Dropbox has announced a new API called 'Datastores.' Datastores has been developed to help third-party apps synch data of all kinds across many different platforms in real time. If you haven't been hacking Dropbox to include these sort of functions, the new Datastores API will sound intriguing.
If you have, well, you've probably already set up something like the API that Dropbox has just invented. Either way, Dropbox is pushing into Apple's iCloud territory. This could get interesting. What does all of this means to Dropbox users?
More Cloud Synching
Thanks to what Dropbox has just created, it is possible that you will see more cloud synching options included in apps going forward. This, in turn, will translate into data that isn't lost when changing devices or updating. For example, you may soon be able to keep all of the high scores you've gained through a game after you've switched smartphones.
Not only will you be able to save information in the cloud from one device, but you will also be able to translate that information to another device. For example: you may save gaming scores on your iPhone, and then pick up your Android tablet to continue on with that game. Picking up where you left off, no matter what device you use, is what Dropbox envisions.
Drop-Ins lets apps use both the Open and Save Dropbox features natively. For example, the iOS Mailbox app (owned by Dropbox) now offers an option to attach any Dropbox file to an email. This is the first app to do so, and it's one feature that many Dropbox users will find helpful. Before Dropbox updated the Mailbox app, it was not possible to attach anything other than a photograph to an email.
Consumers Will Have to Wait
All of the features listed above are open to developers at the moment, but consumers will have to wait to see what developers do with these new Dropbox features to see them in action. If you happen to be a developer, you can get your hands on the new features today by contacting Dropbox.
It will be interesting to see whether or not users have to download and install Dropbox in order to use the new features. The way that the company explained it, though, is that these new features will be integrated so seamlessly that most end users won't even know that they are using Dropbox. But, really, it's up to developers to determine how these new features are used.
Dropbox aims to be the missing link between hard drives and the cloud. A Dropbox representative told press that the new Datastores system is the "...spiritual successor to the hard drive," and that seems to sum it all up nicely.