Introducing Box Elements, the easiest way to build apps with Box Platform

Over the past several years, the nature of software development has shifted from building complicated and monolithic applications to composing and connecting various services in unique ways to deliver value. A new class of services, tools, and methodologies has changed the way software is conceptualized and built. With Box Platform, we've helped hundreds of businesses bring our cloud content management capabilities to their own applications using our APIs to build engaging digital experiences with content for their employees, customers, partners, and more.

Today, we're introducing a completely new way to build apps with Box Platform with Box Elements. Box Elements are a set of modular components that allow you to bring the power of Box to any application and customize them to fit your needs. The first type of Box Elements, UI Elements, are generally available today as part of this announcement. UI Elements allow you to bring the Box user experience to any app and easily build user experiences with content in your apps.

UI Elements enable you to bring elements of our Box app into your own web and mobile applications and customize them to fit your brand. We've taken typical user interactions with files, such as uploading a file, viewing a file, or browsing a list of files and folders, and made them available as JavaScript libraries that you can drop into your own application development projects with just a few lines of code. All of the UI Elements can be completely customized to fit your app's look and feel and are fully integrated with the Box Platform APIs to make building applications with Box Platform easier than ever before. Additionally, all the source code for the UI Elements will be available on Github in the near future, so you can build additional functionality to fit your unique use case, instead of building from scratch.

Today, we're introducing four UI Elements for powering user experiences with files and folders in an application. The four UI Elements are:

  • Box Content Uploader, which lets your users drag and drop files into an application, or select locally from their device, and upload them securely to Box.
  • Box Content Explorer, which provides a view to allow your users to navigate through their files or folders stored in Box from within your application.
  • Box Content Preview, which displays interactive viewers for more than 120 different types of files, including documents, images, videos, 3D files, and more directly in your application.
  • Box Content Picker, which allows your users to select files or folders stored in Box from within your application.

UI Elements can be used to power user experiences for any application or integration with Box Platform. Since first announcing the UI Elements at BoxWorks 2016, we've been working with dozens of companies in our beta program to power user experiences with content in their apps.

For example, Workplace by Facebook leverages the Content Picker UI Element to allow Box users to easily grab files from their Box accounts and share them in a group on Workplace.

Or Maxwell, a digital mortgage automation solution built on Box Platform, leverages the Content Preview UI Element to allow users to easily view loan documents in the Maxwell app.

The Box UI Elements are available to any business building applications or integrations with Box Platform at no additional cost. To learn more, visit https://developer.box.com/ui-elements or ask your Box Sales Representative about building applications with Box Platform. We can't wait to see what you build!