One of the most frequent questions I get as the Product Manager for Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) is for a list of EAS-enabled devices customers can use for mobile email and what functionality they support. This is often a difficult thing to provide since Microsoft licenses patents (which are Microsoft’s Intellectual Property) to EAS licensees. Along with licensing our Intellectual Property (IP), we provide public access to the Exchange ActiveSync protocol documentation. IP licensing does not include Microsoft writing the code for the licensee’s devices or services— that would require Microsoft to write the code for each of the many platforms licensees have and also make us update it every time those platforms were updated.
As part of their implementation, each licensee makes the decision about what parts of EAS they want to implement and how they might best want to do it with their platforms. We always try to work with our licensees to help them create great experiences, but at the end of the day it’s up to each licensee to decide what features they want to make available to their customers. Since each licensee does their own implementation of the EAS protocol, many people ask if there is a list of features implemented by each licensee, so that they can determine which devices meet their organization’s needs. A helpful chart of some of the more common implementations (Windows Phone, Nokia (Symbian), iPhone (iOS), Palm Pre (WebOS), Android, etc.) can be found in Comparison of Exchange ActiveSync Clients.
You may notice that this chart is posted on Wikipedia. This is another way that information is available to the Exchange community, and since it’s a Wiki, you’re all able to contribute!
With always updating software, new devices coming out, and a growing number of EAS licensees making options available, EAS devices are a particularly hard thing to keep track of. We think this is an easy way for each of you to share the information you discover with each other, and a way of building upon some of the great work some of you in the Exchange community are already doing (here’s an example). We hope this can be a useful resource to you in managing mobile devices on Exchange and that you are able to help contribute to the benefit of all folks managing Exchange-connected devices.
Sr. Technical Product Manager