Microsoft will integrate Dropbox’s cloud storage and file-sharing service into its Office productivity suite, the companies said Tuesday. The plan is to integrate both services on phones, tablets and browser-based Web apps.
The partnership is Microsoft's latest move to offer its services on competing platforms -- the company has its own OneDrive cloud storage -- a strategy favored by new CEO Satya Nadella.
Dropbox users will be able to access their accounts in the cloud from within Office apps like Word, Excel and PowerPoint. The tie-up also makes Office the default service for editing files within Dropbox’s app.
“Together, Microsoft and Dropbox will provide our shared customers with flexible tools that put them at the center for the way they live and work today,” Nadella said in a statement.
Office apps also will include an option to share files using Dropbox’s cloud storage service. The integration will scale across desktop programs, mobile apps and those for the Web in the “coming weeks,” Microsoft said. Users with Windows smartphones or tablets that do not have Office will be asked to download it to edit those files.
IPad and Android users will also be able to link their Dropbox accounts to Office apps on tablets, enabling “seamless” integration between the apps. The Office for iPad app requires an Office 365 subscription, as does Microsoft’s app for Android, for which it charges $5 to $20 per month.
Dropbox also said it will build a storage app for Microsoft’s Windows phone platform to join its apps for Apple’s iOS and Google Inc.’s Android mobile operating systems.