Entourage for Exchange Web Services Public Beta

An interesting post landed this past Monday about the Public Beta of Microsoft Entourage. Entourage is Microsoft’s Mac equivalent of Outlook, the mail client that comes with Microsoft Office and connects to their Exchange groupware server.

The post is interesting for a couple of reasons. First of all, Entourage has been using WebDAV to access Exchange, which is very communications intensive and for all practical purposes makes it a second class citizen among Exchange clients. With this beta, Entourage fully adopts Exchange Web Services.

This is a great step forward for Entourage: it will improve its Exchange support and hopefully bring it much closer to the integration level offered by Outlook on Windows.

What’s also interesting is that the Exchange Web Services API seems to be documented and available for integration by third parties. Perhaps this is a good integration point for clients like Thunderbird and Evolution. It looks like their Exchange plugins are still using WebDAV.

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