Rackspace, one of the world's largest hosting providers, announced two major acquisitions today: SliceHost and JungleDisk. Slicehost is a popular cloud computing and hosting provider with about 15,000 users, while JungleDisk is one of our favorite online backup services. JungleDisk used to rely on Amazon's S3 storage solution, but it will now also support Rackspace's new cloud storage solution.
Rackspace also announced a new suite of services, Rackspace Cloud Hosting, which combines a hosting platform (CloudSites) with a cloud storage solution (CloudFS), and, in the long run, a tight integration with Slicehost's services.The pricing for storage on Rackspace's CloudFS is similar to Amazon's current offering, though data transfer is considerably more expensive.
Slicehost was founded two years ago and quickly became one of the more popular cloud computing and hosting companies on the Internet. Slicehost's offering are mostly complimentary to Rackspace's services and Slicehost expects to integrate Rackspace's new CloudFiles storage solution in the near future.
Slicehost also announced a number of new features, including the availability of larger 'slices' and lower prices for its high-end offerings.
By acquiring JungleDisk, Rackspace is now supported by one of the most popular online backup and file storage solutions. Rackspace is planning to integrate JungleDisk into all its products, but it will also continue to support S3.
With these new services, Rackspace is directly competing with Amazon's Web services. The JungleDisk acquisition and the new cloud storage services go up against Amazon's S3, while the Slicehost acquisition competes directly with Amazon's Elastic Compute Cloud.
Thanks to its established user base, Rackspace is in a good position to challenge Amazon's cloud computing services and, if anything, it is good to see that the competition in this space is heating up.
Disclosure: Rackspace is a RWW sponsor.