New Google dashboard provides downtime information

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Google made good on a promise to keep its customers better informed of service outages by introducing a new dashboard for Google Apps on Wednesday.

The feature comes just two days after Gmail went down for a couple of hours worldwide due to a coding problem, although Google said last year it would make more efforts to inform customers after several Gmail outages last August.

The Google Apps Status Dashboard shows a list of applications such as Gmail, Video and Docs and a green check if the service is up, according to the company's enterprise blog.

If not, it shows either a red "x" representing a service outage, a yellow wrench for a service disruption or a blue "i" icon for more information. The dashboard also has an RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed.

The dashboard will be available to subscribers to Google Apps, the company's hosted suite of collaboration, messaging and office productivity services. Apps Premier costs US$50 per user per year.

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