Articles by Willem Ryan
There’s a lot of excitement around artificial intelligence (AI) today – and rightly so. AI is shifting the modern landscape of security and surveillance and dramatically changing the way users interact with their security systems. But with all the talk of AI’s potential, you might be wondering: what problems does AI help solve today? The Need For AI The fact is, today there are too many cameras and too much recorded video for security operators to keep pace with. On top of that, people have short attention spans. AI is a technology that doesn’t get bored and can analyze more video data than humans ever possibly could. It is designed to bring the most important events and insight to users’ attention, freeing them to do what they do best: make critical decisions. There are two areas where AI can have a significant impact on video surveillance today: search and focus of attention. Faster Search Imagine using the internet today without a search engine. You would have to search through one webpage at a time, combing through all its contents, line-by-line, to hopefully find what you’re looking for. That is what most video surveillance search is like today: security operators scan hours of video from one camera at a time in the hope that they’ll find the critical event they need to investigate further. That’s where artificial intelligence comes in. The ability of AI to reduce hours of work to mere minutes is especially significant when we think about the gradual decline in human attention spans With AI, companies such as Avigilon are developing technologies that are designed to make video search as easy as searching the internet. Tools like Avigilon Appearance Search™ technology – a sophisticated deep learning AI video search engine – help operators quickly locate a specific person or vehicle of interest across all cameras within a site. When a security operator is provided with physical descriptions of a person involved in an event, this technology allows them to initiate a search by simply selecting certain descriptors, such as gender or clothing color. During critical investigations, such as in the case of a missing or suspicious person, this technology is particularly helpful as it can use those descriptions to search for a person and, within seconds, find them across an entire site. Focused Attention The ability of AI to reduce hours of work to mere minutes is especially significant when we think about the gradual decline in human attention spans. Consider all the information a person is presented with on a given day. They don’t necessarily pay attention to everything because most of that information is irrelevant. Instead, they prioritise what is and is not important, often focusing only on information or events that are surprising or unusual. Security operators scan hours of video from one camera at a time in the hope that they’ll find the critical event they need to investigate further Now, consider how much information a security operator who watches tens, if not hundreds or thousands of surveillance cameras, is presented with daily. After just twenty minutes, their attention span significantly decreases, meaning most of that video is never watched and critical information may go undetected. By taking over the task of "watching" security video, AI technology can help focus operators’ attention on events that may need further investigation. As AI technology evolves, the rich metadata captured in surveillance video will add even more relevance to what operators are seeing For instance, technology like Avigilon™ Unusual Motion (UMD) uses AI to continuously learn what typical activity in a scene looks like and then detect and flag unusual events, adding a new level of automation to surveillance. This helps save time during an investigation by allowing operators to quickly search through large amounts of recorded video faster, automatically focusing their attention on the atypical events that may need further investigation, enabling them to more effectively answer the critical questions of who, what, where and when. As AI technology evolves, the rich metadata captured in surveillance video – like clothing color, age or gender – will add even more relevance to what operators are seeing. This means that in addition to detecting unusual activities based on motion, this technology has the potential to guide operators’ attention to other “unusual” data that will help them more accurately verify and respond to a security event. The Key To Advanced Security There’s no denying it, the role of AI in security today is transformative. AI-powered video management software is helping to reduce the amount of time spent on surveillance, making security operators more efficient and effective at their jobs. By removing the need to constantly watch video screens and automating the “detection” function of surveillance, AI technology allows operators to focus on what they do best: verifying and acting on critical events. When integrated throughout a security system, AI technology has the potential to dramatically change security operations This not only expedites forensic investigations but enables real-time event response, as well. When integrated throughout a security system, AI technology has the potential to dramatically change security operations. Just as high-definition imaging has become a quintessential feature of today’s surveillance cameras, the tremendous value of AI technology has positioned it as a core component of security systems today, and in the future.
