Dropbox for Business API Lets Partners Develop Apps for Clients

File sharing service Dropbox for Business this week debuted its API, which lets developers – including channel partners – create business-specific apps such as audit logs or remote wipe, as examples.

The API works with 20 services: Centrify, CirroSecure, CloudLock, Dell Data Protection, Domo, Elastica, General Audit Tool, IBM WebSphere Cast Iron, Guidance, Meldium, Microsoft Azure AD, Mover, nCrypted Cloud, Netskope, Nuix, Okta, OneLogin, Ping Identity, Skyhigh Networks, Sky Sync, Sookasa and Splunk.

For partners, the takeaway is that they can help clients address processes including eDiscovery, information security, event and digital rights management, and data loss prevention, within each of the above companies’ services.

What’s also important, though, is that the API lets partners integrate Dropbox for Business with an on-premises file server. As a result, users can share files with people outside of the firewall – say, on a cell phone.

So, how does a partner make money from this new API? First, you’ll make the initial Dropbox for Business sale and earn compensation from the licenses. The API itself doesn’t generate revenue, it’s what you do with it. To take advantage of the API, partners should be familiar with Python and other such scripting languages; the Dropbox for Business website has all the details. From there, you can, for instance, develop a specific capability for a certain customer, then charge for that expertise as well as any continued monitoring, such as checking that people are logging in from authorized locations.

Dropbox for Business says it has amassed more than 100,000 customers since its April 2013 launch. Big-name users include Hyatt, MIT, National Geographic, Spotify and Under Armour. The company, which started its reseller program in May with more than 700 participants, told Channel Partners it expects to end the year with more than double that number.

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