I was reading through some Exchange Server 2013 documentation, when I came across the following information on the schema changes that are introduced:

It seems that new attributes now allow to add exact location information (coordinates) for mail recipients:

As the documentation points out, these attributes could be used to determine the location of an office or meeting room, but I can think of some ways that it could be used to locate e.g. other resources or people. In a connected world people do nothing else but sharing their whereabouts using Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare I can see why introducing such functionality into Exchange could make sense. The new “Bing Map”-app in Outlook, which will automatically map an address from an email onto Bing Maps, can already be seen as a step into that direction.

Interestingly enough, these attributes aren’t required to store a location or offer location-based services. An application could easily store this information elsewhere. However, while this information – at first – might seem irrelevant, to me it proves that Exchange is a product that is constantly evolving and trying to stay ahead of the curve. I’m looking forward to see if we’ll see some use of these attributes in future updates of Exchange or Outlook…

Please note that these thoughts are purely my own and are by no means related to the Exchange product team. To my knowledge, they haven’t made any announcement that location-based services will be used in future updates or releases of Exchange nor have they confirmed these attributes could be used to do so.

For more information on other schema changes, have a look at the following website: