Introducing Annotations: New Collaborative Experiences for Your Apps

Since we launched Box Platform, our goal has always been to provide a suite of powerful content services for developers to leverage in their apps. Today, we're excited to announce a new feature that will allow developers to build more engaging and interactive content experiences with annotations. Available in beta, annotations allow your users to mark up a file preview in your application. Users can add annotations including point comments and highlight text directly on an embedded file preview, without having to leave your app or print out documents in order to mark up or highlight them.

Whether you're building apps for the attorneys who need to highlight sections of a contract for clients to review, financial advisors who need to add notes to an investment plan, or professors who need to grade homework assignments, annotations can help increase user engagement in apps built for nearly any industry.

In beta, there are two types of annotations: point comments and highlights.

Point Comments allow users to add a comment to a specific place in a file, such as adding a note to an image or a specific slide in a PowerPoint presentation.

Annotations point comment

Highlights allow users to highlight a selection of text with a transparent yellow overlay.

annotations highlight

In beta, annotations are available for document and image file types, and we plan to expand support for more file types over time. Once annotations are enabled for your app, your users will see options to add point comments or highlights in a header bar of the embedded preview using the Get Embed Link endpoint of the Box API.

If you're interested in using annotations in your app, you can apply to join our beta by filling out this form. Annotations are available for any app built using Box Platform, but the beta program is limited to 50 developers.

We're excited about the new types of collaborative content experiences developers can enable with annotations. If you're interested in using annotations in your app, sign up for our beta program. For additional feedback or questions, feel free to post a question in our developer forum or reach out to us on Twitter.

Learn more about how to leverage annotations and other content services in your app at this year's Box Dev at BoxWorks.