A new offering from cloud storage provider Box, announced Thursday, aims to bring aspects of the Box user experience, for free, to business apps built on the Box Platform. The overall solution is called Box Elements, with the first portion dubbed UI Elements debuting first, the press release said.

All of the Elements are modular and customizable, offering application integration with only a few lines of code, the release said. The Elements can be used by themselves, or in tandem with one another to create new user experiences.

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The UI Elements portion, now generally available, is made up of four distinct pieces:

  1. The Box Content Uploader allows users to upload content by dragging and dropping files into their business app, or by choosing the files from their device to be uploaded to Box.
  2. The Box Content Explorer is a Box-centric way to approach viewing and navigating files and folders in Box from the app itself.
  3. The Box Content Preview offers interactive viewing experiences for certain kinds of files from within an application.
  4. The Box Content Picker simply allows users to select files or folders stored in Box in their application.

The Box UI Elements can be accessed as a Javascript library or as a React component through the node package manager (NPM). Box Content Preview source code can be found on Github now, and Box will be releasing more UI Element source code in the future, the release said.

While the UI Elements are the first out of the gate, Box has plans to release other Elements in the future. Some on the roadmap include back end services and industry-specific app elements, the release said.

“For the first time, we’re providing businesses of all sizes with the ability to leverage Box’s best in class user experience in their own applications,” Jeetu Patel, CSO and senior vice president of Box Platform, said in the release. “Developers will no longer need to spend huge amounts of time and money building content experiences, security, and infrastructure services from scratch, and can instead focus on building unique experiences for their business needs.”

According to the release, Workplace by Facebook, Pressly, and Maxwell are already using Box UI Elements. The Elements work with Box Platform APIs to make them easier to integrate as well.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

  1. Box has released Box UI Elements, which allow businesses to integrate aspects of the Box UI into their applications.
  2. The UI Elements are available as Javascript library or as React components through the node package manager (NPM), and they work with the Box Platform APIs.
  3. The Box UI Elements can be used at no additional cost, and the firm is planning on releasing more Elements in the future.