Round table contributions
They say that every choice has a cost. It's a basic principle that, economically speaking, nothing is free. If it doesn't cost actual money, it may be expensive in terms of time, attention and/or effort. These are interesting observations to keep in mind as one peruses the various "free" video management system (VMS) offerings available on the market. Some are provided by camera companies to unify their products into a "system", even if it's a small one. Other free VMS offerings are entry-level versions offered by software companies with the intent of the customer upgrading later to a paid version. For more insights, we asked this week's Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the value of “free” video management systems (VMSs) and how can a customer decide whether “free” is the right price for them?
The beginning of the school year and upcoming seasonal changes remind us that demand for security systems, like almost everything else, is seasonal to some extent. Making improvements to educational facilities during the summer months – including installation of security systems – is the most obvious example of seasonal demand, but there are others. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Which vertical markets for security are impacted by seasonal changes in demand?
Where does the time go? Before you know it, here we are at mid-year reflecting on an eventful first half of 2018 in the physical security market. It’s also a good time for our Expert Panel Roundtable to pause and look ahead at what we might expect in the second half of the year. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What technology development will have the greatest impact in the second half of 2018?
Hospitality businesses work to provide a safe and pleasant customer experience for their guests. Hotels offer a “home away from home” for millions of guests every day around the world. These are businesses of many sizes and types, providing services ranging from luxury accommodations to simple lodging for business travelers to family vacation experiences. Hospitality businesses also include restaurants, bars, movie theaters and other venues. Security needs are varied and require technologies that span a wide spectrum. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the security challenges of the hospitality market?
Finding the exact right technology to solve an end user’s problem is challenging, but the rewards are great when an integrator gets it right. A wide range of available product types, price levels and added features increases the likelihood of identifying a technology to solve any problem. But with so many technology and product choices in the marketplace, identifying that one solution can be akin to finding a needle in a haystack. We wondered whether a vast range of product choices is always a good thing. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Are security integrators and end users overwhelmed by “too many choices” related to security equipment and systems? How can they make sense of it all?
Consolidation – a decrease in the number of companies in a market achieved through mergers and acquisitions (M&A) – has been an important trend among manufacturers in the physical security market for many years. More recently, the trend has also appeared to extend to the integrator market. Larger integrators have been buying up other large integrators; in some cases, they have also been buying up smaller, regional integrators to expand their geographic coverage area. We wondered if this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable has noticed the trend. We asked: Has consolidation among security companies shifted to the integrator/installer market? What is the impact?
Knowledge shared among peers is often afforded more credibility than information from manufacturers. An approximation of that principle is at work in the use of case studies as marketing tools in the physical security industry. Case studies are aimed at telling real-world success stories – from actual customers – about how various technologies are used to accomplish security goals and make the world a safer place. But how useful are they? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the benefits of case studies as a marketing tool in the security industry?
You could say concerns about privacy are “trending” in our increasingly data-driven world. Unease about how Facebook and other high-tech companies use and share data dominates the news, and the full impact of new European Union (EU) regulations is about to be felt around the world. By May 25, companies that collect data on EU citizens will need to comply with strict new rules around protecting customer data, as enumerated in the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). But how do the new regulations, and broader concerns about privacy, affect the physical security market? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How do privacy issues and regulations, such as GDPR, impact physical security systems and how they are managed?
How much does a security system cost? We all know that total costs associated with systems are substantially higher than the “price tag.” There are many elements, tangible and intangible, that contribute to the costs of owning and operating a system. Taking a broad view and finding ways to measure these additional costs enables integrators and users to get the most value from a system at the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO). However, measuring TCO can be easier said than done. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable to share the benefit of their collective expertise on the subject. Specifically, we asked: How should integrators and/or end users measure total cost of ownership (TCO) when quantifying the value of security systems?
