Adjarabet Joins MPN, Uses Babelfish API to Expedite Migration
On Monday, MPN, formerly known as the Microgaming Poker Network, announced that Georgia-based online poker room Adjarabet has gone live on the network. Aside from Adjarabet’s size relative to most poker rooms in the industry, this would not normally be big news, as it is not uncommon for poker sites to join and leave networks, but the interesting thing here is the use of the Babelfish API to facilitate the move.
Normally, when a poker room hops on to a new network, it is a gigantic pain in the ass. There is a ton of work to be done to get the new software going, integrate any existing systems, all that technical stuff. It sucks and if anything goes wrong, you can end up with a lot of angry players who get freaked out that their funds are going to disappear any time a poker room goes down for any length of time (and, frankly, that fear is not completely irrational). But Adjarabet and MPN changed things up by using the Babelfish API to make Adjarabet’s migration to the network much easier than it otherwise would have been.
Now, I used to be an information technology consultant, but that was a decade and a half ago, so while I can build a PC just fine and get all my devices hooked up to my wireless network, I am not quite up to speed on all the business technology that is in play nowadays. That is to say that while you are asking, “What in the world is an API,” I was asking myself that same question a few minutes ago. Fortunately, Google is my friend, so here is what I can tell you. API stands for “application programming interface” and what it boils down to is a set of instructions or requirements that allow one application to talk to another. We see them in use all the time in our web surfing, we just don’t notice since a) they are so ubiquitous and b) they work behind the scenes. I’ll let the website readwrite.com illustrate:
On the Web, APIs make it possible for big services like Google Maps or Facebook to let other apps “piggyback” on their offerings. Think about the way Yelp, for instance, displays nearby restaurants on a Google Map in its app, or the way some video games now let players chat, post high scores and invite friends to play via Facebook, right there in the middle of a game.
APIs do all this by “exposing” some of a program’s internal functions to the outside world in a limited fashion. That makes it possible for applications to share data and take actions on one another’s behalf without requiring developers to share all of their software’s code. Code-sharing on that scale wouldn’t just ruffle the feathers of programmers who’d rather keep it secret; it would also be grossly inefficient.
In the case of Adjarabet and MPN, Adjarabet, along with its software partner Singular, was essentially able to tap into relevant portions of MPN’s code using the Babelfish API and join the network without having to rework the entire Adjarabet online poker room. The API is like an adapter of sorts, allowing Adjarabet and MPN to connect without Adjarabet having to trash everything and start from scratch. As MPN said in a press release, “….this software is ‘plugged in’ to Microgaming’s servers, giving Adjarabet a completely tailored, unique poker client with none of the hassle or cost of server-side development and hosting.”
This is a very unique situation in the online poker world. Normally, a poker room remakes itself when it switches networks and ends up looking like every other member of said network. In this case, though, Adjarabet can keep its identity while still being able to take advantage of the added traffic MPN can bring to its tables.
“We were looking for a partner to help us grow and improve our poker offering; when Microgaming presented Babelfish we knew it was exactly what we needed,” said Alastair Ives, Head of Poker at Adjarabet. “The Babelfish API allows us to offer a product that is completely tailored to our customer base, eliminating the pain of migrating to a new software provider. We are very happy with how the process has been handled and with the results of the migration so far.”
According to PokerScout.com, Adjarabet and MPN have yet to merge their tables, but when they do, the union should be felt in the industry. Adjarabet currently ranks eleventh in PokerScout’s traffic rankings (in a three-way tie), drawing an average of 700 cash game players over the past seven days. MPN is not far behind, ranking fourteenth with 650 cash game players. Even if you have to discount those figures a bit to account for overlap, MPN will rank comfortably in the top ten once Adjarabet’s players are all on the network.