Cloud storage provider Box has launched a new desktop application, called Box Drive, which offers users access to their cloud files through the familiar feel of traditional network shared drives.
The application, which supports Windows, MacOS and VDI environments, uses a file finder interface that is natively integrated into Windows Explorer and Mac Finder. When new files are created in Box Drive, all changes are automatically saved back to Box and team members are able to see the changes instantly.
Box Drive can help enterprises who are hung up on traditional fire shares adopt cloud storage without requiring any new training. In convincing enterprise users to adopt cloud, ease of use and cost savings are both huge selling points.
"Box Drive makes the switch to the cloud seamless and painless for businesses still fixated on traditional file shares,” said Dan Dorato-Hankins of Vector Media. “With Box Drive, our users have increased Box usage over 50 percent and have infinitely increased team collaboration in our offices nationwide. Accessing company data is easier than ever, but with the security of a bank vault."
Box Drive complies with HIPAA, FINRA, FedRAMP, Binding Corporate Rules, and Box Governance. In addition, IT admins can augment security policies with Device Trust to ensure only approved devices are able to access Box.
“Box Drive combines infinite access to the cloud with an intuitive, natively integrated desktop experience that is familiar to hundreds of millions of people today in enterprises all over the world,” Aaron Levie, co-founder and CEO, Box said in a statement. “Not only will Box Drive make collaborating on content easier than ever before, it also signals the beginning of the end for expensive network file shares. With Box Drive, enterprises can accelerate their move to the cloud, enhance security, and significantly reduce IT costs.”
The desktop experience is still important for many cloud storage users, especially in the enterprise. Dropbox offers Project Infinite, which it launched last year for business users to access Dropbox files from their desktop, regardless of how much space is on their hard drives. Microsoft OneDrive also has a desktop app which automatically syncs with a user’s cloud-based storage. Microsoft recently announced some changes to its OneDrive service, including merging consumer and business users into a single client.
In a statement, Box said that 78 percent of its customers have already begun to retire expensive legacy infrastructure like network file shares. It estimates that customers in real estate, healthcare and financial services industries could save anywhere from $1.3 million to more than $6 million when replacing legacy infrastructure (hardware, software and maintenance costs) with Box.