Milestone Systems has also been a member of the Lenel Open Access Alliance Programme since 2011 Lenel, a provider of advanced security systems for over 20 years, announced that it will begin selling Milestone Systems video management software (VMS) solutions directly through the Lenel Value Added Reseller (VAR) channel in North America. This alliance will reduce the total cost of ownership for users by offering both the Lenel OnGuard access control and the Milestone XProtect VMS solutions through the same channel with reduced licensing fees. Lenel and Milestone Systems have a combined 40 years of industry experience in providing customers with open security solution technologies. Lenel is part of UTC Climate, Controls & Security, a unit of United Technologies Corp. Lenel Open Access Alliance Programme Both Lenel and Milestone Systems have been committed to providing open platforms that provide customers with the flexibility to select the optimal solutions to meet their needs. Since 2011, Milestone Systems has also been a member of the Lenel Open Access Alliance Program (OAAP), which provides customers a tight coupling between the Lenel OnGuard access control system and Milestone XProtect VMS. “Enabling users to obtain both Lenel OnGuard and Milestone XProtect platforms through our VARs will provide them with a unique value proposition,” said Ron Virden, Managing Director, Global Access Solutions, UTC Climate, Controls & Security. “Not only can the solution be more cost effective, users will also be able to take advantage of a unified support infrastructure for their complete access and video system. And, the strong interface between the OnGuard and XProtect systems ensures customers will have an industry-leading security system today and into the future.” Video verification of access events "The most critical elements of a robust and powerful security solution are the access control and video management systems" “As the sophistication with network technology continues to expand, customers want to take advantage of open platform interoperability—in this case, for video verification of access events, both live and recorded, as evidence. Lenel’s move to reduce the total cost of ownership of the combined OnGuard and XProtect solution eliminates barriers to using this best-of-breed integration for improving security operations,” said Tim Palmquist, Vice President Americas, Milestone Systems. Virden went on to say, “The most critical elements of a robust and powerful security solution are the access control and video management systems. The significant technology advances achieved by OnGuard and Xprotect provide customers with a feature-rich, proven security system for protecting their people and assets. As security threats become more sophisticated they demand continuous innovation across systems, and strong interfaces between industry leaders, which is what this alliance delivers.” To hear more about this exciting alliance at ISC West 2017, visit the UTC booth, #18019 or Milestone booth, #18053.
Milestone offers the widest integration range with Bosch products in the security market At the Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS) event in San Antonio, Texas, Milestone Systems named Bosch Security Systems its Americas 2016 Camera Partner of the Year. The long-standing partnership between the two companies has resulted in seamless integration and support for advanced features of Bosch IP video devices within the XProtect Video Management Software and Milestone Husky Network Video Recorders. And the partnership continues to grow, as Milestone now offers the widest integration range with Bosch products in the security market. Milestone Open Platform Community Camera Partner “Bosch is an exemplary Milestone Open Platform Community Camera Partner, showing a concentrated effort to increase the number of integrations with Milestone video management software, with Bosch Video Analytics, Access Control, Intrusion Detection, and Building Management Systems—and soon Forensic Search,” said Tim Palmquist, Vice President – Americas, Milestone Systems. “As such a strong Community Partner, they have diligently pursued innovation and worked to expand marketing and sales activities to increase the awareness of their solutions operating with the Milestone platform. With heartfelt appreciation, we congratulate our Americas 2016 Camera Partner of the Year: Bosch Security Systems.” Additional integration capabilities “The strength of our partnership with Milestone ensures ongoing development to bring additional integration capabilities to our mutual customers,” said Brad Eck, Integration Manager - North America, Bosch Security Systems. “As our executive, engineering, sales and marketing teams continue to collaborate, we are delivering even greater advantages to our channel partners. This includes opening up new sales opportunities for our customers by ensuring integration support for more features and more products that provide enhanced benefits for end users.” To see a live demonstration, visit the Milestone Systems booth #18053 at ISC West.
