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Smart security is advancing rapidly. As AI and 4K rise in adoption on smart video cameras, these higher video resolutions are driving the demand for more data to be stored on-camera. AI and smart video promise to extract greater insights from security video. Complex, extensive camera networks will already require a large amount of data storage, particularly if this is 24/7 monitoring from smart video-enabled devices. With 4K-compliant cameras projected to make up over 24% of all network cameras shipped by 2023 – there is a fast-growing desire for reliable storage on-board security cameras. The question for businesses is: do they look to break up their existing smart video network, by separating and compartmentalising cameras to handle data requirements, or do they increase its storage capabilities? As some people begin to venture out and return to work following initial COVID-19 measures, we are also seeing demand for thermal imaging technology increase. New technology like this combined with more of these always-on systems being rolled out, means organisations will need to carefully consider their smart video strategy. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analysing data and there are some key trends you can expect to see as a result of this evolution. There are many more types of cameras being used today, such as body cameras, dashboard cameras, and new Internet of Things (IoT) devices and sensors. Video data is so rich nowadays, you can analyse it and deduce a lot of valuable information in real-time, instead of post-event. Edge computing and smart security As public cloud adoption grew, companies and organisations saw the platform as a centralised location for big data. However, recently there’s been opposition to that trend. Instead we are now seeing data processed at the edge, rather than in the cloud. There is one main reason for this change in preference: latency. Newer edge computing will play an important role in capturing, collecting, and analysing data Latency is an important consideration when trying to carry out real-time pattern recognition. It’s very difficult for cameras to process data – 4K surveillance video recorded 24/7 – if it has to go back to a centralised data centre hundreds of miles away. This data analysis needs to happen quickly in order to be timely and applicable to dynamic situations, such as public safety. By storing relevant data at the edge, AI inferencing can happen much faster. Doing so can lead to safer communities, more effective operations, and smarter infrastructure. UHD and storage AI-enabled applications and capabilities, such as pattern recognition, depend on high-definition resolutions such as 4K – also known as Ultra High Definition (UHD). This detailed data has a major impact on storage – both the capacity and speeds at which it needs to be written, and the network. Compared to HD, 4K video has much higher storage requirements and we even have 8K on the horizon. As we know, 4K video has four times the number of pixels as HD video. In addition, 4K compliant video supports 8, 10, and 12 bits per channel that translate to 24-, 30- or 36-bit colour depth per pixel. A similar pattern holds for HD — more colour using 24 bits or less colour using 10 or 12 bits in colour depth per pixel. Altogether, there is up to a 5.7x increase in bits generated by 4K vs. 1080 pixel video. Larger video files place new demands on data infrastructure for both video production and surveillance. Which means investing in data infrastructure becomes a key consideration when looking into smart security. Always-on connectivity Whether designing solutions that have limited connectivity or ultra-fast 5G capabilities, most smart security solutions need to operate 24/7, regardless of their environment. Yet, on occasion, the underlying hardware and software systems fail. In the event of this, it is important to establish a failover process to ensure continued operation or restore data after a failure, including everything from traffic control to sensors to camera feeds and more. Consider the example of a hospital with dozens or even over a hundred cameras connected to a centralised recorder via IP. If the Ethernet goes down, no video can be captured. Such an event could pose a serious threat to the safety and security of hospital patients and staff. For this reason, microSD cards are used in cameras to enable continuous recording. Software tools – powered by AI – can then “patch” missing data streams with the content captured on the card to ensure the video stream can be viewed chronologically with no content gaps. Thermal imaging Health and safety is the number one priority for all organisations as people return to work and public spaces. Some organisations are deploying thermal imaging to help screen individuals for symptoms as they return. Organisations that operate with warehouses, depots and assembly lines will traditionally have large amounts of cameras located outside of the entrance. With thermal imaging smart video in place, these cameras can now serve a dual purpose as a screening device. The thermal imaging technology is capable of detecting elevated body temperatures, with 10-25 workers being scanned in one shot, from one camera – making it an efficient and accurate process. This way, staff can use the information to help identify people who may need further screening, testing, and/or isolation before returning to work. There are many more types of cameras being used today, such as body cameras, dashboard cameras, and new Internet of Things (IoT) devices While this may not increase data storage requirements, it can change your retention policies and practices. Smart security today is about utilising AI and edge computing, to deliver an always-on, high-resolution video provision that can help keep people safe 24/7. These trends increase the demands and importance of monitoring, which means requirements of the supporting data infrastructure improve to match that, including the ability to proactively manage the infrastructure to help ensure reliable operation. Companies need to make sure they have considered all the storage and policy challenges as part of their smart security strategy for the future.
