Getting Email on Mobile Devices FAQs

Options for iPhone and Windows Mobile Devices
The iPhone and Windows Mobile-based devices use ActiveSync to synchronize wirelessly. See ITG for more details on how to set up your device for synchronization or refer to the following ITG FAQ items:

What are the benefits of ActiveSync?
  • One can get email instantly (depending on settings Calendar, Contacts and Tasks can also be synchronized wirelessly)
  • One can also look up contacts in the school directory without having to first load the list of contacts onto their mobile device (similar to looking up a contact in Outlook); this is connecting to the Global Address List

Options for Blackberries

Blackberry Enterprise Service
What you will have to pay:
To School: $140 for two-year license ($100 one-time activation plus $20/year)
To Wireless Service Provider: varies, but student must be subscribed to Enterprise Service plan w/ Wireless Service Provider

For more information, please refer to the ITG FAQ.

What does Blackberry Enterprise Service (BES) get me?
  • BES allows you to get instant email from your GSB email Account. Also, BES allows you to wirelessly synchronize Calendar, Contacts and Tasks
  • Connect directly to and search Global Address List
  • BUT BES costs more (up to $140 for two years, plus potentially more expensive monthly data plan)

I already pay for data service (and get email from Yahoo and/or Gmail). How do I get my GSB email without paying for BES?
  • Most likely you subscribe to Blackberry Personal/Internet Service, which should be known as BIS.
  • To set up your GSB email to your BB device, do the following:
- Go to "Personal Email Set Up" or equivalent on the Home Screen of your device (most likely same icon used to set up Yahoo or Gmail service)
- Enter your GSB email address (i.e. jsmith09@gsb.columbia.edu)
- When prompted, enter your GSB email password (the same password you enter to access your Outlook on your laptop)
- You should be good to go! (You should see a new Mail icon in your Home Screen)

What is the difference between BES and BIS?
  • With BIS, you will *only* receive your GSB email
  • You will *not* be able to *wirelessly* synchronize Calendar, Contacts and Tasks

So if I still get me email with BIS, what's the difference?
  • With BES you should get your email *instantly*
  • With BIS you *still* get your email, but there may be a *delay* of up to 15 minutes (the delay is from what I have observed)

Is the delay a problem?
  • No, you still get your email
  • There are times when there might be little to no delay, but this is cannot be controlled

What happens if I want my email instantly without paying for BES? Is this possible?
  • You can redirect your email to a Yahoo/Gmail or other account

How do I redirect my email?
  • Ask ITG for detailed instructions

IMPORTANT: Are there any drawbacks with redirecting my email?
  • YES. If you redirect your email, you will not see who else the message has been sent to (including those in the To and CC list)

What does this mean?
  • If an email is sent to three people (John, Jack and Jill), and John has redirect enabled, he will not be able to see that Jack and Jill have also been sent the message
  • Therefore, "Reply-All" only goes to the Sender of the original message

How do I get my Calendar and Contacts onto my BB Device if I am using BIS?
  • Use Blackberry Desktop Manager and the supplied USB-to-miniUSB cable supplied with your Blackberry
  • With Desktop Manager, you can synchronize your Calendar, Contacts, Memos and Tasks (I believe you must *first* have Outlook open and connected to the email server, before opening Desktop Manager); you must configure how you want to synchronize your device

Are there alternatives to synchronizing using the USB cable?
  • Yes. You can use Google Sync to synchronize Calendar and Contacts.


DISCLAIMER: We do *not* work for ITG, Research In Motion, Microsoft, Apple, Google, or any wireless service provider. All information contained here-in is subject to change, based on the services by all related parties. We are not responsible or any omission, errors or changes which may result from changes in services provided by them or any other parties mentioned here.

Options for Android phones

New versions of Android (the Droid and Nexus One) have built-in IMAP and POP3 support, which means you can get your school mail. Usually these applications will ask you for your username, password, and server (mail.gsb.columbia.edu) and take care of the rest. If you run into difficulties you can ask ITG to help you set up the phone.

Old versions of Android (G1) do not have built-in support. But you can download an application like TouchDown which allows for the same features. The free version is good for 30 days, and you can either pay for the full version or reinstall the free version every few weeks.