TouchDown Exchange app bests broken Samsung Galaxy Note 3 email client

TouchDown Exchange app bests broken Samsung Galaxy Note 3 email client

Summary: Samsung has been working to improve their Exchange email client and has it working on the Galaxy S4. They took a step back with the Note 3, but thankfully NitroDesk's TouchDown fills the void and offers enhanced experience.

(Limited Samsung email client)

I detailed my love-hate relationship with the Note 3 earlier this week and one reason I considered returning it was the broken Samsung Exchange email client. Samsung has it working well on the Galaxy S4, but for some reason seems to have taken a step back on the Note 3.

Android has always lagged behind in providing a full featured email solution for Exchange ActiveSync users like myself, while the contacts and calendar part has been fine. The native Android client in Jelly Bean is now a decent solution, but I can't use that on my Note 3 without rooting and hacking a bit.

Samsung's EAS client has frustrated me in the past, primarily as it relates to local folders in Outlook. To further explain my problem with Exchange on Samsung phones, you can see in the screenshot here that the Note 3 shows me just four additional local storage folders. In reality, I have over 15 folders and subfolders on my work computer.

HTC has always done an excellent job with Exchange in their Sense UI and my HTC One gives me full access to these local folders. I had full access to these folders when I tested the Galaxy S4 as well so I know Samsung can get it right. On an eval and my own Note 3 there is no way to access any of the folders that I have setup in my account.

(TouchDown provides full access)

In order to gain access to these folders and work with a full Exchange ActiveSync solution I went back to an old friend, TouchDown from NitroDesk, that I used in the early days of Android when the native client was either non-existent or terrible.

As you can see in this other screenshot, TouchDown gives me full access to these local folders on my Note 3. In addition, TouchDown is designed for Exchange and actually offers me a pretty amazing and highly customizable experience on the Note 3. So even if Samsung fixes their Exchange email client I may end up sticking with TouchDown for the best mobile Exchange experience.

Further reading

Topics: Mobility, Android, Samsung, Smartphones

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  • I agree...

    I've been using Touchdown since the original Galaxy came out. I think it is, by far, the best Outlook Exchange client out there. My favorite part is actually the ability to color code the appointments in my calendar so that they match the same category colors I use in Outlook.
  • and 3 months later...

    ..have Samsung updated the email client? Trying to find out ahead of buying a Note 3 for myself. I have often used TouchDown and even upgraded to the Pro version in the past. It is a great business email tool. I hope they are getting plenty of downloads, they deserve to be. Hats off to NitroDesk! Could do with knowing if Samsung have sorted it though, as don't want to be forced to rely on 3rd party app, got used to Samsung S4 email client before my S4 wifi decided to stop working! Looking at S3 replacement - I'm sending back the Lumia 1020 I've had for 2 days as was surprisingly disappointed in the basic/limited nature of Windows Phone! Really good blog reviews btw Matthew
    • Touchdown app

      I'm still on Blackberry due to its ability to fully sync with Outlook (Exchange) -- particularly with Inbox sub-folder notifications. My emails are directed to those sub-folders by Rules. I've been waiting for the Galaxy to match that functionality but it has yet to do so. I tried Touchdown in the past (2yrs ago) and it would sync the folders, but did not provide notification. There was no way to know when a sub-folder email arrived! Has Touchdown been modified to provide this function?