Arnab Mitra, the CEO of DigiBoxx, shares insights into the company's compliance with industry regulations, plans for future growth, and the challenges and opportunities in the Indian market.
DigiBoxx, a homegrown cloud storage and file-sharing platform, offers both free and paid cloud storage plans for individuals and businesses. Since its launch in December 2020, the service has garnered over two million customers in just a year, competing with other cloud storage providers such as Google One, Microsoft's OneDrive, and Dropbox with relatively affordable plans.
As a new entrant, the GDPR Act worked to our advantage. It allowed us to create products that are GDPR compliant.
The NITI Aayog has promoted Digiboxx as a boost to Atmanirbhar Bharat, which has led to it making headlines. The platform allows users to securely store and share their digital content with others. In an exclusive interview with Jatinder Singh, Executive Editor of CIO&Leader, Arnab Mitra, the CEO of DigiBoxx, shares insights into the company's compliance with industry regulations, plans for future growth, and the challenges and opportunities in the Indian market. With a strong emphasis on data security and privacy, DigiBoxx is becoming increasingly popular among individual users and businesses. Here are the edited excerpts.
CIO&Leader: What technical challenges has DigiBoxx encountered that are distinct, and how has the company surmounted them?
Arnab Mitra: A major challenge has been around concerns regarding data access response times, this is largely dependent on connectivity issues, and our customer care team works diligently to address and resolve any such queries. We also receive a great deal of constructive feedback from our users regarding improvements to the service, user interface, and feature set, which are crucial in developing a superior product for the people of India.
CIO&Leader: Can you discuss DigiBoxx's approach to integrating with other platforms and technologies, and how this has impacted the company's growth?
Arnab Mitra: We are on the verge of releasing our Public API, which will allow several different businesses to benefit from our storage solution offerings. We are extremely excited about the possibilities and I believe that we can completely disrupt the space of digital storage here in India .
CIO&Leader: How does DigiBoxx differ from other cloud storage services like Google Drive or Dropbox?
Arnab Mitra: DigiBoxx's key differentiator is that it is developed and hosted entirely in India, ensuring that users' digital assets are stored within the country. We recognized a significant demand among citizens for such a service, which prioritizes keeping data within national borders. Moreover, it is highly scalable, making it suitable for individuals, freelancers, gig workers, small businesses, and large enterprises alike.
Compared to most other cloud providers, DigiBoxx offers considerably more affordable subscription plans. To illustrate, a three-month 2TB plan on DigiBoxx costs the same as a one-month 100GB subscription on Google Drive. It is a very cost-effective solution for the average user and businesses. Additionally, DigiBoxx recently introduced the DigiFotos feature, allowing users to automatically sync their photos from their smartphones to their cloud drives.
We have also prioritized simplicity in our user interface, ensuring that our customers find DigiBoxx easy to use and not overly technical. We have invested considerable time and effort in creating a user interface that is intuitive and straightforward, and we maintain absolute transparency regarding our data storage and protection policies, including password protection. We also provide customer support in local languages to ensure that customers who are not well conversant in English or are not particularly tech-savvy can also use our services with ease.
CIO&Leader: How does DigiBoxx ensure compliance with industry regulations and standards, such as GDPR and ISO 27001?
Arnab Mitra: As a new entrant, the GDPR Act worked to our advantage. It allowed us to create products that are GDPR compliant. We are currently undergoing ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 certification. We are already certified by multiple other inner checks worldwide and we operate out of data centers, which are MeitY certified - MeitY has only certified 16 data centers in this country and we are one of them. As a MeitY-certified data centre, we work under the aegis of The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology ensuring that we are aligned with the most updated data security and safety policies in the country.
CIO&Leader: What new technologies or trends is DigiBoxx currently exploring, and how might they impact the future of the platform?
Arnab Mitra: We are exploring various cutting-edge technologies that are apt and beneficial for our users. We will share more information on these developments at an opportune time. (See: How DigiBoxx Leveraging Tech To Deliver Cost-Effective Storage)
CIO&Leader: Data storage is an essential part of our daily digital lives. What are your plans for offering services to enterprises? What are the challenges that you intend to solve?
Arnab Mitra: We are proud of being an indigenous service, which is why we are so vocal about it. But that is not our only USP. The storage as a service we offer is very affordable and can cater to the individual user as well as an SMB, scaling from basic cloud-sharing features to multi-user, asset tracking, and collaboration capabilities. The plans on offer are extremely competitive. Individual users can invest Rs 30 to get 2 terabytes or 2,000GB. Small businesses can avail of 500GB at Rs 999 and this includes access to 50 users, which is not offered by any international cloud storage service. This makes it more cost-effective for companies to collaborate over digital campaigns and creatives via DigiBoxx, get web traffic insights, and create custom workflows.
CIO&Leader: What are the key factors that help DigiBoxx build trust apart from the fact that it has been developed in India?
Arnab Mitra: Most of the cloud storage services have their datacentres located in multiple locations – in India and around the world. However, users are not given the choice as to where they would like their data to reside. With growing concerns over data ownership and digital IP, it is necessary to be more conscious about where your data is being stored. The service is encrypted and the plans, including the free one, are ad-free and do not track usage. Another reason, why people should trust us, is the fact that we are here for the long term. The team is constantly finetuning our existing service and adding new features like regional language support, Android and iOS apps for anywhere access and backup, the DigiFotos feature that lets people carry their photos wherever they go, and more. DigiBoxx is also available as a storage option in the Jio Photos app in all Jio set-top boxes (STBs). In addition, we are now working on releasing a Windows desktop app soon.
CIO&Leader: Finally, how does DigiBoxx balance the need for innovation and agility with the need for stability and security? What are your future plans?
Arnab Mitra: We are growing our footprint in India with more data centres. We are already present in Noida, Mumbai, and Indore. Very recently, we opened our first full-blown development centre, micro-DC in Kolkata and also hired local talent there. We have identified six hubs in all and also want to have a presence in Bhubaneshwar. Some of our engineers are based in Bengaluru and Hyderabad too. This is because all these cities I have mentioned are also strong engineering hubs from where we can tap quality talent. For our data and delivery centre in Kolkata, we have conducted campus recruitments partnering with large engineering groups like Techno India & standalone private institutes. Our target was to recruit 100 new talents by this fiscal and we have reached 50% of our target already.
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