Thursday, December 27, 2012
Amazon had troubles with its cloud storage on Christmas day and fouled Netflix's movie delivery. That damaged not only Amazon but also Netflix. Consumers don't care who is at fault. They want movies. That Netflix couldn't provide them until late that evening wasn't good enough. It has been a hard lesson for high-tech companies that they cannot afford down time when providing services perceived to be essential. The phone companies understood that long ago when they built universal service. They became accustomed to engineering redundancies into systems so down time was reduced. The disaster wrought by Hurricane Sandy was a reminder of this. I saw the repair trucks for Verizon, the local phone company, on the street before those of the power company. High-tech companies are getting better at 24/7 service, but they still have a distance to go. I'm sure Amazon is working to make sure that it doesn't happen again, and Netflix is looking for backup.