Box Adds Video And Imaging Features, Announces Box Platform

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Box announces new ‘dynamic’ content features and developer packages at its BoxWorks conference

Box is adding new preview capabilities and integrations that it says will help customers move from the “static” world of documents to the “dynamic” world of video, imaging and 3D.

The company detailed new features to its cloud service, a new iOS-only photo application and Box Platform – which allows developers to build applications on Box without having to integrate –at its annual BoxWorks conference in San Francisco.

“The last ten years of IT have been about changing the way people work,” Box CEO Aaron Levie said, citing cloud and mobility as but two developments. “We think the next ten years of IT will be about changing your businesses. Box sits at the centre of the new way of working.”

Dynamic content

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Box preview will soon support HD video, promising to support various file types and 4K playback as well as networks of various speed with adaptive bitrates. One in seven Box users preview video in Box, with businesses of all types accounting for this growth, ranging from media companies to firms that simply use online training material.

Medical images will also be viewable, with a MRI scans, X-Rays and other types of file converted from the DICOM standard into a version that can be viewed on HTML5 in a browser rather than on specialist equipment.

The other major preview addition is a 3D interactive view that accepts models in “whatever” file type a designer is using. The feature was demonstrated using a trainer design from New Balance and the Telsa X car, the latter of which demonstrated the lighting and texture capabilities. Support for virtual reality is on the way too.

Box Capture

The company has also released an iOS-only application that allows field workers to take pictures on a smartphone camera and immediately add them to a corporate Box account. Metadata is automatically added and colleagues can be tagged so they get a notification in the office when an image is uploaded. The app has been beta tested with Coca-Cola and it has been suggested the insurance, construction and retail industries are but three that will benefit.

“Mobile is becoming a major part of our personal lives and increasingly in our professional lives. It’s blurring the lines,” said Vanessa Larco, director of product management at Box. “Capture solves one of our customers’ biggest challenges: quickly collecting information from the field and sharing it with the rest of the team. You can capture videos, photos and contextual data automatically.”

Box Platform

Finally, Box says it will make it easier for companies to create applications for Box with Box Platform, which eliminates the need for employees or customers to log in with a Box account. All of the main Box APIs and features can be accessed, including preview, collaboration and security. Box Platform will be available as a free developer version and a paid-for commercial edition.

“We want you to be able to work with Box no matter that application you’re using,” said Jeetu Patel, chief strategy officer. “The only thing that can limit what you can create is your imagination.”

Box, which floated earlier this year on the New York Stock Exchange, is still a loss making operation but in its most recent results recorded a 43 percent rise in revenue.The  company generated $73.5 million (£47.6m) during the quarter, up from $51.4 million (£33.3m) a year ago, with major customer wins including Airbnb, Linkedin, Spotify and Twitter. In total, Box’s cloud platform has more than 40 million registered users at 50,000 companies.

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