The Race for Intelligence

Last month, we talked about the booming IP market and the emergence of the network video recorder (NVR) as the storage device that will become the standard for recording and storage. This month, let’s take a look at the next stage of what the IP boom is going to do to video surveillance: intelligent video.

The security industry is getting an early taste of the power IP has to replace the traditional alarm market. As upsetting to some as that may be, others will see this as a new growth period that companies everywhere can latch onto.

Increasing Mileage of Security
I have a 1970 Buick Electra 225 convertible that I treat like another child. It’s a beautiful machine. But it distributes expensive test fuel through each of those 465 inches of engine displacement, and through two carburetors that produce about 13 miles per gallon on the highway.

Gas mileage wasn’t a big concern in 1970, but it is now. Enter the fuel injector and the emergence of hybrid engines that now squeeze up to 40 miles out of each gallon. We need that efficiency in today’s security world. The industry is on the way to producing that kind of performance.

With the amount of video destined to surround us in the years to come, we need to squeeze more intelligence out of our environment than we do now.

Revving Up the Video Race
From the latest research by J.P. Freeman Co., it looks like a lot of security suppliers are in a race to introduce their answer to efficiency as quickly as possible.

For the moment, it’s called intelligent video and comes in the form of software programs that tell us where dangers are and what they look like. This allows for something more than an alarm signal to tell us to take care.

Is the intelligence good enough to be a complete replacement for all the devices we now use to provide what we call alarms? Judging by the experience of users that are early adapters, there’s a long way yet to go.

But the seed has been planted, and lots of manufacturers believe in this new future. As the chart to the left shows, the plans of manufacturers have changed dramatically in just one year.

Manufacturers Start Their Engines
In 2005, only 17 percent of manufacturers reported active offers of intelligent video products, while another 50 percent said they planed to offer intelligent video. The remaining one in every three manufacturers said that they had no plans to enter this new world of environmental intelligence.

Within just 12 months, that level of active participation and future planning changed sharply.

As of today, almost half of all video suppliers claim to have active intelligent video offers on the street, and another 42 percent say they plan to join the fray. Only one in 10 still have no plans.

The race is on, and it appears that the industry is going to see more changes ahead as these software products improve and change the way product managers make product recommendations.


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