average load time of less than three seconds.

Furthermore, availability of all sites was 99.5 per cent, so few users will have experienced a problem, with the London 2012 website's journey planner page as high as 99.9 per cent.

TfL's pages had a rapid load time of 1.6 seconds, the fastest of any measured, while the BBC's pages, which were revealed to have delivered almost three petabytes of data earlier this week, never took longer than four seconds to load.

Keynote explained that the data was collected from tests run in 28 different locations across Europe and beyond, in cities such as London, Amsterdam, Manchester, Moscow and Vienna, so the firm was able to build up a detailed picture of the requests being made to key websites.

“We chose these sites because we knew they would be under huge demand during the event,” lead solutions consultant at Keynote Systems, Robert Castley, told V3.

“After the issues that affected the ticketing site earlier in 2012, a lot of firms will have worked on their strategies to ensure there were no issues and the fact everything worked so well during the event was just another great aspect of the Olympics.”

Castley suggested it was likely that firms may have requested extra bandwidth or taken advantage of content delivery networks during the event to handle the extra loads, but will now return to normal operations, when they can more accurately predict traffic on their pages.

The Olympics generated several fascinating stats on web use during the event, with BT revealing that almost 40 billion views were served for the official London 2012 website.


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Dan Worth

Dan Worth is the news editor for V3 having first joined the site as a reporter in November 2009. He specialises in a raft of areas including fixed and mobile telecoms, data protection, social media and government IT. Before joining V3 Dan covered communications technology, data handling and resilience in the emergency services sector on the BAPCO Journal

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