Jaswa and Wang confirmed that the technology will be integrated into the operating system on “virtually every” HTC device starting in early 2012. HTC users will also get free additional Dropbox storage for a limited time. Dropbox is already built into Sony Ericsson Android phones sold in some European countries, and in Sharp phones sold by Softbank in Japan. These deals could be a key move, since data is increasingly created and accessed on smart phones. Along with Apple’s iCloud, Microsoft offers cloud storage for smart phones, through the Skybox service for Windows Phone 7 devices.
Jaswa argues that Dropbox has an advantage over these services, because it’s designed to work on any device. “People are going to have an Android phone and an iPad,” he says. “They’re going to have a PC at home and a Mac at school. Building a service that works equally well on all these devices is the most important thing.”
But to attract big business users, cloud services need to convince IT managers to let valuable company data to reside outside their control. This means persuading them that a service is as reliable, and secure, as anything built and maintained in-house. Dropbox is trying to highlight the reliability of its technology by pointing out that it runs on Amazon’s cloud service.