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WhatsApp suffers major worldwide outage lasting two hours

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WhatsApp suffered its first major outage in over a year. The service went down at around 3 AM Eastern Time with app users stuck on a “connecting” message and WhatsApp Web users seeing an internet connectivity message instead. 

The service started to return to normal at around 11:10 PM ET. Although the outage seems to have been completely resolved at the time of writing as confirmed by Meta themselves, Downdetector reported a maximum of 70, 047 reports at the peak. The outage also isn’t local to a region, with users across the world being affected. 

The last major Whatsapp outage included other Meta-owned platforms like Messenger and Facebook as well.

The company hasn’t disclosed a reason for the outage at the moment but considering other Meta-owned networks are working fine, something inside WhatsApp itself seems to have gone wrong. The last major outage the platform experienced was last year as part of a massive outage also including Instagram, Messenger, Oculus and Facebook due to a configuration change in one of the network’s routers. 

Whatsapp outages are relatively rare, especially when compared to other Meta-owned platforms like Instagram, Facebook and Messenger. That said, the fact that Whatsapp has a user base of more than two billion people worldwide from all walks of life including government officials to office workers across multiple fields, outages can have severe communication implications. 

The timing of the outage also seems to be unfortunate for Whatsapp, happening around Diwali, a festive time in India, the platform’s biggest market by far. The outage went as far as to impact Meta’s share prices, which fell by 0.7% to $128.85 premarket following the outage.

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Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah is a Computer Science graduate who writes/edits/shoots/codes all things cybersecurity, gaming, and tech hardware. When he's not, he streams himself racing virtual cars. He's been writing and reporting on tech and cybersecurity with websites like Candid.Technology and MakeUseOf since 2018. You can contact him here: yadullahabidi@pm.me.

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