Hacker's Handbook

Rapid Prototyping

Building a production ready MVP in 3 months

Posted: 2023-05-29

Today, we want to talk about on of our exciting projects with Deutsche Telekom, one of Europe's largest telecom providers. Together, we embarked on a mission to revolutionize the Smart Home industry, all while adhering to GDPR and ensuring scalable, data-driven innovation. This is yet another testimony of the success of the Happy Path MethodTM.

The team with the IoT pipeline on a whiteboard in the background.

Telekom, as they prefer to call themselves, needed a system that could seamlessly handle a staggering one billion transactions per day, all while tackling the complexities of data anonymization. But here's the twist: they still wanted to extract valuable insights through statistical analysis from this anonymized data. Challenge accepted!

We got the request in late December from an innovation department at Telekom. They needed to convince upper management that it was possible to build a system that could handle this amount of traffic within a reasonable budget. Problem was, that this proof was needed by January to be approved in the next year's budget.

In just three short weeks our HappiHacking team armed with Erlang, Kafka, and the Happy Path Method quickly built a proof-of-concept solution that easily could handle over 15.000 transactions per second, and anonymizing all data in a GDPR compliant way. This convinced Deutsche Telekom's management of the project's feasibility. With a bit of Swedish humor and a relentless pursuit of value delivery, we showed that innovation doesn't have to be a long and tedious process.

Unfortunately there was a political policy decision at Telekom at the time that only allowed the use of three programming languages in production. Erlang was strangely not one of them, but Java was. So over the next three months, we worked tirelessly to transform our Erlang proof-of-concept into a production-ready solution in Java. It still used the same Kafka setup, anonymization and Grafana monitoring but some of the end points were replaced by Java, and the corporately approved Spring Boot framework. This required a bit more work but HappiHacking's team of experts designed an architecture that could handle the massive data volume, ensuring smooth transactional systems capable of handling billions of messages each day.

This innovative data streaming solution paved the way for Deutsche Telekom's own team to build new services upon our foundation. Among those services was the MagentaZuhause App which received a reddot award.

As a little side project we also managed to get data from a Magenta TV set top box which was a black box to us. By combining bash scripts, C, regexps and some innovative hacking we manged to get information from the TV, and we could also turn the TV on and off remotely within a few milliseconds. This proved that we could build a service for remotely managing a TV in the home. For a real product we would of course build it into the software which another department within Telekom had access to, but such a cross departments project could take months to get started.

" - Why did the smart TV get turned off?"
" - Happi's joke was so bad."

Throughout the project, our partnership with Deutsche Telekom flourished. Together, we navigated the intricacies of the Smart Home landscape, crafting solutions that blended robust data handling with GDPR compliance. Our motivated HappiHacking team went the extra mile, delivering qualitative results while sharing a few bad jokes along the way.

In the words of Filiz Hazer-Yilmaz, Deutsche Telekom's representative: "If you are searching for a motivated team that will go the last mile with you, deliver qualitative stuff, and understand bad jokes…HappiHacking is the right choice!"

At HappiHacking, we thrive on challenging projects that push the boundaries of innovation. Our Smart Home collaboration with Deutsche Telekom exemplifies the power of rapid prototyping, scalable systems, and a touch of Swedish irreverence. We're proud to have played a part in designing and implementing new IoT services, revolutionizing the Smart Home experience for Deutsche Telekom's customers.

- Happi

Happi Hacking AB
Munkbrogatan 2, 5 tr
111 27 Stockholm