IDC Analyzes Three Key Competitors in Worldwide Cloud File Sharing and Collaboration Services Market and Outlines a Structure for Evaluating Vendor Capabilities

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. May 29, 2012 – A new competitive analysis from International Data Corporation (IDC) evaluates worldwide cloud file sharing and collaboration (CFSC) services provided by Box, Dropbox, and YouSendIt. Collectively, these companies manage more than 90 million registered email addresses, up nearly 88% from 2011. Additionally, these three providers grew (two in triple digits) in 2011 to more than $120 million in combined revenue.

"The cloud file sharing and collaboration services market is changing rapidly, with many vendors looking to compete and this IDC research provides an approach to evaluation that can be applied across the market for enterprises planning to purchase these services, for vendors determining how to partner with CFSC services providers, and for competing vendors," said Maureen Fleming, program vice president, Business Process Management and Middleware research.

While there are comparable capabilities across the three vendors evaluated, IDC found that differences in strategy and focus create wide differences across their offerings.

For broad enterprise use, Box scored the highest. Box focuses on collaboration and the ability to view and edit content without the need to manually download a file. It also has a growing ecosystem of cloud and on-premise partners.

YouSendIt scored well for all use cases. It has fewer collaboration features than Box but has a greater emphasis on providing capabilities directly from the PC or Mac without shifting to its cloud service. It had the highest scores in the group for security and file transfer.

Dropbox is simple and fast and has the most efficient file sync capabilities, but its strategy only modestly involves enterprise use. Its largest offering, Team, allows up to 100 users. This makes it unmanageable in large enterprises.

"There are a large number of competitors in the CFSC market, and vendors are planning to enter the market from both the public and private cloud sides," noted Fleming. "Currently, a key value proposition is cloud storage of files. IDC expects to see the market eventually evolve into one where an important differentiating value proposition will be access — with offerings competing based on how they federate access across the various CFSC services."

The IDC study, Worldwide 2012 Competitive Review of Selected Cloud File Sharing and Collaboration Services (IDC #234770), examines the cloud file sharing and collaboration services market and evaluates the capabilities of three leading providers, Box, Dropbox, and YouSendIt. This report assesses the three providers' capabilities overall and across three common use cases: personal user, informal workgroup, and structured use across a department or enterprise. To look at overall functionality of CFSC services, IDC assessed Box, Dropbox, and YouSendIt to identify, organize, compare, and test features to determine what core capabilities were offered and which ones aligned the best with common use cases.

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