Turns out a box isn’t just for storing stuff; at least not in a digital context. At the BoxWorks 2013 user conference , Box announced it has begun private beta testing of Box Notes, a set of tools that allow users to create and annotate content within the Box cloud platform.
According to Whitney Bouck, general manager for enterprise at Box, the development of Box Notes represents a significant departure for Box in that it has now moved into the realm of content creation. Previously, end users could share content, but any time anyone want to make a comment or create new content, they had to fire up another application.
On a practical level that made cloud platforms such as Box a little cumbersome to use. Box Notes solves that problem, says Bouck, by making it easy to create content or comment on content directly within the Box environment.
Box Notes, scheduled to be available in early 2014, provides support for real-time, concurrent editing of documents along with annotation. Any documents created using Box Notes automatically leverages the encryption capabilities of Box. In the not too distant future, Box will add support for Apple iOS and Google Android devices.
Box is clearly trying to up the ante in the collaboration wars in the cloud where multiple application providers are now vying to become the dominant workflow platform.
But the implication of Box Notes goes well beyond the ability to create content within the Box environment. A lot of end users carry notebooks to be able to create content or more often, simply comment on it. Box Notes means that instead of firing up a PC, many users will be able to use their tablet to collaborate or create content. For a lot of us, that means the blurring of the lines between PC and tablet use.
What impact that will ultimately have on the number of PC units that will be shipped is anybody’s guess. But as more editing capabilities find their way into the cloud, you can be pretty sure that tablet usage will increase.