The Microsoft Teams collaboration app was hit by a possible networking issue on Wednesday that led to delays in receiving chat messages for some North American users.
Microsoft also reported issues involving running live events in Teams. Along with North America, some users in South America have been affected, the company said.
The issue with delayed chat messages was resolved after roughly five hours.
“We rerouted services to alternate infrastructure, and the impact to message delivery has been mitigated,” the company said in a tweet from the Microsoft 365 Status account at 4:07 p.m. Eastern Time.
It was at least the second major report of Microsoft Teams issues this month, with the Redmond, Wash.-based tech giant disclosing issues with joining Teams meetings on Feb. 4.
For solution providers and their customers, “the infrequent but annoying feature outages of Teams are undoubtedly frustrating,” said Ben Wilcox, senior vice president of solution architecture at iV4, a unit of Atlanta-based ProArch.
“Outages in technology have always happened because there is no such thing as perfect code or perfect hardware. Cloud outages are less due to mass redundancy, but it’s still not perfect and likely never will be,” Wilcox said in an email to CRN. “Luckily, there are usually five ways to get around a failure in Teams, such as turning off video, accessing the file via SharePoint, dialing in via the conference bridge, sending the attachment via email, or just calling the person on your cell phone.”
Importantly, Microsoft cloud services “have historically done an excellent job of preventing the recurring issue once they’ve found the root cause and put in new controls to prevent problems,” Wilcox said.
On Wednesday, Microsoft acknowledged the issues with delays in receiving Teams chat messages at 10:51 a.m. Eastern Time, via the Microsoft 365 Status account on Twitter.
At 12:15 p.m. Eastern Time, the account tweeted that Microsoft has “identified a potential networking issue that may be causing the problem.”
Microsoft declined to comment beyond the messages shared by the company on Twitter.
Teams—which is part of Microsoft’s Office 365 suite of productivity apps—has become an essential tool for countless businesses in North America since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and widespread shift to remote work. Microsoft disclosed in late October that Teams had reached 115 million daily active users worldwide.
On Wednesday, an outage map on downdetector.com showed the Teams issues affecting users in numerous major cities in the U.S. and Canada, including New York, Washington, Chicago, Toronto, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, Atlanta, Seattle, Vancouver and Boston.
The Teams issues follow a series of three Office 365 outages in 10 days last fall, which affected Teams, Outlook and other productivity apps.