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Box sharpens search API

External developers can now build tools, apps and integrations with more search functionality for Box content

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Box has extended its search API to increase and improve the ways in which customers find information in its cloud-storage and file-sharing service via custom-developed tools, applications and integrations.

The original API (application programming interface) allowed only for keyword search, but the new advancedAPI has eight new filters, so that queries can be narrowed using criteria like file extensions and date range.

"This new API allows customers to hone their searches with many different parameters, dramatically improving how information is found and used by users and administrators," wrote Box official Ted Blosser in a blog post.

According to Box, the new search API will enhance enterprise-wide e-discovery because it allows IT administrators to search all user content with a single API call. "Not only are you able to search file and folder names, but you can also search for document text, owners, date ranges, and metadata," Blosser wrote.

The advanced search capabilities are available in the native Box applications, so the new API is "primarily for customers to build a tailored search experience and for partners to enrich their Box integrations," a company spokesman said via email.

"We see customers wanting to extend the Box service into their own internal applications like intranets; for example, a customer the other day wanted to have his marketing team go to an internal team site to look for marketing images rather than go directly to Box," the spokesman said. "We also see partners who build compliance focused applications in the eDiscovery space, where enterprise-wide advanced searches via the API will provide tremendous value."

Improving the way Box can be used via third-party applications and integrated with external websites and enterprise software systems is key to the company's future success, since it aspires to provide its customers with an underlying cloud storage layer for all of their content and files.

Box, founded in 2005, has historically put a lot of emphasis on making its product open and has a program for external developers interested in tapping the various APIs for the cloud-storage service.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.



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