Box vs. Dropbox: Cloud Storage Comparison

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Box and Dropbox are two of the largest cloud-based document management systems (DMS). These cloud storage systems stand out not just for their collaborative capacity – in terms of ease of sharing documents – but also for their security, implementation, administration, and integration.

Dropbox is more of a household name, with over 600 million users. Box has a higher profile among large enterprise, boasting 70% of Fortune 500 companies as customers. Altogether, 95,000 companies use Box DMS, with a total user base of 8 million.

With both Box and Dropbox seeing massive usage, which is the best option between the two platforms? The Dropbox vs. Box comparison has been raging for some time now.

Today, we will address this argument by measuring these platforms using core factors like collaboration, security, integration, and project management.

Box vs. Dropbox: Collaboration

Collaboration is a paramount functionality of cloud-based DMS. So what do you get from Dropbox and Box?


Dropbox has impressive collaboration tools for people to share files and work together on a task. Most notable among these tools is Dropbox Paper. Paper is compatible with iOS and Android devices.

With Dropbox Paper, users can readily accrue data from multiple sources to initiate a task. Dropbox Paper makes it easier to create to-do task lists, documents, edit, and share them.

This dedicated collaboration tool also helps you store versions of documents and sync your files across more than one device.

Leveraging the Smart Sync functionality on Paper, a team member assigned a project manages the project without the need for extra tools.

Regardless of files being stored in the cloud or synced locally, team members assigned to a project can view their file collections from their desktop. Should they desire, they can download these documents curated in the cloud.


Box version of Dropbox’s Paper is Box Notes. Indeed, Box is a real-time collaboration tool that is native to the Box platform.

This tool has a neat pack of functionalities that make it enticing to cloud DMS enthusiasts, especially for its bespoke web experience. Box Notes allow you to create, view, and edit documents from one browser window.

Collaborative tasks like group ideation, status monitoring, and project planning can be readily done with Box Notes. This facility is accessible on mobile, desktop, or web.

To initiate a project, a team member (or lead) could create notes and curate them in Box folders. Consequently, this user can add fellow collaborators on such a note.

This way, each member assigned to that note can simultaneously edit the note in real-time, adding multi-media, checklists, and text.

Box vs. Dropbox: Security and Administrative Control

Security and ease of use are two fundamental metrics that will play a role in which cloud-based DMS you choose.


Dropbox places a key emphasis on security. Dropbox gives you advanced encryption, ensuring your content is protected from intrusive access. Also, you can set your restrictions when files are shared.

And in the unfortunate scenario where a user’s device is lost or compromised, you can quickly wipe off all the data on that device remotely.

You also get other protective safeguards like secure data transfer, application-level controls (diffused across a secure architecture), and network configuration.

Administration is not any less seamless with Dropbox. Thanks to the admin dashboard’s easy user interface, an administrator can monitor user activity, logins, track access statistics (across a team), and file sharing.

It is within the exclusive preserve of the administrator to take off or add a new user to his Dropbox business team.


Box is strong when it comes to security. It boasts advanced security functionalities like custom data retention and file encryption. More than this, you get enterprise mobility management with Box.

Administration with Box is robust as well. The admin controls access and modulates sharing policies, both internally and externally. This is aimed at mitigating vulnerabilities like data loss associated with full data visibility.

Another solid security protocol with Box is its data encryption, both in transit and when at rest. At rest, we mean data that isn’t migrating across networks or devices.

Correspondingly, data in transit implies when data moves from one point to another destination, either through the internet or a private network. You also get custom encryption keys, which are all yours to control.

If you have been previously plagued with redundant cloud DMS, you will agree it is worth celebrating that Box leverages multiple backup systems and data centers. All these contribute to Box’s commitment to 99.9% service level agreements (SLAs).

Box vs. Dropbox: Third-party integrations

Of course, you will have third-party business apps to integrate with your cloud DNS. This could be your CRM database or even EHR systems for those in the health niche.

Both Dropbox and Box have notable integration with your enterprise software. This gives you an integrated platform to run chores like file downloads, uploads and syncing. Both platforms deploy APIs that make it possible to integrate with a broad spectrum of third-party apps.

Dropbox and Box can be easily integrated with Outlook and Office 365. This is a massive plus since 20% of corporate employees use Office 365.

Moreover, Box has over 1,400 native connections listed as apps. On Dropbox, such pre-built connections are termed Extensions.

Comparatively, Box’s integrations are more streamlined to business-eccentric apps like your company’s marketing hub or CRM.

Dropbox’s integration is broader. It serves not only business apps but also consumer apps.

Box vs. Dropbox: Storage

Understandably, storage varies across Dropbox and Box depending on the plan your team goes for. Typically, Box offers you the Starter, Business, and Enterprise plans.

On the Starter Plan, Box gives you 100GB while you get unlimited storage for the Business and Enterprise plans. It is different for Dropbox.

There are three plans on Dropbox. These are the Standard, Advanced, and Enterprise. The standard plan has its storage starting at 5TB while you get unlimited storage with the Advanced and Enterprise plans.

It is worth noting that the Starter plan on Box is one-third the cost you get with the Standard plan on Dropbox. Admittedly, the gulf in storage (with Dropbox’s higher) between both entry-level plans may justify the price differential.

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