Gmail takes a Friday timeout

Google's popular Gmail service dropped offline for a bit at midday Friday. Service disruptions also hit Calendar, Drive, Docs, and Google+ Hangouts, among others.

Seth Rosenblatt Former Senior Writer / News
Senior writer Seth Rosenblatt covered Google and security for CNET News, with occasional forays into tech and pop culture. Formerly a CNET Reviews senior editor for software, he has written about nearly every category of software and app available.
Seth Rosenblatt
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Google's Gmail service, which provides e-mail for around 450 million people, went offline Friday around 11:04 a.m. PT. Service began to return for many Gmail users 25 minutes later, while full service was restored this afternoon.

A Google spokesperson said that the company is looking into the outage.

Google quickly updated its apps status dashboard to reflect that Gmail was down. Officially, the company flagged the outage as a "service disruption," and not a "service outage," although that's probably little consolation to people who weren't able to access their Gmail. Google updated the dashboard to show service disruptions for Gmail, Calendar, Talk, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Sites, Group, Voice, and Google+ Hangouts.

Coincidentally, Google site reliability engineers were hosting a Reddit "Ask Me Anything" during Gmail's naptime.

Twitter exploded with the expected snark of the masses, including competitor Yahoo. Yahoo tweeted and, hours later, deleted an announcement and screenshot that Gmail was down. Yahoo has since apologized, which isn't surprising given that it was only last month that the company's own Yahoo Mail suffered a multiday outage.

Update at 3:20 p.m. to note that Yahoo deleted its tweet about the Gmail outage, and has apologized. Also updated at 1:45 p.m. to add Google Voice to the list of affected services, at 12:25 p.m. to add that most Google services have been disrupted, and at 11:40 a.m. to add context.