Microsoft Office 365 users, Box has room for you in the cloud

Office 365 users can now access their files from Box within the Office desktop application -- but there's no iPad access yet.

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Box CEO Aaron Levie speaks with Dreamworks Animation CEO Jeffery Katzenberg speak at Boxworks 2014 about animation technology and new media. Donna Tam/CNET

Unlike his keynote last year, Box CEO Aaron Levie decided not to poke fun at Microsoft too much at the BoxWorks conference on Wednesday. Instead, the outspoken cloud-services leader announced that Box is testing a new integration with Microsoft's popular Office 365 software.

Of course, he still had to get some laughs.

Box is not yet available for the iPad version of Office 356, but "there's one person that can make that happen," Levie said, before flashing Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella's Twitter profile on the screen. "Reach out to him to share your support for getting Box on Office 365 on iPad."

For the beta desktop integration, Office 365 users can now access their files from Box within the Office desktop application. Users can open a file in Box, work on it and then save it back into the Box cloud. They can also share the document within Office. Levie said Box will also make this integration available on the online version of Office soon.

Box continues to grow thanks to increased interest in cloud services that allow people to access their files from multiple locations. It now has 27 million users and serves 240,000 businesses, including 99 percent of Fortune 500 companies. Box publicly filed for an IPO in March but reportedly put off its plans for a few months to wait for a stronger market.

At his keynote, Levie displayed his usual flair for comedy, taking the opportunity to rib on Dreamworks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, who helped kick off the event with a discussion about technology and animation.

"When I was in college, I actually applied for an internship at Dreamworks," he told Katzenberg. "I never heard back."

When Katzenberg started to give Levie advice and say that's he's a big fan who has watched Levie grow since meeting him four years ago, Levie interrupted with, "It could have been the last 10 years if you had looked at my resume."

Levie also announced several product updates for BoxNotes, the company's cloud collaboration tool. Box is adding checklists, tables, and version history. He said users have spent 600,000 hours on BoxNotes, with nearly 50 percent of that time on mobile.

Correction, 2:33 p.m. PT: The original article incorrectly described how much time users spent on BoxNotes. Levie said they have spent 600,000 hours on BoxNotes.

 

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