Google Docs Goes Dark In Evening Cloud Outage

Google Docs, Google's cloud-based suite of productivity applications

According to the Google Apps Status Dashboard, Google began investigating an issue with Google Docs Lists at 5:18 p.m. EST. About 10 minutes later, the search giant began probing hiccups with Google Documents and Google Drawings.

Google Docs comprises a host of Google's cloud-based applications, including documents, presentations, spreadsheets and other tools.

At 5:40 p.m. EST, Google said the issues persisted.

"We're aware of a problem with Google Docs List affecting a majority of users," Google wrote. "The affected users are unable to access Google Docs List."

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By 6:18 p.m. EST Google said it had righted the problem.

"The problem with Google Docs List should be resolved," Google wrote. "We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience and continued support."

Google Documents and Google Drawings suffered similar outages and were back online by 6:19 p.m. EST, Google said.

In a statement to customers, Google wrote: "We are aware of an issue involving Google Docs and are working now to resolve it as quickly as possible. We will be updating the Apps Status Dashboard regularly. We apologize for this inconvenience."

The Google Docs cloud outage comes on the heels of Google launching the ability for users to access Google Docs, Google Calendar and Google Gmail without an Internet connection. While offline access for Google Docs is read only, Google said it is working on offline editing capabilities.

Google Docs' downtime is the most recent in a string of high-profile cloud outages that have rocked the industry and called into question the reliability of cloud computing services. Last month, Microsoft Office 365 suffered a cloud outage that impacted several of the software giant's online services. The outage affecting Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft's cloud application suite, followed a string of several outages that rocked Office 365's predecessor Microsoft Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS).

Cloud colossus Amazon Web Services has also suffered recent outages that took its cloud services offline.