Rosanne Cash is best known for three things: her lush voice, the folk/country/rock/blues songs she composes and sings, and an affinity for her father Johnny Cash's music, which she mingles into her repertoire. Less well known is her addiction to technology for both personal and business purposes, which bit her and at least hundreds of thousands of iCloud users over the last few days during an email outage about which Apple has provided few details.
Cash, an avid Twitter user who last year performed a concert drawn from followers' requests from a new album, took to that social network when iCloud went down. She wasn't alone: Twitter, Mac user forums, and Apple's support boards were filled with complaints, anger, and questions about an estimated 30-hour failure in iCloud email. But Cash puts a prominent face on an outage that affect many more users whose experiences might otherwise go unnoticed.
During that time, according to the iCloud status page, first less than 1 percent and then 1.1 percent of iCloud users couldn't check email either via an email client or the iCloud website. The site continues to update with terse data about affected users and the time of the next update. Apple hasn't responded to Macworld's request for information about what caused the outage and how it was communicated to users. While iCloud has 150 million users, Apple doesn't break out how many of those rely on email. It is likely only a modest fraction because iCloud may be enabled without creating a Me.com address, unlike its predecessor, MobileMe. (I have an iCloud email address which receives spam and email offers from Apple, and I never check it.)
Despite Cash's public profile, she and her husband and collaborator John Leventhal are their own IT support, and she relies on email to manage the million details of a hard-working, touring musician. She uses an iPad on the road, and uses Twitter to maintain friendships and have conversations during some of the long hours of driving or flying between gigs. Their home is full of Macs and iOS devices.
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