WhatsApp is back: Services restored after 2 hours of global outage- QHN

After an outage that lasted almost two hours on Tuesday — affecting both personal and business users — WhatsApp’s services were restored. The instant messaging platform was down for thousands of users, both in India and around the world, who were unable to send or receive messages or see changes to their status updates.

The outage impacted users across phones, and its WhatsApp Web service. WhatsApp business services and WhatsApp payment services were also down. According to outage detection website Downdetector, nearly 29,000 reports of outages were flagged by WhatsApp users.

Later in the day, some users reported that services were still not working on WhatsApp Web, but there were no complaints regarding the phone app.

Confirming that the services were restored, Meta in a statement said, “We know people had trouble sending messages on WhatsApp today. We’ve fixed the issue and apologise for any inconvenience.”

However, the company did not share any details on the reasons for the outage, calling it a ‘technical issue’.

WhatsApp has seen tremendous growth with 2 billion users using it globally. While in India, the platform has over 400 million users, it boasts over 15 million users on its WhatsApp small business app.

Growing importance

According to Businessofapps.com, over 100 billion WhatsApp messages are sent and over two billion minutes are spent on WhatsApp voice and video calls per day. This data is for 2020.

According to Meta’s Q2, 2022 earning calls, 1 billion users were messaging with a business each week across WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram.

WhatsApp payment is still small in India, recording about 7.43 million transactions for the month of September, with a value of Rs 631.63 crore. This compares with 6.78 billion total transactions across platforms like PhonePe, GooglePe, Paytm and others, with a transaction value of Rs 11.16 trillion.

Outages on the rise

Worryingly, such outages are not new to the platform. On October 4, 2021, Meta’s all three platforms — Instagram, WhatsApp messenger, and Facebook were down for six hours. The 2021 outage was due to the DNS failure issue. A DNS failure means users are unable to connect to an IP address using domain name. However, Tuesday’s issue only impacted WhatsApp’s services and not other Meta platforms like Instagram and Facebook.

In a similar instance, Google, too, had reported global service disruption across YouTube, Google Photos, Maps, Drive, and Duo.

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