Today’s environment has evolved into something that according to some may seem unexplainable. But in the context of video surveillance, this is something that we understand. Allow me to shed some light and understanding in terms of security and why it truly is a necessity. Security is not a luxury, it is a necessity. An essential practice now peaking the interests of all businesses small and large. A video surveillance system is a cost effective option that does not require monitoring fees. As business slows, temporarily shuts down or closes, an increase in vacant properties is inevitable. This pandemic will continue to put severe pressure on many businesses around the country. With so many considered non-essential, it is really sad to see how many must shutter their doors and lay off employees. Keeping an eye out for suspicious activity using a commercial grade surveillance system that supports advanced analytics, may end up saving your potential customers thousands of dollars down the road. Demand for video surveillance and security products We can certainly draw on the conclusion that security is a “need” more so than a “want”. Times like this just further cement that thought process. In today’s economic spiral, people aren’t actively looking for lighting controls or home theaters. What they look for is a way to keep their loved ones safe, protect their homes, businesses and property. In my opinion, you will see video surveillance and security product sales skyrocket in the coming months and years. It has been reported that response times for first responders may be impacted as a result of COVID-19, leaving those with bad intent more time to ransack a property knowing that law enforcement may be slow to respond. Criminals will always take advantage of the situation. All we can do as a community is use common sense, stay vigilant and watch out for one another. For some of us that may mean mitigating risks with technology. Affordable video monitoring solutions Having a solution that can quickly and securely share video footage may be the difference between identifying a perpetrator and becoming a victim. Ella, a video search platform developed by IC Realtime, makes every second of video instantly searchable and shareable, either with the authorities or your neighborhood social apps. Plus it is compatible with any RTSP streaming device. To wrap this up, it’s not about pointing out the obvious, it’s really about bringing awareness as to how technologies can be implemented to provide peace of mind without breaking the bank. Video surveillance technology is a way to do that and provide added security for you, your family and your business.
The safeguarding of premises through the monitoring of entrance and exit points has traditionally been a very manual aspect of security. Human operators have been relied on to make decisions about who to admit and deny based on levels of authorisation and the appropriate credentials. But the access control business, like many industries before it, is undergoing its own digital transformation; one where the protection of premises, assets and people is increasingly delivered by interconnected systems utilising IoT devices and cloud infrastructure to offer greater levels of security and protection. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification, right through to complex networks of thermal cameras, audio speakers and sensors. These systems, connected through the cloud, can be customised and scaled to meet the precise requirements of today’s customer. And it’s the ease of cloud integration, combined with open technologies and platforms that is encouraging increasing collaboration and exciting developments while rendering legacy systems largely unfit for purpose. Remote management and advanced diagnostics Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution.Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution. For example, as the world faces an unprecedented challenge and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause disruption, the ability to monitor and manage access to sites remotely is a welcome advantage for security teams who might otherwise have to check premises in person and risk breaking social distancing regulations. The benefits of not physically having to be on site extend to the locations within which these technologies can be utilised. As an example, within a critical infrastructure energy project, access can be granted remotely for maintenance on hard to reach locations. Advanced diagnostics can also play a part in such a scenario. When access control is integrated with video surveillance and IP audio, real-time monitoring of access points can identify possible trespassers with automated audio messages used to deter illegal access and making any dangers clear. And with video surveillance in the mix, high quality footage can be provided to authorities with real-time evidence of a crime in progress. Comprehensive protection in retail Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity The use of connected technologies for advanced protection extends to many forward-looking applications. Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity. Customers are able to use mobile technology to self-scan their chosen products and make payments, all from using a dedicated app. From an access control and security perspective, connected doors can be controlled to protect staff and monitor shopper movement. Remote management includes tasks such as rolling out firmware updates or restarting door controllers, with push notifications sent immediately to security personnel in the event of a breach or a door left open. Remote monitoring access control in storage In the storage facility space, this too can now be entirely run through the cloud with remote monitoring of access control and surveillance providing a secure and streamlined service. There is much to gain from automating the customer journey, where storage lockers are selected online and, following payment, customers are granted access. Through an app the customer can share their access with others, check event logs, and activate notifications. With traditional padlocks the sharing of access is not as practical, and it’s not easy for managers to keep a record of storage locker access. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers. The elimination of manual tasks, in both scenarios, represents cost savings. When doors are connected to the cloud, their geographical location is rendered largely irrelevant. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers They become IoT devices which are fully integrated and remotely programmable from anywhere, at any time. This creates a powerful advantage for the managers of these environments, making it possible to report on the status of a whole chain of stores, or to monitor access to numerous storage facilities, using the intelligence that the technology provides from the data it collects. Open platforms power continuous innovation All of these examples rely on open technology to make it possible, allowing developers and technology providers to avoid the pitfalls that come with the use of proprietary systems. The limitations of such systems have meant that the ideas, designs and concepts of the few have stifled the creativity and potential of the many, holding back innovation and letting the solutions become tired and their application predictable. Proprietary systems have meant that solution providers have been unable to meet their customers’ requirements until the latest upgrade becomes available or a new solution is rolled out. This use of open technology enables a system that allows for collaboration, the sharing of ideas and for the creation of partnerships to produce ground-breaking new applications of technology. Open systems demonstrate a confidence in a vendor’s own solutions and a willingness to share and encourage others to innovate and to facilitate joint learning. An example of the dynamic use of open technology is Axis’ physical access control hardware, which enables partners to develop their own cloud-based software for control and analysis of access points, all the while building and expanding on Axis’ technology platform. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification Opportunities for growth Open hardware, systems and platforms create opportunities for smaller and younger companies to participate and compete, giving them a good starting point, and some leverage within the industry when building and improving upon existing, proven technologies. This is important for the evolution and continual relevance of the physical security industry in a digitally enabled world. Through increased collaboration across technology platforms, and utilising the full range of possibilities afforded by the cloud environment, the manufacturers, vendors and installers of today’s IP enabled access control systems can continue to create smart solutions to meet the ever-changing demands and requirements of their customers across industry.
The newly established Open Security & Safety Alliance (OSSA or 'the Alliance'), a non-profit, non-stock corporation formed to outline specifications for a common standardised platform for security and safety solutions, announced that since its formation in Fall 2018, the organisation has grown by 50% and initiatives are in full-swing. The Alliance is quickly attracting players ranging from device manufacturers, software developers and system integrators to distributors and system on a chip (SoC) companies. “We’re extremely pleased OSSA is drawing strong support from progressive companies across various sectors, as our purpose is to all start from a common platform business model to spur innovation and add real value for customers and users as they manage and monitor property, people and surrounding circumstances,” said Johan Jubbega, President, Open Security & Safety Alliance. “Each new member brings diverse insight and expertise to the bigger picture we’re working to bring into focus for stakeholders in the security, safety, building automation solutions and associated industries.” OSSA member roster The Open Security & Safety Alliance’s five founding companies – Bosch Building Technologies, Hanwha Techwin, Milestone Systems, Pelco by Schneider