Amazon Web Services (AWS) has signed an agreement to acquire NICE, a software-as-a-service company based in Italy that helps customers optimize and centralize their HPC, cloud and visualization resources. The terms of the deal are unknown, but it is expected to close in Q1 2016.
According to NICE’s sparse website, it will continue to operate under its existing brand, and continue to support and develop EnginFrame and Desktop Cloud Visualization (DCV) products.
AWS didn’t drone on about the acquisition, instead opting for a short blog post written by AWS’ Chief Evangelist Jeff Barr, to briefly sum up the news. While not a lot may be known about the acquisition at this point, it is clear there are three main reasons why AWS pulled the trigger on the deal.
While certainly not the core of the deal, AWS will have access to quite the list of customers with its acquisition of NICE. Customers include: Airbus, Alcatel, Audi, Bridgestone, Bosch, CERN, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Ericsson, Ferrari, Fiat, Harvard Business School, Hess, Honda, Jaguar Land Rover, Lear, Magellan Aerospace, McLaren, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Motorola, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Red Bull, Siemens, Suzuki, Toyota, and Yale University.
Though some of NICE’s customers are already customers of AWS to some capacity (Ericsson, for example), there are likely some customers who are not, and these could provide a great opportunity to AWS in the future, even lending themselves to deployments of large-scale HPC jobs on AWS servers, as VentureBeat points out.
“Like AWS, we are a customer obsessed company and we are globally appreciated for the excellence of our support and professional services,” Bruno Franzini, Support and Professional Services Manager at NICE said in a statement. “With the backing of AWS, we will pamper our customers even more.”
- High Performance Computing
In a statement, NICE said that it will work closely with AWS to “create innovative and exciting technologies and services for high performance and technical computing with the goal to help customers to accelerate and grow their business.”
While AWS already offers HPC clusters as a service, CfnCluster, its acquisition of NICE is expected to strengthen its offering with the ability to aim clusters at delivering for certain workloads, according to a report by CBR Online.
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- 3D Capabilities
NICE’s other main product, Desktop Cloud Visualization software, is a 3D visualization technology that lets users connect to a Direct/X and OpenGL application hosted in a data center, according to CDR Online.
This allows 3D developers and game designers access to work remotely from any computer, ITProPortal said. The technology could bring more 3D game developers on board AWS while extending its 3D capabilities, which AWS recently built on with the launch of Lumberyard, a 3D game engine.