OnApp, a London-based cloud platform provider, announced its new storage platform “OnApp Storage” at the WHD.global 2012 exhibition in Germany. OnApp Storage is intended for service providers and enterprises and in the company’s words, “offers the performance and resilience of high-end SAN products using off-the-shelf disks and server hardware.”

OnApp is targeting a big, fast-growing marklet. Earlier this week, EVault President Terry Cunningham estimated that roughly 1,600 companies now offer cloud storage services and online backup services. And EVault, owned by Seagate Technologies, is aiming to make some acquisitions while also consolidating the market.

Still, it's early in the cloud storage market. Thousands of VARs and MSPs are trying to figure out whether to launch their own cloud storage services. OnApp hopes to empower those potential partners with its cloud-oriented storage platform.

Indeed, OnApp says its solution overcomes enterprise SAN issues (high entry and maintenance costs), open source options that lack reliable support, and low-end products that lack scalability and performance. OnApp based the new storage platform on “patent-pending, ‘smart disk’ technology” and claim that OnApp Storage solves the problems of each of three approaches named above.

This past month Talkin’ Cloud reported that OnApp opened a new office in Utah and added 50% more support staff in the U.S. The Utah will provide Level 1 tech support. An OnApp spokesperson told us last month that they build their business by helping the more traditional channel organizations become infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) providers. OnApp also offers OnApp Cloud and a content delivery network (CDN) platform.

OnApp adopters include SlicedTech, a cloud services provider in Australia. “OnApp Storage is on the cutting edge of storage virtualization and cloud technology,” said Daniel Hoffman, CTO of SlicedTech, in a prepared statement. “By adding OnApp Storage to our OnApp cloud platform, we can increase the flexibility or our tiered storage offering without impacting our existing service delivery framework."

OnApp Storage was developed in the firm’s R&D center in Cambridge, UK. The OnApp Storage team included developers of the original OSS Xen and Citrix XenServer platform storage stack. OnApp will announce pricing when OnApp Storage is launched in the second half of 2012. The company has launched a beta program for the new storage platform; you can register to potentially participate here: http://onapp.com/storage.

Channel partners can click here to learn more on OnApp’s partner program.

Additional insights from Joe Panettieri.