MIPS 2017’s theme ‘Together We Make the World See the Future’ reflected a newly clarified company purpose Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), held its 12th Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS) this month in San Antonio, Texas, with over 500 attendees. It is an open platform community event engaging hundreds of channel and alliance partners, customers, media people, Milestone experts and management. Milestone business activities and product innovations were shared, and 60 solution partners showcased their integrated offerings and services. Community focus on combined solution power This year’s event theme ‘Together We Make the World See the Future’ reflected a newly clarified company purpose. The emphasis is on community focus for the combined solution power of the Milestone open platform and its partners. CEO & President Lars Thinggaard appeared virtually as the audience put on VR headsets to visit beautiful landmarks of Denmark as inspiration to ‘see the future’. “We can only do this together,” said Kenneth Hune Petersen, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer at Milestone, from the stage. “We believe that the co-creation of value is unique to our open platform community.” Milestone community initiatives Petersen presented the three pillars of the new Milestone community initiatives begun last year, and more are planned in future. The Milestone Marketplace will start with new developments for the Milestone Store, the Solution Finder is evolving into the Solution Portal, and the Developers Forum is expanding. The afternoon was devoted to touring the Community Innovation Lab where Milestone Solution and Technology Partners demonstrated the latest innovations in the industry. After more VR fun watching introductions for the exhibit sections, each group was led by Milestone managers, and feedback walls in each category throughout the hall journey invited brainstorming. Milestone’s open platform community offers a framework to succeed – together – leveraging each other’s innovations Key note speeches On day two, Milestone VP Americas Tim Palmquist gave his keynote speech, further developing his topic from last year’s MIPS event: End to End is a Dead End; The Road to the Future is Open. He questioned whether the glory days are over for the surveillance market and recommended a more realistic look at today’s maturing IP market which is experiencing a natural consolidation, product price wars and other competitive factors. “It’s no longer fast growth and ‘easy money’ like the early phases in a technology lifecycle, so new business models must be developed to encompass the next market disruptions that will come. Milestone’s open platform community offers a framework to succeed – together – leveraging each other’s innovations,” said Palmquist. Digitisation of security systems Mike Sherwood, Milestone Director of Technical Operations, Americas, spoke on ‘The Engine of Innovation’: “We are driven to see one another succeed: we cannot develop in a vacuum. The best companies understand that it takes more than just one company alone to really succeed. I would reword Neil Armstrong’s famous moon landing remark, that we believe in many small steps to make a big leap!” DELL VP Ron Pugh took the stage to talk about the digitisation of everything in our lives and how the Internet of Things (IoT) can unlock the potential of the unconnected by bridging IT and Operational Technology (OT). Milestone Partner NMS presented the breakthrough SpotterRF compact radar surveillance integration with XProtect VMS that gives aerial and ground views for perimeter protection. Milestone open platform solutions Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport shared knowledge gained from growing their systems on the Milestone open platform, including RFIDreaders to manage taxi traffic, and a Unified Command Vehicle with six cameras as well as a Mobile Camera Trailer with solar power. Jamie Ritchie said: “We are building for capacity with a focus on multi-purpose solutions. In our work, we always run into the unknown: the future is just the next exit away – and with the open platform, we are excited about it!” Breakout sessions in the afternoon had parallel Technology and Business Tracks covering such topics as ‘New Cool stuff in the XProtect platform’, ‘Advances in Technology Evolving the Business Model’, Video Enabling IoT with Metadata’, ‘Public Safety & Transportation Interoperability’, ‘Video-Verified Access Control’ and ‘Cloud Solutions that Work with Today’s Technology’. "The feedback we are getting from our community is a key element for setting the direction in our product development" Global Advisory Board In early 2016 Milestone created a new global Advisory Board with the first of several groups focused on the Advanced products. Others are being formed to focus on the Business Ready portfolio, overall Business Strategy and the Developers Forum. Each has members that represent the spectrum of stakeholder roles: end users, partners and Milestone staff. Monthly questionnaires have been sent (in addition to the annual global partner survey), and quarterly meetings held. “The feedback we are getting from our community is a key element for setting the direction in our product development. We see a big opportunity for high-performing, platform-centric products with strong connectivity. This shift from product to platform thinking applies to both our software and hardware offerings, and is initially addressed in the XProtect 2017 R1 release,” said Milestone CTO Bjorn Eilertsen. Awards and recognitions The final night of MIPS announced the following awards: Anixter: Distribution Partner of the Year (Americas) Wesco: Distribution Partner of the Year (USA) Southwest Microwave: Solution Partner of the Year Quantum Corporation: Technology Partner of the Year Differential Networks/ Spotter RF/ NMS: MIP Integration of the Year Convergint Technologies (Seattle, WA): Installation of the Year Brady Integrated Security: Education Partner of the Year Convergint Technologies (Houston, TX): Retail Partner of the Year Tactical Micro/Benchmark Electronics: Transportation Partner of the Year Tech Systems: Healthcare Partner of the Year Stone Security: City Surveillance Partner of the Year App-Techs Corporation: Regional Partner of the Year AND Government Partner of the Year Prosegur Technologia (Argentina): Regional Partner of the Year Presidio: National Partner of the Year Bosch: Camera Partner of the Year, Americas Axis Communications: Supported Camera #6,000 in Milestone Device Pack release 9.0 The first-ever Milestone Community Kickstarter Contest Winner of awards valued at $50,000 was Parking Spotter. Milestone Systems will be hosting MIPS Community events in Macao end of February and in Dubai early May, as well as other Milestone events in many regions throughout the year.
