Exchange vs. IMAP

As you read on, you’ll notice that IMAP is frequently faster at syncing than Exchange accounts. This is not actually a fair comparison. Why? IMAP is actually much lighter weight. Exchange does a lot more than IMAP. There’s XML metadata with Exchange syncs that is not present with IMAP, so the transactions are larger on Exchange syncs.

Of course, you get benefit from using Exchange accounts that IMAP simply does not support including online archives, delegation, syncing categories, client support for updating rules, free/busy support, and coming soon, propose new time support for scheduling. You also get streaming notifications, which means much faster notification.

In addition, you get a far more reliable sync — one that rarely sees errors, or has issues — and you just don’t see Exchange accounts have problems such as the way IMAP can so easily get confused.