Apple is even today likely to buy Dropbox by making it by far, the largest acquisition of a feature not a product as said by Steve Jobs in 2009.
I have decided to slate reasons why both Apple and Dropbox needs this merger/acquisition of Dropbox by Apple
Why Apple needs Dropbox
It is always said that Apple thinks differently from its competitors in the industry. They likewise articulate that “Apple kills its competitors with awesomeness”
- iCloud is good, but not to have
Being an Apple user and a die-hard fan of the tech giant, they lack the compatibility of iCloud for its users. Users of Apple devices can store all their files in the iCloud on one server, but it isn’t smooth to use, unlike Dropbox, Box, One Drive or Google Drive.
- iCloud is dependent on its rival to run its cloud services
iCloud is currently hosting accounts of various Apple Device owners, but on Amazon Web Services. It may sound good that Apple can concentrate only on giving a feature rich platform to its users, rather concentrate on back-end storage, but this sounds good only for a new startup and not for a tech giant valued more than Amazon. Dropbox recently dumped AWS, to store over 90% of their 500 million strong user base’s files on their self-hosted servers. Well, it may sound an added investment, but shows independence in itself. Apple loves to give its users a rich prison, which is not available when they host their cloud on AWS.
- Apple wants to target the business users
Dropbox is available on all platforms in the form of apps, but iCloud users have to go through a web version if using a non-Apple device. Microsoft’s Surface has the best capabilities and well integrated to OneDrive, which is very less complicated than iCloud (in my opinion). Secondly, Microsoft to target business users have given OneDrive facility to Apple users such that a business user can use an iPhone to connect to a Windows Desktop at workplace through a seamless integration of OneDrive. Dropbox is more promising than OneDrive, justifying the need of Dropbox in their business.
- Apple is only in hardware
Apple generates major revenues from its hardware alone. People tend to not like their software by-products. Microsoft has the best Office tools in the market. They have Skype with Office 365 integration for their business users connected to OneDrive. Its software can run over the top on all devices in the market. Google has a similar situation. Delivering a robust mail service connected to Hangouts supported by the gaudiest and most user-friendly Google Drive, they are present on all devices. Apple lacks here not due to backward technology, but lack of a cloud service which can make out all the jobs swiftly for Apple.
- Apple stands for Simplicity
People initially using Apple devices find it difficult to use. But their ecosystem is appealing. Connected with Siri, supported by iOS and OS X the only link missing a highly responsive cloud service which can be given by Dropbox.
- Apple gets the expertise of Dropbox for cloud services
Like Xbox is developed on the Microsoft cloud, it delivers a separate team to handle with it. Apple heavily needs such a team on which they can rely on acquiring innovative products not constrained by the demand of a cloud expert team headed by the intelligent Drew Houston.
Why Dropbox needs Apple (a new angle)
Dropbox was invaluable in 2009 but in 2016, there are various other cloud services better than Dropbox due to various reasons
- Dropbox need a backing
Google offers 15 GB free cloud storage to all its users. Today it has a user base of 1 billion on the planet. That means that 15000 Petabytes for free, Whereas Dropbox has 500 million users, only for 500 Petabytes and at a cost. This indicates that Google causes the potential to reduce its costs to hunt such a service for free. If premium, it’s an additional benefit. Dropbox will get all these benefits if it joins Apple.
- Dropbox is a feature not a product
Apple has developed new products every 5-7 years in a cycle. Dropbox is still stagnant since its launch. The boost will be given if it joins Apple.
- Finally, valuation
Due to strong competition in the cloud space, Dropbox is losing its company value slowly. To stop this and get a good deal out of the Tech’s hottest Startup, it needs a backer like Apple.
What is the bigger picture for most users
Apple kills whatever it acquires
Being NeXT in the late 20th Century, Siri or Beats, all were killed within months of its leverage to keep it exclusively for Apple users. Siri, artificial intelligence software remained confined to Apple users despite other tech giants bringing their AI software for Apple. It didn’t even spare beats, a music company known for best quality, sported on my old HTC sometime back today confined only to Apple.
Will it do the same to Dropbox too?
If it acquires Dropbox, it may not do so to not upset the 500 million user base on various platforms mostly business users, but they allow Dropbox to decay slowly by giving users the feel of Apple ecosystem and making iCloud superior in technology and pull Dropbox’s business users on Apple rather going to Microsoft which has an edge due to Office tools and a superior Cloud service.
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