For such a small tool, today’s unveiling of Box Notes is causing a bit of a storm and likely will upset quite a few people across the productivity suite space. This is because Notes, which is in closed beta for the moment, offers document editing and collaboration to those storing their content on the Box enterprise platform.

Introducing Box Notes

Notes is a relatively simple tool. The idea is to offer those that use the Box platform the ability to create, edit and store documents rather than simply move from other document editors into Box.

The documents created on Notes will (of course) be storable on Box. They will also be searchable and shareable so that business users will no longer have to use third-party products like Google Docs or Office.

Something to note here --  those who decide to use Notes can do so in the knowledge that the Box platform is HIPAA-compliant -- meaning security, security and more security.

Box Notes for document collaboration and editing.jpg

Box Notes for document collaboration and editing 

If Notes was a new release from a small, struggling company trying to make a living with a new easy-to-use editing/collaboration tool, then it probably wouldn’t have made the news.

However, this is Box, which has the money and the customer base to push Notes right across the enterprise and SMB space. On top of this, Box is likely to go public early next year, giving it an impact that a smaller company just would not have.

The climate is also right for this release with more and more enterprises turning to cloud computing for cost-effective computing. The result is that most vendors are now either offering document collaboration and syncing capabilities, or will be doing so in the near future.

Notes is Box’s document collaboration offering, that also comes with document editing, and will be available in the near future as a mobile app and, according to the Box website, will offer the ability to add images and video to documents.

Box Notes for Mobile.jpg

Box Notes for mobile

Box Notes vs. Office, Google Docs

The result is a streamlined editing and collaboration tool that avoids all the complicated, overkill functionality that weights Office down and makes it a little too heavy on the function side for many users.

The question really is whether it can, or will, compete with Office, or Google Docs? In a word, No. It just competes with what Docs can do and is trailing behind Office by several, long miles.

However, who is to say what Box might decide to do with it in the future? As a business, Box has shown itself to be far too agile in the past to dismiss anything and there is undoubtedly a number of people in Redmond, or in Menlo Park, that have been told to keep a close eye on it.

For the moment, though, it is just a small release in private beta that offers those using Box the possibility of editing and collaboration on documents without having to jump between apps.