Are the glory days of IP video behind us? Not by a long shot, if you listen to the upbeat message at ‘Milestone Community Days’ in San Antonio this month. Pledging to ‘Make the World See,’ the community of technology partners, distributors, integrators and customers joined in a celebration of past successes, with an emphasis on future possibilities, at the yearly gathering hosted by the video management system (VMS) vendor. Milestone software integrations "The industry is changing and it's not a time for business as usual," said Bjørn Skou Eilertsen, Milestone Systems Chief Technology Officer (CTO). "Our Open Platform Community is changing the way video technologies are used." Milestone has completed more than 150 software integrations using its platform, supports more than 6,000 camera models and is deployed in more than 150,000 surveillance installations around the world. The emphasis on community – how multiple companies can work together on systems built around the Milestone platform – has become a familiar theme at the yearly Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS), this year re-dubbed ‘Milestone Community Days.’ Unified and integrated experience There was a lot of talk about ‘co-created innovation’ and ‘co-created value’; the premise being that a ‘community’ working together through successful partnerships can accelerate collective innovation, combining best-of-breed solutions into a unified, integrated experience for customers. The community strategy creates an external ecosystem to generate complementary products and service innovations and to build positive feedback between the complements and the platform. The emphasis on community has become a familiar theme at the yearly Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS) "If you rely on your own employees, you will never solve all your customers' needs," added Eilertsen. "No matter who you are, most of the best people work for someone else. If you believe you have all the smart guys in your organisation, you are wrong. We need the whole community to engage." There are more glory days ahead for video, according to Milestone. Video is changing the way companies are working, automating and driving compliance. It is becoming part of every industry and companies are using video in new ways. The Milestone community works to ensure continued innovation through a developer programme, technology adoption programmes, advisory board and other initiatives. In effect, the community approach will continue to fuel growth, even if "the easy money is over," as Tim Palmquist, Milestone vice president, Americas, acknowledged. Virtual Reality Technology was a big part of MIPS 2017, including an exhibition of industry partners showing their contributions to the collective innovation. It was called the ‘Milestone Community Innovation Lab.’ A tour of the exhibition focused attention on each category of partners – storage systems, cameras, video analytics, etc. Attendees were provided with virtual reality (VR) goggles to view videos positioning Milestone's approach to each category, and then had time to meet with the various partners. The VR goggles were also used to view Lars Thinggaard, Milestone's president and CEO, addressing the group in a VR video produced at Milestone's headquarters in Denmark, formatted into the full virtual reality experience. One technology topic was hardware acceleration, which can increase surveillance system performance at the client level, at the recorder and/or for a mobile server application. Hardware acceleration involves leveraging the power of a graphics processing unit (GPU) to ease the computing load on the central processing unit (CPU). It is seen as an important enabling technology for the larger computational loads of higher camera count systems, and higher resolution/4K cameras. Milestone testing has confirmed a massive improvement in video processing using hardware acceleration. “Video is changing the way companies are working anddriving compliance. It is becoming part of every industry" Milestone solution portal Pre-recorded buffering in RAM (random-access memory) is one of the ways Milestone is improving performance and lowering costs of storage solutions. Buffering extends the life of the hard drive with minimal impact on RAM. Milestone has committed to provide a ‘solution portal’ as a peer-to-peer resource to promote greater innovation, such as bundling together solutions from various companies. Enabling co-selling among partners, the portal makes it easy to explore and combine elements with a global reach. A ‘Milestone store’ portal is also being devised, providing fast configuration, efficient order handling through distribution and encompassing the complete product portfolio. Applications beyond security are growing, with more on the horizon. "More than 35 percent of global installations have purposes instead of, or in addition to, surveillance," says Eilertsen. "It's changing the way companies are working, automating and driving compliance. Video is becoming part of every single industry." Plenty of reasons to be optimistic – and in the case of Milestone, ambitious: "We want to be a part of every surveillance installation in the world through video technology,” said Kenneth Hune Petersen, Milestone's Chief Sales and Marketing Officer.
Tracy Little comes to Milestone Systems with more than 18 years of management experience in the physical security industry Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), has announced Tracy Little as the U.S. National Sales Manager, East Region. He resides in the Twin Cities metro area near St. Paul, Minnesota. As a member of the Milestone Americas Sales Team, he reports directly to Mike Taylor, Director of Sales, Americas. Tracy Little comes to Milestone Systems with more than 18 years of management experience in the physical security industry. He has held leadership positions as Vice President Enterprise Accounts Americas at IR Security & Safety, Director National Accounts North America at AMAG Technology, as well as the Regional Security & Fire Sales Manager for the Northwest Region at Johnson Controls. His experience in both manufacturer and integration firms has been helping Fortune 500 companies achieve their security and safety goals from unique perspectives. Tracy Little is a member of the ASIS International organisation, and has achieved certificates in Entrepreneurial General Management, Project Management Mastery, Lean Six Sigma, and Organisational Strategic Change at Duke Corporate Executive Education. He also holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire. “Tracy has a proven knack for attracting, negotiating, developing and growing new and existing accounts,” says Tim Palmquist, VP Americas at Milestone Systems. “His deep background makes him exactly the type of leader we need for managing multiple sales activities in the very dynamic Eastern region. His knowledge of the industry will prove valuable as we broaden our network and deepen our channel sales support to achieve and exceed our mutual goals in the coming year.”
