This weekend saw panic, sadness, anger and shouting as Xbox Live was inaccessible to users. It also saw people the world over waking up to the insanity underlying any idea that the next Xbox would demand 'always on Internet'.
Of course, the first reaction to the downtime was that the system had been hacked to death, probably by everybody's favourite digital demons, Anonymous. The group quickly took to Twitter to state:
"XBOX Live was NOT hacked by Anonymous", and with conspiracy out of the picture
, it was time to consider plain old Cock-Up, otherwise known as 'unintended consequences' or 'unscheduled maintenance' or 'a mistake'. According to Microsoft's
own service status page as we write this: "Users may experience difficulties with the following services:
Creating new or accessing existing Minecraft game saves
Affecting the following LIVE Platforms:
Xbox 360 Console"
An update went up on 4/14/2013 at 8:52:07 PM PDT stating, "Don’t fret, Xbox Silver Members! We know that you’re still experiencing some issues when you try to load a saved game in Minecraft. We are hard at work with our partners on this issue. We want to get everything back up and running smoothly for you! Thank you for being so patient with us, you’re doing great. We’ll let you know as soon as we have more information!"
As of 12:12GMT on the 15th of April, that is still the latest.
Now, simply put, these things happen. Servers go down. Cables are cut. Power-outs shake things up. These things happen on small scales, in your home network. They also happen on networks with services that are serving millions of people globally. These things will always happen. What is not going to happen is "Always Connected to the Internet Xbox 720".
Not unless Microsoft wants to lose a huge chunk of audience that is.