Tech firms face outages after Japan quake, tsunami

Panasonic, Square-Enix, and NTT Communications are among the tech companies in Japan that have confirmed their operations have been put on hold in some cases.

Panasonic is among the tech companies in Japan that have put some operations on hold following the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit the country on Friday.

Panasonic announced this morning that employees in its digital camera, electronic materials, and washer and dryer plants sustained "minor injuries" following the earthquake. In addition, the earthquake has caused the company to stop operation in one of its factories, though it did not say which factory was closed. It said that it will "evaluate further details of the damage" to see how long it will be suspending its operation.

But Panasonic isn't alone. Game developer Square-Enix said yesterday that it has shut down game servers for Final Fantasy XIV, Final Fantasy XI, and PlayOnline. It will keep the service shut down for at least a week.

Square-Enix's decision was a response to the firm's power company, which asked customers to conserve energy usage. The Tokyo Electric Power Company said in a statement that its "facilities have been seriously damaged [and] power shortage may occur."

Even NTT Communications, which offers everything from IT services to voice and Internet service, is facing a "partial disruption" of its Internet offering, it said today. The issue is due to "submarine cables connecting Japan with the United States and other parts of Asia" being damaged following the earthquake.

There is still uncertainty about when services across Japan will be restored. The country is still feeling aftershocks and rescue efforts are under way. But the rebuilding effort could take a long time as Japan tries to overcome what some are calling its worst disaster in decades.

Shown is a satellite image of Arahama in Sendai. This image shows one continuous landscape across the rectangle--at center, see the roadway sloping slightly upward from left to right across the black bar. In the original, dynamic version of this image, the black bar can be scrolled left and right across the landscape.
Shown is a satellite image of Arahama in Sendai. This image shows one continuous landscape across the rectangle. In the original, dynamic version of this image, the black bar can be scrolled left and right across the landscape. Google, ABC, GeoEye

 

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