Google targets Microsoft's mobile ambitions: Gmail Android now supports Exchange work email

Anyone using a work email on Exchange can now add their account to Gmail.

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Support for Exchange is coming in an Android Gmail update via Google Play in the next few days.

Image: Google

Google is rolling out support in Gmail on Android for Microsoft Exchange, not just for Nexus devices but for all Android handsets.

The newly-added Exchange support removes a roadblock for people who wanted to use Gmail for work and personal email on an Android device.

Gmail on Android has allowed users to set up email from non-Google accounts such as Yahoo and Hotmail for a little over a year, making Gmail more of an email-management tool. However, support for Exchange accounts has until now been limited.

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Previously, work email addresses that use Microsoft Exchange servers were only available for Nexus devices and a few others that run on Android 5.0 Lollipop and newer, Google notes in a support document.

That situation explains why the new Exchange support sounds like old news, since at the time it was announced, it was misinterpreted as Gmail on Android gaining Exchange support for all Android devices.

"Now, whether you're on Google Apps or Exchange, you can use the Gmail app on any Android device to send and receive mail," Google noted in a blogpost.

Support for Exchange is rolling out in an update to the Android Gmail app via Google Play within the next few days.

It should come as a relief for anyone who desperately wants Exchange to work with Gmail on Android. As noted by Venture Beat, there was an option to install a separate Exchange app. The update also means Gmail supports calendar and contact data from Exchange.

Of course, since Google began supporting select third-party email services in Gmail on Android, Microsoft has accelerated its support for Google's mobile platform, including with the launch of Outlook for Android in January last year.

For those who just wanted a single app to manage multiple email accounts, including Exchange, Outlook was a good option and now they can choose Gmail, too.

Read more about Gmail on Android