Microsoft Windows Phone 7 users hit with two service disruptions this week

It wasn't a great week to be a Windows Phone 7 user, with two seemingly unrelated Marketplace and Xbox Live access issues hitting Microsoft customers and developers.

It wasn't a great week to be a Windows Phone 7 user.

The Windows Phone Marketplace was down for anywhere between seven and ten hours on May 4-5 (depending on whose account you believe), with many users unable to purchase and/or download applications. Then, on May 6, many Windows Phone 7 users were reporting they were unable to access Xbox Live from their phones.

Microsoft has provided very little, by way of explanation, for the Marketplace outage. This is the only information available, a spokesperson said, which posted to the Windows Phone blog late last night:

“Earlier today some Windows Phone users were unable to download applications from Windows Phone Marketplace for several hours and instead received an error message saying, ‘Can't get this info right now. Check back in a little while.’ The problem was identified and fixed in a matter of hours. The Marketplace service is now fully available.

"We regret any inconvenience this disruption caused the impacted customers and our developer community. The problem was the result of scheduled maintenance being performed on Microsoft’s infrastructure during the night. The root cause of this issue has been identified and steps are being taken to help prevent future disruptions to the Marketplace service.”

Microsoft isn't sharing any details about "the root cause" that happened during scheduled maintenance (maintenance about which Microsoft didn't forewarn its customers).

The May 6 Xbox Live access problem which hit Windows Phone users is seemingly unrelated to the Marketplace issue. According to the Xbox Live service status page:

"Users will experience issues attempting to use LIVE services that use Token services including but not limited to connecting to Facebook\Twitter on the Xbox 360 Console, signing into Xbox LIVE using the Windows Mobile 7 phone, and editing avatars or viewing achievements on Xbox.com.

"We are aware of the problem and are working to resolve the issue. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your patience."

A Microsoft Windows Phone spokesperson said there were no additional details to share at this time.

Update: 6 pm. ET on May 6: The Xbox Live status page is no longer flagging the token services issue.

I am not going all Paul Thurrott on Microsoft here -- and couldn't even begin to come close to some of the Windows Phone Secrets author's epic (and largely deserved) rants about the Windows Phone team's need to offer customers and developers the best experience ever, in order to grow market share -- or at least to slow marketshare losses.  I have to say weeks like these make me wonder whether I should go for a Windows Phone 7 once Verizon finally comes to market with something (which is supposed to happen some time before June 30).

Windows Phone users-- what's your take?

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