Online Play Requirements
Connecting Players Online Since 2013
Update Regarding Online Play (Click Here)
As you may be aware, the advent of “social distancing” and “sheltering-in-place” has placed unprecedented demands on Internet Service Providers and the infrastructure that supports the World Wide Web. Anyone with an online service is now facing performance challenges during peak periods. DartConnect is no exception.
On Friday 27 March 2020, we introduced a new architecture to address the dramatic increase in on-line match play. However, we will need several days to properly scale this solution. As a precaution, we are temporarily implementing a limit for the number of concurrent on-line matches. This limit comfortably exceeds our current peak periods. However, in the event of a “surge”, this function is designed to protect live matches.
Should DartConnect reach maximum on-line capacity, a request for a Connect Code will be declined. Match turnover is rapid and we encourage members to try again after a short period. This “limit” does NOT affect in-person match play or matches against the DartConnect computer. We appreciate your patience and will be removing this constraint as soon as possible.
When Apple introduced the first iPad in 2010, it inspired DartConnect. While we still think tablets are the best devices for a chalkboard replacement, DartConnect was designed to specifically accommodate the use of small screen/smartphones.
For Apple tablets and phones, we recommend the Safari browser and on Android products, we recommend Google Chrome. Amazon tablets have their own native browser, Silk.
INCOMPATIBLE BROWSERS: Android devices OFTEN default to a native browser installed by the manufacturer. Download Google Chrome from Google App Store. Microsoft Explorer is NOT compatible. Download Google Chrome. Other browsers may work but have not been validated.
Using a webcam (or mobile device) to share you dartboard can enhance the experience, but should NOT be considered a requirement for experimenting with online play.
Keep in mind that streaming of any kind (movies, music video games, and video chat) crowds the bandwidth servicing your home, and can affect your stream.
Pro Tip: DartConnect has been designed for very low bandwidth consumption. Should you experience slowness, consider running the scoring app on a mobile hotspot, independent of the traffic in your household.
While the game of darts allows us to play remote (good thing we are not pool players), playing on-line requires us to modify some of our in-person behavior to improve the experience for participants. Here are a few considerations. We will be adding more as we get feedback from on-line veterans.
Who Goes First?
Even if you are using a webcam, the custom of aiming for the bull to determine the starting player can be a challenge when playing on-line. If you would like to continue this tradition, we recommend using the “PDC Bull” rule, in which only darts inside the Bull, or Double Bull count. If both players achieve a single bull or a double bull (a “tie”) then the players re-bull.
To speed up match play, consider dispensing with this custom and utilize “Random” or “Coin Flip” for the starting player.
Traditionally, players bull up before every Cricket leg. Again, for the sake of expediency, we recommend alternating or playing “Mugs Away” (loser starts the subsequent leg).,
Required Components: DC and Reliable Internet
Recommended Broadband Speeds
There are many factors that contribute to internet reliability, including the location of the router, the age of the device, your internet service provider and the number of devices in your household competing for bandwidth. DartConnect does not requires a lot, but remember, upload speed matters, and this is normally a weak aspect of home service. Using the device you will be scoring on, in the location you will be playing in, you can use speedtest.net or google speed test. Remember, any streaming service, music, web cams, movies etc. consumes lots of bandwidth, creating traffic DartConnect must compete with.
If your router is old or the standard one provided by the cable company, consider investing in a Mesh Network – this technology has resolved many hard to reach dart alleys.
Phone or VOIP Group Chat
Group Chat Options
Historically Skype and Google Hangouts have been the go to services for DartConnect Members when using a webcam. A relative new service called Discord has received promising reviews.
For convenience, What’s App, FaceTime or a an old fashion conference call is tough to beat. What’s at risk with a friendly game of darts among friends anyway?
AirPods and Bluetooth Headphones
With the proliferation of bluetooth headsets, we have more options than ever to be engaged conversationally with our opponents, while listening to music in the background.
Webcam or Video
Using a webcam with DartConnect:
Pro Tip: DartConnect’s scoring app has been designed for very low bandwidth consumption. Should you experience slowness, consider running the scoring app on a mobile hotspot separate from what you are using for video and independent of the traffic in your household.
Webcam Mounting Options
Better webcams have a 1/4 thread tripod screw sleeve that enables simple mounting options (no duct tape needed!). Combine this with a camera clamp you allow for multiple mounting options.
The Pedco UltraClamp is a personal favorite for its versatility and durability – its clamp mechanism is designed to work with both flat surfaces and poles. The swivel feature allows you to aim your webcam as needed.
The recent introduction of Ring Lights creates a new mounting option. If you do not have one of these lights, consider using a “spring pole”. Spring poles are designed to be easily moved and stored as needed. These can be found at hardware stores, paint stores and on Amazon.
“ZipWall” is one manufacturer of these spring poles, and they make both 10 ft and 12 ft versions (check your ceiling height before ordering).
Pro Tip: These are always typically sold in 2 or 4 packs. Partner up with your mates and share the cost.
If the app screen freezes or you see the "endless spinner"
NOTE: Always make sure you are using a compatible browser with the DartConnect scoring app – Learn More.
If the app freezes or shows a spinner that spins for a long time, especially while saving and syncing match data to our servers, the typical solution is to “refresh” the application.
If a refresh does not resolve the issue, you may need to delete your browser history and cache and reinstall the scoring app. For reinstallation instructions:
App response is sluggish, turn recording is "lagging"
Smooth online play requires a reliable WiFi Internet connection.
If you are experiencing slow or sluggish response from the app while playing online, for example, if it takes a long time to record scores and pass the control back and forth between players, this is most commonly caused by slow or compromised Internet connectivity.
First, measure your WiFi speeds, try speedtest or Google:
Please note that Internet speeds can be negatively affected by the following:
How to improve your Internet speeds for online play:
App Requires Using "Control The Match" For Every Turn
When setting up an online match, the host device must select player names from the “Home” player list (left side) and select the opponent from the “Away” player list (right side).
If players are selected from the incorrect list, then the app will require tapping “Control the Match” for every turn to input scores. This can not be changed during the match.
Improving your Internet speeds for online play
If you are experiencing sluggish play and app slowdown. Here are some ideas for how to improve your Internet speeds for online play:
First, measure your WiFi speeds, try speedtest or Google:
Ideas for improving speeds: