Microsoft mercy on iPhone - Enterprise IT can now rejoice
Now there is an answer for long wait - the new agreement between Apple and Microsoft will enable the iPhone 2.0 for Exchange ActiveSync. This is the reflection of Apple's acknowledgment for Microsoft on how popular the Microsoft Exchange Server 2007and its mobility features. The popularity of Exchange Server 2007 in the enterprises forced many of the mobile device makers to support Exchange right out of the box, and the last one to enter into this bandwagon is none other than Microsoft's rival Apple. What that means is, Apple will build Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync into the iPhone - this allows iPhone users to be able to access Exchange Server and enjoy the mobility features from Microsoft. Apple now the recent addition to Motorola, Nokia, Palm, Sony Ericsson, Symbian and many others that license Exchange ActiveSync for mobile devices.
Apple thinks this move is essential because more and more enterprises are moving to Exchange Server (especially to the new version - Exchange Server 2007) and also, there more mobile devices coming to the market that equip with Microsoft ActiveSync feature. It is true to some extend that to be considered as win-win deal, but on the other side iPhone market share will explode and becomes threat to blackberries.
Although iPhone 2.0 supports ActiveSync, the true Windows Mobile experience is not guaranteed. In other words, true Outlook experience on a mobile phone and some of the key enterprise device management policies are not in the iPhone 2.0
The Microsoft Effect
I remember when iPhone launched it became a hot selling stuff in the market though majority of the enterprises banned this device from its networks for very many reasons such as "no support for Exchange Server", security etc..Sounds like Apple took this lightly though the fact is Exchange Server market share of close to 50% in the enterprises.
Exchange Hosting Providers can now rejoice too. I remember some of them were providing IMAP access when iPhone was initially launched.