Electric and VIVOTEK Inc. – today are working alongside 15 inventive international players that currently comprise the OSSA member roster: OSSA Member Business Focus Aitek Management Software Provider Ambarella Inc. SoC Manufacturer AndroVideo Inc. Video Surveillance Device Manufacturer Anixter Inc. Distributor HiSilicon Technologies Co., LTD SoC Manufacturer Hunt Electronic Video Surveillance Device Manufacturer Kings Secure Technologies Installation/Commissioning Services NetApp Inc. Recording/Storage Device Manufacturer QUALCOMM Incorporated SoC Manufacturer Security & Safety Things GmbH (SAST) Service Provider SOCIONEXT Inc. Video Surveillance Device Manufacturer Sony Imaging Products & Solutions Inc. Imaging Products & Solutions Topview Optronics Corp. Video Surveillance Device Manufacturer Wavestore Global Ltd Management Software Provider United Technologies Access Control Device Manufacturer Differentiating security and safety use cases Workgroups have been instrumental in launching key programs throughout the past six months. To support the Alliance’s mission to drive the development of differentiating security and safety use cases – including those utilising Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning – members have already achieved valuable outputs including: Specification of a common Technology Stack to cater to innovation and reduce market fragmentation Definition of a common and vendor-agnostic operating system (OS) that together with the Technology Stack will fuel the development of value-added solutions for customers and users Description of a common market approach to data security and privacy Establishment of an ecosystem of like-minded companies Keynote speeches at Milestone’s Integration Platform Symposium and VIP customer events in the U.S., EMEA and Asia-Pacific region First prototype cameras based on the commonly defined Technology Stack and OS have been realized and will be showcased at ISC West 2019 Benefits of joining OSSA The Alliance is designed to include everyone and offers membership levels to meet the needs of companies big or small. Benefits of joining OSSA include access to the Alliance framework and the ability to connect, discuss, influence and collaborate with other Alliance members to steer change for the betterment of the industry. Together, OSSA members are providing standards and specifications for common components including an operating system, IoT infrastructure, collective approach for data security and privacy, and a drive for improved levels of performance across products, solutions and services. Visitors for ISC West are invited to hear first-hand about the benefits of OSSA membership. Many members will be exhibiting at the event.
EtherWAN will setup Ethernet Switches for the live demonstration as well as provide technical support on site EtherWAN Systems, Inc., a global Ethernet connectivity solution provider, announced its consecutive 5th year of sponsorship to the Secutech Excellence Awards in Secutech International during 28-30 April, 2015. EtherWAN will setup Ethernet Switches for the live demonstration as well as provide technical support on site. The switches will connect with 7 NVRs and 47 IP cameras, including those with ultra HD, IR bullet, and panorama features. The audience will see the live performance results of the surveillance equipment from each contestant. Secutech’s official network topology to utilise EtherWAN’s Ethernet Switches EtherWAN’s PoE Solution products have been tested compliant with world-leading IP camera manufacturers such as Axis, BOSCH, Brickcom, Dahua, EverFocus, Hikvision, Hunt, Merit LILIN, Raylios, Sunell, TVT Digital, Tyco, Ingrasys, Shany, Panasonic, Sony and Vivotek etc. with smooth transmission result. Other than the sponsorship in the IP camera award, EtherWAN’s Ethernet Switches also support the NVR award site, which is co-located to Secutech Award, with approximate 10 different NVR brands in the contest to display the best storage performance. The official network topology for this event will utilise EtherWAN’s 8-port and 16-port PoE Managed Ethernet Switch with dual Gigabit uplink ports connecting to another 24-port full Gigabit Managed Ethernet Switch to shape the best network traffic. EtherWAN’s equipment will be running non-stop together with all devices from each contestant. “We are very much pleased to be once again appointed as the Ethernet equipment sponsorship to this event. It is also the 1st time that Secutech International highlights the subject of Network Transmission being technically-exclusive of other exhibition categories. With almost two decades' experiences in Ethernet technology, we are confident that our support can make the event another success, just like all we did in previous years.” said Maggie Chao, VP of Sales & Marketing in EtherWAN Systems. Case-proven product quality in indoor and outdoor environments EtherWAN has proven its technology know-how in network solutions and case-proven product quality in both indoor and outdoor environments. EtherWAN will continue to serve a sound role in the industry of network, especially when connectivity is crucial.
