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Microsoft unveils Exchange Server 2007

Shows off enhanced mobility features

Microsoft yesterday showed off new mobility features that will be available in Exchange Server 2007, the next version of the company's email and messaging software.

The forthcoming update improves email searches on mobile devices, allowing users to search through a greater number of emails on mobile devices than they can right now, said Megan Kidd, group product manager for Exchange 2007, at the company's TechEd conference in Boston.

The software will allow a remote user to wipe all Exchange Server-fed data from a device if it is lost or stolen. Currently, only someone with Exchange Server administrator privileges can do this.

Exchange Server 2007 will allow mobile device users to reply to meeting requests in a variety of ways, Kidd said. Currently, when users receive a meeting request from Exchange Server on a mobile device, they can reply only by accepting or declining the invitation. With Exchange Server 2007, a user will be able to do either of those things and send an email reply to the sender or forward the message.

Microsoft will for the first time include user-interface technology in Exchange that allows emails to have the same look and feel on mobile devices as they do in the Outlook email desktop client or on Outlook Web Access, a web-based mail system.

Devices that license Microsoft's ActiveSync technology will be able to leverage Exchange Server 2007's new mobility features. So far, Microsoft has not lined up vendors to support the software, but the company expects there will be devices available next year after the general availability of Exchange Server 2007, Kidd said.

Microsoft plans to release a public beta of Exchange Server 2007 at the end of July. Users can preregister for the beta now at www.microsoft.com/exchange/preview.

Exchange Server 2007 will ship either at the end of 2006 or in early 2007.

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