Dropbox helped pioneer the concept of the cloud by offering users a free and easy way to store and sync files on the web so that they're accessible (and look the same) from any PC or mobile device with an Internet connection. Company founder Drew Houston initially created the app for his own personal use, though quickly realized others could benefit from it as well. Fast forward to today and Dropbox is one of the most popular cloud services out there, albeit it's a much more competitive landscape than it was several years ago. Rather than concede the market to the competition, Dropbox this week has come out swinging with a bunch of new features, including Carousel, a photo and video sharing app for iOS and Android.
This is one way in which Dropbox is extending its reach into social. Carousel combines the photos in your Dropbox with the photos on your phone, and then automatically backs up news ones as you take them. There are similar services that integrate with Dropbox in such a manner, but now Dropbox has one of its own.
"We also think those memories are meant to be shared. That’s why we built private conversations into Carousel — as a way to relive entire events with friends and family," Dropbox explains. "With Carousel, you can share hundreds of photos in the same amount of time it’d take to send just one by text. Even more, you can capture an event from every angle by saving the photos others share with you."
You can download Carousel by Dropbox for iOS here and for Android here. Windows Phone and BlackBerry users are out of luck.
For business users, Dropbox is working on an initiative it calls "Project Harmony." It's an effort to bring collaboration to the Dropbox world by letting you see who's editing a file as well as have a conversation with other editors and the ability to keep copies in sync, all right inside the apps you already use.
On a semi-related note (to Dropbox), Mailbox is now available for Android with a new auto-swipe service, which allows you to mute threads you don't care about, snooze messages from friends until after work, and route receipts to a list, all automatically.
"Starting today, Mailbox uses Dropbox to sync preferences and auto-swipe patterns across email accounts and devices. That means you get a seamless experience no matter which device or email account you use," Mailbox says. "This is part of an ongoing integration of Mailbox into the Dropbox family — we’re working hard to craft magical experiences that are only possible on top of the Dropbox platform."