AUSTIN, Texas — The demand for wireless download technology in the mobile video surveillance market is lagging behind supply, according to IMS Research, now part of IHS.
In “The World Market for Mobile Video Surveillance” report, IHS notes that a surplus supply of wireless download technology was fitted to 16% of all video recorders sold in mobile video surveillance markets during 2012. However, the study indicates that end users either never plan to use the technology or they don’t have the back-end software to support it.
Although there is currently a greater supply of wireless download technology than there is demand, adoption rates for the technology across each vertical market have been growing, according to IHS Senior Analyst for Video Surveillance David Green.
“Adoption rates have increased quickly; the technology really suits the usage cases for these larger fleets of trains, buses or police cars,” he says. “Using Wi-Fi for downloading saves time and cost for the operator, can improve reliability and also offer added value features, such as remote vehicle health-checks.”
As many as 45% of recorders sold were fitted with Wi-Fi that the customer will use. However, 16% were fitted with technology the customer won’t use, which actually causes manufacturers to spend more for components that do not need to be fitted. Yet that won’t affect suppliers too much, according to Green.
“The16% number might sound [like] a lot in terms of unit shipments, but it’s only a small portion of the revenue,” he explains. “Economies of scale mean the component costs will be low to start with, plus most of the oversupply is coming from recorders made by low-cost, Asian manufacturers. These companies can’t move on price since they’re already at the bottom, so they compete with each other by loading up on features — even though they know the customers won’t use them.”
Green notes that high-end manufacturers have an oversupply level that is less than 16%.
Within the next several years, the current adoption rates for wireless download technology could prove to be promising for manufacturers, according to the study.
“Definitely [manufacturers] see adoption increasing into the future,” Green says. “Mobile video systems are evolving and wireless is a key part of the more intelligent system, linking with back-end software to provide an end-to-end solution. Manufacturers aren’t wasting their money here — and they’ll see the rewards when the market sees a boost in sales over the next couple of years.”