8 Comments

Summary:

Enterprise customers often rely on Microsoft Exchange Active Sync for remote data wipe and device administration features. Now Google has added the same features to Google Sync for iPhone, Nokia E-series devices and Windows Mobile handsets. Is this another nail in Exchange’s coffin?

google-sync

Google just beefed up their mobile synchronization functionality for the enterprise and education markets, which removes one long-standing complaint about the service. Up to now, you couldn’t remotely wipe your handset data using Google’s tool set. This feature is a must in today’s business world and it has long been a staple of Microsoft’s Exchange ActiveSync platform. Google licenses Exchange ActiveSync technology and uses it with their Google Sync service. You can use it for push email and synchronization of calendar events and contacts for your phone.

And now Google is remote data wipe features with Google Sync — lose your phone and you can wipe your personal data to protect it. Google Apps administrators can do even more, however. They can set devices to lock after configurable period of inactivity, require passwords and even ensure that those passwords are strong.

The new Google Sync administration features work with the iPhone, Nokia E series handsets and Windows Mobile devices as well. There’s no mention of Android, but then again, Google Sync is for non-Android devices due to the native synchronization that Google builds into their mobile platform. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to hear that these same functions become supported natively in a future Android update soon. Has Google has just made it a wee bit easier for enterprises to switch from Microsoft Exchange to the far less costly suite of Google Apps?

By the way, if you’re an iPhone and Exchange 2007 user in the enterprise and don’t use Google Sync, The Apple Blog has a how-to that might interest you. They have a step-by-step tutorial showing how to remotely wipe an iPhone using Microsoft’s Outlook Web Access service.

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  1. ironic since Google Sync uses Exchange ActiveSync

  2. Wow, thanks for the pointer to the Apple Blog article. We use the iPhone w/Exchange 2007 and I did not know remote wipe existed.

    Have to say, as much as I love Exchange, Google Apps Premier is looking pretty good. Guess I need to find one of those comparison charts to see what I would lose – but for the cost of one month of Exchange, we could get a year of Google.

    1. Don’t get too excited the only system that I’d take remote wipe to the bank on is BES and Blackberry. I’ve tested WinMobile, Pre, iPhone they are all hit or miss. You would be missing a lot but then again if you are not using the other features or know they existed do you really need them?

  3. Unless they can get SAS70, SOX, GBH and other convoluted acronym certification I doubt they’ll have any traction in the corporate world. Which is why most corporations still use Blackberry as the default smartphone. It may not be as sexy as the iPhone/Droid or Pre but it has detailed device accounting you can take to court if the need should arise.

  4. “Has Google has just made it a wee bit easier for enterprises to switch from Microsoft Exchange to the far less costly suite of Google Apps?”

    Far less costly? Says who? Does that include similar hosted alternatives? Conversion costs? Application support? User retraining?

  5. We did a pilot on Google apps the outlook sync app is a joke so slow its unbelievable!

  6. what about supporting pin locking on their android hand sets with exchange? Or even better can a google apps administrator enforce policies on android handsets in their company? or does it only work is you use EAS…

  7. OK So What I understand is that I can only do a remote wipe using google sync if I am using exchange, google apps enterprse or education….Is that right? or could I as a non enterprise user use my gmail to remote wipe….Any feedback is appreciated. Just had my phone stolen and need to wipe that info asap. Have already installed google sync one week ago.

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