DROP­BOX IN THE MID­DLE

How Drop­box is do­ing what no other com­pany can - unite Ap­ple, Google and Mi­crosoft with a sin­gle folder.

HWM (Singapore) - - Think - BY LEO BOON YEOW

In 2002009, a young de­vel­oper named Drew Houston found him­self sit­ting in Steve Jobs’ of­fice. Jobs had asked Houston and his part­ner Arash Fer­dowsi for a meet­ing in Cu­per­tino, to talk about buy­ing the two founders’ fledg­ling com­pany.

But Houston told Jobs that he wasn’t sell­ing, not even to Ap­ple -he was de­ter­mined to build a com­pany, no mat­ter what. Jobs smiled and told them he would be go­ing af­ter their mar­ket, and that their com­pany was “a fea­ture, not a prod­uct.”

Drop­box - the fledg­ling com­pany built around a ‘fea­ture’ - has since ex­ploded into a tech be­he­moth; said to be worth be­tween US$5-10 bil­lion, with around 175 mil­lion ac­tive users sav­ing more than a bil­lion files daily.

In June 2011, Ap­ple an­nounced iCloud, their new cloud sync­ing ser­vice to re­place Mo­bileMe. But de­vel­op­ers have been vo­cal about their dif­fi­cul­ties sync­ing their apps us­ing iCloud. Daniel Pasco, CEO of Black Pixel stu­dio, wrote that “we spent a con­sid­er­able amount of time on this ef­fort, but iCloud and Core Data sync­ing had is­sues that we sim­ply could not re­solve.”

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