Panasonic introduces two highly cost effective, i-Pro SmartHD security cameras - the WV-SP105 and WV-SP102
Panasonic introduces two highly cost effective, i-Pro SmartHD security cameras - the WV-SP105 and WV-SP102

Panasonic System Networks Europe (PSNE) announced the introduction of two highly cost effective i-Pro SmartHD security network cameras - the WV-SP105 & WV-SP102. The new cameras record 720p HD images at up to 30 frames-per-second (FPS) with multiple H.264 (High profile) and JPEG video streams. Both cameras employ Panasonic's UniPhier® LSI (Large-Scale Integrated circuit) chip and H.264 High Profile format to deliver real-time video streaming at a lower data size. These affordable cameras are packed with Panasonic features such as Adaptive Black Stretch (ABS) technology for wide dynamic range, Digital Noise Reduction (3D-DNR), and Video Motion Detection (VMD) with four programmable detection areas, 15-step sensitivity levels and 10-step detection sizes. Metadata for the VMD works with Panasonic's Model WJ-ND400 playback VMD function. Privacy Zone can mask up to two private areas, such as house windows and entrances/exits. "We need to offer options for our customers looking for greater cost-efficiencies," said Stephen Gerrard, Head of Marketing for PSNE UK. "Our new cost-effective cameras provide superior image quality and ensure we have solutions for every application." The flagship i-Pro SmartHD model WV-SP105 incorporates a newly developed 1.3-megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor for full-frame 1,280x960-pixel image size. In VGA resolution mode, the camera offers a 2x extra zoom in addition to the 4x digital zoom controlled by the browser. The camera provides automatic electronic sensitivity enhancement (up to 16x) with light sensitivity levels of 0.8 lux (colour) and 0.4 lux (B&W) at F2.2. The new i-Pro SmartHD model WV-SP102 is equipped with a 0.32 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor that offers full frame (640x480-pixel) transmission at 30 fps. Automatic electronic sensitivity enhancement is 8x, with light sensitivity levels of 2.0 lux (colour) and 1.3 lux (B&W) at F2.0. For both network cameras, progressive scan ensures clear images with less motion blur and no tearing, even when a subject is moving. A primary (RGB) colour filter provides superior colour reproduction. For organisations that need to secure both personnel and property but also face the challenge of economic constraint, WV-SP105 & WV-SP102 provide a highly specified security solution at a cost efficient price.

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Panasonic WV-CF/CW300 Series cameras add five 24/7 security solutions to the panasonic surveillance camera line-up
Panasonic WV-CF/CW300 Series cameras add five 24/7 security solutions to the panasonic surveillance camera line-up

Panasonic System Communications Company Europe (PSCEU) is pleased to announce the introduction of five new day/night fixed analogue box and fixed dome cameras with high resolution (650 TV lines), high sensitivity with true day/night functionality and a 16-axis matrix colour compensation function for a wider range of natural colour adjustment. Advanced functionality is available in the WV-CF/CW300 series of day/night fixed dome cameras, with high light sensitivity resulting from the day/night function; capturing colour images is possible at just 0.08 lx in the WV-CF314L/WV-CW324L and 0.15 lx in the WV-CF304L/WV-CW304L. This is in correlation with the 20 m IR LED irradiation of the WV-CF314L and the 10 m irradiation distance of the WV-CF304L and with the 50 m IR LED irradiation of the WV-CW324L and the 20 m irradiation distance of the WV-CW304L Additionally, all five models incorporate an infrared (IR) cut filter that switches on and off for greater light sensitivity in B/W mode, enabling scenes and images to be captured in total darkness, at 0 lx. The infrared light is used to illuminate the images, facilitating the ‘true day/night’ feature along with auto back focus (ABF) which allows for quick installation and sharper images. The true day/night feature combined with the IP 66 rated housing ensures that the WV-CW300 series is the perfect fit for outdoor installations. Able to capture scenes and images even when the sun is down and the lights are out, the WV-CF300 and WV-CW300 series are the ideal analogue solution to 24/7 surveillance; with true day/night and infrared capabilities, as well as options to suit outdoor installations, a model can be found to suit each challenge and installation.  