As technology advances, the world is becoming increasingly connected, changing the way users think about and interact with security systems, which continue to evolve across all verticals and applications. With this change comes new opportunity for security integrators; security systems are advancing, creating new needs for products and services — some of which can be met through the adoption of cloud-based service systems. Cloud technology is no longer a dreamt-up version of the future of security — it’s here. If you’re hesitant to make the move to the cloud, consider these six reasons to embrace this new technology now. Cloud technology has created an opportunity for integrators to offer managed services to their customers Increased RMR Cloud technology has created an opportunity for integrators to offer managed services to their customers, producing a new business model that generates more stable and predictable income streams. By offering managed services on a subscription basis, integrators can build a part of their business to provide recurring monthly revenue (RMR), allowing them to scale faster. This business model is especially beneficial for customers who prefer to pay a fixed monthly or yearly rate for services rather than a large upfront fee, which can help attract new business while growing revenue from current customers. Stickier Customers Providing managed services fosters a more involved relationship between integrators and their customers, which can help boost customer retention. This is primarily the result of three factors. Firstly, customers who buy managed services are committed for a specified term, which helps develop an ongoing business relationship between them and the integrator. Secondly, providing managed services creates an opportunity for more customer contact — each interaction is an opportunity to build rapport and monitor customer satisfaction.While the functionalities of each system vary, their potential is evident in the cloud-based services available Third, customers who purchase managed services generally tend to do business longer than customers who purchase products or services individually; with the monthly purchase of their services on autopilot, customers get into the habit of receiving these services, which helps reduce the chance that they’ll cancel their subscription while also building customer loyalty. High Gross Profit Margins Cloud managed services create an opportunity for a service and technology to be purchased together, helping to generate a higher gross profit margin from the beginning of the customer relationship. On an ongoing basis, cloud service platforms offer a new level of accessibility to integrators, helping to provide better insight on activity trends to identify opportunities to continuously grow their revenue through subscription-based streams. Easier To Provide Managed Services Traditionally, serving more sites required integrators to hire more technicians to meet the needs of their growing customer base, but the cloud has helped overcome this demand. While the functionalities of each system vary, their potential is evident in the cloud-based service platforms that are available today. When a problem occurs on a site that is managed by a cloud-based system, the integrator can receive a real-time notification regarding the issue The Avigilon Blue™ platform, for example, is a powerful new cloud service platform that helps integrators address the needs of their customer sites using fewer resources by offering the ability to administer system upgrades, fixes, health checks, and camera or system settings adjustments remotely. The Avigilon Blue platform automatically sends, and stores video analytics highlights in the cloud, which can easily be accessed from any PC browser or mobile device. This data can be used to efficiently manage customer sites and maintain the health of those sites, helping to increase speed of service and expand the capacity to have more sites up and running.Cloud service platforms have the potential to revolutionize the security industry by providing new opportunities for integrators Not only does this help integrators scale their business faster, it creates an opportunity to provide added value to the customer at a lower cost as new upgrades and services come out. Proactively Fix Problems Before They Occur In addition to automating notifications and tedious maintenance tasks, cloud service platforms help provide integrators with the information and abilities they need to keep their customer sites running smoothly. When a problem occurs on a site that is managed by a cloud-based system, the integrator can receive a real-time notification regarding the issue — possibly before the customer even notices a disruption in service. They can then identify the problem and determine whether it can be resolved remotely or requires a technician to be deployed. By having the capacity to pinpoint service needs and make certain adjustments via the cloud, integrators can streamline their customer service processes and lower their response times to provide better, more efficient service. Increased Valuation Of Business Companies that utilize cloud technologies are experiencing as much as 53 percent higher revenue growth rates The ability of cloud service platforms to help integrators manage more sites remotely and expand their revenue through subscription-based streams offers a competitive business advantage. Security innovators have harnessed the power of the cloud to enhance integrator efficiency so that they can spare their attention, resources and effort for where it’s needed most. As a service that helps offer scalability and a high gross profit margin while requiring fewer resources to maintain customer sites, cloud service platforms have the potential to revolutionize the security industry by providing new opportunities for integrators that may ultimately increase their business valuation. According to a study by Dell, companies that utilize cloud, mobility, and security technologies are experiencing as much as 53 percent higher revenue growth rates compared to those who do not such technologies. Integrators who adopt cloud service platforms can benefit from numerous advantages — cost-saving maintenance capabilities, the potential to generate new monthly recurring revenue, and user-friendly design and data security — which make them a significant development within the industry as well as a potential lucrative new business model. The dream of cloud technology is no longer a distant idea of the future, it can become a present reality — and integrators who harness its power can reap its business benefits now.
