Move at the speed of Cloud.

Metal Toad is a AWS Advanced Consulting Partner helping to modernize businesses through cloud implementations.  Move at the speed of cloud.

 
$25,000+
 
$150 - $199 / hr
 
10 - 49
 Founded
2003
Show all +
Los Angeles, CA
headquarters
  • 10250 Constellation Blvd., 23rd Floor
    Los Angeles, CA 90067
    United States
other locations

Portfolio

Key clients: 

ABC Television DC Comics Disney Golden Globes Intel Sony Wheel of Fortune

Siemens Gamesa Transforming energy through the Internet of Things


Business problem: A dearth of operational data

Offshore wind turbines are truly awe-inspiring machines—and they require a similarly awe-inspiring amount of maintenance. Keeping these behemoths functioning at peak performance requires complex operational planning, predictive maintenance, and precise scheduling.

As a leading supplier of wind power to customers all over the globe, Siemens

Gamesa is responsible for a ten-year warranty on a large number of offshore wind turbines. Maintenance ships and crews account for the largest percentage of Siemens Gamesa’s turbine service expenditures, costing hundreds of thousands of dollars each day. Industry consolidation and new turbine blade technologies have made high performance and cost reduction crucial.

But with the existing technology, the activity of the ships performing maintenance was a black hole of data.

  • Planning relied on human estimates, which were imprecise and error-prone
  • Hard data for actual onsite operations was sorely lacking
  • The accumulated errors and lack of precision led to costly decisions

For efficient, cost-effective operational planning, Siemens Gamesa needed accurate, directly observed data about every step of their maintenance procedures. Without a precise digital system, all that crucial information was just blowing in the wind—along with any opportunity to optimize operations and save money.


Technology solution: Smart data collection, analysis, and visualization

Metal Toad created a proof of concept for a solution that has the potential to revolutionize wind turbine maintenance operations. The heart of the solution is a new “smart platform” leveraging the Internet of Things (IoT)— For more visit https://www.metaltoad.com/casestudy/siemens-gamesa




Wheel of Fortune

Business problem: Increasing fan base, limited capacity

For over 40 years, contestants on Wheel of Fortune have spun the wheel to win big on TV. And today, viewers at home can join in the excitement—by entering sweepstakes online for a shot at prizes.

However, WheelOfFortune.com kept running up against the constraints of old technology. Whenever a big sweepstakes was launched, avid fans would

descend on the website and overtax its servers.

Wheel of Fortune's web properties were hosted on old physical IBM servers that were unable to adjust capacity in response to spikes in demand. Additionally, the old infrastructure, built piecemeal over the years, was unreliable. The legacy system just couldn't keep up. As a result, the site frequently crashed and experienced outages.

Technology solution: The cloud delivers agility and performance

Moving the site’s servers to the cloud provided the elasticity Wheel of Fortune needed. With an Amazon Web Services (AWS) solution, capacity is scaled up to flawlessly handle traffic surges.

Metal Toad also implemented several other strategies to boost the site’s performance:

  • With Amazon Cloud Formation, issues that used to take days to resolve can now be repaired within a few hours
  • The Amazon Virtual Private Cloud gives the team full control over security—private traffic stays private
  • Puppet automatically keeps each web server correctly configured and functioning
  • Spreading their servers across multiple data centers increases fault tolerance 

Impact: The wheel keeps spinning for awesome engagement

Now the Wheel of Fortune site can keep pace with fans’ excitement. When the team launches a new sweepstakes, preventative scaling can double, triple, or even quadruple their capacity to match expected traffic and keep the site running smoothly at all times.


Sony Crackle

Business problem: An out-of-date legacy platform

In the competitive landscape of over-the-top (OTT) streaming entertainment, Sony Crackle was delivering popular content in the US, Canada, and Latin America—and they were anxious to increase their reach. They needed an infrastructure that could scale at the pace of their business.