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Panasonic showcases superior image quality with the launch of Super Dynamic 5 (SD5) technology
Panasonic showcases superior image quality with the launch of Super Dynamic 5 (SD5) technology

IFSEC 2009 saw host to the latest edition to Panasonic's market leading Super Dynamic technology with the launch of Super Dynamic 5 (SD5). Super Dynamic 5 technology achieves superior video images by combining 12xwider dynamic range with greater low-light sensitivity (0.3 lux), more resolution (650 lines colour), the implementation of Adaptive Black Stretch (ABS) technology to compensate for dark areas, and intelligent Video Motion Detection (i-VMD) to capture moving objects without distortion.Accompanying the launch of SD5 at IFSEC, Panasonic also launched MEGA SD Technology for the IP camera market. The new Panasonic Super Dynamic Series takes image processing to new peaks, with all the contrast and colour of reality itself, even in dimply lit situations. MEGA SD promises the user 1,280 x 960 images with a superior dynamic range with the fusion of 2.6 million pixels CCD and Super Dynamic DSP technology.  With over 2.6 million pixels CCD Uniphier platform delivers 2048 x 1538 for outstanding image quality, allowing for precise identification. MEGA SD provides 10 times more precise image than the conventional VGA CCDs.SD5 and MEGA SD both reach to new levels of superior image processing and smart intelligence functions, approaching and even exceeding the human eye. Panasonic System Solutions Super Dynamic innovation will continue to meet the expanding needs of security.

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 Panasonic introduces i-Pro SmartHD, the impressive new range of security cameras
Panasonic introduces i-Pro SmartHD, the impressive new range of security cameras

Panasonic System Networks Europe launch six intelligent new i-Pro SmartHD camerasThe smart six i-Pro SmartHD cameras:With increased market demand for truly converged IP surveillance and communications systems added to a greater than ever expectation for high resolution images, the new range will satisfy both trends whilst also minimising total cost of ownership and maximising efficiency. The first three clever cameras in the i-Pro SmartHD line-up are box type network cameras that yield high data compression rates to minimise network data traffic through the H.264[1] format. WV-SP306 and WV-SP305 HD network cameras plus the WV-SP302 network camera are all scheduled for release in June, 2010. Additionally, Panasonic is also showing off a further three fixed dome network cameras, equipped with 3.6 variable focal auto iris lens, the WV-SF336 and WV-SF335 HD fixed dome network cameras plus the WV-SF332 fixed dome network camera will all become available in July, 2010. Smart thinking redefines image quality and efficient use of networks: The new i-Pro SmartHD cameras are all equipped with Panasonic's proprietary platform UniPhier®[2], and with their H.264 high profile format, high definition video[3] transmission is made possible at up to an impressive 30 frames per second. This brings two immediate advantages from installing i-Pro SmartHD CCTV solutions in any environment. Firstly, a reduced total cost of ownership is achievable because existing secure IP networks can be used. Network data traffic created by CCTV content is squeezed through the high quality H.264 format, more video data can be transmitted down the same cables than before, so for new systems additional costly network cable infrastructure and the labour cost associated with installing it is substantially reduced. Further, new cables may not need to be run in order to support existing IP based systems such as computers or telephony equipment. The second advantage is that the resulting images that are transferred from the camera and seen by the end user are of a crystal clear quality, with nearly one million pixels[4] visible. With standard definition systems that produce lower quality images, small details such as clothing material, identifiable by observing textures, might not be present in the captured content. With small and subtle details like this acknowledged by security professionals and police around the globe as factors all too often critical to solving serious crime, i-Pro SmartHD brings more powerful tools to bear in the fight against crime. Further features which can additionally reduce bit rates and network bandwidth consumption include low burden image transmission, high quality 1/3rd MOS sensors, 3D Digital Noise Reduction to produce the cleanest images possible and 0.3 Lux high sensitivity to replicate vivid colourful images. With smart use of network resources and crystal clear crime beating images covered, PSNE have also considered environmental resources and Panasonic's Eco Ideas initiative has enabled the reduction of power consumption by up to 45%[5]. Smart features: With increased market demand for truly converged IP surveillance and communications systems i-Pro SmartHD CCTV systems answer also with the capability to transmit two kinds of H.264 encoded video simultaneously. This is in order to further reduce network data traffic and maintain provision of network services at required speeds. For example, for Panasonic Network Video Recorders a 1.3 megapixel 30 FPS video can be recorded whilst another video stream is transmitted simultaneously in VGA resolution for a multi-screen camera display in a security office. VRS[6] is a sophisticated new function that further decreases the burden of CCTV data traffic on the network through capturing images only at HD resolutions in specified sections of the image, for example where property most at threat is located. A camera overlooking a car park need only produce HD images in the areas where cars are parked and not on the walls surrounding that area or an owner of a chain of stores may only require high resolution images of high risk merchandising areas and is less concerned in capturing HD footage of other areas of the shop. The new i-Pro SmartHD cameras are also equipped with Panasonic Super Dynamic technology for a superior dynamic range and face detection capability. With this combination, faces can be detected automatically and are clearly visible even in a strongly backlit situation where previously suspects couldn't be seen. Smart technology, smart investment, smart security: The latest i-Pro SmartHD cameras not only improve image quality to a high definition resolution, but through a simpler, easier to operate and maintained security system, better answer end user needs. They also save time and other resources which reduces total cost of ownership. Where PSNE brings something truly different to the security market is in the ability to offer a wide range of solutions to a wide range of users that answer their needs and with the latest i-Pro SmartHD innovations PSNE's security customers will be sure to be making the most intelligent security choice.Note:H.264/AVC/MPEG-4 Part 10 (Advanced Video Encoding) is a standard for video compressionPanasonic's Proprietary system LSI platform, UniPhier®1280 (H) x 960 (V) 30FPS or 720p HD video (1850 (H) x 720 (V))1280 (H) x 720 (V)45% power consumption when compared with conventional CCTV camerasVRS Variable Resolution at specific area

