April 17, 2021

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Xbox Live status: Why servers went down in major outage, and latest news on core services

3 min read

Xbox Live was down for over five hours on Thursday evening, Microsoft said, as users around the world reported problems connecting to the online service.

On Friday morning the company tweeted saying that all services had been restored, including online gaming.

However, players of three games, Rouge Company, Smite and Rec Room, still reportedly have intermittent problems.

Here’s what we know so far about why it went down.

Why was Xbox Live down?

The official Microsoft Xbox status page announced the outages during peak gaming hours in the US on Thursday night.

It confirmed that there were several areas of Xbox Live affected including people not being able to sign into their accounts, issues with multiplayer gaming and people not being able to purchase through their online store.

Users also reported problems with starting cloud games or being unexpectedly disconnected from games while playing.

In a tweet, the company said at the time: “We are aware that users may not be able to sign-in to Xbox Live at this time.

“Our teams are currently investigating to fix this issue. We will update here and on xbox.com/status when we have more information to share!”

The same Twitter account tweeted four hours later, saying: “Our teams are continuing their investigation and have found that users experiencing sign-in issues may have issues with Purchasing Content and Party Chat as well.

“We will send additional updates here and on xbox.com/status when we have more information to share.”

Several social media users who have recently bought the new Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S angrily tweeted the company.

Microsoft’s outage Down Detector, which tracks outages and issues affecting online services from mentions across social media, saw a surge in complaints with some 12,000 users voicing concerns.

But as of Friday morning, the company has not yet explained the reason for the outages and there has been no official explanation for the server issues.

Services are back

On Friday morning the Xbox Support Twitter page said: “Users should once again be able to sign-in, complete purchases and join chat sessions.

“Thank you for your patience and as always, we’re listening.”

The same account said “console, game, and app updates” were also back online after the unexpected shutdown.

Just over 2.8 million Xbox Series X and Series S consoles have reportedly been sold since Microsoft’s next-gen systems launched on 10 November last year. 

Similar to the PS5, the launch of the new Xbox consoles has been blighted by stock shortages around the world.

The company’s Chief financial officer, Amy Hood, recently revealed that sales would continue to be constrained by stock issues, telling investors earlier this month: “In gaming, we saw record engagement and monetization across our platform as well as console demand that has significantly exceeded supply following the Xbox series X and S launches.

“Xbox hardware revenue grew 86 per cent driven by the new console launch as well as the benefit from lower price promotions on our prior generation consoles.

“In Gaming, we expect continued strong engagement on the Xbox platform and significant demand for the Xbox series X and S that will still be constrained by supply.”

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