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Apple now posting near-daily MobileMe outage updates

Taking the matter head-on, Apple is now fully acknowledging the problems it's had with MobileMe in the past two weeks as well as the attempts to fix it — to the point where company chief Steve Jobs is involved.

An anonymous Apple worker has been tasked by Jobs with providing multiple updates per week on a dedicated status page that explain at least some of why the company's new push data service has failed and what has been fixed.

"In the 14 days since we launched, it’s been a rocky road and we know the pain some people have been suffering," says the employee. "Be assured people here are working 24-7 to improve matters, and we’re going to favor getting you new info hot off the presses even if we have to post corrections or further updates later."

For its first update, the company maintains that a "serious problem" with its email servers shut out access to about one percent of MobileMe accounts but now says that it has given some of those accounts web access to their messages and that a complete restoration should be completed in one week, or the start of August. The worker does, however, warn that as much as 10 percent of the messages delivered between July 16th and July 18th will have been lost.

While not providing full details, the staffer does also add that many of the company's problems with the service were triggered by a surge of data traffic on the launch of iPhone 3G and the iPhone 2.0 firmware that was far in excess of what was anticipated, knocking out web access to all of MobileMe's features. According to Apple, the company has not only bolstered its capacity but taken preventative steps with its software to guard against these kinds of outages as well as smooth out the overall experience.

"The team has also fixed over 70 bugs including one that was preventing MobileMe IMAP mail folders from syncing correctly between the web app and Mac OS X Mail or Outlook," the employee notes, "plus others correcting display issues in Calendar and in general enhancing the performance of our web apps."

A second update is expected this weekend that should provide further detail. In the meantime, the company has updated its MobileMe email support article to reflect the new partial solution for those affected by the most severe component of the outage.