The Absa Group Limited is one of South Africa’s largest financial services groups, offering a complete range of banking and wealth management products and services. Absa Bank's business is primarily in South Africa, and the group has equity holdings in banks in Mozambique and Tanzania. Absa is a subsidiary of Barclays Bank, a major global financial services provider with an extensive international presence in Europe, the United States, Africa and Asia.
Absa Bank’s objective was to streamline its processes and reduce costs while maintaining a clear focus on the individual customer’s experience. Their decision to deploy megapixel network cameras in a proof-of-concept video surveillance installation was based on leveraging the greater system efficiencies, functionality and superior image quality of megapixel technology.
The new security surveillance system at Absa Bank was installed by AV Enforce Electronics (AVEE) of South Africa. The system employs Arecont Vision's 2.0 and 3.0 Megapixel Cameras positioned behind teller stations to closely monitor transactions between bank employees and clients. In addition, Arecont Vision's 8 Megapixel 180-degree and 360-degree Panoramic Cameras (AV8185 and AV8365) watch over customer queues, automated teller machines (ATMs) and the general banking hall with extreme image detail.
Each Arecont Vision megapixel camera at the Absa Bank installation is connected to a power-over-Ethernet network switch that serves as the network video connection and also as the power source to the camera. Cameras are recorded on Luxriot network video recorders. The system is monitored locally by authorized management personnel.
Arecont Vision's AV3105 3-Megapixel Camera uses a ½ inch CMOS sensor to provide 2048x1536-pixel progressive scan images at up to 15 frames per second (fps). The camera is built with Arecont Vision's massively-parallel MegaVideo technology, providing image processing at billions of operations per second. It can output multiple image formats of larger areas to allow simultaneous viewing of the full resolution field of view and regions of interest. The Arecont Vision AV2105 2-Megapixel Camera provides 1600x1200-pixel video at up to 24 fps, with light sensitivity of 0.1 lux at F1.4. Features include forensic zooming on archived video, region-of-interest views, as well as image cropping and motion detection.
The panoramic view cameras used at the Absa Bank proof-of-concept installation are the 180-degree Arecont Vision AV8185 and 360-degree Arecont Vision AV8365 8-Megapixel Cameras. Both models employ four 2-megapixel sensors enclosed in 6-inch IP66-rated domes and provide up to 6400x1200-pixel images at 5.5 fps. The cameras can be set for lower resolutions at higher frame speeds, such as 1600x1200-pixel images at 22 fps or 800x600-pixel images at 88 fps. The cameras also use Arecont Vision MegaVideo video processing at billions of operations per second. Light sensitivity is 0.2 lux at F2.0, and the cameras provide image cropping and up to four regions-of-interest.
“Arecont Vision outperforms all the current competitors,” said Alex De Barros of AV Enforce. “The price compared to analog cameras is better considering the fact that you gain so much. We were able to capture images for the bank that were never achieved before.”
The proof-of-concept system at
Arecont Vision megapixel network cameras use H.264 compression to minimize bandwidth and storage needs and are available at costs comparable to standard-resolution alternatives. Megapixel images provide much more detail in playback mode for forensic investigations. Operators can zoom in for up-close views on stored images. They can view specific parts of a larger image, such as a person's face. A benefit for Absa Bank is creation of a database of suspected criminals to allow operators to identify them easily.
The use of megapixel video enables a larger area to be covered with fewer cameras, which reduces overall system cost which make it easier to realize ROI. Higher-resolution images boost the functionality of systems, enabling pristine image quality at industry-leading high frame rates, while minimizing bandwidth usage with H.264 video compression.
The proof-of-concept system at Absa Bank has demonstrated that megapixel cameras are suitable for applications in the banking environment and represent a significant upgrade in system functionality compared to standard-resolution cameras. In addition to lower bandwidth and storage requirements, megapixel cameras can dramatically decrease costs related to other elements of a system, such as fewer software licenses, less cabling, fewer lenses, and a decrease in man-hours needed to bring it all together.
“There is a lot at stake in the banking environment, and megapixel imaging can vastly improve the performance of the video surveillance systems in this important market,” said Ethan Maxon, Middle East and Africa Regional Sales Manager of Arecont Vision. “We continue to spread the word about the unparalleled image quality and resolution of Arecont Vision's megapixel IP video cameras. It's good to know that Absa Bank has experienced those benefits first-hand.”