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Panasonic introduces the WV-SP509 full HD network camera
Panasonic introduces the WV-SP509 full HD network camera

The WV-SP509 IP static camera provides high quality images and a wealth of features. Using a newly developed MOS sensor, the SP509 provides high quality full HD images across multiple H.264 and JPEG streams. Using MEGA Super Dynamic technology to deliver 128x dynamic range, the day/night image quality of the SP509 is ideal in all conditions. Packed with features, the SP509 is the most intelligent camera to date. Face detection allows the camera to adjust product focus to capture a person in shot and also use the XML data to trigger an alarm upon detection if using a compatible recorder. Auto back focus (ABF) allows easy installation, reducing installation time and ensuring perfect image. VIQS (variable image quality on specified area) is the latest innovation to the Smart HD range, allowing the camera to have higher resolution only on specified areas of the image, meaning lower bandwidth. The WV-SP509 provides all the latest Smart HD innovations, ensuring is fit for all in and outdoor needs*. Also, ONVIF compliant this camera is a must for a wide range of applications. Key features: Progressive scan 3.1 Megapixel MOS Sensor. Up to 30 fps at 1920 x 1080 image size Progressive scan 1.3 Megapixel MOS Sensor Wide Dynamic Range and ABS (Adaptive Black Stretch) technologies deliver wider dynamic range Face Wide Dynamic Range technology ensures clear face image High sensitivity: 0.5 lux (Colour), 0.06 lux(B/W) at F1.4 / 0.03 lux (Colour), 0.004 lux (B/W) at F1.4 with Sens Up 16x H.264 (High profile) and JPEG dual stream output Power over Ethernet (PoE) IEEE 802.3af, SDXC memorycard

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New from Panasonic: Two indoor vandal resistant dome cameras extend the award winning i-Pro SmartHD range
New from Panasonic: Two indoor vandal resistant dome cameras extend the award winning i-Pro SmartHD range

PSNE launches the WV-SF346 and WV-SF342 vandal-resistant indoor network dome cameras to broaden the i-Pro SmartHD range of options for installers.Panasonic's Uniphier® technology maximises network traffic management enabling simultaneous H.264 (High-profile) and JPEG video streams over IP for real time monitoring and high-resolution video recording. SDHC and SD memory card slots make manual recording in H.264 or JPEG possible with automated backup recording upon alarm or network failure, which assures piece of mind.Both cameras allow for VMD (Video Motion Detector) technology, which has 4 programmable detection areas, 15 steps sensitivity level and 10 steps detection size with up to two privacy zones for masked windows or doorways. Progressive scan technology ensures clear images with reduced image tearing and motion blur and Face Wide Dynamic Range technology ensures a clear face image even during movement.Stephen Gerrard, Country Marketing Manager PSNE, stated: "Both network dome cameras are designed with a range of indoor applications in mind. Panasonic's new technology and intelligent features ensure that the best possible image quality is achieved with specific focus on optimising facial recognition for security operatives on the floor."The WV-SF346 also comes with ABF (Auto Back Focus), which adjusts sensor positioning to ensure an easy installation while Focus Assist aids set up in the WV-SF342. The Digital Noise Reduction feature, 3D-DNR, ensures noise reduction in various conditions whilst the vandal resistant polycarbonate dome structure is designed to survive a free fall drop from a 5kg weight; making both domes the ideal indoor security package.The WV-SF346, supports the newly developed 1.3 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor with simple day/night function enabling superb low light performance at 0.3 lux (colour) and 0.2 lux (B/W). A full frame transmission up to 30fps at HD 1,280 x 960 image size means the WV-SF346 certifies precise video quality and subsequent subject recognition. The WV-SF342 also supports simple day/night function, with high 0.2 lux (Colour), 0.13 lux (B/W) and a full frame rate of up to 30 fps transmission at super high resolution SVGA/800 x 600 created by 1.3 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor.These two new indoor, vandal resistant network dome cameras strengthen the Panasonic i-Pro SmartHD range and come equipped with all the attributes needed for a flexible indoor installation.

