Lower pricing was one theme emerging on the first day of the show, with camera manufacturer Samsung leading the way with the introduction of its WiseNet Lite cameras, versions of its popular line that have fewer features to enable a price point that can compete with lower-price competitors. German manufacturer Mobotix is also looking to lower costs, in its case by introducing an indoor camera line at a lower price point and employing efficient snap-together manufacturing processes to keep prices competitive.
Axis Communications at ISC West
Axis Communications kicked off ISC West with a pre-show press conference built around a baseball theme; their demonstration of the quality and impact resistance of Axis cameras involved hitting them with baseball bats.
Axis is expanding beyond its core business in IP cameras (and an ongoing offering in access control) with additional devices that can be used with the “Internet of Things.” At ISC West, they introduced a new IP-enabled loud speaker that uses SIP protocol (compatible with voice over IP telephones, for example), as well as a “network video door station,” combining video (including WDR and low-light performance), two-way communications and PoE for easy installation indoors or outdoors. (Might a non-video IP intercom be introduced in the near future? Could be.)
"Axis is positioning Zipstream as a technology that can pave the way for faster implementation of 4K higher resolution cameras, while minimising the cameras’ impact on bandwidth and storage needs..."
Among the other Axis news is Zipstream compression that cuts bandwidth consumption by more than 50 percent, according to the company. Fully compatible with the H.264 standard, Zipstream isolates and preserves important details in an image, while saving bandwidth and storage by “filtering out” unimportant parts of an image (such as the sky) and applying additional compression to those irrelevant areas. Axis is positioning Zipstream as a technology that can pave the way for faster implementation of 4K higher resolution cameras, while minimising the cameras’ impact on bandwidth and storage needs. They also see it as an interim approach until the newer H.265 compression standard becomes more widespread in the market, thus avoiding any delay embracing newer video capabilities.
New multi-sensor camera:
Axis also unveiled a 180-degree multi-sensor camera that combines three 4K sensors with 30 frames-per-second in a stylish and discreet housing; it comes pre-focused from the factory with the three sensors moving together for easy installation.
The Axis event ended with brief comments about the pending acquisition of Axis by Canon. “The industry is changing with a lot of consolidation, and Canon can provide benefits that we as the current owners could not,” said Martin Gren, Axis co-founder. “Canon has guaranteed they will let Axis operate as an independent company.” Gren says that the benefit of Canon’s technology capabilities in the areas of cameras, lenses and imaging will be obvious at future shows when Axis will likely introduce “20 products rather than 14.”
“The industry is changing with a lot of consolidation, and Canon can provide benefits that we as the current owners could no.”
End-to-end solutions from IDIS:
The Axis news was just the start of a day full of new product introductions, and even companies exhibiting for the first time at ISC West. Perhaps the largest new entrant is Korean video manufacturer IDIS, which is making a splash with a big booth and a timely emphasis on end-to-end IP solutions that are “plug-and-play” -- their term for it is “Direct IP.” IDIS also offers a “total solution,” including a selection of NVRs -- for small, medium and large systems -- that their IP cameras plug directly into, and that can be tied together into enterprise-size systems using their IDIS Solutions Suite. Easy installation can help integrators protect their margins by saving time and money, and the simplicity also allows traditional analogue installers to embrace IP video (and IDIS DirectCX provides a migration path from analog to IP for any system). (IDIS is compatible with other third-party cameras using ONVIF standards.)
SightSensor XA thermal camera:
SightLogix, a thermal analytics company, is displaying its third generation product -- the SightSensor XA wide-area thermal camera -- that increases the image sensor array from 320x240 pixels to 640x480 pixels, and processes the full image area. The result is an extended, “volumetric” detection area that allows transition from an approach of protecting a perimeter to protecting specific (and larger) areas. For example, now instead of protecting an airport’s perimeter, they can protect the area around where the airplanes are (and therefore detect “insider threats” in addition to intruders). New markets for the more economical solution include automobile lots, scrap metal yards, maintenance yards, storage areas, etc. President and CEO John Romanowich calls it a “massive area outdoor burglar alarm” (with no false alarms). The system can even detect intrusion in an entire stadium. SightLogix’ new SightWrap is a monitored alarm service that works with a dealer’s central station (and also provides recurring revenue).
Much more to report, stay tuned ….