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Dropbox’s new tools reimagine the cloud service as your AI sidekick

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Dropbox has introduced two innovative products that place a strong emphasis on AI, signaling a shift in the company’s direction. The first is Dropbox AI, a tool designed to analyze your documents and offer summaries and answers. With this feature, you can easily obtain concise explanations for various types of content, such as contracts and meeting recordings, simply by clicking a button. Additionally, you can pose questions about specific files, and Dropbox AI will read the document and provide you with the answers you seek. This AI-powered functionality aims to streamline document management and enhance productivity. CEO Drew Houston highlighted the convenience of being able to retrieve files, ask questions, and receive immediate responses through Dropbox AI.

The second product, Dropbox Dash, is a more comprehensive undertaking. Serving as a unified search bar, it combines the power of AI with an extensive range of capabilities. Similar to well-known search tools like Apple Spotlight, Windows Search, or third-party launcher apps such as Alfred, Dropbox Dash aims to be your go-to source for retrieving information across all aspects of your life, whether local or online. Through its connectors to major platforms like Google Workspace, Microsoft Outlook, and Salesforce, Dropbox Dash provides fast access to everything you need in a single location. The intention is to create a ChatGPT-like dialog box where you can ask questions and receive answers about personal and work-related content in your digital world.

In addition to being a universal search bar, Dropbox Dash also functions as a browser extension. It introduces Stacks, which are intelligent collections for organizing and retrieving URLs, similar to how playlists store songs. Furthermore, the extension includes a start-page dashboard that displays search options, Stacks, shortcuts, and relevant contextual items. Dropbox envisions that, with time, Dash will utilize generative AI to extract information from both your personal data and your company’s data, providing relevant answers and content. For instance, you could ask Dash about the next company holiday without having to manually search through your organization’s internal links and pages.

As Dropbox introduces these AI-powered features, the company recognizes the importance of privacy and customer trust. They pledge to be transparent, assuring customers that their data will not be sold to advertisers. Dropbox acknowledges the need to develop AI technologies fairly and reliably, while also minimizing bias. With Dash’s ambitious goals, it seems plausible that major players like Apple, Microsoft, and Google may already be developing their own AI-infused universal search bars to integrate into their operating systems. Dropbox aims to establish Dash as a compelling solution before these industry giants render third-party alternatives obsolete for most users.

Currently, Dropbox AI is available in alpha for Dropbox Pro customers in the United States and will gradually roll out for select Dropbox Teams. Users can join the waitlist for Dropbox Dash to stay informed about its availability.

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