Box introduced a new app store-like service today for the iPad and iPhone.Box (formerly Box) offers a file sharing service for enterprises. In its announcement, it hinted at an Android version soon, but pretty much dismissed Windows as being unimportant to enterprise mobile users.
“iOS- and Android-powered mobile devices have reshaped the business landscape. According to a recent report by Forrester one-third of devices used by business professionals are non-Microsoft. Further, Windows device share will fall below 50% by 2016,” Box said in its press release.
So that’s why Box isn’t going to bother making its new cloud service available for Windows users.
Essentially, the new service, called Box OneCloud, gives iPad and iPhone users an app store of business productivity apps where all the files created by those apps are stored in the Box cloud. Microsoft-bashing aside, this is a pretty good idea.
Box has stocked OneCloud with 30 popular business productivity apps already, including Quickoffice, which lets users edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint files and create new documents compatible with older versions of Word and Excel.
So clearly Box wants to give mobile workers access to Microsoft Office applications from the iPad, without having to bother making them use (and licence) Windows.
There’s a few other clever ideas with Box OneCloud. It includes an app from Adobe called EchoSign that lets people use an iPad to sign documents, eliminating the last use for the poor old fax machine.
But it’s a little early to declare Windows dead to the mobile market. Microsoft, for all its problems and its late entry to tablets, is a healthy company with big plans for mobile. It still has millions of end-users in enterprises, and the vast majority of companies have not joined the so-called “post PC” era … yet.
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