Box steps up IT admin features, launches enterprise license agreements

Summary:Box has focused on its user interface with its recent updates, but now is focusing on the other side of the equation---technology management.

Cloud storage player Box has rolled out an enterprise license agreement and a bevy of enterprise management features to keep IT admins happy.

Box has focused on its user interface with its recent updates, but now is focusing on the other side of the equation---technology management. In a nutshell, Box's features provide one view of the enterprise content stored in the company's service.

The enterprise features as a bevy of corporate tech players such as Citrix and VMware eye Box's turf. Established vendors are increasingly offering storage as an add-on to existing services. These vendors are pitching better IT management tools and note that consumer-based efforts (SkyDrive, Google Drive, iCloud and Dropbox) aren't enterprise friendly.

Box is trying to play the consumer and enterprise sides equally.

"Our secret sauce is a great user experience and IT control," said Whitney Tidmarsh-Bouck, general manager of Box's enterprise unit. She noted that VMware, a partner, briefed Box on its plans, dubbed Octopus. The difference between Octopus and Box is that VMware's tools run within its environment and may seem disjointed to the user.

Box, which has more than 120,000 businesses in the fold, has been stepping up its enterprise game. The company has added Lennar Corp. and Webcore Builders to its base as well as Allergan. Those customers show how Box is hitting verticals.

Among the key changes, which are rolling out in a beta.

  • The company introduced an enterprise license agreement. That move doesn't sound like a huge deal, but for corporations trying to track down a bevy of accounts on credit cards it's helpful. The enterprise license agreement also provides predictable pricing over time.
  • Box launched a new admin console and enterprise search tools. Box Enterprise admins can see folder and file access in one pane. Search shows where and how files are shared inside a company.

  • New mobile security tools. Admins can apply passcode locks and new permission schemes in Android devices and iOS tools are on deck.
  • Support for multiple email domains. Box accounts can be created for more than one domain. That feature is critical for larger companies.
  • Archiving and e-discovery tools. Archiving additions are designed for regulated industries so they can track comments, tasks and sharing files.

Topics: VMWare


Larry Dignan is Editor in Chief of ZDNet and SmartPlanet as well as Editorial Director of ZDNet's sister site TechRepublic. He was most recently Executive Editor of News and Blogs at ZDNet. Prior to that he was executive news editor at eWeek and news editor at Baseline. He also served as the East Coast news editor and finance editor at CN... Full Bio

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