From now on, it will be easier than ever to share your Dropbox files with your friends and family, thanks to a new Facebook Messenger file sharing feature everyone was waiting for. Their service has always provided a reliable source of storage for personal files like photos and videos and anything else counting as a memory you wouldn’t want to accidentally delete. For limited space, Dropbox works ideally as a cloud storage for personal needs; there isn’t really any need to invest in a professional cloud storage service. But the only ingredient which was maybe missing was the ability for better connected file sharing, especially with your social media accounts, namely with Facebook.
Recently (at the beginning of this month), it was announced that an agreement between Dropbox and Facebook has been reached in order to make file sharing easier between Facebook friends (or whomever you’re chatting on Facebook Messenger) with. This is great news from more than one point of view: easier shares, file sharing available from your mobile devices directly, a cool preview of the files directly in the messenger chat window and so on. All this is available from free with the simple app installed on your mobile (just make sure the app is updated to the newest version). You can find it in the Apple Store and in the Google Play Android Store as well.
How the New Dropbox File Sharing Feature Works
In order to start using this file sharing feature, which is basically an extra integrated app functionality for both the Dropbox and the Facebook Messenger apps, you first need to have both of them installed on your Android device. Most users are looking forward to accessing this on their smartphones (since we already spend so much time there), but it can successfully be used with tablets, hybrid mobile devices and so on, as well. So, the first step is to make sure you have both apps installed on the device you plan to use the file sharing on, and also that both of them are updated to the most recent version.
The next step is to also make sure you are logged in to both apps, on your respective Facebook and cloud accounts. You may skip this step if the apps are only receiving an update (and you’ve been logged on for a while), but if you’re installing them for the first time, then you should definitely remember to be properly logged in on both, with whatever credentials you normally use.
As you may have already noticed, linking videos and images and even GIFs in your Facebook Messenger app already makes them be instantly viewable, directly from the chat window. The same sort of instant featuring which Facebook chat users enjoyed on their non-mobile devices for a while, is now available for the mobile messenger app as well. This is part of the larger plan to make the chats (which users are increasingly using on their mobile) more visual, easy to use and fun. But here comes the cherry on the top of the cake: beyond the photos, videos and memes which can now be visually shared through simple taps on the screen, you will be able to access and link your files conveniently and easily as well. Tapping the ‘Open’ button which will now be implemented in the chat app with the recent update will open the app, allowing you to select the files you would like to share.
The sharing principle between the Dropbox and the Facebook Messenger apps just as it works when linking videos, images and GIFs: instant visual previews of everything. This is crucial for mobile device users who prefer not to have to open the links in an actual internet window, or to have to download them separately into their device, for files. Stan Chudnovski, the head of product for Facebook Messenger has recently released the following statement in a blog post, about this new combined feature for the apps involved: ‘We want our users to communicate just the way we want to on Messenger, with everyone they care about.’ He added: ‘Giving our users the ability to share their official videos and images in Messenger threads with just a few taps will help them bring more style and personality to their conversations.’
There are currently about 900 million people using the Facebook Messenger app, and if Facebook continues making efforts to ensure the chat app becomes easier and easier to use, while increasingly fun as well, the number of users is expected to rise. The prevalence of competing chat services (like Skype or WhatsApp) means there is still more market shares to grab for the Facebook Messenger chat app if it continues to up its game. The new file sharing feature with instant access seems to be just the step forward in that direction that we needed.