Google turns off Windows 8 ActiveSync support

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Axe falls on Windows 8 and RT, but phones get six-month reprieve

Google has ended support for new Exchange ActiveSync (EAS) connections from Windows PCs and tablets.

The system, which lets users sync their email, calendar and contacts from Gmail to their device, will no longer let Windows 8 and RT users make new connections between their hardware and Google’s cloud. Existing users will not be affected.

The decision to turn off support for the EAS protocol was announced by Google in December and took both users and Microsoft by surprise.

The company initially said it would stop accepting new connections from all Microsoft devices on 30 January 2012. However, Windows Phone got a six month reprieve and will continue to accept new EAS connections until 31 July 2013.

Microsoft has issued guidance for people who want to access Gmail in their Mail app via its support pages.

Nevertheless, the company has also taken this as an opportunity to encourage Microsoft device users to adopt its own cloud services.

“Of course, this could also be a good time to simply switch to, a new personal email service that is clean and intuitive, keeps your address book up-to-date with information from your favourite social networks, and includes powerful inbox management tools and so much more,” said the Redmond giant in a blog post.

In addition to EAS, Google has also ended support for Google Sync for Nokia S60 and SyncML.