Time Warner Cable has explained why its brand new iPad app stopped working last night.It wasn’t that some network exec blew a fuse and threatened a lawsuit — it was a simple demand-crushing-the-servers problem. (As the company jokes, “it’s not a good party unless you run out of beer.”)
TWC responded by reducing the number of channels in the app to 15, from 32, which seemed to help. It’s now working to add more capacity so it can add the full channel roster back.
And here’s TWC’s blog post by PR guy Jeff Simmermon:
We were pretty sure that our iPad app was going to be fairly popular, but we had no idea that it was going to be the most downloaded app in the iTunes store yesterday. The demand was overwhelming, in more ways than one. At about 8 o’clock last night the app crashed under a much heavier load than we anticipated. Our engineering team is working as hard as they can to put a fix in place and get everything up and running as soon as they can.
For the time being, the app is running with only 15 channels. We have found that by temporarily reducing the number of available channels, we can ease strain on the authentication process. This will enable us to offer at least some sort of an experience to our customers while we get a fix in place. We’ll add the other 17 channels back in as soon as we can fix the underlying issue, and we’ll be adding more channels in future iterations of the app as well.
On the one hand, this is a nice problem for us to have — it’s great to see that our customers are excited about this, and we’re thrilled to know that our vision of TV’s future is one that the public wants. In other words, it’s not a good party unless you run out of beer.
On the other hand, this is really frustrating for us and our customers, too. And we’re really sorry for the inconvenience. We know how frustrating it can be when a brand-new product doesn’t work well. Please bear in mind that this our first foray into the iPad app world, and the first cable company to offer live streaming to the iPad at all. We’re going to figure out a fix and implement it as soon as we possibly can.
We appreciate your patience and understanding, and again, we’re sorry for any frustration.