A Google-led effort to make Dropbox more of a tool for businesses could hurt productivity and other aspects of the enterprise.
Google bought Dropbox for $19 billion in April 2016.
That deal gave the company the right to sell its technology, but it also required it to get permission from other companies to distribute their files in the cloud.
The Dropbox deal was designed to make it easier for companies to share their files.
But now, as the company continues to invest in the company’s other products, it is not clear that Dropbox will continue to be able to sell itself as a platform for sharing business files.
That could put Dropbox in an awkward position if it continues to lose money.
Dropbox was founded in 1998 by former Google engineers who wanted to create a better way to share documents with one another.
But its business model has become more focused on selling the data that users can access on the cloud, and its revenue has declined.
In its latest quarterly report, Google said that its cloud-based file-sharing business, Drive, saw revenue decline 19% year-over-year to $4.8 billion in the third quarter of 2017.
Its cloud-hosted business, Box, saw a similar decline, to $1.8 to $2.4 billion.
That’s about a 13% decline.
And Box was losing money, too, with revenue falling 30% to $3.7 billion.
Google said its cloud business, which has more than a billion users worldwide, has been losing money for the past three quarters.
But it is unclear how much of that decline was due to Dropbox’s lack of revenue growth.
And while Dropbox has continued to grow its business and add new features, it has struggled to sell more of its business as a result.
Google’s $18 billion acquisition of Box was the most expensive in its history.
Dropbox is now worth about $13 billion.