Google has admitted to underestimating the impact of the outage that prevented users from accessing its Gmail service for more than an hour yesterday.
Google first acknowledged the problem at about 5:40 pm GMT in the Google Apps Status Dashboard, and declared the issue solved at around 6:45 pm.
Initially, at 6.18 pm, the company said that the bug affected “less than two percent” of Gmail’s user base.
However, in the update announcing the resolution to the problems, it said: “We’ve determined that this issue affected less than 10 percent of the Google Mail users who attempted to access their accounts during the affected timeframe.”
Gmail has more than 350 million active users, so an outage that lasts more than an hour and affects more than one percent of its users inevitably leads to discussion forums and social media sites lighting up with reports and complaints.
Assuming this outage affected nine percent of the user base, that would translate to about 31.5 million impacted users – significantly greater than if just 1.5 percent (5.25 million) had experienced problems.
Gmail is used by individuals for personal matters and by companies for employee communications as part of the Google Apps cloud-hosted collaboration and communication suite.