Because OTT media delivers content directly over the internet, there

should be unlimited ability to grow. But Sony Crackle’s legacy platform—built piecemeal over many years—constrained their ability to expand into new regions. Its legacy code was unwieldy to maintain, taking two days just to sync databases. The infrastructure was also time-consuming to expand, requiring long lead times to build capacity for new regions.


Technology solution: Automation for rapid expansion

Metal Toad designed and built a new platform rooted in the idea of infrastructure as code (IaC), an approach that automates and replaces many manual operations with programmed automation. Now, the team can launch a new region with just a couple simple steps—the infrastructure builds the new region automatically in just hours.

We combined several leading-edge Microsoft Azure features in new ways. Because there was little existing documentation for how these systems interface, Metal Toad led the way in coding a new approach to streaming technology.

Impact: Faster, more reliable, and ready to grow

With 21 countries in seven streaming regions—and many more on the horizon—Sony Crackle is now poised to expand quickly across the globe. Processes that once took days or weeks now take merely hours.

The app’s reliability has also exponentially increased. Whereas the legacy system was time-consuming to fix when problems arose, the team can now identify and easily solve issues in real time.



Golden Globes

Technology solution: Super scalability

Metal Toad designed and built a cloud platform with incredible elasticity. In the 48 hours surrounding Award Night 2015, GoldenGlobes.com successfully delivered over four million page requests with load time under a quarter of a second—with 100% uptime.

The autoscaling infrastructure saves money, too. Instead of investing in server space they don’t need for most of

the year, the HFPA can now scale up and down to meet traffic demands in real time, minimizing waste and increasing reliability.

Metal Toad also engineered a custom content management system (CMS) to keep users engaged after awards season had come and gone. The scalable, flexible, open-source CMS transformed the HFPA’s web presence into a dynamic year-round destination for entertainment content.

Impact: Big savings, better experience

The HFPA’s web presence has transformed from a simple informational site that experienced a traffic uptick a couple times a year into a destination resource for film and television industry content.

  • Cost savings: The cloud infrastructure can quickly scale from two to forty servers, so the HFPA pays only for the space they need, when they need it
  • Reliability: Our solution allows us to solve problems on the fly, even fixing problems onsite instantly during Awards Night—while maintaining 100% uptime
  • Engagement: Users enjoy a dynamic online experience—free from lags and errors—that keeps them coming back throughout the year


Intel Sports Division

Business opportunity: Transformative tech acquisition

Intel may be best known for great processors, but their vision is much broader: innovating at the boundaries of technology to bring the future into being.

Intel established their Sports Group in 2016 to revolutionize the sports-viewing experience. And with a few key acquisitions—180-degree panoramic 3D video, volumetric 3D video, and a

video-tagging AI—Intel saw an opportunity to build out their vision by partnering with Metal Toad. 

Technology solution: Cloud-native app with engaging UX

A high-performing proof of concept (PoC) project was key to meeting Intel’s strategic goal: solidify Intel’s leadership in the immersive media landscape by dynamically delivering panoramic, stereoscopic True VR video. Intel was anxious to prove the potential of the technology quickly, so after the discovery process, we set an aggressive timeline—completing the build in just 16 weeks.

Because Intel was already building a relationship with the Liverpool Football Club (LFC), our solution focused on an app to make soccer games even more exciting with personalization and amazing 3D video.

The UX: Highly personalized, immersive content

The Metal Toad discovery process—involving in-depth interviews with LFC fans—guided the design of a deeply engaging app.

  • As users watch the live game, they pin their favorite plays in the app
  • The app curates a custom content feed, using AI to discover relevant videos based on user behavior
  • The app notifies users of events like game start times, highlights, and availability of post-game video
  • Post-game, fans can watch their personal highlight reel in True VR video

https://www.metaltoad.com/casestudy/Intel_Sports_Division

ABC Television

Technology solution: An up-to-date, use-anywhere app

ABC Executives needed a smart, streamlined solution—one that didn’t further bog them down with a multi-year vendor contract. Idea Asylum Productions had been a long-term trusted partner to ABC in delivery of preview content to affiliate stations and, when modernizing the effort with a tablet application, they hunted for a single vendor that offered

mobile technologists, no licenses or upsells, and a lightweight support arrangement—enter Metal Toad.

