I stumbled upon this very unique tech piece that is being used a lot in the industry today.
It’s called box. It is a completely web-based interface software database that you can access from any kind of computer. You are able to store content and files online so that they can be accessible and sharable in any format from essentially anywhere. But box was designed with specific access controls in mind. This means that the user can control who has access to the system- whether it be to view or to edit the files.
Now, you’re probably thinking- why not just email the piece to the person that needs to view it? What if it’s a piece that needs to be constantly edited or needs to be passed on to other people along the way? You’re having to work with teams, partners, and clients. Business today is different. Partners work in remote locations, teammates telecommute, and frequent flyers rely on mobile phones. Shouldn’t the tools we use be different, too? If it’s in a central database, accessible to specific users, they are able to get to it when they want and where they want.
Another great feature that box has is its sharing/collaborations. For example, if you were using a program file and sent it through box to someone else. If they don’t have that software on their computer, they are still able to open, edit/use the file due to the intense collaboration systems that box is partnered with.
With over 2 million users as of September 2008, the company is growing in revenue and features. They recently announced that they will be partnering with Dell in their new releases of the Inspiron Mini 9. Box will come pre-installed on these mini computers for users to share files anywhere.
Now how much does something like this cost? Well, if you’re looking for simple transfers, it’s free. With the free service you get 5 Collaboration folders, 1GB of storage and 25MB file uploads. If you want to upgrade, they have an individual package at $7.95/month. This includes 5 Collaboration folders, 5GB of storage, unlimited bandwidth and 24/7 email support. There are also business packages available.
Looking at this company from an eco-friendly view, this is realistically saving on paper and the endless photocopies of documents that are thrown out while going through revisions. A lot of companies can use this system to have most of their files digital- and when necessary to have a hard copy, print. But in the long run, this has potential to save us quite a few trees. The only disadvantage I see in this system would be that you have to be connected to the internet in order to access the database. But with today’s technologies, many are connected almost 24/7. I see this company only getting bigger if they implement their marketing strategies for the brand correctly- and right now, they seem to be doing their job.