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March 27, 2022updated 02 Nov 2022 5:11pm

What is Dropbox?

Dropbox is a file hosting cloud storage service that is frequently used for file sharing and collaboration.

By Hannah Williams

Dropbox is a cloud computing service that is used for collaborating, storing and sharing files. The company was founded in 2007 by MIT students as a start-up company from the American seed accelerator Y Combinator.

The company received multiple rounds of investment and saw growth throughout the proceeding years and has long been a major fixture in the cloud file storage market.

The application is available for Windows, Mac and Linux desktop operating systems, along with apps for iPhone, iPad, Android and other devices.

Dropbox
Image: Shutterstock

How does Dropbox manage files?

Dropbox allows users to create their own folder, which is then synchronized so that it appears as the same folder regardless of which device is used to view it. Files placed in this folder are also accessible via the Dropbox website and mobile apps.

In order to share a file, the user can generate a URL for it from the Dropbox website and send it out for others to view.

The service provides 2GB of storage as part of its basic plan and paid subscriptions can include anywhere between 2TB and “as much space as needed”.

Where does the company sit in the cloud market?

Having started in 2007, Dropbox is one of the “legacy” cloud computing providers along with the likes of Salesforce and Amazon Web Services.

In recent years, the market has exploded with new use cases and its growth is expected to keep up the pace until at least 2027. Dropbox has remained a relatively stable presence with a focus on file storage, as opposed to the many start-ups experimenting with AI or mainstay competitors such as AWS and Microsoft Azure with more varied products.

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Despite that, Dropbox has managed to maintain a healthy share in the file storage market at around 27.6% as of 2022, according to Statista.

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