Box's new file-sharing app brings better Windows 10 integration

Box app

Microsoft continues its "cloud first, mobile first" strategy by announcing that Box's new Windows 10 universal app is available as a free download in the Windows Store. The product is the result of a partnership announced in April at Microsoft Build.

The new app integrates with Windows 10's file picker, allowing Microsoft Office users to save Word, Excel and PowerPoint files directly to the Box cloud. Similarly, double clicking a saved file within the Box app will open the appropriate Windows app. For better collaboration when working on shared files, Box also integrates with Windows 10 to send notifications of changes.

You can also use the new app to send and share links to specific files, so you won't have to deal with large email attachments. Additionally, there is also a preview functionality so you can preview your Office files, PDFs and photos within the Box app without having to download the content.

Going the extra mile

Box's integration with Microsoft goes further than rival Dropbox. For starters, Dropbox does not have a native Windows 10 Store app yet.

Dropbox integration with Office Online is also matched by Box on the web. However, I couldn't find the same feature to create Office documents within the new Box app for Windows 10. Box's integration with Windows 10 also makes it easier to save and select files to use with other Windows products.

Both services compete with Microsoft's OneDrive cloud. Microsoft made a controversial decision recently when it reversed its decision to offer unlimited storage.

On the phone

Box told ZDNet that an app for Windows 10 Mobile users will be available within a few weeks of the platform's launch. Windows 10 Mobile is currently available as part of a public beta for Windows Insiders.

"With the new app, users can seamlessly access, manage and collaborate on their Box content across all their Windows 10 PCs and tablets," said Duncan Fisher, Mobile Applications Product Manager at Box, in a statement.

The Box app works with individual, business or enterprise accounts.