Saturday, February 25, 2012

Box lures Android users with 50GB storage

To celebrate new additions and updating of its Android app, Cloud storage service Box, is giving away 50GB of free storage to all Android users who log in before the 23rd of March. If that's not a reason to celebrate, we don't know what is! To avail this offer, one needs to log in to the Box app for Android, and you'll be upgraded instantly.

It's really quite interesting - last year, around the time iCloud gave away 5GB of free storage, Box offered iOS users 50 GB of free storage, and now, they are tapping into the Android user base.

Box's new revamped Android update features a fully furnished user interface, new features, and is compatible with the latest version of the Android OS, Ice Cream Sandwich. The company worked hand in hand with Google to help redesign it; it supports users who have the older versions of Android. Box will be adding support for four languages - French, Italian, German, and Spanish - to the Android app. In addition to this, users will have the ability to comment on files, upload multiple files at once and grant access to other people to files individually.

The past few months have been a rat race in the cloud-storage realm and Box has stepped up their efforts to capture the mobile cloud storage market. Apple recently announced its plan to integrate iCloud with its upcoming Mountain Lion Mac OS. Microsoft is making SkyDrive universally available and integrating that with Windows 8. Then there are the other big boys - Dropbox, SugarSync, and Amazon Cloud Drive. Google might be rolling out its own very soon.

While it is hard to find reasons to complain about 50GB of free storage, one does need to keep a few things in mind. Unlike Dropbox or SkyDrive, Box doesn't offer a free desktop sync tool to create backups of their local files online. This desktop app is available only to those holding professional accounts, which costs $15 per month. Unpaid users are still limited using the lowest file size limit of 25 MB.

Despite the lack of a free desktop utility, Box does have an advantage over the competition - it works with third-party apps and services. You can send files to Google Docs and Gmail, put them up in Microsoft Office, all with Box. No other cloud-storage space allows you to do that.

The new Box Android app is available today in the Android Market.