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New IP domes: Two feature packed vandal resistant domes, the WV-SF346 and WV-SF342 from Panasonic
New IP domes: Two feature packed vandal resistant domes, the WV-SF346 and WV-SF342 from Panasonic

PSNE launches the WV-SF346 and WV-SF342 vandal-resistant indoor network dome cameras to broaden the i-Pro SmartHD range of options for installers.Panasonic's Uniphier® technology maximises network traffic management enabling simultaneous H.264 (High-profile) and JPEG video streams over IP for real time monitoring and high-resolution video recording. SDHC and SD memory card slots make manual recording in H.264 or JPEG possible with automated backup recording upon alarm or network failure which assures piece of mind.Both cameras allow for VMD (Video Motion Detector) technology, which has 4 programmable detection areas, 15 steps sensitivity level and 10 steps detection size with up to two privacy zones for masked windows or doorways. Progressive scan technology ensures clear images with reduced image tearing and motion blur and Face Wide Dynamic Range technology ensures a clear face image even during movement.Stephen Gerrard, Country Marketing Manager PSNE, stated: "Both network dome cameras are designed with a range of indoor applications in mind. Panasonic's new technology and intelligent features ensure that the best possible image quality is achieved with specific focus on optimising facial recognition for security operatives on the floor."The WV-SF346 also comes with ABF (Auto Back Focus) which adjusts sensor positioning to ensure an easy installation while Focus Assist aids set up in the WV-SF342. The Digital Noise Reduction feature, 3D-DNR, ensures noise reduction in various conditions whilst the vandal resistant polycarbonate dome structure is designed to survive a free fall drop from a 5kg weight; making both domes the ideal indoor security package.The WV-SF346, supports the newly developed 1.3 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor with simple day/night function enabling superb low light performance at 0.3 lux (colour) and 0.2 lux (B/W). A full frame transmission up to 30fps at HD 1,280 x 960 image size means the WV-SF346 certifies precise video quality and subsequent subject recognition. The WV-SF342 also supports simple day/night function, with high 0.2 lux (Colour), 0.13 lux (B/W) and a full frame rate of up to 30 fps transmission at super high resolution SVGA/800 x 600 created by 1.3 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor.These two new indoor, vandal resistant network dome cameras strengthen the Panasonic i-Pro SmartHD range and come equipped with all the attributes needed for a flexible indoor installation.

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IP cameras - Expert commentary

We need to talk about intelligent enclosure protection
We need to talk about intelligent enclosure protection