Today’s security industry has reached a critical mass in the volume of collected data and the limits of human attention to effectively search through that data. As such, the demand for video analytics is increasing globally and we believe that all video surveillance systems will eventually feature video analytics. Artificial Intelligence Solutions Through the power of artificial intelligence (AI), Avigilon™ is developing technologies and products that dramatically increase the effectiveness of security systems by focusing human attention on what matters most. As AI solutions become adopted, this technology provides scalable solutions that can be deployed across a range of verticals and applications to better address security challenges. GPU Technology Increases In Value As the world becomes increasingly connected, the way we think about and interact with our security systems will continue to evolve across all verticals and applications. The emergence of GPU technology, in particular, has led to a dramatic increase in performance and value. With the democratization of video analytics, and increased use of AI and deep learning, we believe that video analytics will be inherent in all digital surveillance and used in broader applications. Cybersecurity will become paramount as we move toward a more connected approach to security – particularly as our collected data becomes more sophisticated and critical. Avigilon Revenue Growth We’re pleased to see our 39th consecutive quarter of year over year revenue growth in 2017, thanks to a strong pipeline of innovative products and AI-driven technology, including our latest version of our award-winning Avigilon Appearance SearchTM technology, a sophisticated deep learning AI search engine, that makes searching video as easy as searching the internet, and Avigilon™ Unusual Motion Detection technology, which will bring a new level of automation to the security industry. Our focus on innovation has allowed us to stay at the cutting edge of meeting our customers’ needs. We expect to continue to expand our security solutions in 2018, with innovative products like our forthcoming Avigilon BlueTM platform, a subscription-based cloud service platform for security and surveillance that will provide a new level of accessibility to users by enhancing their ability to deploy AI solutions and services.
The COVID-19 global pandemic had a life-changing impact on all of us in 2020, including a multi-faceted jolt on the physical security industry. With the benefit of hindsight, we can now see more clearly the exact nature and extent of that impact. And it’s not over yet: The pandemic will continue to be top-of-mind in 2021. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What have been the positive and negative effects of Covid-19 on the physical security industry in 2020? What impact will it have on 2021?
More crowded aisles and productive conversations continued to set the tone on the second day of ISC West in Las Vegas. No big technology breakthroughs have surfaced, but there is plenty of interest, and some degree of curiosity, about whether (and when) the recent hype about artificial intelligence (AI) and deep learning will translate into usable products. Vertical Market Solutions “Yesterday we saw a tremendous amount of traffic in the booth, and today is more of the same,” said Miguel Lazatin, Director, Product and Channel Marketing, Hanwha Techwin America. The layout of the Hanwha Techwin booth is different this year, although the “footprint” is the same size. “We lessened the number of kiosks within the booth, which allows for better flow, and the ability to accommodate more customers and do the demonstrations more effectively and focus more on product solutions,” Lazatin adds. “We are introducing products in new categories for Hanwha Techwin,” Lazatin says. “We have new thermal cameras, new stainless steel cameras, new multi-sensor cameras, as well as new mobile products. We are expanding our product set to address new applications and new markets.” The new products are tailored and specific solutions for those new markets, which include food processing plants, oil refineries and areas where Hanwha Techwin has not played in the past. Although there is a lot of talk about deep learning and artificial intelligence at this year’s show, there don’t appear to be a lot of actual products being introduced in those categories. Companies of all shapes and sizes are embracing the new buzzwords, leaving some attendees unsure how these new ideas — or marketing concepts? — fit into the “real world.” Hanwha Techwin America lessened the number of kiosks within the booth, which allows for better flow Meeting Customer Needs With AI A key to leveraging the value of new technologies such as AI and deep learning is to get beyond the buzzwords and position the new capabilities in the context of actual end user benefits such as operation efficiency and automation, says Stuart Rawling, Director of Global Business Development, Pelco by Schneider Electric. “The customer doesn’t care about buzzwords, he just wants to know what are the benefits? What solutions are we offering?” At the show, Pelco announced a new alliance with IBM that will leverage Big Blue’s advanced knowledge of deep learning and analytics, and combine it with Pelco’s VideoExpert video management system (VMS). “We have a version of that integration at the show, but the real news is that we are merging our development plans to solve specific use case problems,” says Rawling. Video Analytics In The Cloud Cloud applications are also gaining traction, including the Avigilon Blue cloud platform. “It allows integrators to manage everything from one easy, central site,” says Willem Ryan, Avigilon’s Vice President, Global Marketing and Communications. “They can respond quicker and with knowledge of what the system is doing.” Video analytics are built in as an inherent part of our solution. Any IP cameras — Avigilon or ONVIF-conformant — become equipped with analytics when they are connected to the Blue platform. A new announcement at the show is Avigilon’s ACC System Health Monitoring, a new service added to the Blue platform. Health monitoring enables integrators to be more proactive in their service and keep systems running smoothly. “Cloud allows you to scale how you can manage systems and service systems rather than having to go on site to upgrade systems,” says Ryan. “People think it’s a buzzword, but really it’s a means to an end to make systems more secure, more efficient, more responsive. We’re putting a lot of investment in it.” A new announcement at the show is Avigilon’s ACC System Health Monitoring, a new service added to the Blue platform Building RMR For Customers The cloud also enables integrators to build more recurring monthly revenue (RMR). A cloud approach that encompasses products and ongoing service ensures that an integrator continues to “touch” customers. “For us, they can package this around service in a new way,” says Ryan. “The customer doesn’t have to worry about a large capital expense in the beginning. And as new capabilities come along, they can be added. So it becomes a way to sell a package around their company, service and products; but less about the products and more about a platform that allows them to sell their [integration] company in a new way. What we’re hearing is, it’s a change in mindset, and you need buy-in from the top of the organization. And the sales people have to get used to selling in a different way. It’s going to take time, and our industry needs to evolve. Customers love the flexibility. And integrators need stickier customers and better profit margins.” Avigilon also continues to upgrade its Appearance Search product to enable faster review of stored video. Now a search for video related to an investigation can begin with a physical description of a person (rather than using a reference image as a starting point in the search). There’s one more day for attendees to roam the aisles of ISC West in search of new and useful technologies. Foot traffic historically drops off on the final day, but that just leaves more quality time for interaction among those staying until the bitter end. Count me among that group, and I will have much more to report after the show ends.
A technology poised to transform the physical security market is deep learning, which is a neural network approach to machine learning, differentiated by an ability to train using large data sets for greater accuracy. In effect, the system “learns” by looking at lots of data to achieve artificial intelligence (AI). Phases Of Deep Learning I heard a lot about AI, including how it can transform the physical security marketplace, when I attended NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference (GTC) in San Jose recently. Recognizing images, including video images, is a big focus of AI. In the past, you needed programmers to spend months telling a computer how to recognize an image. In deep learning, instead of programming the computer, you just show it many different images and it "learns" to distinguish the differences. This is the "training" phase. After the neural network learns about the data, it can then use "inference" to interpret new data based on what it has learned. In effect, if it has seen enough cats before, it will know when a new image is a cat. Factors enabling AI Deep learning and AI are fast-growing areas for a wide range of uses – physical security is just one. It is all made possible by the coming together of three factors. One is the availability of lots of data. This is the “big data” we have been hearing about; in effect, a proliferation of sensors (including video cameras) has produced a large enough mass of data to enable systems to be trained effectively. The second factor is the development of new algorithms to train neural networks faster, and the third is the availability of computer hardware (specifically GPUs, graphics processing units), that is capable of rapidly completing the involved calculations. NVIDIA manufactures those GPUs and sponsors the annual GTC conference, all about how they can be used more effectively. “Deep learning is about teaching technology to understand the world around us in a way that is similar to how we understand it” Deep learning and neural network computing is everywhere. It is now widely available in on-premises computers, in systems embedded in edge devices, and even in the cloud. The edge is particularly important in the video surveillance market, enabling systems to function despite any bandwidth or latency issues that would limit the effectiveness of a central server-based system. Edge-based functionality also limits concerns about the privacy of information, and eliminates dependence on the availability of 3G connectivity. NVIDIA AI City Initiative Video analytics applications fall under NVIDIA's “AI City” initiative, which they describe as a combination of "safe cities" (video surveillance, law enforcement, forensics) and "smart cities" (traffic management, retail analytics, resource optimization). Depending on the application, AI City technology must function in the cloud, on premises and/or at the edge. NVIDIA’s new Metropolis initiative offers AI at every system level, from the Jetson TX2 "embedded supercomputer" available at the edge, to on-premises servers (using NVIDIA’s Tesla and Quadro) to cloud systems (using NVIDIA’s DGX). “AI City applications need an edge-to-cloud architecture,” says Jesse Clayton, Senior Manager, Product Management, Intelligent Machines, at NVIDIA. “Some applications, such as body cameras and parking entrance applications, have to have AI at the edge. But for other problems, you need to aggregate multiple sources of information, such as using AI on an on-premises server for hundreds of video cameras.” The sheer volume of installed cameras in the world makes video an AI problem – more than 1 billion