Outlook has Tasks. I tend to flag emails that I need to take further action on, and they appear in my tasks list in Exchange:
iOS 5 and OSx (Mountain Lion or later) have ‘Reminders’. I figured that it must be possible to show Tasks from Exchange – after all, I could already sync Email and Calendars. So I set this up … and no tasks came through. Puzzling.
Instead, I tried the opposite – to create an Exchange Task from iOS.
These tasks then did appear in Outlook. It was only then that I went to the Outlook ‘Tasks’ tab, and realised that only the tasks created as ‘Tasks’ were being synchronised. Check out the ‘type’ icons. ‘Followed up’ email has a mail icon – and the tasks that sync have a ‘Task’ icon:
I created a ‘Task’ item in Outlook and voila, it appeared on my phone (as you can see in the screenshot of my phone).
Further checking shows that when you flag an item for ‘Follow Up’, it creates a ‘To Do’ item. This is not the same as a Task, and isn’t synced with iOS or Mac OSx Reminders.
It’s kinda hard to say who missed the point here – Microsoft or Apple – but it is pretty annoying that an email flagged for follow up can’t be synced with Reminders. This might be worth remembering if considering Office 365 / iPad or iPhone scenarios.
(Other than that, it’s nice to be able to get email, contact and calendar information by phone)