Monday, June 09, 2008

iPhone 2.0 and the MobileMe - why enterprise users do not need the service.

Just after the last post I had a customer ask me about MobileMe from Apple.  All Exchange Server users should know is that MobileMe is for all those who do not have Microsoft Exchange in their corporate environment.  It is a service that provides iPhones, iPods, MACs and PCs with a simple way to keep E-Mail, Calendars, Contacts, etc.. up to date when Microsoft Exchange is not an option.  In other words, corporate users do not need this service.

iPhone 2.0 will support Microsoft Exchange Active Synch

Today the new iPhone 2.0 was unveiled in San Francisco, and among the new features is the Microsoft Active Synch support.  This is a large improvement over the iPhone 1.0's support for Microsoft Exchange which used the IMAP protocol to download mail.  With the new software the iPhone will be capable of synchronizing live data from the MS Exchange Server including e-mail, calendar, and contacts. Moreover, with the push technology (also available on Windows Mobile phones) the synchronizations for e-mails should be fast and use less battery power to complete each time.   We'll know more about that on July 11th (or sometime thereafter). 

Some of the benefits to the iPhone (aside from the love some people have for Apple products like the iPod) is support for attachments including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.  Furthermore, it will also handle images and PDF files. 
We've tested the iPhone 1.0 version and felt it did not fit our customers as it was not an enterprise product.  iPhone 2.0 looks more promising but there are some red-flags on the horizon. For one, it uses the touch interface where as many of our customers prefer keyboards. More important, however, is that not being a Windows Mobile Device it may not support the security features - such as remote wipe - that we can accomplish with regular Windows Mobile Devices.  We will put that to further testing once it becomes available.
/Karl J