Box is going to very busy over the next year or so as it prepares for its IPO. In the meantime it needs to keep users happy -- after all, happy users generally means happy investors. Last October Box launched Box for Windows 8. This week it is tweaking that and adding some more.

Box, Windows 8

The upgrades that have just been announced, though, are not just for the sake of upgrading but a response to real interest the Window 8 apps have generated.

According to Box, since the original release of the Windows 8 app there has been more than half a million downloads, particularly across business and enterprise customers.

While there is no way of verifying that independently, there is no reason to doubt that figure given the huge interest shown already in Windows 8 in general combined with the sustained interest of business users in Box products.

Box Windows 8 Navigation.jpg
Box Windows 8 navigation

Leaving aside the strutting about a couple of notable customer wins, Box has announced that it is adding more ‘goodness’ to the Box Windows 8 setup.

Taking the queue from the success of its Box for Android app, an app that enables users to preview files on Androids, (Box says on average there are 100,000 previews per day using it) it is bringing the same kind of technology to Windows.

Windows 8, Win Phone Functionality Upgrades

With it, users of either Windows Phone, or Windows 8 devices will be able to preview at least 75 different file types going way beyond typical Word or PowerPoint file presentations and it has the ability to preview Illustrator files, or even AutoCAD file, for example.

Box Windows Phone Wide Tile.jpg
Box Windows Phone Wide Tile

There is no need, Box says, to download the files in question, or open the files in other apps -- you simply click and preview, which is sure to win over those who have to work with a lot of different files.

It also been working with platform specific upgrades too adding features that are unique to Windows Phone and Windows 8.

For Windows 8, for example, there is:

  • A new navigation bar that swipes from the top to get to your All Files home, updates and other Box features
  • Improved semantic zoom functionality through improved spacing.

For Windows Phone there is:

  • Better support for Office document and PDFs which open directly in Microsoft Office
  • A new wide cycle tile that pins out Live Tile

All of these new features and enhancements add up to a packed release across both Box for Windows Phone and Box for Windows 8. Version 1.5 of both apps is available.

Keep in mind as well that you still get free 25GB Box accounts when you sign up from any HP or Dell Windows 8 device, and 50GB accounts from the HP Elitepad 900 and Elitebook Revolve.