cameras worldwide by 2020 will provide 30 billion frames of video per day. The existing limitations of current video systems to adapt and function well in real-world conditions point to a need for better technology, as do the traditional shortcomings of video analytics systems. Video systems can achieve "super-human" results, identifying and classifying images using artificial intelligence. NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference offered a chance for Avigilon to interact with others focused on AI AI In Video Surveillance AI is steadily making its way into video surveillance. Multiple security industry partners are using NVIDIA GPUs to boost the effectiveness of their systems. Many companies highlighted their initiatives at ISC West in April and again at NVIDIA’s GPU Technology Conference. Among them are Avigilon’s Appearance Search and BriefCam’s real-time video synopsis system. Hikvision uses the technology for a six-fold improvement detecting pedestrians in the rain, while Dahua is speeding up its license plate recognition system by five times. Other companies using the technology are UNV Uniview (vehicle classification), SeeQuestor (investigations), Xjera Labs (people and attribute detection) and Sensetime (object detection). NVIDIA’s Quadro GPU system enables Avigilon network video recorders (NVRs) to search simultaneously across hundreds of cameras to find images that are similar in appearance, such as faces that match an example. The GPU’s fast and efficient processing power, available in a small and affordable form factor, provides a system that is scalable and cost-effective but can run complex algorithms to provide rapid results. Beyond recognizing objects, the system can also learn about how objects interact in the environment, and look for anomalies “Deep learning is about teaching technology to understand the world around us in a way that is similar to how we understand it,” says Willem Ryan, Senior Director, Global Marketing at Avigilon. “What seem simple to us in terms of how we perceive the world is complex for a machine to do, but a machine learns faster. Deep learning allows you to teach a machine how to make connections that we make every day. Using GPUs, a system can make assumptions and calculations instantaneously.” Beyond recognizing objects, the system can also learn about how objects interact in the environment, and look for anomalies or non-typical events. For example, if the system sees a car go onto a sidewalk, it could provide an alert. How Will AI Develop? NVIDIA’s GTC conference offered a chance for Avigilon to interact with others focused on AI, and to share Avigilon’s knowledge of the unique AI challenges of the video surveillance market. “This is the heart of the development of AI and deep learning,” said Ryan at the GTC conference. “To be involved and part of this is exciting to Avigilon, and we can expose people here to how AI can be used in a way they may not be familiar with. We have talked to people who didn’t realize how video surveillance happens currently, and how AI is changing it. “ “We want to continue to support the idea of GPU processing and how using it can make video surveillance solutions more effective, and change how people interact with video,” he added. “That’s where we see the impact. There have been challenges we have struggled to overcome in the security industry, and these are the breakthroughs that will help us overcome those challenges. So, we want to be at the forefront and involved in those discussions.” The impact of AI and deep learning on the physical security industry is only beginning. The full realization of that impact over the next few years will be fascinating to watch.
The key driver to growth in the IP market is the effectiveness and efficiency of the technology Technological advances in video surveillance are allowing end users the flexibility to do more with their systems than previously imagined. 2014 saw several new technological trends that shaped the future of the security market, with 4K and cyber security being the main drivers. The drift continues this year too with end users demanding HD video surveillance and wide-spread implementation of video analytics. Studies show that new technologies in both these areas are being assessed and adopted. Adding Value Via HD Surveillance And Video Analytics That is the view of Willem Ryan, director of product marketing at Canadian based manufacturer, Avigilon. He thinks it’s a very interesting time in the security market with two factors driving it – the increased need for and development of high definition surveillance, and the resurgence of analytics. “Now 4K (8 megapixels) is part of the conversation, and we are seeing analytics making a resurgence. A few years ago analytics was over-hyped and under-delivered. Now it’s quickly becoming part of a system.” “The idea is to get all the evidence and detail you need in one image. This enables our end users to make quick decisions and capture footage that is immediately actionable”, says Willem Ryan, director of product marketing at Avigilon “Using analytics beyond security and using it as a business tool are very exciting. Video surveillance becomes dual-purpose or even multi-purpose. So a security department that faces the challenge of being a cost center is now transformed into a value center.” Need For An IP-Oriented Approach Ryan says we are also seeing more integration of access control and video verification of alarms. “To have those integrated tightly is a good thing. Another example is managing doors and identities over IP. Our products have to work together with IT security. You need to have the technology to play well within that IT ecosystem.” According to Ryan, the debate over IP or analog is over. While analog is still out there, now the question is: What is the most effective way of implementing IP? “People want the power and benefit of IP with the ease of installation of analog.” There is less