Google Inc (GOOG.O) suffered a service outage on Friday that briefly took down Gmail, the Internet email service used by hundreds of millions of people and many businesses across the globe.
Google, which first acknowledged the outage at 11:12 a.m. Pacific Time (19:12 GMT), said roughly one hour later that service had been restored for some users and it expected “a resolution for all users in the near future.”
It remained unclear what triggered the outage, which affected users in at least India, Britain and the United States and prompted a stream of complaints on Twitter from users in many more countries.
“We’re investigating reports of an issue with Gmail. We will provide more information shortly,” the company said on its “App Status” dashboard online, which tracks the state of various Google services.
Two other Google properties, the social network Google Plus, and YouTube, appeared to load slowly as well.
Yahoo Inc (YHOO.O), which runs a rival Internet mail service, seized the moment to post a screenshot of the Gmail error page to Twitter.
Google users attempting to sign on saw a “temporary error” message and a brief note: “We’re sorry, but your Gmail account is temporarily unavailable. We apologize for the inconvenience and suggest trying again in a few minutes.”
Google did not respond to requests for comment.
UPDATE: As of 3:23 p.m. EST Gmail is back. “The problem with Gmail should be resolved. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience and continued support. Please rest assured that system reliability is a top priority at Google, and we are making continuous improvements to make our systems better,” Google writes on its App Status Dashboard.
I like to imagine they were busy undoing evil by yanking the NSA splices out of their fiber cables (or whatever) to regain user privacy.