Confusion and frustration surrounding EAS/AirSync support

This post is about emClient’s EAS (Exchange ActiveSync) support and my
(not guaranteed to be 100% correct) understanding of it. The emClient refers to EAS as AirSync, but that is just a far less common and outdated name for the same thing. I’m calling it EAS.

Prior to v7.1, whenever we setup an (MS’ online mail service) account in emClient, EAS was used in the background to do all the syncing. Since version 7.1, emClient still uses EAS to synchronize contacts, calendar and task data, but e-mails are synchronized using IMAP.

The emClient team has done a poor job of explaining why this is. I’ve seen very vague mentions of “reliability issues”. However, considering this is a proven technology that is licensed by MS, and which is used successfully by hundreds of other companies, this “explanation” seems insincere (either that or their development team is incompetent). I’m not buying it. More on that later…

More importantly, along with that change in EAS support, the emClient team also changed how an account is configured. Prior to version 7.1, it was possible to to setup an account and then redirect it to an alternative server. This allowed emClient to authenticate and synchronize not only against, but also against any other EAS based service provider, like Zoho or Shaw. Due to the changes in account configuration, this is no longer possible. For customers who used emClient specifically for the ability to sync with such providers, and payed for it, emClient is now broken. As of yet, I have not seen this addressed by the emClient team. This is frustrating for quite a few people and the emClient’s handling of it just looks dodgy.

I’d appreciate an honest and technically competent answer as to what is going on here.

I suspect these changes were actually made because EAS is a technology that must be licensed from MS. The changes likely allowed the developers to lower or eliminate the licensing costs.

That last paragraph is speculation. Everything else is simply the situation as I currently understand it.

Am I right about all this so far? Corrections? Official statements from the emClient team?

What I’d like to hear is this:

  • EAS will return as a fully supported synchronization protocol (i.e. including mail)
  • EAS will be configurable for other services besides, like Zoho or Shaw
    Since EAS must be licensed from MS, I’d understand the free version not supporting it, but the Pro version really should. It’s what people payed for.

Side note:

A while ago, (MS’ online mail service) and MS Outlook (the Windows application) used EAS to synchronize data between them (just like emClient). Sometime last year that changed. Now and Outlook synchronize data using EWS. EWS is the protocol used by Exchange server, which  emClient already supports. When creating a new account in emClient, we can already select “Exchange” (as opposed to outlook, gmail, yahoo, etc) and enter an address. This works perfectly well. The result is an emClient account that syncs with using EWS rather than the clunky EAS+IMAP approach.

Unfortunately, most users with Outlook accounts will end up using the later/inferior approach, as that is the setup we get when we say we want to synchronize with an account. That seems completely backward. I’m hoping this is only temporary and that the emClient team intends to fix this ASAP!

@Russel Markosky,

Any chance I can get your feedback on this issue as well?

Kind regards


Hello Collin,

Thank you for your post. I will try to explain it clearly.

The AirSync was officially supported for MS accounts. The fact that it worked for Zoho was just a public workaround but it was never publicly announced or advertised as a feature by eM Client. When Microsoft ended using AirSync for mail, we gradually presented the solution with IMAP + AirSync and then EWS.

Based on this, we do not plan introducing AirSync support for free/paid version users as our development team focuses on new ideas and technologies that will help our users in the future.

The second question regarding EAS - We didn’t support EAS before and I have no information that it would be planned in the near future.

I hope this answered your question.

With best regards,
Russel Markosky
eM Client

There are only like and comment options here. I do not like this comment and I have gone from an advocate of EM Client to considering it borderline malware  (PUP-emclient) for it’s continuous prompts to “upgrade” to a disastrous program.

Paid (like me) or free doesn’t matter, all users are treated equally bad and screwed over by these folks.

You have now OFICIALLY  told everyone with or Zoho accounts (or any other ISP or business that uses Activesync) to go an stuff themselves.
EM Client is now officially the worst email client. At least Outlook ALWAYS said screw-you instead of adding it after the fact. What’s next? Removing CardDAV and CalDAV?

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You have to understand the business model here.  The vast majority of their user base is Gmail and I assume the second level would be Exchange (including, Hotmail, etc.).  I would imagine that users of Zoho/Activesync would be a small fraction of their user base.  As any organization has limited resources, they can’t be all things to everyone, so they have to support the majority.  Unfortunate as it may be for you, I don’t think it’s eM Client saying screw you…

You would think that the 12  million Shaw customers and 20 million Zoho customers who are not served by Outlook vs the Hotmail/ and office 365 users who are already served by Outlook would be a fantastic edge. It certainly is in my client base. (or was until June)

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Hello Russel

While I don’t like your answer, it’s at least believable and for the first time clearly states your company’s position. That’s very valuable and it’s the first time I’ve seen anything like it on this issue anywhere. Thank you.