Dropbox has half a billion users, but it needs more paying businesses

The company's new user numbers raise more questions than they answer

Dropbox has long been an incredibly popular choice for cloud file storage and sync, and the company announced Monday it hit an important milestone: It has 500 million registered users. 

That number leaves out a lot of information. It's unclear whether Dropbox has 500 million unique people registered to use its service, or if it has 500 million registered accounts, with some people using multiple accounts. The company also didn't say how many of those accounts are active. 

Dropbox also said that it has 150,000 businesses paying for its product -- which is the same figure it unveiled at a conference in November. In Monday's announcement, the firm said it adds 25,000 paying business customers each quarter, meaning it now should have upwards of 175,000 paying customers. 

That last figure is particularly important because Dropbox's business relies on convincing companies to use its services for their internal file storage and collaboration needs.

Dropbox said it is already used inside 8 million businesses -- in many cases, without being approved by IT -- but the actual percentage of businesses paying for the privilege of using the service is much smaller. 

Dropbox's pitch to IT managers is simple: CIOs can be heroes to their users by allowing them to use the same tools they're already comfortable with on their home computers. At the same time, paying for Dropbox Business or Enterprise will give companies the ability to manage what their employees are doing.

The company has made headway picking up customers, especially among small teams. It also has some big names using its product, including News Corp., Intuit and Expedia. But it's facing a ton of pressure from competitors, including Microsoft, Google and Box.

Dropbox has added a lot of enterprise-focused talent to its team, including Microsoft veteran Thomas Hansen, meaning that customers are likely to see additional improvements aimed at making the startup's product more interesting to enterprises. It remains to be seen whether that will translate to customer gains, however.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Blair Hanley Frank

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?