Box Platform: Announcing v2 API in GA and Year in Review

2012 has been an amazing ride for the Box platform, and I’m excited to announce that we’re ending the year on a high note with the general availability of the Box v2 API. First released back in April in beta, we’ve made tremendous strides to bring our partners, developers and customers a simple, elegant and intuitive API that will power the next generation of business collaboration.

Our v2 API represents a major step forward for Box. It is RESTful, implements the OAuth2 spec to standardize user authentication, has much improved error handling and it is well documented. Our Platform Manager Peter Rexer has a deep dive into all the details of the v2 API here. We’re also introducing Box developer accounts, which offer developers access to all of Box’s enterprise features through both the Box web app and the API. In celebration of our new API, we’re offering 25GB of Box free for any developer account created before January 18, 2013.

API Momentum in 2012

Our new API is being launched at a time of tremendous platform growth for Box. In 2012, every API metric that we tracked grew significantly. Here’s just a sample of some of the massive traction we’re seeing with the Box API:

  • 129%: growth in third party developers using Box
  • 140%: growth in number of third party API calls per month
  • 133%: growth in apps in the Box Apps Marketplace
  • 200%: growth in number of weekly users of third party apps on Box

Of course, we wouldn’t have seen such strong platform growth and API engagement without the efforts and work driven by the amazing Box platform team and our ecosystem of third party developers. We built industry-first products including Box OneCloud and Box Embed, travelled the world meeting amazing companies along the way and got together as a community to hack some pretty cool projects. Here’s a brief look back at an amazing 2012.

Box OneCloud

In April, we introduced Box OneCloud for iOS, the first mobile cloud for the enterprise. OneCloud helps you discover useful productivity apps that are deeply integrated with Box for productivity on common business tasks like document editing, PDF annotation, e-signature, etc. We launched on iOS with 50 apps and shortly thereafter brought this to Android. By year’s end we’ll have nearly 300 OneCloud app integration partners across both iOS and Android. 40% of all Box’s Fortune 500 customers are using Box OneCloud.

Box Platform on the Road – New York & London

In New York this spring, we announced our v2 API in beta, 100 new OneCloud apps and partnerships with General Assembly and TechStars. We welcomed over 650 attendees to Skylight West to hear from Box CEO Aaron Levie, Take Two Interactive CEO Strauss Zelnick and former Editor-in-Chief of Wired Chris Anderson. Later, everyone danced to cool tunes spun by Elijah Wood. Our friends in New York include the Bizodo team, which makes a great form-filling app that puts content into Box. We also hung out with the Handshake team, which created a rich order-taking app useful in many business and retail settings. When the Handshake logo appeared on our OneCloud billboard on the 101, they tweeted that it was the startup equivalent of your voice dropping. One of the most interesting things about New York is the concentration of enterprise-focused startups. For example, we’re really pleased to support Jonathan Lehr’s NY Enterprise Technology Meetup and Nick Gavronsky’s New York City Startup Weekend, which just occurred last weekend.

In late August, we parachuted into the middle of Carnival week in London to talk to analysts, press, London-based startups and supporting government organizations. We hosted a developer meet-up at Shoreditch House and were awestruck by the energy in London, particularly in Tech City. We spent time in Google’s shared space in London, where we first met Ben Wirtz, CEO of Unifyo, which brings together multiple sources of customer data to provide enterprises with a singular view of customers. We wandered down to Chelsea to meet Will Lovelace, CEO of Datownia, a company that allows the easy translation of Excel spreadsheets into APIs for external consumption. And we visited the lofty digs of the Chelsea Apps Factory, a super high quality app consultancy and production company.

It’s great to meet with so many wonderful people and even better when you can get together and build some really cool things.

Box Hack Event

Full disclosure, our first public hack event at Box HQ was not intended to be thematically linked to astronauts shooting each other, but that’s another story. At this event, called “Redefine Work,” 150 hackers stayed overnight creating more than 40 contest entries. Participating technology partners included TokBox, Firebase, Mashery, Twilio, Parse, and SendGrid. Our winning hack, called OMGHelp, is an application that improves the technical support experience by allowing a customer to use a smartphone camera to show a technical support person what they’re doing. If you’re interested, here is a really nice recap of our event that was created by Mashery’s Neil Mansilla on Storify.

We closed out our active year in October with...

BoxWorks Dev Day

At BoxWorks, we announced a brand new technology that lets you quickly and easily extend the full Box experience anywhere you work. We call it Box Embed, our robust HTML5 framework for adding Box directly into the user interfaces of other applications. We launched with ten partners, including NetSuite, Jive, Conur, Oracle and others and we plan to continue adding to that number. Box Embed is particularly exciting to us because it’s one of the easiest ways for our partners to help make the content you have stored on Box accessible from anywhere.

We also ran an un-conference-like Developer Day where hundreds of developers joined us to hear about the latest web development technologies and learn about enterprise development. We ran a well-attended startup camp with Boxers from various departments (design, sales, marketing in addition to developer evangelists) providing consulting. And we concluded with one of my favorite reporters/writers, Drew Olanoff of TechCrunch, interviewing one of my favorite “startup” CEOs, Jeff Lawson of Twilio, about the ways that developers should think about using APIs in their apps.

We were fortunate to have many of our platform partners join us at BoxWorks this year. Jesse Miller and the team met with Box customers on the main show floor. David Klein and the SlideShark team presented in one of our sessions, as did Milind Gadekar from CloudOn.

As you can see, we've had an amazing year. Thanks to all of our platform partners, big and small, for working with us. We look forward to reaching the next level in the new year.

2013: Looking Forward

As 2013 approaches, we're working on making it even easier for developers to work with Box by focusing on our SDKs and other developer tools. We're also excited to be building new platform products. On one front, we’re working on new developer-focused metadata tools. On another, we’re looking at allowing developers to hook into workflow products that will allow content to move through Box in various business flows.

We're sure that it will be a fun ride. Happy holidays to all and we’ll look forward to working with you in 2013!


Tags: api, dev, sticky