Local surveillance companies often struggle when deciding between distributing third-party brands or selling their own branded surveillance products, especially when the company has already achieved some level of recognition among their customers and/or other key players. Distributing a famous third-party brand is a way to “play it safe” in an environment where there is little budget to spend on marketing, public relationships and other expenses related to product placement. Someone else has already made those investments. Nevertheless, when talking about identity, owning a brand eases the way for customers to associate the local company with the type of products/services it offers. A local company seeking more prestige can create its own “additional value” for clients, rather than simply merchandising and trading. By the time a local surveillance company decides to sell its own branded products, another decision needs to be made: whether to manufacture products or to find OEM/ODM manufacturing sources. Understanding the differences between the approaches related to project development and budget planning will provide guidance to any local company. The keys for setting a production line Self-manufacturing represents tremendous challenges of time management and investment. The local company needs to be absolutely sure there is enough time to assemble the qualified human resources who are capable of developing the required hardware and software resources to create surveillance products that can evolve and overcome challenges in a competitive market. After gathering the right professionals, the next challenge is time management. Every team at any organisation, regardless of size, needs time for training and consolidation. For this reason, the local company has to estimate a buffer time for this learning process, when mistakes are allowed in order to achieve a very stable product. Another aspect to take into account is infrastructure. The company will need to own adequate space and required equipment for the manufacturing processes. Obviously, the required investment is enormous, and the ROI gain might be slower than expected if the wrong decisions are made. Currently OEM/ODM manufacturing sources are located in China and Taiwan Therefore, finding an OEM/ODM manufacturer eases the way to enable any local company to achieve a unique identity; especially when creating strategic surveillance solutions that require customised technology. The benefits of working with OEM/ODM manufacturing In the medium-long term, working with OEM/ODM sources does not require a big investment, and the ROI is faster. The local company can focus resources on marketing and new business development – not have to spend resources on manufacturing and fixed assets such as plants, facilities, and operators. All the complexity of manufacturing processes and investments is taken care of by the OEM/ ODM manufacturing source. It is important to mention that an existing product line can be expanded faster by using one or more OEM/ODM sources. Products with similar characteristics might only require new features to increase the competitive value inside the whole chain of distributors, sellers and resellers. After identifying the advantages of the OEM/ODM approach, the next important step is to find the right OEM/ODM source; otherwise, the maximum value might not be achieved, and the business direction would get blurred. Points for choosing an OEM/ODM source Providing an acceptable lead time is not the only parameter to determine a good OEM/ODM manufacturing source. To find the right OEM/ODM partner, an exhaustive analysis of the factory must be performed in areas as Scale, Human Resources, Quality and Operations. For example, a scale analysis offers a good reference to estimate project development. Also, it helps to evaluate the general performance of the factory and its ability to meet client demands. Some other criteria for evaluating scale are monthly capacity production, amount of production lines and workers. "It is important that an OEM/ODM manufacturing source be willing to hear about developing new designs and concepts from the branding company" In the human resources area, analysis requires more than taking a quick look at how many workers and experts are committed to the job; rather, consider the factory organization and its employee development programs. Does the factory fulfil the whole design and manufacturing process, or just a part of it? Not providing the whole service might lead to gradual cost increases, since other sources need to be contacted to fill all the manufacturing gaps. Furthermore, experts should strive for developing new technologies, being one step ahead and not behind. Also, it is important that an OEM/ODM manufacturing source be willing to hear about developing new designs and concepts from the branding company. Any branded company needs to take advantage of this expertise from manufacturers, meaning that serious employee development programs would be held internally for training and developing knowledge. A manufacturer company with high employee turnover could put the smoothness of the project development at risk; the company might spend too much time constantly training employees, and the acquired knowledge might consequently be leaked. Also, the factory requires implementing high control standards, including packaging for overseas shipment. For product improvements, it is important to evaluate the return merchandise authorisation (RMA) process and how feedback flows from the customer. All of this will help to evaluate quality that should be complemented with the best infrastructure. Finally, analysing operations cannot be overlooked. It is preferable that the business model of the manufacturer source be pure OEM/ODM-based; in this case, the roles of both actors (buyer and factory) are clearly established, and there will not be any risk that the factory decides to approach the buyer’s client. "In the medium-long term, working with OEM/ODM sources does not require a big investment, and the ROI is faster" Public companies offer more complete and precise information about their financial states; obviously, healthy finances represent a more stable operation and provide more security for the money invested in merchandise. Conclusion Currently OEM/ODM manufacturing sources are located in China and Taiwan. There is no doubt that China offers very attractive prices and lead time, but Chinese manufacturers still face unpredictable situations of quality control, sometimes undermining credibility related to IP surveillance in some regions of the world. Although Taiwan manufacturers cannot compete against the Chinese in price, they offer high quality and a balanced solution, making them highly trustworthy for any IP surveillance business.
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