iPhone and Windows Mobile get the (Gmail) Push
Nokia too, with a bit of a bodge
Google has added e-mail support to its Google Sync service, providing vital connectivity to iPhone and Windows Mobile Users who don't have the time to press "check mail".
The new functionality was launched last night, but rapidly became overloaded as initial synchronisations took their toll. The service is working better now, integrating with Windows Mobile and iPhone handsets through their Microsoft Exchange compatibility. S60 users are reporting that the service is also compatible with Nokia's Mail for Exchange download, so everyone can have push email as long as you're not using Exchange at work.
That limitation comes because only WebOS will support multiple Exchange accounts, and Google Sync appears as an Exchange server to the handsets. Users will have to choose between their Gmail and work accounts, or get themselves a Palm Pre and lord it over their iPhone-toting colleagues by checking both at the same time.
S60 isn't officially supported, but by installing Nokia's Mail for Exchange it can be made to work: detailed instructions can be found in the comments on Google's blog entry. But even Mail for Exchange will only support one Exchange account.
Users of the service are reporting reduced battery life, which is unsurprising, but Google Sync will use a lot less data than polling a mailbox every five minutes, so it's a matter of priorities.
Push email is a must-have for users who are subservient to their machines. While some of us are happy to check e-mail when we want to, many people feel their lives aren't complete without Twitter feeds, Facebook updates and email alerts constantly reminding them how important they are. Now they can have them all delivered to their mobile phone without so much as a prod. ®
Simple. For push to work the phone must keep a constant connection up, because if its IP changes it's not going to be able to receive notifications. With polling it can actually go to sleep in between, thus saving battery.
Also, if you get email at a greater rate than the polling interval then polling is a win there, too. If you don't poll and just have the email client check when you bring it up, that's the best of all.
Having tried it I can say IMAP is far superior - I can go into any folder on my IMAP account and it's populated instantly because IMAP only downloads the headers until you need the email. OTOH with the exchange version it tries to download the whole email including attachments - I'm currently at 24 hours plus and my inbox only has half its emails, most of the folders are still empty... and the 'push notification' takes over 10 minutes to notify you of a new email. It's like going back to POP, only worse.
@Monty Burns: Standards of reporting
> " Short sighted and ignorant comments like that do you no favours."
I, on the other hand, like a little leavening of sarcasm.
If I am needed by work when I am off work they can ring or text me as an exceptional circumstance. I do not want the mindless prattling of HR and management taking up my valuable time.
And I have taken a person's phone from them when they were about to look at a text or email while I was talking to them. I was tempted to chuck it in the bin.
I may have to join facelessbook but only because my old school group is posting pics there and to check up on my kids.
But WinMo only does one :-(
Now all we need is for Windows Mobile to gain the vey simple ability to talk to two exchange servers at the same time. I currently use Exchange Push for work emails so I can't use GMail Push. I have to do it via IMAP instead. Grrrrr