Enclosures containing electronics, communications or cabling infrastructure offer a simple attack point for cyber breaches and an opportunity for a physical attack on the hardware. Yet, many of these assets are housed within enclosures that provide minimal security features to offer a deterrent to any would-be attacker. This has always just been a pet hate. Walking down the high street of a town anywhere in the United Kingdom, you can often see open street communication cabinets. You can actually look directly inside at the equipment. And if I was a bad guy, I could quite easily just put my foot into their enclosure and quite quickly take out their infrastructure. Charged service for enclosures This seems crazy when a US$ 2 magnetic contact on a door can quickly tell you whether your enclosure is open or shut, and can be vital in keeping your network alive. Moreover, the operators of these systems, whether it is telecoms or internet providers, are providing a charged service to their customers, so they should really be protecting their enclosures. Why has that security level not been so readily taken into the outside world, into the unprotected environment? More sobering, if you contrast this security approach to the approach taken in the data centre world, an environment that already has multiple stringent security protocols in place, you get a very different picture. For instance, security devices can capture snapshots of anyone who opens a cabinet door in a data room, so it is recorded who has opened that door. While that is just one simple example, it begs the question. Why has that security level not been so readily taken into the outside world, into the unprotected environment? In my mind, a lot of it boils down simply to education. Network connection, easy point of cyber attacks Our preconceived idea about cyber security is some big corporation being knocked out or held to ransom by, again in our mind, someone sitting at a laptop, probably with their hood up over their head, typing away in the darkness, attacking us through the internet. But how the would-be criminal is going to come at us is just like in sport. They attack at the weakest point. Networks can be deployed in the outside world in many ways, such as cameras monitoring the highways. That means those locations will have a network connection. And that can be a point of attack in a non-secure outside world. Enclosures can be broken into by attackers Many people think, ‘That is okay because I’m going to take that ethernet device that my cameras are connected to and I’m going to put it inside an enclosure.’ However, what people do not realize is that the only thing that the enclosure is doing is protecting the ethernet device from Mother Nature. Because, without proper security, those enclosures can be broken into pretty easily. Many of them are just a single key that is not in any way coded to the device. Twofold cyber security People need to realise that cyber security is twofold. It can be carried out by hacking the network or physically breaking Therein lays the problem. People need to realise that cyber security is twofold. It can be carried out by hacking the network or physically breaking into the weakest physical point. And so, a simple boot through the open door of an enclosure can vandalise the devices inside and take down a small or large part of a network. And by definition, this meets the criteria for a cyber-attack. So, how do we go about tackling this problem? Well, security is a reaction marketplace. And for enclosures, there’s not, at present, a plethora of solutions out there for to counter these types of attacks. It can be challenging to find what you’re looking for through a quick Google search compared to searching for more traditional security protection measures. Deploying smart sensors and detectors But, under Vanderbilt and ComNet, we are currently taking our knowledge and experience from system installation and compiling it together. We’re bringing different products from different parts of our business to make a true solution. For instance, we have sensors for enclosures that detect anything from gas or smoke to open doors, detectors that will tell you if someone is trying to smash open your enclosure with a sledgehammer, or that someone is trying to lift your enclosure off of its mount. More importantly, as is not really a one-size-fits-all solution, we have developed a menu structure available that allows customers to pick and choose the ones that will best fit their own requirements.

We have the technology to make society safer – how long can we justify not using it?
We have the technology to make society safer – how long can we justify not using it?

