Amazon.com’s website went down around 1 p.m. Pacific time today for as much as 45 minutes due to unknown causes.
The outage appears to have affected Amazon’s main website for all U.S. and Canadian visitors. VentureBeat was able to confirm that it was offline for at least 20 minutes, and the website Down For Everyone or Just Me also confirmed the outage for that time period.
Estimates differ on exactly how long Amazon was offline: Some reports have it at 15 minutes, 25 minutes, 40 minutes, and 45 minutes. At 40 minutes, the outage could have cost the company as much as $4.72 million in lost sales, the Puget Sound Business Journal estimated, based on the company’s average sales of $117,882 per minute. Of course, that’s an average rate, and sales at the online retailer might be expected to be much brisker on a Monday afternoon in the summer, when people are shirking work by ordering barbecue tools, Hawaiian shirts, boxes of cheap outdoor drink tumblers, or trashy novels to read on their Kindles.