Well, this is gonna be fun: Microsoft just released a new native mail/calendar/contacts app (which they’re calling “OWA”) for the iPhone and iPad. A few quick notes:
- It is only supported with Office 365 wave 15 mailboxes. It may, or may not, work against on-premises Exchange 2013 mailboxes. (Update 130716 1509: Microsoft has in fact committed to on-prem support, but haven’t said when.)
- It is a native app, with separate versions for iPhone (iPhone 4 and later) and iPad (iPad 2 and later). Both versions require iOS 6. Making a native app rather than just a bound web control means that the app can include some other cool features.. including gesture controls and voice control.
- It supports Information Rights Management (and, yay, reading signed S/MIME messages). Oh, and it supports delegate access too. Oh, and online Personal Archives… and shared calendars, too!
- No support for public folders, I’m afraid.
- It uses Exchange Web Services, not EAS; to the Exchange CAS and mailbox roles, OWA on a device looks almost exactly like OWA in a browser.
- VOTING BUTTON SUPPORT YES REALLY WOO HOO.
- It has full offline functionality, powered by a local sqlite database.
- When you request a remote wipe, the wipe request removes the app and all the data from its device but leaves the rest of the device untouched. This is a huge feature.
Of course, I’ll have full coverage of the app (and how to administer and manage it) in the clients chapter of Exchange 2013 Inside Out: Clients, Connectivity, and Unified Messaging. Until then, grab the client and play with it! I was able to download, install, and use it on my iPad3 without any trouble, but the App Store refused to allow me to download it to an iPhone 4. Stay tuned…
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