Microsoft is aiming these apps at organizations using any Office 365 subscription that includes Exchange Online. In fact, a subscription to Office 365 that includes the latest update of Exchange Online is required to use either of the apps.
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If you’re wondering whether this is a Web app or a mobile app, you’re not alone. These are really native mobile apps that offer the usual email, calendar, and contact functionality that you get from the Outlook Web App in the browser, as well as “additional capabilities” that are only possible in packaged apps.
Here is the official feature list:
- Organize your email quickly with Conversation View, Mark as Junk, Flag, and Categories.
- Quickly search or browse email in all folders including Outlook Favorites.
- Schedule meetings using attendee free/busy and room finder.
- View shared calendars including delegate support.
- Use your voice to look up a contact or bring up your schedule.
- Remote wipe erases only your corporate data in OWA for iPhone and leaves your personal data on the device alone.
- Separate passcode for OWA for iPhone provides an additional layer of security.
In addition, the apps store your credentials and automatically log you in, pop up reminders even when the app is closed, and sync your OWA contacts so that they recognized by the iPhone’s caller ID. They are available in the same 60 languages that are supported by Exchange Online for Outlook Web App in the browser, and use the same default tongue.
Here’s the iPhone app:
Here’s the iPad app:
“Our goal is to help our customers remain productive anytime, anywhere,” the company says. “This includes providing a great email experience on smartphones and tablets.”
Microsoft is thus attempting to bring a native Outlook Web App experience to iOS devices without actually writing an app for Apple’s platform completely from scratch. In theory, this should make it easier to keep the apps updated with the latest features and improvements as much of the same code will remain the same.
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