“We were very surprised to see Gmail announce last week that they’ll soon end support for Exchange ActiveSync, unless of course you are willing to pay Google for your email,” Dharmesh Metha, Microsoft’s product management senior manager, wrote on the Outlook Blog.”…So if you want a better email, especially on your phone or tablet, it’s time to join millions who have already made the choice to upgrade to Outlook.com.”
In a post titled Winter Cleaning which appeared last Friday on the Official Google Blog, the company announced that it will not allow new Google Sync connections early next year.
Google Sync allows uses of Microsoft’s Exchange ActiveSync protocol to access their Gmail calendars and contacts. However, Google said it has now developed a similar access points.
“With the launch of CardDAV, Google now offers similar access via IMAP, CalDAV and CardDAV, making it possible to build a seamless sync experience using open protocols,” Venkat Panchapakesan, vice-president of engineering for Google. “Starting January 30, 2013 consumers won’t be able to set up new devices using Google Sync, however, existing Google Sync connections will continue to function.”
Users of Google Apps for Business, Government and Education will still be able to use Google Sync, he said.
Metha of Microsoft, however said, Google’s move is essentially “downgrading” mobile service for many free email users.
“It means that many people currently using Gmail for free are facing a situation where they might have to downgrade their mobile email experiences by downgrading to an older protocol that doesn’t sync your calendar or contacts, doesn’t give you direct push of new email messages and doesn’t have all the benefits of Exchange Sync,” Metha said.