Nokia pushes out big Mail for Exchange update

Despite having an entire line of handsets devoted to enterprise users — and even dubbed “Enterprise series” — many view Nokia’s offerings as unfit for business use. While this notion may some merit despite wide adoption in several regions, recent updates to Nokia’s in-house Exchange sync solution have definitely gone a great length to make Eseries devices more viable enterprise contenders. Mail for Exchange (MfE) provides push email, PIM sync and plenty more goodies you would expect from any mobile Exchange client. With this latest update to version 2.9.158, MfE also features the following:

  • Access Point Groups/Destinations — Mail for Exchange can now actively switch between WiFi and GPRS connections automatically if your phone supports Destinations. This feature is only available on S60 3rd Edition, Feature Pack 2 and S60 5th Edition phones.
  • Calendar, Contacts, Tasks, are disabled by default on new installs. This is to prevent users
    from inadvertently losing Calendar, Contacts and Task data.
  • When editing your Out of Office (OoO) message on the the device, Mail for Exchange retrieves the current OoO message from the server when the setting/tab is accessed and OoO is set to “Yes”, instead of periodically as in previous versions. This may cause a short delay and requires connectivity with the server.
  • Much better battery life in adverse network conditions. If the Mail for Exchange client can’t
    maintain a connection to the Exchange Server, it automatically switches to polling every 15
    minutes. The client will switch back to Always on at the next scheduled period.
  • Mail for Exchange setting tabs are no longer dynamically displayed, instead all tabs are
    always displayed.
  • Manage your device by name instead of IMEI via Outlook Web Access (OWA) email client (if
    account allows). Users of OWA can perform device management features on their phone
    clients such as wiping the device. The phone model name is now visible in the status field.
    This is helpful for users who are synchronizing several phones.
  • Pictures in contacts are now synchronized.

The biggie here of course, is Access Point Group support. Prior to Feature Pack 2, S60 was a disaster when it came to data connectivity as it required each application to specify a single means of connectivity (Access Point) to be initiated each time information was to be transmitted. FP2 doesn’t solve the problem entirely but it does allow users to create Access Point Groups that can include a variety of cellular data and Wi-Fi Access Points in a single entry. Applications such as the new version of Mail for Exchange still need to be set to initiate the Group but at least now apps configured to connect via Wi-Fi aren’t dead in the water the instant you get too far from your router. Of course handsets using older versions of S60 such as the E71 are out of luck unfortunately — yet another reason to get excited about the E71x, which reportedly sports FP2.

[Via Symbian-Guru]

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