23 August 2009

Exchange: What is Microsoft Exchange

Microsoft Exchange email is far superior to the basic email still used by some businesses.


Smaller businesses typically start with POP email - the basic, no-frills email that has been common since the 1980s.

POP email is cheap, but offers none of Outlook-Exchange's advanced functionality, like calendars, task lists, file-sharing or contacts.

POP email is stored on your local PC, instead of on a central email server, so if you use different devices - like a desktop PC and a BlackBerry® - you will not see emails which came through to a different device.

Some businesses use an older product called Lotus Notes. This works more like Microsoft Exchange, but is lacking in ease-of-use and is not compatible with Microsoft Outlook.


Microsoft Outlook-Exchange is popular due to its user-friendliness and its advanced features, which boost productivity:

  • Up-to-date: Exchange stores everything centrally, so you always see the latest version of your email, files, calendar and contacts.
  • Mobile access: Exchange is the software that powers email for handhelds like the latest BlackBerry®, Treo or Windows Mobile devices. It also offers sophisticated Web mail, so you will always be synced with your team.
  • Shared calendars: Lets employees see colleagues' availability to schedule or rearrange meetings, book conference rooms, and plan projects.
  • Shared task lists: Allows 'to do' lists to be created and assigned, then shared with team members. Managers can check off items as they are completed.
  • Shared contacts: Company or shared address books means your customers' contact details will never be lost or misplaced.

Microsoft Outlook-Exchange lets employees share information and work together productively, in a way that is otherwise impossible.