App Review: Box Cloud Storage App for Windows Phone

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Screen Capture (8)Some people love them, some hate them: Cloud services. There are many cloud services out there: SkyDrive, which is built into your Windows Phone, iCloud, Dropbox and many more. One of those is Box, which released a native application for Windows Phone a few days ago. Here is a quick overview of the app.

At the beginning you have to set up a Box account, which is pretty easy, because it can be done directly from inside the application. You will notice that the E-Mails you get from Box are somehow personalized, which I  liked very much. Phrases like ‘dear colleague’ are normal, and you do not get any spam.

After you set up a account you can start immediately. The application’s UI is simple and easy, but not completely metro. The header doesn’t have a metro design, same for the icons. It looks a bit like a mix from iPhone UI and Metro UI. It is not that bad, but it could be better as it is a Windows Phone application. Anyway, the user experience is smooth and fast. Folders open without any delay (as far as you have a fast data connection), scrolling is very fluid and the search function works very well.

When it comes to opening a file it is a bit of a hit and miss. A picture was no problem, a Microsoft Word document neither, but I could not open a simple .mp3 file, which was a bit disappointing. A good function is the ‘mark’ option, which allows you to select multiple files. Well, of course this should be a must have on every cloud app, but it’s not, at least on non-WP7 devices.

Box is a very good alternative to SkyDrive, if you don’t want Microsoft to be able to have access to your data, because Box is known to be very safe. On the other hands I recommend not to upload personal data like pictures or documents to any cloud service; you will never know who is able to have access to it, and as Box can’t open music files and is not as well integrated into the system as SkyDrive, it is only a alternative and nothing more.

Box can be downloaded in the Marketplace.

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