Event provided the distribution partners with an opportunity to network Milestone Systems, the open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), held it’s first-ever summit devoted solely to distribution partners. The theme for the event was ‘Winning Together’. This is the Milestone focus for 2015 to signal an even greater dedication to the Milestone partner ecosystem. Opportunity to distributors The summit took place at the global headquarters in Denmark and provided the Milestone distribution partners with an opportunity to network and learn more about all the ways that Milestone supports expanding their business. Attendees discovered the latest Milestone partner tools, dove deeper into Milestone product offerings, discussed industry-shaping trends and shared ideas for better serving the market’s needs through open platform video solutions. During the two-day event, Milestone executives and experts addressed the group about utilising open platform technology advantages to foster growth. There was a focus on how distributors all over the region can accelerate their activities more effectively by leveraging Milestone’s expertise and selling tools. Summit awards The Milestone focus on increasing the indirect sales channel started in 2014. To celebrate the outstanding results achieved in EMEA, several awards were given out during the summit: Milestone EMEA Distributor of the Year 2014: NIT Milestone EMEA Strategic Project Win 2014: Smartwares Milestone EMEA Partnership Award 2014: Ulkem Milestone EMEA Open Platform Excellence Award 2014: Elmat “We are delighted to recognise these Milestone Distribution Partners with these awards as a testament to their innovative approach, dedication to open platform technology and strong customer relationships,” said Thomas Lausten, Milestone Systems VP EMEA. “Milestone is a company based on the premise of partnerships: the energy and the dedication to work even closer with Milestone was an uplifting experience for us all at this summit.” Latest addition to Milestone The Milestone focus on distributors is not limited to EMEA - this is a global strategy. Milestone is constantly expanding the organisation’s approach to improving business with the indirect channel. The latest addition to this organisation is Shane Loy, Distribution Manager Americas, Milestone Systems. “Milestone is a company based on the premise of partnerships" Shane joined Milestone Systems at the end of February 2015 after 17 years with HID Global in numerous roles, most recently as Vice President of Sales, Secure Issuance & Distribution Channels for North America. While working at HID, he moved up through the company in the following roles: Regional Sales Manager; Senior Regional Sales Manager, Central USA & Canada; Director of Sales, Distribution, North America; Vice President of Sales, Distribution Channel, North America.“Shane brings a wealth of experience in the physical security marketplace, as well as an excellent reputation. He is already well known to many of the Milestone distribution partners, and he brings important expertise and understanding of the nuances of selling products through the distribution channel,” said Tim Palmquist, VP Americas at Milestone Systems. “We are looking forward to Shane’s contributions and proud to welcome him to our team of industry professionals.”
WLANmall was recognised because of the sophisticated surveillance systems it planned, built and implemented WLANmall and its parent company, Continental Computers, were named Milestone Systems’ 2014 Regional Partner of the Year at the 10th Annual Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS) 2015 in Las Vegas. Milestone Systems is a global industry leader in open platform IP video management software. WLANmall customers: WLANmall was recognised because of the sophisticated surveillance systems it planned, built and implemented throughout the US, which included Milestone Systems open platform IP video management software (VMS), for a variety of customers, including: A sprawling technology campus with multiple locations that required facility control/monitoring (Milestone XProtect® Professional/Milestone XProtect® Access Control Module); Numerous law enforcement agencies for both covert (i.e. undercover investigations) and overt (i.e. public space observation) surveillance (Milestone XProtect® Corporate); Several municipalities to ensure public safety (Milestone XProtect Corporate); and Elementary, secondary and tertiary educational facilities for student protection and early notice of suspect activity (Milestone XProtect® VMS). “We are honoured to receive this award from Milestone Systems, which is such an innovator in the IP video management space,” said Ronen Isaac, vice president of WLANmall. “Milestone continues to expand its offerings of leading edge, scalable and reliable solutions that have been the cornerstone of our end-to-end security and surveillance systems that help keep our customer assets secure and municipalities safer.” “WLANmall is the winner of our Regional Partner of the Year award for 2014 for showing dedication to the Milestone brand and for a strong mutual partnership that has produced significant revenue growth year over year,” said Tim Palmquist, VP Americas for Milestone Systems. “Their commitment to achieving and maintaining Milestone’s Expert Certification in its staff has resulted in exceptional quality in the design, installation and support of our XProtect video management systems.”