of a learning curve for installers, says Ryan, allowing them to offer all the benefits of IP, such as high definition. In Ryan’s view, the key driver to growth in the IP market is the effectiveness and efficiency of the technology. Together with the reduction in storage costs, people can monitor more of their premises than is presently the case. Mobile is also important; chief security officers are demanding access to video while they are out of the office – the idea is that the connection to your security is in the palm of your hand Improving Access To Security Systems In the consumer market, people expect high definition video. That feeds through to the security surveillance market creating a demand for better and better resolution. Mobile is also important, says Ryan; chief security officers are demanding access to video while they are out of the office – the idea is that the connection to your security is in the palm of your hand. At an earlier media event, Avigilon demonstrated its new 7K HD Pro camera, said to be the industry’s first single-sensor 7K camera. “The idea is to get all the evidence and detail you need in one image. This enables our end users to make quick decisions and capture footage that is immediately actionable,” said Ryan. HD Data Processing Challenges “For Avigilon, we believe in innovation and that analytics and high definition should be available to all. Doing that fast enough is a great problem to have but is a challenge. We’ve been one of the fastest growing companies in the industry, but we still find people who have never even seen the benefits of high definition video.” But higher definition means more data, which means more of a challenge to manage all that data. ‘Infobesity’ is a term that Avigilon sometimes uses, and to counter that you need a system that delivers the right information at the right time. Finding the best way to do that is a great challenge, concludes Ryan.
When asking exhibitors at IFSEC International 2015 about what drives their markets, many cite system integration as a key factor. And they want more of it. Integration As Business “Driving Force” For example, John Davies of TDSI says customers are now seeking out system integration. “They want a solution rather than components, such as linking access control with building management systems or with an organization’s IT network to control access to its computers,” he says. Every year I come to IFSEC I see the trend towards more integration. This is a big trend and won’t change,” says Baudouin Genouville, global alliances and integration manager of Suprema Suprema – a specialist in fingerprint biometrics based in South Korea – is also reaping the benefits of a drive towards greater integration. Baudouin Genouville, global alliances and integration manager, says the main driver for their business is the integration of the company’s fingerprint readers with third-party access control software. “This is possible because we provide an SDK (Software Development Kit), and the industry understands it well. The more people who know your SDK, the more integration there is. Another example of integration is that we can embed our BioStar2 software in a NVR to run access control – that is what I mean by integration. Every year I come to IFSEC I see the trend towards more integration. This is a big trend and won’t change,” says Baudouin Genouville. Video And Access Control Integration TDSI’s John Davies says Europe was in the doldrums until three or four months ago, but is starting to show promise. The UK market is buoyant with sales up 10% while the Middle East, Southeast Asia and China are very buoyant According to video solutions company Avigilon, we are also seeing more integration of access control with video surveillance. An example is video verification, according to Willem Ryan, director of product marketing. “To have video verification of alarms, for example, to have those integrated tightly is a good thing. Another example is managing doors and identities over IP. Our products have to work together with IT security. You need to have the technology to play well within that IT ecosystem.” At video specialists Wavestore, integration is their raison d’etre. “With a truly open platform, what we do well is to bring disparate technologies together. We can put it all together and run it seamlessly," says James Smith, director of marketing. Market Trends A few years ago, video analytics was over-hyped and under-delivered. Now it is quickly becoming part of a system, and is being used beyond security as a business tool At IFSEC International, exhibitors also share their views on the wider security market and technological trends. TDSI’s John Davies says Europe was in the doldrums until three or four months ago, but is starting to show promise. The UK market is buoyant with sales up 10% while the Middle East, Southeast Asia and China are very buoyant. “There are a lot of infrastructure projects going on in China. All in all, we are experiencing double-digit sales growth since 2012.” Avigilon’s Willem Ryan says it’s an interesting time in the security market, and it is being driven by the increased need for and development of high-definition surveillance, with 4K (8 megapixels) being “part of the conversation”. We are also seeing a resurgence in video analytics, says Ryan. A few years ago, video analytics was over-hyped and under-delivered. Now it is quickly becoming part of a system, and is being used beyond security as a business tool, with the security department being transformed from a cost center to a value center. He goes on to say that the consumer market now expects high-definition video, so that creates a demand for better and better resolution in the surveillance market. IFSEC exhibitors mostly agreed: Integration is critical in the development of new security solutions, while the growing presence of IP contributes to their ease of implementation.
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