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Dropbox's Paper collaboration platform goes into open beta, gets iOS app

Dropbox on Wednesday launched the first open beta of Paper, its Google Docs-like Web collaboration platform, simultaneously releasing companion apps for iOS and Android.

Paper was first announced almost a year ago, but until now has only been accessible in private testing. As a part of entering open beta, the service now has more pratical table support, including easier cell creation and deletion, and the ability to resize column widths. Among other changes are enhanced search functions, and refined image galleries, for instance letting users comment on a single image.

Perhaps the biggest addition is a new notification system, which gathers together comments made on a user's documents, while also tracking mentions and replies elsewhere. Notifications should be visible on the Web, in the Dropbox desktop app, and on mobile.

Rather than attempting to mimic Paper's full interface, the mobile apps offer notifications, comment replies, and simplified document editing, excluding some embedding options but allowing text changes and the ability to insert images from a device's camera roll. Any document marked as a favorite can be edited offline.

The iOS app runs on iPhones and iPads with iOS 8.1 or later. Dropbox cautions, though, that the Paper mobile apps are only "coming soon" to users in the European Union.