It isn’t always immediately obvious how to set up a mobile device to work with Microsoft Exchange. Once you understand the necessary steps, however, it isn’t difficult at all. The 2010 version of Exchange has made it quite simple to sync your mobile.

Microsoft Exchange can be a useful tool for business owners, but it is infinitely more useful if you can make it mobile. It is offered as a software package or as a hosted solution that can be accessed from nearly any device, making it easy to streamline all your communications throughout your business.

You have a number of options when it comes to connecting Exchange with your mobile device, but some are less complicated than others. If you own a Blackberry, for example, Microsoft Exchange Online offers an option for connecting with this device. Others may require a bit more of a work around, particularly if you are using an older version of Exchange.

Why Use Microsoft Exchange?

There are a number of versions available from Microsoft Exchange, but for the best results, you will need to pick up the latest version, which is currently 2010. This will allow you to sync mobiles with the messaging system and you will then be able to check your emails and IMs, as well as send new ones with your phone. However, this is not all that the new Exchange has to offer.

If you run a business, you will find that the 2010 version provides some great features:

  • The ability to remove yourself from an irrelevant conversation
  • Text preview of voice mail messages
  • Automatic email encryption to protect valuable information
  • Inbox backup capabilities
  • The ability to delegate administrative tasks to others

For business use, it’s useful to be able to sort through your emails rapidly and have access to them on the road. You will be able to set up your inbox so that the most important emails and messages are available first, which eliminates the need to log in on your business computer. Business trips can be more productive, as well, when you are connected via your mobile device.

Setting Up Your Mobile Device with ActiveSync

How you set things up depends on which mobile device you want to use with Exchange, but in most cases you will need to download ActiveSync, which comes with Exchange. This will work with hosted Exchange accounts only, as it is easily accessible via internet. If you’re using the self-hosted version, you won’t be able to connect it with your mobile.

What you’ll need to sync up:

  • A hosted Exchange account
  • A mobile device
  • Wireless data plan or wireless connection for your mobile

Setting up your Android:

  1. Go to Menu
  2. Choose Accounts and Sync Settings
  3. Add your account by pressing Add Account and entering your email, password and domain name and clicking Next
  4. Enter your account name in the account name field
  5. Check Requires SSL and click Next
  6. Press Automatic Push and choose how far you want to sync (24 hours back, 3 days, etc.)
  7. Give the account a name and set the Your Name field to what you wish people to see when they receive your email (usually a business or personal name)
  8. Press Done

If you have a mobile device that runs Windows Mobile 6.1 or Windows Phone 6.5, you will be able to set the sync up quite rapidly. Note that the majority of phones will be able to use the ActiveSyn option which requires minimal setup and will allow you to automatically configure your device.

Setting up your Windows 6.1 device:

  1. Choose Start and go to Programs
  2. Choose ActiveSync
  3. Press Set Up Your Device to Sync with It
  4. Enter your email and check the box to have the phone check automatically for Exchange Server settings and click Next
  5. Use your email as your username and enter your password to the account
  6. Choose Save Password and press Next
  7. Your phone should automatically sync and show you all the folders on your hosted Exchange account

For a Blackberry, you will need to activate it in the Control Panel. This can be done by logging into the hosted Control Panel and selecting a user. Then you will need to go to the Tasks section, choose Blackberry and select Activate. You’ll be prompted to enter a password here, which should be something you will remember to give to the user. Then click Activate again to complete the process.

Once the Blackberry has been activated via the Control Panel, you may need to activate the actual device through Enterprise Activation. Go to Options, choose Advanced Options, then Enterprise Activation. This will prompt you to use the password and username given in the Control Panel activation, you can then hit the Menu key and Activate the device.

Once you have synced up your mobile device, you are ready to start messaging from anywhere. This gives the business owner great freedom and the ability to stay on top of emails whether on a business trip or in a meeting.