Microsoft Service Disruptions Affect Hotmail, Outlook, SkyDrive
March 13, 2013

Microsoft Service Disruptions Affect Hotmail, Outlook, SkyDrive

Michael Harper for — Your Universe Online

Microsoft services Hotmail, Outlook and SkyDrive experienced some service disruptions and outages yesterday, leaving many customers without access to their accounts. Nearly four hours after users began Tweeting about these disruptions, Microsoft acknowledged the incident on their Service Status page.

“We're having a problem accessing email,” read an update on the page. “You might not be able to see all your email messages. We're working to restore service right now.” Microsoft posted another update three hours later, as reported by PCWorld, claiming they were still working on the issue.

Many Hotmail and Outlook customers were unable to see all of their emails during this period of down time. SkyDrive customers reported having trouble adding, editing or removing files. The Outlook service disruptions lasted for an estimated eight hours. SkyDrive customers were left with disrupted service for an estimated three hours. According to Microsoft´s service status page, all services are currently back online.

Last month, Microsoft announced plans to migrate Hotmail users over to their new Outlook mail service. Many users online speculated that perhaps something was jumbled during this multi-month migration, causing yesterday´s outages.

Earlier this year, Hotmail and Outlook users were unable to access their accounts from their Android phones, iPads and iPhones for several days.

Microsoft previewed their brand new Outlook service last July to a rush of waiting customers. Within the first six hours of availability, one million people had signed up to try the service. By the time they closed the preview, more than 60 million people had signed on. The preview phase ended last month when Microsoft announced the Hotmail migration to Outlook.

“The upgrade is seamless and instant for people who use Hotmail. Everything from their email address, password, messages, folders, contacts, rules, vacation replies, etc. will stay the same, with no disruption in service,” said David Law, director of product management for last month.

Microsoft has said they hope to have all Hotmail users migrated over to Outlook by the end of this summer. Despite yesterday´s interruptions, the new Outlook has been earning some positive press as a better and cleaner email experience than the long-relied-upon Hotmail. It´s integration with Microsoft´s SkyDrive cloud storage offering is also a plus over the old Hotmail. Similar to their expansive Surface with Windows RT advertising push, Microsoft plans to begin running a three-month-long campaign to promote the new Outlook.