'Black Monday' as WeChat service lost
Updated: 2013-07-23 07:27
By He Wei in Shanghai (China Daily)
Breakdown brings misery for millions of mobile app enthusiasts across nation
For Chen Zidan, a 28-year-old insurance company worker in Shanghai, yesterday's temporary loss of service on WeChat was a "Black Monday".
After waking up, she found herself disconnected from the popular mobile communications app's server, through which she keeps in contact daily with more than 200 friends she has not seen for months.
Her anxiety rose when she lost track of her boyfriend in France, who had promised to post pictures taken on a trip to Italy on his personal page. WeChat is the only platform the couple uses to communicate.
"I feel isolated and lonely. There's not much to read during my half-hour subway ride to work. I feel lost and a bit frustrated," said Chen.
She is just one of the millions of Internet-savvy young people who have embraced social networking apps as an integral part of life.
Tencent Holdings, China's largest Internet company by market capitalization and the developer of WeChat, confirmed that a hardware breakdown occurred at around 9:30 am.
The incident came as it struggled to deal with hordes of users unable to send individual or group messages or update their "friend circles", a function allowing them to share photos or information among their contacts.
Tencent's WeChat team said on its micro blog it was doing everything possible to fix the nationwide meltdown.
A company announcement in the afternoon said investigations suggested that a cable linking to the WeChat server was destroyed by ongoing construction projects, but that most users were able to access their accounts from noon.