Case study SessionCam


SessionCam is a feature-rich solution aimed at brands seeking a better understanding of customer activity on their website.

The solution records and replays precise activity by each website visitor; every scroll, mouse click, mobile touch screen pinch and zoom, and data entered. This allows SessionCam’s customers, such as John Lewis and Sky, to gain a better understanding of user behaviour in order to improve usability and increase conversion rates.


SessionCam’s CTO, Richard Churchill, wanted to enhance SessionCam’s visibility of behaviour and activity that took place specifically on mobile and tablet devices. To do this, SessionCam needed to increase its filtering capability to efficiently decipher device characteristics and play back these findings as part of the recordings.

SessionCam found limitations with other device detection solutions that monitored only a restricted selection of browsers and operating systems.

SessionCam Screenshot1
51Degrees solution offers sessioncam customers the ability to filter and drill down to device type information

SessionCam’s 100% increase in traffic and concurrency in the past year put pressure on its existing infrastructure. Any new device detection solution had to keep up with this increasing demand, ensuring speed and user experience were not compromised.


Initially SessionCam implemented the 51Degrees Lite version. Rigorous testing quickly proved that it was faster and more accurate than any other solution. 51Degrees increased SessionCam’s granularity of device specifics and ability to detect, record and play back each and every device it documented, including those with obscure User-Agents that had previously caused problems.

Following the success of the 51Degrees Lite product, SessionCam purchased the Premium version of the product to take full advantage of 51Degrees’ relevant, accurate, data and detection capability. 51Degrees adds approximately 200 device models to its database each week meaning that SessionCam is able to remain up-to-date with new devices and browser versions.

51Degrees is a really good balance between the quality and performance of device detection that we require, Implementation was really really easy, we didn’t have any problems. Richard ChurchillCTO, SessionCam

The device detection solution needed to work seamlessly in line with SessionCam’s existing infrastructure. SessionCam uses autoscaling clusters from Amazon Web Services to manage and handle multiple connections. 51Degrees needed to scale horizontally in an auto-scaling environment, without imposing limitations on the system’s operations or capacity management.

In 2015 SessionCam upgraded to the latest version, delivering even greater accuracy. This version no longer relies on regular expressions so it does not need to load all data into memory, but rather reads from the actual data file to perform detection. This allows for sub-millisecond detection speeds whilst keeping the memory footprint low.


Reliable. Accurate. Scalable. Low Latency.

  • Increased revenue using 51Degrees’, enabling SessionCam to offer an improved reputation for accurate, contextual and fast analytics.
  • Lower latency at all times, assisted by 51Degrees, even as SessionCam’s traffic fluctuates.
  • Improved user experience in the interface and in the depth of analysis since 51Degrees vastly advanced the data quality of SessionCam’s device detection capability.

Easy to Install

  • Implementation of the latest version took only 15 minutes.

Greater Control And Content Adaptation

SessionCam users can filter recordings from specific device types at mobile, tablet or desktop level and even drill down to individual devices thanks to the data from 51Degrees.

SessionCam Screenshot1
Filtering recordings from specific device types at mobile, tablet or desktop level

Within the playback service, 51Degrees is used to detect the user’s device capabilities too. This helps SessionCam, for example, to play back only the elements which appear to the customer, by detecting the browser, and therefore the individual client view of the website. This enables an optimised user experience.

A critical component was the weekly automated updates. Having the data file updated via 51 Degrees’ update process direct to our cloud solution gave us the ability to support new devices so we can focus on new features. Richard ChurchillCTO, SessionCam