While the application of facial recognition within both public and private spheres continues to draw criticism from those who see it as a threat to civil rights, this technology has become extremely commonplace in the lives of iPhone users. It is so prevalent, in fact, that by 2024 it is predicted that 90% of smartphones will use biometric facial recognition hardware. CCTV surveillance cameras  Similarly, CCTV is a well-established security measure that many of us are familiar with, whether through spotting images displayed on screens in shops, hotels and offices, or noticing cameras on the side of buildings. It is therefore necessary we ask the question of why, when facial recognition is integrated with security surveillance technology, does it become such a source of contention? It is not uncommon for concerns to be voiced against innovation. History has taught us that it is human nature to fear the unknown, especially if it seems that it may change life as we know it. Yet technology is an ever-changing, progressive part of the 21st century and it is important we start to shift the narrative away from privacy threats, to the force for good that LFR (Live Facial Recognition) represents. Live Facial Recognition (LFR) We understand the arguments from those that fear the ethics of AI and the data collection within facial recognition Across recent weeks, we have seen pleas from UK organisations to allow better police access to facial recognition technology in order to fight crime. In the US, there are reports that LAPD is the latest police force to be properly regulating its use of facial recognition to aid criminal investigations, which is certainly a step in the right direction. While it is understandable that society fears technology that they do not yet understand, this lack of knowledge is exactly why the narrative needs to shift. We understand the arguments from those that fear the ethics of AI and the data collection within facial recognition, we respect these anxieties. However, it is time to level the playing field of the facial recognition debate and communicate the plethora of benefits it offers society. Facial recognition technology - A force for good Facial recognition technology has already reached such a level of maturity and sophistication that there are huge opportunities for it to be leveraged as a force for good in real-world scenarios. As well as making society safer and more secure, I would go as far to say that LFR is able to save lives. One usage that could have a dramatic effect on reducing stress in people with mental conditions is the ability for facial recognition to identify those with Alzheimer’s. If an older individual is seemingly confused, lost or distressed, cameras could alert local medical centres or police stations of their identity, condition and where they need to go (a home address or a next of kin contact). Granted, this usage would be one that does incorporate a fair bit of personal data, although this information would only be gathered with consent from each individual. Vulnerable people could volunteer their personal data to local watchlists in order to ensure their safety when out in society, as well as to allow quicker resolutions of typically stressful situations. Tracking and finding missing persons Another possibility for real world positives to be drawn from facial recognition is to leverage the technology to help track or find missing persons, a lost child for instance. The most advanced forms of LFR in the market are now able to recognise individuals even if up to 50% of their face is covered and from challenging or oblique angles. Therefore, there is a significant opportunity not only to return people home safely, more quickly, but also reduce police hours spent on analysing CCTV footage. Rapid scanning of images Facial recognition technology can rapidly scan images for a potential match Facial recognition technology can rapidly scan images for a potential match, as a more reliable and less time-consuming option than the human alternative. Freed-up officers could also then work more proactively on the ground, patrolling their local areas and increasing community safety and security twofold. It is important to understand that these facial recognition solutions should not be applied to every criminal case, and the technology must be used responsibly. However, these opportunities to use LFR as force for good are undeniable.   Debunking the myths One of the central concerns around LFR is the breach of privacy that is associated with ‘watchlists’. There is a common misconception, however, that the data of every individual that passes a camera is processed and then stored. The reality is that watch lists are compiled with focus on known criminals, while the general public can continue life as normal. The very best facial recognition will effectively view a stream of blurred faces, until it detects one that it has been programmed to recognise. For example, an individual that has previously shoplifted from a local supermarket may have their biometric data stored, so when they return to that location the employees are alerted to a risk of further crimes being committed. Considering that the cost of crime prevention to retailers in recent years has been around £1 billion, which therefore impacts consumer prices and employee wages, security measures to tackle this issue are very much in the public interest. Most importantly, the average citizen has no need to fear being ‘followed’ by LFR cameras. If data is stored, it is for a maximum of 0.6 seconds before being deleted. Privacy Privacy is ingrained in facial recognition solutions, yet it seems the debate often ignores this side of the story Privacy is ingrained in facial recognition solutions, yet it seems the debate often ignores this side of the story. It is essential we spend more time and effort communicating exactly why watchlists are made, who they are made for and how they are being used, if we want to de-bunk myths and change the narrative. As science and technology professionals, heading up this exciting innovation, we must put transparency and accountability at the centre of what we do. Tony Porter, former Surveillance Camera Commissioner and current CPO at Corsight AI, has previously worked on developing processes that audit and review watch lists. Such restrictions are imperative in order for AI and LFR to be used legally, as well as ethically and responsibly. Biometrics, mask detection and contactless payments Nevertheless, the risks do not outweigh the benefits. Facial recognition should and can be used for good in so many more ways than listed above, including biometric, contactless payments, detecting whether an individual is wearing a facemask and is therefore, safe to enter a building, identifying a domestic abuse perpetrator returning to the scene of a crime and alerting police. There are even opportunities for good that we have not thought of yet. It is therefore not only a waste not to use this technology where we can, prioritising making society a safer place, it is immoral to stand by and let crimes continue while we have effective, reliable mitigation solutions.  

Safety in smart cities: How video surveillance keeps security front and centre
Safety in smart cities: How video surveillance keeps security front and centre

