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Microsoft Teams Outage Affects Millions Around the World

Newsweek 1/25/2023 James Bickerton
A signage of Microsoft is seen on March 13, 2020 in New York City. Microsoft Team's users are reporting outages across the world on January 25, 2023. © Jeenah Moon/GETTY A signage of Microsoft is seen on March 13, 2020 in New York City. Microsoft Team's users are reporting outages across the world on January 25, 2023.

Users around the world reported Microsoft Teams, the communications platform used by many businesses, had stopped working on Wednesday morning.

Faults were reported on the email service Microsoft Outlook as well as a number of other products owned by Microsoft.

Several hours after the first outages were reported, Microsoft said it had "rolled back a network change," which they believed was behind the disruption.

A spokesperson for Microsoft told Newsweek at 11:10 a.m. ET that the issue was "resolved."

Earlier on Wednesday morning Microsoft had tweeted: "We're investigating issues impacting multiple Microsoft 365 services. More info can be found in the admin center under MO502273."

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The company later added: "We've identified a potential networking issue and are reviewing telemetry to determine the next troubleshooting steps."

Azure, Microsoft's cloud unit, also reported problems, tweeting: "We are currently investigating a networking issue impacting connectivity to Azure for a subset of users. More information will be provided as it becomes available."

According to website Down Detector, which monitors the performance of major online platforms, a flood of reports claiming Teams wasn't working began to come in around 2:11 a.m. ET.

At 1:56 a.m. ET the website hadn't received a single new report of the service not working, but this surged to 211 at 2:11 a.m. ET, then peaked at 1,868 an hour later at 3:11 a.m. ET, before falling sharply again.

In the Down Detector comment section users from all over the world discussed the problems they were having with Teams in their respective countries.

One user wrote: "MS Teams suddenly stops working. Manila."

Another posted: "No screen sharing and chat, audio is sketchy – Poland."

A third said: "Both Denmark and the Philippines have huge issues, we can attend meetings and talk, but not share screens, and hardly video."

Microsoft Teams customers also took to social media to discuss what had happened to the service.

Paul Andrew, from Derby in the U.K., tweeted: "Anyone else having issues with Microsoft Teams, OneDrive and Outlook?"

Another user posted: "Microsoft Outlook, Teams services down in Sri Lanka and around the globe."

Data scientist Harveen Singh Chadha posted: "#MicrosoftTeams is down and some of my colleagues thought they got laid off. Difficult Times!!"

Microsoft Teams was launched in 2017, as part of the Microsoft 365 batch of products, offering videoconferencing and chat functions aimed at workers. In this respect it has a similar function to rival product Slack, which was launched in 2013 by Slack Technologies.

In January 2022, Teams reported it had over 270 million monthly users, with more than 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies using the product.

This latest incident isn't the only recent bad news for the company, with the global technology giant announcing 10,000 layoffs on January 5, comprising about five percent of its global workforce.

Other big tech companies including Amazon, Facebook and Alphabet, the Google parent company, have also announced big job losses over the past few months, suggesting a global trend of paring back and consolidation.

On January 11 Microsoft also announced a new 'energy saving mode' for its Xbox console, sparking a backlash from some conservatives who claimed the company had gone "woke."

Microsoft has been contacted for comment.

Update, 1/25/23, 8 a.m. ET: This story has been updated to note reports of outages have fallen sharply after Microsoft "rolled back a network change."

Update, 1/25/23, 11:10 a.m. ET: This story has been updated with a Microsoft spokesperson's comment that the Teams outage was resolved.

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