Cisco buys Whiptail for $415 million as flash land grab continues

Take an afternoon off and see what happens. On Tuesday,  Cisco announced plans to buy Whiptail, a maker of flash memory systems, for about $415 million. The two companies were already strategic partners so that, plus the fact that everyone is buying into flash, means the deal makes sense. Cisco(s csco) said it’s integrating Whiptail’s flash memory directly into its Unified Computing System (UCS) servers.

The news came a day after Western Digital announced plans to buy Virident, a server-side flash vendor  for $685 million and make it part of its HGST subsidiary. When it comes to super-fast flash storage and memory, everyone’s getting in on the act. IBM(s ibm) bought Texas Memory  last year; EMC(s emc) snapped up ScaleIO and ExtremIO; Violin Memory filed for an IPO a few weeks back and Pure Storage signaled its plans to do the same when it announced a massive $150 million funding round last week.

Everyone wants fast flash storage and memory. While the cost of flash storage has fallen, it’s still no bargain compared to more traditional disk drives. And that leads to an opportunity for hybrid storage players like Nimbus Data, Nimble Storage, Tegile Systems and others.