At the heart of BoxWorks 2012 in San Francisco this week are two major announcements for the enterprise cloud storage giant.
First up is Box Embed, an HTML5-embeddable framework that brings together Box's suite of collaboration features and cloud-stored content to third-party applications.
Thus, Box Embed also comes with 10 new enterprise partners: Concur, Cornerstone OnDemand, DocuSign, Eloqua, FuzeBox, Jive, NetSuite, Oracle, SugarCRM and Zendesk.
The core idea behind Box Embed to link content together in one place in a simple but useful way -- especially for end users.
"The challenge for us is sticking a Box interface in any of these apps by itself isn't really that useful," said Chris Yeh, vice president of platform at Box, via telephone on Thursday, adding that you need to make it contextually relevant.
Using NetSuite as an example, what the Box Embed interface does is it allows a user within NetSuite to access content in Box that is relevent to the object (such as customer records, etc.) in NetSuite that the users is looking at. Essentially, the integration with Box is designed to associate documents in a folder back with the actual record in NetSuite.
Yeh said that this has a lot of advantages because enterprise customers don't have to worry about where content is stored or encrypted correctly because it's already built into this Box interface.
"So besides the fact that it's contextually relevant, the other thing that's really cool about it is this interface in NetSuite is totally useable in the way Box would be usable in a website like this," Yeh said, explaining that if the user took a file from the desktop and dragged it in here, it would automatically upload it.
Yeh added, "Everyone benefits because these products are now tied to one layer of content in the enterprise."
Box Embed also has potential beyond just being embedded in partner and customer applications. Being that it is HTML5-based, it can also be incorporated on intranets, extranets, forums, wiki’s, and blogs.
Yeh commented that there are probably "another 100 partners or so" that Box would like to involve here, but this is a significant starting point nonetheless.
Box Embed is still being built out with enterprise partners. Subscribers of Box and these other services should start seeing this feature available during the fourth quarter of 2012 or the first quarter of 2013. There is no additional cost for Box Embed for existing customers of both Box and these SaaS companies.