We put our strategic discovery process to work, interviewing all key stakeholders to create user stories tailored to each persona. From that, a clear solution emerged: a single app that the sales team could use with any mobile device or computer—replacing all the old DVDs and spreadsheets with a modern, polished presentation.

Metal Toad created a mobile app that caches videos locally, so the sales team can use them even with no internet connection. A browser-based counterpart was developed that duplicates the look and feel of the app, but relies on streaming video for content delivery. In other words, any technological situation that a sales call could present, the ABC sales team would have access to all necessary sales tools.

The app relies on a host of key technologies:

  • A proprietary custom JavaScript framework and PhoneGap 1.9 with custom plug-ins

  • A single codebase for both implementations, using the latest versions of RequireJS and OpenAJAX

  • A backend consisting of modules and APIs that provide easily-managed content and data to both implementations

Impact: Smooth sailing for sales

The new system revamped the entire sales process, making it faster, easier, and more efficient. ABC’s sales demo—shows and all—is now readily accessible from any tablet, at any time.

DC Entertainment

Enterprise Multi-Site Content Management

Alongside our brilliant design partners at Sisu, Metal Toad was chosen to help DC Entertainment build four wholly separate websites that could be managed from a single location by a single business unit. The enterprise-class sites for DC Comics, Vertigo, MAD Magazine, and DC Entertainment Corporate had been separate for far too long and the executive leadership team no longer wanted the

overhead associated with relying on multiple admins in multiple locations to publish content.

A mutual in-depth discovery with Sisu uncovered DC's desire for a customized admin experience with an eye on future flexibility and scalability. They required an open-source solution that would continue to let them reinvest their budget instead of spending it on proprietary licensing fees. Drupal was the prime candidate for a content management system (CMS) that allowed for a secure, wholly-owned platform.

Metal Toad enabled the DC Team to manage all content across the four sites from a single unified interface while incorporating a thorough brand redesign. The Drupal admin experience was custom tailored to team needs, creating the ideal platform for multi-year iteration. In sum, modules geared towards utility and business needs power DC’s Drupal core and the Metal Toad team is constantly consulting with all of DC's business units on future enhancements.

Not only does the DC team enjoy increased efficiency by having a single system for staff to learn and manage, but that unity also communicates a single look and feel to their international customer base.


For more visit https://www.metaltoad.com/casestudy/dce

United Natural Foods Inc.

Business problem: Wildly inefficient data management

As a large and growing food distributor, United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) had a data problem. With thousands of SKUs, scads of suppliers, and loads of product information, UNFI was drowning in data—and the collection and management was cumbersome.

Staff spent countless hours manually copying and pasting data into spreadsheets, chasing vital info

from suppliers, and duplicating efforts across siloed departments. UNFI knew the inefficiency was costing them time and money.


Solution:  Leading-edge digital infrastructure

Metal Toad built a leading-edge supplier portal. This admin-controlled environment, in which suppliers enter all necessary data directly, collects all product info in a single place—making data secure, accessible, and accurate. Processes that used to take weeks can now be done in less than a day.

We took it to the next level to help UNFI’s subsidiary, Blue Marble Brands. Metal Toad designed a product information management (PIM) system to manage detailed information on every product. Our headless Drupal approach allows the system to harness a vast amount of data and make it easy to access.

Additionally, UNFI needed a cloud platform that could scale to handle the ongoing growth of their digital assets. Metal Toad engineered an Amazon Web Services (AWS) solution that lets the ecosystem grow at the pace of their business. It’s fast and cost-effective, with 99.95% uptime and 24/7/365 monitoring.


Impact: Efficiency that saves money and drives growth
  • Partnership with Metal Toad helped UNFI bring its processes into the 21st century and set the stage for ongoing growth.