- Editor Rating
- Rated 3 stars
- Box Personal & Business Cloud Storage
- Reviewed by:
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- Company ReputationEditor: 80%
- Customer ServiceEditor: 80%
- FeaturesEditor: 50%
- FunctionEditor: 40%
- Value For The PriceEditor: 50%
Box is one of the top competitors for online cloud storage suitable for both personal and business use.
Box has been around since 2005 and is beginning to make a serious mark in the cloud storage market against tough competition such as DropBox. The service offers tiered plans starting at a free 5GB personal account and ending at an enterprise level account with unlimited storage. All files are accessible through logging into your Box.com account online, using an installed Box client on your computer, or by connecting to the Box service via a variety of mobile device applications.
Company Reputation & Service
Box is currently a much less popular service than it's competitor DropBox, but its marketshare is growing at a fairly steady rate. According to the Box.com website, they are currently being used in companies such as Six Flags, TaylorMade, Pandora, AARP, MTV, RedBull, Panasonic, Skype, Linkedin, DirectTV, and over 140,000 other businesses. In my opinions this does give the Box service some serious credibility as many of these companies are very successful and well run companies who would not rely on a mediocre service. In terms of customer service, they provide you with many options. They have a customer service number, but in most cases I do not think this is necessary. The reason I say this is they have dedicated a big focus on providing the Box user with all types of documentation. This includes a huge list of online help pages featuring FAQs and general information, tutorials & documentation in the form of downloadable PDFs, free online training sessions, and step by step how-to videos.
The features of Box are pretty on par with competing services in the market. All accounts are able to share file links with friends or coworkers, access the service via the mobile app, take advantage of secure storage and transfers of their data, sync important files or folders automatically, and have the ability to edit documents in the cloud straight through the Box service. By signing up for a business account, you will receive the added benefits of being able to enable password protected sharing, experience faster upload times, utilize text search through your uploaded content, access download tracking and stats, issue access to documents based on a user's role, see multiple version histories, and directly integrate the service within Google Apps. Lastly, if you decide you need some major firepower you can sign up for the enterprise account which gets all the previously mentioned features, plus a long list of extra features primarily dealing with account management and security settings. Personal accounts offer 1 user access and storage space from 5-50GB, business accounts offer from 3-500 users and 1TB of space, lastly enterprise accounts offer unlimited users as well as an unlimited amount of online storage. Personal accounts start at $9.99, business accounts start at $45 a month for 3 users, and enterprise accounts prices vary depending on your needs. In comparison to Dropbox they do have the advantage of offering more storage for a cheaper price. One of the largest problems I have personally with the Box service is the file size limits that are thrown onto each account and I'll explain why. For a personal account, there is a file size limit of 250mb-1GB depending on the account tier. For someone like me who often works with multimedia or video files that end up rendering out to 3-5 GB at a minimum, the Box service will not be able to cater to my needs. If I have put 30+ hours into a single file I would absolutely invest into a backup service that will ensure I do not have the chance of loosing my work if my computer were to crash, become stolen, or some other unfortunate event. You might be thinking, well why don't you just upgrade from a personal plan? Even if I were to upgrade to a business account my file size limit only raises to 2GB and the enterprise level raises it to 5GB. These are still too low in my personal opinion and something I hate most about the service. Especially when you compare to Dropbox who does not feature a file size limit, it is one of Box's major downfalls.
The Box service function's fairly well though not as well as DropBox in my personal opinion. The interface for both the online control panel and the desktop/mobile client are not as appealing and well designed,. I much prefer the Dropbox interface simplicity and ease of use that practically anyone can handle without having to reference support or how-to documentation. Another thing I noticed that was very disappointed with Box was the upload speed of the personal accounts. Documents seem to take years to upload and the only way to boost this speed is to purchase a business level plan or higher where you will get the advantage of the “faster uploads” feature. How much of an increase would this be, I really cannot answer that as I haven't had a chance to demo anything, but the personal account. In comparison of the upload speeds of DropBox, Box is the clear loser of this matchup.
The Box service will undoubtedly satisfy some users, but due to a few major flaws such as constricting file size limits and slow upload upload speeds I cannot recommend it when there are superior options available within the same price range. If you are someone looking to store small sized files and don't mind dealing with slow upload speeds then sign up and give it a try, you have nothing to lose. If you are looking to store files that are larger than 1GB then you should steer clear and look into an better alternative such as Mega or DropBox.
As a graduate of the University of Massachusetts and our Managing Editor, Colt loves testing out the newest tech products/services. His goal is to help better educate other consumers to ensure the most satisfying purchases decisions on consumer electronics and services. When he is not working on creating new content, Colt enjoys spending time with his two Australian Shepherds, Mia and Zoey.