Microsoft, Dropbox to Integrate Office, Cloud Storage

In a cloud-first, mobile-first sort of play, Microsoft and Dropbox announced that they will be integrating their services to collaborate across Dropbox and Office.

Microsoft partnership

Microsoft and Dropbox announced a partnership to integrate their services for collaboration across Dropbox and Microsoft Office on phones, tablets, and the web.

With these integrated capabilities Dropbox and Office users will be able to access Dropbox from Office apps to get to their files and folders faster, edit Office files directly from Dropbox and sync them across devices, and share new or edited files from the Office apps using simple Dropbox sharing functionality, among other things.

The functionality will first be included in the updates to the Office apps for iOS and Android, coming in the next few weeks, the companies said. The Web integrations between the Dropbox Website and Office Online will be available in the first half of 2015. Dropbox will also make its application available on the Windows Phone and Windows tablet platforms in the coming months.

With data and mobile usage exploding globally, millions of people are turning to Dropbox and Office to access, manage and collaborate on their files from anywhere, anytime. More than 1.2 billion people use Office to get work done and Dropbox has become home to more than 35 billion Office files.

"In our mobile-first and cloud-first world, people need easier ways to create, share and collaborate regardless of their device or platform," said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, in a statement. "Together, Microsoft and Dropbox will provide our shared customers with flexible tools that put them at the center for the way they live and work today."

"People around the world have embraced Office and Dropbox to empower the way they live and work today," said Drew Houston, CEO and co-founder of Dropbox, in a statement. "Our partnership with Microsoft will make it easier than ever to collaborate seamlessly across these platforms, giving people the freedom to get more done."

Dropbox and Microsoft have been cozying up for months. In July, Dropbox announced it was adding new Office-oriented features to tap into the ubiquity of the Office platform, including full-text search of Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents.

This partnership will enable people at work, home and school to easily collaborate on documents, spreadsheets and presentations. These capabilities will first be available from within the Dropbox and Office apps on tablets and phones and will soon be accessible via the Web.

In a blog post on the partnership, the Microsoft Office team said: "With the next updates to Word, Excel and PowerPoint on iPhone, iPad and Android Phone you’ll be able to connect to your Dropbox account, so you can access, edit and share your Dropbox files right from your Office apps. Once you've added your Dropbox account to Word, Excel or PowerPoint, you can navigate folders and files on Dropbox for viewing and editing in the native Office apps. And accessing Word, PowerPoint and Excel from your Dropbox app is just as easy. Navigate to the file you want, and the Dropbox app will open the Office app you need."

In a separate post, Ilya Fushman, head of product, business and mobile at Dropbox, said, "We know that much of the world relies on a combination of Dropbox and Microsoft Office to get work done. In fact, Dropbox is home to over 35 billion Office documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. That's why we're partnering with Microsoft to help you do more on your phones, tablets, and the web. Soon you’ll be able to access your Dropbox directly from Office apps, and edit Office files from the Dropbox app."

The new integrated capabilities will be available to all Office users with a Dropbox account. Dropbox for Business customers will need an Office 365 subscription.