VOIP services

Downtime Hits Skype

As it prepares for an IPO, Skype Ltd. has suffered a major network failure that left its millions of users without their usual audio and video calling capabilities. (See Skype Dials Into a Public Future .)

The problem, the company explained in a blog on its Website, was that a number of its "supernodes" (essentially the servers that house subscriber information and enable Skype sessions) were "taken offline by a problem affecting some versions of Skype."

As this article was published, about 14 hours after problems were first noted, Skype's Twitter Inc. feed had just published an update apologizing to those who were still offline. Meanwhile, the Skype Website, which shows how many millions of users are currently connected to the services, was showing "0 people online right now." It recently boasted how it had 25 million concurrent users during November. (See Skype: In Numbers.)

The outage raises a number of questions about Skype's network redundancy and advance warning monitoring strategy. It will also be a wake-up call for anyone using the service for business communications.

The big surprise currently, though, is that a major telco hasn't issued a statement oozing with Schadenfreude.

— Ray Le Maistre, International Managing Editor, Light Reading

Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 4:15:18 PM
re: Downtime Hits Skype

There's still no full explanation of what happened (and probably won't be for a while). But interestingly enough, Tony Bates is mentioning that some users might get compensated for the downtime:


einstein 12/5/2012 | 4:15:15 PM
re: Downtime Hits Skype

I dun have Skype service the whole of yesterday, and even today, its intermittent. But than, its a free service, so I'm not expecting too much, except its been working fine for the last 6 years that as free user, you kinda expected it.

But I do know some small business, does depend on it for international calls, either skype to skype calls or Skype call in and call out. Of course, for those paid users, I'm sure they are pissed when they can't make a call.

Sign In