Mobile AppsMobility

Major WhatsApp Outage Impacts Millions Of People

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelance and long standing contributor to TechWeek Europe

What went wrong? Major outage across the world sees WhatsApp offline for at least half an hour

WhatsApp has suffered a major outage on Friday morning after services for the popular messaging app went offline for at least half an hour.

The outage began at 7.10am GMT, and it prevented millions of people across the world from using the app.

Indeed, people were unable to send or receive messages, and it is reported in various media outlets that the issue was down to a “server problem”.

WhatsApp

WhatsApp Outage

It seems that while the app could still load, and people could still see their chats and contacts, once they entered into a chat, the app just showed a “connecting” message that never resolved itself.

This meant that new messages couldn’t be sent or received.

According to the website Down Detector, a huge spike in reports began from 7.10am on 3 November.

It seems to have mostly impacted western Europe and Asia regions, but problems have been reported across the world. And WhatsApp Web was also impacted by the outage.

It should be noted that this is not the first time that WhatsApp has gone down. In May this year for example WhatsApp suffered a major four hour outage around the world.

And matters have not been helped by the fact that WhatApp does not seem to maintain its official online page (unlike its owner Facebook) that gives users timely information when the site is down or experiencing problems.

Read More: The story of WhatsApp

Its official Twitter status account for example which is supposed to Tweet when the service is experiencing problems, appears to be no longer updated. Indeed, the last post there was way back in 2014.

Messaging Plaform

Outages are of course a risk with any online service. But the latest outage is a blow to WhatsApp and its ambitions of becoming the world’s de facto messaging platform.

This is because for many people, WhatsApp has replaced SMS as their primary mobile messaging application. Indeed WhatsApp has over 1.2 billion monthly active users, and users are said to send well over 50 billion messages per day.

WhatsApp was bought by Facebook for $19bn (£11.4bn) in 2014.

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