Dropbox wants to replace your hard disk

Dropbox kicks off its first developer conference with launch of a new platform and a bold prediction

Barry Collins
10 Jul 2013

Dropbox has kicked off its first developer conference with the stated goal of replacing the hard disk.

The cloud-storage service is fighting for attention in an increasingly tough market, with Microsoft integrating SkyDrive tightly into Windows 8, Amazon recently launching its own consumer cloud storage service, and Google relying on Drive for its Chromebook devices.

Dropbox remains fiercely competitive, largely because of its cross-OS compatibility and speedy synchronisation, and now the company is planning to take the service to the next level with the launch of the Dropbox Platform.

The spiritual successor to the hard drive is what we’re launching

With up to 500 developers expected for the inaugural developer conference in San Francisco, the company is bullish about its future prospects. "We are replacing the hard drive," said Dropbox CEO Drew Houston, according to a report on Wired. "I don’t mean that you’re going to unscrew your MacBook and find a Dropbox inside, but the spiritual successor to the hard drive is what we’re launching."

The new Dropbox Platform includes tools for developers that will allow them to use Dropbox to sync app data between devices, so that a user of a photo-editing application can access the same library of photos and settings on their smartphone and tablet, for example.

The company's new APIs will also make it easier for app developers to include plugins that save to Dropbox, or choose files stored in the service for use within apps. "Drop-ins let developers connect to hundreds of millions of Dropboxes with just a few lines of code," the company said in a blog post.

"The Chooser gives people access to the files in their Dropbox from web and mobile apps, and the Saver makes saving files to Dropbox one-click simple. You can already see them in action in Yahoo Mail, Shutterstock, and Mailbox."

App developers interested in the new APIs can find details on the Dropbox Developer site.

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