Understanding the difference between Microsoft Office 365 and hosted Exchange servers can be tough to nail perfectly at first — even though it can significantly impact how you communicate with friends, family, colleagues, and customers.
Microsoft Outlook is one of the most used mail clients for businesses and organizations, with a growing number choosing to use Exchange servers that are set up separately from the free-for-all Office 365 environment to enjoy added control and stability.
The popularity of Exchange servers isn’t just because of Microsoft brand recognition; the reliability of the service, as well as many included productivity and collaboration tools, makes it ideal for business. For many businesses, it’s most cost-efficient to purchase Exchange hosting space from a trusted and reliable provider rather than configuring and maintaining its own dedicated server resources.
Microsoft Hosted Exchange Server Reviews
Because Microsoft Outlook Exchange is so widely used, there are many hosted Exchange options from which to choose. HostingAdvice.com has looked at the spectrum of competitors providing hosted Exchange, and we’ve used our expertise in servers and business-class hosting solutions to narrow down the top providers.
Our recommendations for servers to provide Microsoft Exchange are based on reliability, support, security, file sharing, and other key aspects that make up the hosted Exchange experience.
1. iPage – Microsoft Hosted Exchange Server
Providing full support for Microsoft Exchange, iPage is a web hosting service that works well for beginners and experienced users alike. The hosted Exchange service is offered as an upgrade from iPage’s standard email system.
All iPage email services are secure, encrypted, and protected against spam and viruses. With competitive pricing, iPage has the full package for hosted Exchange without any hassle of setup and maintenance.
- FREE site transfers and 1-year domain registration
- Unlimited domains, storage, and email addresses
- Email forwarding, autoresponders, and webmai
- Market your site with $200 in ad credits
- FREE online store and site-building tools
- Get started on iPage now.
2. GoDaddy – Microsoft Office 365 Server
One of the foremost names in domain and email hosting, GoDaddy also offers hosted Exchange services. All packages have the necessary features to make email communication easy and secure — including antivirus protection and spam filtering.
Users of GoDaddy’s Microsoft Outlook-based service can access their emails from any computer or device connected to the internet without having to install special software on each one. Additionally, robust online storage space keeps all contacts saved in case your local files are lost due to an accident or virus attack.
- Professional email solutions on your domain
- Microsoft Outlook and Office 365 available
- World-class data security and spam filtering
- HIPAA-compliance features with premium plans
- 99.9% uptime guaranteed
- Get started on GoDaddy now.
3. Liquid Web – Microsoft Hosted Exchange Server
As one of the titans of worry-free managed hosting, Liquid Web offers top-notch support for hosted exchange services. All plans include powerful features such as mobile device access, shared calendars, global address lists, and Outlook integration.
Secure communication between users of Liquid Web’s service is assured through military-grade encryption technology — making it one of the most secure solutions around when handling sensitive data via email or other messaging protocols.
- Heroic Support® and fully managed hosting
- Linux or Windows options with cPanel, InterWorx, or Plesk
- Industry leader in customer loyalty and NPS score
- Servers proven faster than AWS and Rackspace
- 100% uptime guarantee plus built-in backups
- Get started on Liquid Web now.
What is the Difference Between Hosted Exchange and Microsoft 365?
Microsoft 365 is a subscription-based service that includes access to various Microsoft products and services, including the Office suite of productivity tools and cloud storage. It is designed to help businesses and organizations improve employee collaboration and communication.
Hosted Exchange is a service that allows businesses to access the Microsoft Exchange Server platform from a remote location, typically through a third-party provider. This allows businesses to use the Exchange Server platform without hosting it on their own servers or maintaining it in-house.
One of the main differences between the two is that Microsoft 365 includes more than just email and calendaring capabilities. It includes access to the full suite of Office products and other tools and services such as cloud storage, security and compliance features, and online meetings and video conferencing.
Another key difference is that Microsoft 365 is a subscription-based service, while hosted Exchange is typically offered on a per-user, per-month basis. This means that with Microsoft 365, businesses pay a flat fee for access to all of the included products and services, whereas with hosted Exchange, businesses only pay for the number of users who need access to the Exchange Server platform.
How Much Does Hosted Exchange Cost?
Hosted Exchange can accommodate any organization’s budget, depending on how many mailboxes are needed and the storage space required. According to Optimal Networks, an IT consulting and management company, hosted Exchange servers can cost anywhere from $0 to $30 per mailbox month. The average mailbox costs $12 per month.
When selecting a business-class email and calendar system, Microsoft Outlook Exchange is considered one of the best bets in the industry. Using hosted Exchange, Outlook can be accessed from any device, at a desk, or on the go. The ease of having shared folders, calendars, and tasks can help businesses increase overall productivity.
Overall, Exchange has the desired features for an enterprise email solution that is trusted by organizations of all sizes and types.
How Does Microsoft Outlook Exchange Server Hosting Work?
If you’ve decided that you want to use Microsoft Outlook Exchange, the next step is choosing a hosted Exchange server. Hosted Exchange is a service that provides a Microsoft Exchange email box and storage space available via a server from a third-party provider.
A provider of hosted Exchange manages the data on a cloud-based server, including mail sent and received, contacts, and calendar data. An Exchange server can handle tens of thousands of email accounts and data, making it the solution of choice for many corporate environments. While its power and storage are excessive for most individuals’ personal email needs, it’s ideal for small- to mid-sized businesses to the enterprise.
Hosted Exchange has many benefits, including automatic software upgrades, maintenance, and technical support. The lack of physical servers and significant security advantages benefit enterprise operations. Organizations should consider whether their data is highly sensitive and whether retaining control over it is essential before choosing hosted Exchange service.
Microsoft Exchange Server Hosting Powers Business Email
All businesses need email, and Microsoft Outlook Exchange is a major competitor in that market. But there are many options for hosted Exchange servers to choose from, and the prices and mailbox sizes vary.
Choosing the right provider is a matter of knowing your budget, how many mailboxes you’ll need, and how much space is required to keep your business connected. Crunch these numbers, then match them to your choice of provider.
However, Microsoft Exchange may not be the best fit for everyone, particularly regarding server and software expenses and maintenance. Fortunately, many other emailing alternatives abound for much lower prices.
If you decide to look into other options, be sure to read our list of the top email hosting services for your business or personal use.