DropBox has released an API for Android and iOS devices that simplifies its integration with applications. From a technical standpoint it does not add any new syncing features that were not available to developers, but the tools have been simplified to such a degree that it could propel adoption of the already popular service. Currently, the biggest advantage that DropBox has going for in its favor is its 100 million strong user base, something which Google, Microsoft and Apple are all training their crosshairs on. While Google Drive, Microsoft SkyDrive and Apple iCloud come along with he respective mobile platforms, DropBox has had the first movers advantage and additionally it has been cross platform for the longest time. Apple’s iCloud on the other hand is only for Apple made hardware, SkyDrive is the most ubiquitous of the lot but still struggles with user adoption and Google’s Drive is the newest player in the market.
DropBox in the last few months has continuously been refining its craft. It has been moving beyond the core file-system nature of its product and is trying to make the experience more seamless where the user does not have to worry about where their content is going. More importantly, DropBox is currently focusing on getting its users to sync more data, rather than capture more users because this way it will be able to build more value add services around its core product. For instance, a couple of weeks back it launched the ‘Photo Album’ feature. Recently, it purchased cloud based streaming service AudioGalaxy, which could point towards the impeding launch of a DropBox plugged-in music service. Additionally, audio streaming apps like AudioBox also tap-in to DropBox to pull music.
More importantly though, it is noted that the new APIs are simpler to implement than Apple’s iCloud APIs which means that DropBox has set its eyes on capturing a lot of users from Apple’s cloud product. And when one takes into account that DropBox is a cross platform service, this move could attract users who are not solely planted in Apple’s ecosystem but use products from multiple different vendors.