Urban populations are expanding rapidly around the globe, with an expected growth of 1.56 billion by 2040. As the number of people living and working in cities continues to grow, the ability to keep everyone safe is an increasing challenge. However, technology companies are developing products and solutions with these futuristic cities in mind, as the reality is closer than you may think. Solutions that can help to watch over public places and share data insights with city workers and officials are increasingly enabling smart cities to improve the experience and safety of the people who reside there. Rising scope of 5G, AI, IoT and the Cloud The main foundations that underpin smart cities are 5G, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT) and the Cloud. Each is equally important, and together, these technologies enable city officials to gather and analyse more detailed insights than ever before. For public safety in particular, having IoT and cloud systems in place will be one of the biggest factors to improving the quality of life for citizens. Smart cities have come a long way in the last few decades, but to truly make a smart city safe, real-time situational awareness and cross-agency collaboration are key areas which must be developed as a priority. Innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping centre, or the main roads through towns Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping centre, or the main roads through towns. From dangerous drivers to terrorist attacks, petty crime on the streets to high profile bank robberies, innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT and cloud technologies can go some way to helping respond quickly to, and in some cases even prevent, the most serious incidents. Many existing safety systems in cities rely on aging and in some places legacy technology, such as video surveillance cameras. Many of these also use on-premises systems rather than utilising the benefits of the cloud. Smart programming to deliver greater insights These issues, though not creating a major problem today, do make it more challenging for governments and councils to update their security. Changing every camera in a city is a huge undertaking, but in turn, doing so would enable all cameras to be connected to the cloud, and provide more detailed information which can be analysed by smart programming to deliver greater insights. The physical technologies that are currently present in most urban areas lack the intelligent connectivity, interoperability and integration interfaces that smart cities need. Adopting digital technologies isn’t a luxury, but a necessity. Smart surveillance systems It enables teams to gather data from multiple sources throughout the city in real-time, and be alerted to incidents as soon as they occur. Increased connectivity and collaboration ensures that all teams that need to be aware of a situation are informed instantly. For example, a smart surveillance system can identify when a road accident has occurred. It can not only alert the nearest ambulance to attend the scene, but also the local police force to dispatch officers. An advanced system that can implement road diversions could also close roads around the incident immediately and divert traffic to other routes, keeping everyone moving and avoiding a build-up of vehicles. This is just one example: without digital systems, analysing patterns of vehicle movements to address congestion issues could be compromised, as would the ability to build real-time crime maps and deploy data analytics which make predictive policing and more effective crowd management possible. Cloud-based technologies Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation that is needed to overcome the limitations of traditional security systems. Using these, smart cities can develop a fully open systems architecture that delivers interoperation with both local and other remote open systems. The intelligence of cloud systems can not only continue to allow for greater insights as technology develops over time, but it can do so with minimal additional infrastructure investment. Smart surveillance in the real world Mexico City has a population of almost 9 million people, but if you include the whole metropolitan area, this number rises sharply to over 21 million in total, making it one of the largest cities on the planet. Seven years ago, the city first introduced its Safe City initiative, and ever since has been developing newer and smarter ways to keep its citizens safe. In particular, its cloud-based security initiative is making a huge impact. Over the past three years, Mexico City has installed 58,000 new video surveillance cameras throughout the city, in public spaces and on transport, all of which are connected to the City’s C5 (Command, Control, Computers, Communications and Citizen Contact) facility. Smart Cities operations The solution enables officers as well as the general public to upload videos via a mobile app to share information quickly, fixed, body-worn and vehicle cameras can also be integrated to provide exceptional insight into the city’s operations. The cloud-based platform can easily be upgraded to include the latest technology innovations such as licence plate reading, behavioural analysis software, video analytics and facial recognition software, which will all continue to bring down crime rates and boost response times to incidents. The right cloud approach Making the shift to cloud-based systems enables smart cities to eliminate dependence on fibre-optic connectivity and take advantage of a variety of Internet and wireless connectivity options that can significantly reduce application and communication infrastructure costs. Smart cities need to be effective in years to come, not just in the present day, or else officials have missed one of the key aspects of a truly smart city. System designers must build technology foundations now that can be easily adapted in the future to support new infrastructure as it becomes available. Open system architecture An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations For example, this could include opting for a true cloud application that can support cloud-managed local devices and automate their management. An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations and deliver additional value-add services to citizens as greater capabilities become possible in the years to come. The advances today in cloud and IoT technologies are rapid, and city officials and authorities have more options now to develop their smart cities than ever before and crucially, to use these innovations to improve public safety. New safety features Though implementing these cloud-based systems now requires investment, as new safety features are designed, there will be lower costs and challenges associated with introducing these because the basic infrastructure will already exist. Whether that’s gunshot detection or enabling the sharing of video infrastructure and data across multiple agencies in real time, smart video surveillance on cloud-based systems can bring a wealth of the new opportunities.

Latest Panasonic System Communications Company Europe news

Panasonic announces the launch of remote PTZ camera range for a wide range of uses
Panasonic announces the launch of remote PTZ camera range for a wide range of uses

Panasonic's PTZ camera range is the renowned remote production solution. They have been designed to deliver high-quality images with natural colour reproduction, offer ease of use, and provide accurate and smooth camera movements. Panasonic continuously incorporates new features into its PTZ range to meet the changing production requirements - from the FreeD protocol to support AR/VR applications, to IP transmission protocols like high-bandwidth NDI, SRT and RTMP/RTMPS for stable video transmission and live streaming. Case study: Cathedral live streams Sunday mass The Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral is the largest Catholic cathedral in England and recently upgraded their AV system to live stream their services to an online audience. The Panasonic AW-HN40 PTZ camera system was a perfect fit for this update due to their optical zoom capability, their NDI|HX output and ease of use. Case study: UHD virtual reality studio at RWE campus RWE created an UHD Virtual Studio for their Campus in Essen, Germany. The studio was installed by KST Moschkau GmbH and features 4 Panasonic AW-UE150 UHD PTZ cameras, the KST-CamBot.system and Zero Density's Reality Engine. This solution was employed as RWE relies heavily on TV production automation as they do not employ professional studio personnel. L.I.V.E. video series - smart live production One can follow the company’s Live Integrated Video Experience (L.I.V.E.) video series to find out more about the future of broadcasting. It showcases the ground-breaking capabilities of their technology in virtual studios and addresses the challenges of live production in a rapidly changing industry. This series include managing the move to remote production and the necessary workflow changes, enhancing the production value of live streamed content and the adoption of VR and AR technologies. In detail – Meet the UE100 One can watch the AW-UE100 webinar session to find out why the newest addition to the company’s wide PTZ line up meets the ever-increasing demand for high quality video content from cameras that can be operated remotely, with flexible and cost-effective operation. The 4K/60p capable camera supports high-bandwidth NDI, high-efficiency NDI|HX and SRT without the need for additional licenses, and includes a 12G-SDI output to support a wide array of shooting environments, from event live streams to studio production. EasyIP+ set up tool EasyIP+ is a free-to-download tool used to set up the company’s PTZ cameras with ease. This new tool has a host of new features, including a redesigned graphic user interface (GUI) with all key features in one centralised place, a new and improved camera list function, an Auto-IP Set-Up and firmware update functionality that informs the user about any updates automatically. One can find this and many other useful software updates on the Panasonic update page.

