Overall, 2015 was an interesting year for the security industry and Panasonic. We’ve seen some exciting advancements in surveillance technology, including a strong uptick in body-worn cameras for law enforcement. The transition to IP cameras continues; but with economic ups and downs, we also saw customers hanging on to existing systems longer than expected, so providing support and helping them migrate at their own pace will continue to be a priority for us. From a global perspective, the influx of low-cost imports certainly impacted the overall marketplace.
IP-based camera systems - a potential access point
Looking ahead to 2016, we expect to see 4K camera integration into existing systems for specialised applications. Hardware and software advancements post capture, plus new encoding algorithms, will continue to improve bandwidth utilisation to support new, ultra-high-resolution cameras and ultimately true end-to-end 4K systems. I think we’ll also see an increased focus on network-level data security of video streams. As IP-based camera systems become an integral part of business network infrastructure, they can also be a potential access point, so preventing the malicious takeover of security endpoints is critical.
Insights and data from analytics
Another exciting area of development in 2016 will be the availability of increasingly accurate camera- and server-based analytics applications that can provide valuable data and insights for business operations, management and more. These include analytics for:
- Business intelligence: In the case of retail, heat maps, dwell time and age/gender demographics offer tremendous ROI beyond traditional surveillance and provide valuable data for marketing, training and operational optimization optimisation purposes.
- Privacy: In other applications, analytics can support specific privacy needs or real-time redaction, such as moving object removal in cases where specific objects are the surveillance priority versus people.
- Proactive identification: The ability to recognize recognise persons of interest or ‘banned’ personnel from businesses or campuses to assist in further mitigating threats.
Being a successful security solution provider is not unlike being a successful reseller. Winners will be those companies that differentiate themselves by bringing additional value to customers beyond hardware. Software, services and technologies that are capable of delivering value beyond traditional surveillance capabilities and can be used for training, remote monitoring and assessments, distance learning and more, will provide critical capabilities now and increasingly in the future.
See the full coverage of 2015/2016 Review and Forecast articles here