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5 Mins Of Google Downtime Causes 40% Drop In Global Internet Traffic!

It is one of the most widely discussed topics that how important really is Google?

No one can question its impact on the world. Be it the internet or now mobile, Google has its hands on everything related to technology.

A recent incident though proves exactly how much of a ripple even a minor absence of the giant can create.

On Saturday, Google services observed a snag because of which they were not available for about 5 minutes. That is no big deal right, just 5 minutes.

However, it is of noteworthy that the internet traffic saw a plunge of 40% during this period. While it is expected to see a plunge, the magnitude of it shows the high reliance that people have on Google.

Google Downtime

I also wonder if this is a replicable scenario, if this outage happens for a longer period or not. My point being that while there are other options, most people would not have jumped on to them for just 5 minutes. I suspect that most people must have tried to refresh their browsers and many might have even suspected that their internet was not working.

The reason for this is because our reliance of Google search. Chrome is the most used browser and Google is the default search in that. Firefox also comes with Google by default. What this means is that everyone must have been searching even other sites by Google search. Infact, it is quite common to type the url of the site a user wants to visit in the google search box, rather than going straight to the url box of browser. The impact would have been that many people who are not tech experts might have thought that their internet is down.

Android too uses Google search as default and adds to a plethora of devices depending on Google search.

I suspect that it was this that caused even further dip in the internet usage. If this outage would have been longer (few hours perhaps), most people would shift to other search engines and the visible dip of 40% would be reduce.

The time of impact was 4:22 AM to 4:27 AM so barring a few night dwellers, most Indians were unaware of this.

According to Google- “Between 15:51 and 15:52 PDT, 50 percent to 70 percent of requests to Google received errors; service was mostly restored one minute later, and entirely restored after 4 minutes.”


About Kunal Prakash

A graduate from IIT-Roorkee, Kunal Prakash’s love for technology was at first sight and everlasting. He is currently enjoying the first stint as a professional after leaving over 20 years of schooling. You can follow him on facebook or visit his blog for his other musings.

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