Dropbox intros offline folder support

With mobile offline folders, users can tag an entire folder to have its contents synced automatically to their phone or tablet.

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Image: Dropbox

Dropbox on Tuesday announced the launch of Dropbox Mobile Offline Folders. The cloud-based file sharing service provider says the new premium feature will let users stay on task on their smartphones even when data and Wi-Fi is unavailable.

With mobile offline folders, users can tag an entire folder to have its contents synced automatically to their phone or tablet, as opposed to marking each individual file for download, Dropbox explained in a blog post.

Of course, users must have a cell signal or internet connection to download folders in the first place, which make the feature most useful for people who know they're going to be off grid.

In terms of business appeal, the offline capabilities will be an asset to Dropbox's productivity pitch as it markets its platform to the likes of field workers, technicians and others who regularly travel to low-connectivity areas on the job. Dropbox competitors Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive currently make files available offline, but not entire folders.

"Mobile offline folders not only help minimize downtime during commutes and traveling days, they also make it easier for admins to communicate with the entire team," Dropbox said in a blog post. "Now, everyone in the office and in the field can stay on the same page and know they're working with the latest documents."

The feature will be available to Dropbox Pro, Business and Enterprise customers on the latest version of Dropbox's Android app over, which is expected to roll out over the next few days. A new iOS app is scheduled for release users early next year.

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