Box rolls out Windows Phone app, bolsters Qualcomm ties

Box rolls out Windows Phone app, bolsters Qualcomm ties

Summary: For Box customers, Windows Phone is the No. 3 platform---at least in terms of interest.

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Box is betting on the Windows Phone platform with a native application. The cloud storage company is also forging an alliance with Qualcomm to offer preloads on select Snapdragon devices and deals for more storage.

Add the two moves up and Box is clearly betting that Windows Phone can be a viable No. 3 mobile platform for its core enterprise customers. Box is a platform agnostic cloud player, but has generally focused its efforts on Apple's iOS and Google's Android ecosystem. Nevertheless, Box said it "anticipates strong traction for Windows Phone devices."

For good measure, Box said it is developing a Windows 8 app as part of the Windows 8 Release Preview.

Based on market share---Microsoft has 4 percent of the mobile platform pie according to comScore---Box's move looks as questionable as its HP WebOS app. However, Matthew Self, vice president of platform engineering at Box, said Windows Phone was the No. 3 mobile OS in terms of customer questions.

"Windows phone hasn't shown the traction yet, but we get a lot of customer questions. Windows Phone is definitely No. 3 in terms of questions," said Self. "And that may indicate potential for the future. We're investing in Windows 8 too."

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For Box, the strategy is to be cross platform across numerous mobile operating systems including RIM and now Windows Phone. "Forty percent of our activity is mobile," said Self.

Box for Windows Phone is designed to utilize the live tiles in the mobile platform and share enterprise files and images. The Windows Phone Box app includes batch uploading, file sharing options and the ability to pin live tiles to the screen.

As for the Qualcomm partnership, Box said it will have its apps preloaded on Android and Windows 8 devices. Box will also offer deals like 50GB of free storage and other bundles.

The Qualcomm partnership largely creates additional distribution for Box. Self wouldn't comment on whether Box will cut additional deals with Nvidia or Intel.

Topics: Mobility, Cloud, Microsoft, Mobile OS, Storage

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3 comments
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  • How necessary is this for Windows Phone?

    Maybe it's different for enterprise users, but my Skydrive account already integrates wicked tight with Windows 7 and Windows Phone 7.5. That said, I started my account when I still got 25 gigs for free and I don't even think I've used 1 gig.
    ikissfutebol
  • So Qualcomm Gets You Preloaded on WP8?

    Color me skeptical. Possibly, they can make certain that the app runs smoothly, etc., but I don't quite think that a partnership with Qualcomm will get them loaded onto WP8 phones. I'd think that Microsoft, the hardware manufacturers, the phone companies, and - hopefully - the consumer would have a larger sway over that (I know, the last one will seem somewhat illusory). Personally, I'm with @ikissfutebol, I have SkyDrive, so unless someone I work with uses Box, I have no need for it. Glad they make it available natively, though, for those who do use it.
    WebSiteManager
    • Snapdragon isn't just Windows Phone

      Qualcomm's Snapdragon platform is used for hundreds of phones a year, mostly Android but also Bada and even still BREW.
      mary.branscombe