Panasonic unveils state-of-the-art i-PRO X-Series of network security cameras with built-in AI capabilities
Panasonic unveils state-of-the-art i-PRO X-Series of network security cameras with built-in AI capabilities

Panasonic has announced its new i-PRO X-Series of network security cameras with built in AI capabilities making them ideal for the next generation of intelligent applications in business and society. i-PRO X-Series security cameras With its Software Development Kit, the camera range is designed for third party application development that can be tailored to a business customer’s needs. The range includes six new models, with 5MP resolutions available in July, 2020 and 4K resolutions at the end of the year, and indoor and outdoor vandal resistant dome or box configurations. The new cameras can install up to three video analytics applications, with two i-PRO applications plus the Software Development Kit included free-of-charge, if purchased before the end of March 2021. The two analytics applications available as of now are AI Video Motion Detection (AI-VMD) and Privacy Masking. AI Video Motion Detection AI engine enables alarm triggers, based upon predefined parameters, at a  very high level of accuracy AI Video Motion Detection (AI-VMD) is capable of detecting any human, vehicle, two-wheel motorcycle or bicycle and can be used for intrusion detection, identifying loitering, direction detection and many more applications. The AI engine enables alarm triggers, based upon predefined parameters, at a higher level of accuracy than ever before. The second application is Privacy Masking to detect and recognise human figures in a video scene and pixelate their figures or faces for privacy protection. This application is important for many businesses operating in geographies where strict privacy laws are in force, such as Europe with GDPR. It can be used to protect the identities of employees, customers and visitors in a wide range of industries. AI engine with on-board analytics The new i-PRO X-Series employ an AI engine with on-board analytics to detect suspicious changes in scenes, automatically adjust image settings of the scene being analysed, and optimise video compression to conserve network bandwidth and server storage capacities. “This new camera range, with its open Software Development Kit, offers exciting opportunities to tailor a host of next generation AI applications around the specific needs of business customers,” said Gerard Figols, European Head of the Panasonic Security Business Unit. New analytics applications He adds, “Our partners already have a number of innovative additional applications in development for future use with the camera range. We will be announcing more on these applications later in the year but the benefits of the cameras with these new analytics applications are widespread and vary from enhancing security to helping make a change in the post-COVID world.”

Panasonic unveils BizTalk, free online leaning resource for businesses in the ‘new normal’ work environment
Panasonic unveils BizTalk, free online leaning resource for businesses in the ‘new normal’ work environment

Panasonic has launched a free online resource for businesses to help them to continue to learn, change and share in the ‘new normal’ work environment. Panasonic BizTalk Panasonic BizTalk brings together a series of digital talks, webinars, training and Q&A’s with Panasonic experts and partners across its entire range of business technology. Areas of interest covered include mobile computing, security, broadcast, business communication and visual solutions, as well as industrial medical vision camera and integrated technology solutions to address vertical industry challenges. Comprehensive online learning environment “With businesses adjusting to a new type of working environment, our traditional methods of learning and sharing experiences, such as at physical events and conferences, have vanished but our industry and business challenges remain,” said Jan Kaempfer, Head of Marketing at Panasonic System Communications Company Europe. Jan adds, “As a result, Panasonic is focusing on providing its customers and partners with a comprehensive online environment for understanding industry trends, sharing experiences and learning about the latest technology solutions. This free resource will rapidly grow over the coming months and I encourage businesses, partners and media to participate.”

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