Outdoor video analytics
Eagle Eye Networks, the globally renowned company in cloud video surveillance solutions, has released a best practices guide ‘Analog Video to Cloud’ for business owners who are interested in economical ways to upgrade legacy analog video surveillance cameras to a modern, digital cloud system, and how existing cameras can be reused in the process. This report details the advantages of managing analog camera video in the Cloud, including lower costs and greater flexibility, outlines v...
When technology performs a required task effectively, there is little reason to upgrade to the ‘next big thing’. In this regard, the physical security market is notoriously slow to change. Much of yesterday’s most robust and dependable equipment is still in place at thousands of customer sites, still performing as well as the day it was installed. However, there comes a point when any technology becomes outdated. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: Which securi...
ProdataKey (PDK), a manufacturer of the cloud access control platform built for mobile, announces the release of seamless integration with Rhombus Systems, the pioneer in cloud-based video surveillance and asset tracking systems. In joining forces, the two companies – each known for their best-in-class cloud offerings – bring to market the industry’s easiest-to-implement, easiest-to-use, comprehensive access control, and AI-assisted video management solution. The integration i...
Videonetics, the globally renowned AI & DL powered Unified Video Computing Platform (UVCP) strengthens its technology partnership with Axis Communications, the globally renowned company in IP surveillance, by co-creating and delivering numerous integrated solutions under Axis Application Development Partner (ADP) program, to meet growing demands of different market segments. Axis ADP Program The Axis Application Development Partner (ADP) Program is designed to help software vendors streaml...
Security and Safety Things GmbH has announced the launch of its second App Challenge to spur additional creative development in video analytic applications. Through April 26, 2021, participating developers have the opportunity to submit proposals for apps to address specific security, safety and business optimization use cases in the retail, transportation, stadiums and entertainment, and healthcare verticals. S&ST open camera OS and IoT platform The apps will be designed to run on smart...
Calipsa, a globally renowned provider of Deep Learning-powered video analytics for false alarm reduction, has promoted Brian Baker Brian to the newly created role of Chief Revenue Officer for Global Business Development. He was previously Calipsa’s Vice President of the Americas, with similar duties for the North American continent. Baker will immediately focus on business development in the U.K., France, Spain and the Americas, while identifying other potential global regions for growth....
ONVIF, the renowned global standardization initiative for IP-based physical security products, is pleased to announce the appointment of Leonid (Leo) Levit as the new Chairman of the ONVIF Steering Committee. Leonid Levit serves as Director of System Integration at Axis Communications and brings to the Chairman’s role a strong technical background and more than a decade of product management, marketing, and sales experience. Levit takes over from Per Björkdahl, who is stepping down from the role of Chairman after nine years. Video surveillance and access control products major “For the past decade, ONVIF has worked to facilitate nearly universal interoperability of IP physical security devices and clients, enabling end users and systems integrators to have freedom of choice in their selection of video surveillance and access control products,” said Leonid Levit. I look forward to being part of the next evolution of ONVIF, as it continues to support our evolving industry" He adds, “I look forward to being part of the next evolution of ONVIF, as it continues to support our evolving industry and the deepening relationships between analytics, IoT, AI and other technologies.” Prior to his role as Director of System Integration, Leonid Levit was Global Product Manager of Analytics Solution at Axis Communications. His past work experience includes roles at Sony Mobile Communications and Ericsson Mobile Platforms. Interoperability of IP physical security products Founded in 2008, ONVIF is a renowned and well-recognized industry forum, driving interoperability for IP-based physical security products. The organization has a global member base of established cameras, video management systems, and access control companies, and more than 19,000 profile conformant products. ONVIF offers Profile S for streaming video, Profile G for recording and storage, Profile C for physical access control, Profile Q for improved out-of-the-box functionality, Profile A for broader access control configuration, and Profile T for advanced streaming. ONVIF continues to work with its members to expand the number of IP interoperable solutions that ONVIF-conformant products can provide.
DICE Corporation (The New DICE Corporation) is empowering security integration companies with Matrix Integrator, a cloud-based video event monitoring, surveillance, and alarm notification suite for any video system, anywhere, and at any time. Interactive video monitoring For the first time, security integrators can directly provide end-users with automatic and managed interactive video monitoring services, while also controlling their business operations at the same time. “In the past, DICE Corporation has been perceived solely as an automation software company for monitoring stations,” explained Avi Lupo, DICE Corporation Co-President. Avi Lupo adds, “However, the security industry has evolved from just a basic alarm panel and a central station providing simple alarm services. With the New DICE’s Matrix Integrator and our new technologies, we are offering integration companies, and the industry as a whole, a new way of doing business.” Matrix Integrator Matrix Integrator is a complete platform with managed services, such as video verification and remote guarding Matrix Integrator is a complete platform with managed services, such as video verification, remote guarding, virtual guard tours, business management, and virtual doorman, all using advanced video analytics, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and cloud recording of events. Other services provided via Matrix Integrator include object detection and human behavior analysis with real-time notification. Flexible, scalable, and easy to implement and use, Matrix Integrator not only offers a new way of selling CCTV, but also at the same time, provides recurring additional revenue (RMR) every month. Integrated with DICE’s exclusive hybrid technology Using DICE Corporation’s exclusive hybrid technology, integrators can bridge to a professional central monitoring station of their choice at any given moment and any time. Many event applications can go directly to an end user’s cell phone and/or to cloud video recording. Integration companies can also choose to bridge to a professional monitoring station of their choice to monitor accounts at night, weekends, or 24/7. SaaS, PaaS and IaaS technology in the Cloud “Central stations are not required but it is an option. Some services are managed and require operators to handle them, while others are automatic and can be provided without staff,” said Avi Lupo, adding “So central stations are providing managed services for the integrator, but the technology and control is in the hands of the integration company.” All Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) technology, including receivers, reside in the Cloud at DICE’s secure UL/ULC data center. Unified platform to control PTZ and IP cameras New technologies allow DICE Corporation to move the ‘smart’ from the camera to the cloud New technologies allow DICE Corporation to move the ‘smart’ from the camera to the cloud. Any camera or Network Video Recorder (regardless of the manufacturer) can provide video analytics without the need to invest in expensive new technology. The unified platform also provides controls for all IP cameras, PTZ cameras, and field devices, as well as one-click camera views. Plus, because the platform is on the Cloud, there are automatic version updates. Remote modification and interactive services The bottom line is that there is a minimal upfront cost for both integrators and end-users in installing a new system. Furthermore, in most cases, the integrator has no need to return to the site to upgrade the system and provide these new interactive services. “The world is changing and so is the industry,” stated Avi Lupo, Dice Corporation’s Co-President, adding “Matrix Integrator is a new, innovative way of selling CCTV with many advantages. This is an opportunity for integrators to benefit from a competitive edge and change before they have to.”
CyberCube announces a partnership with NFP, an insurance broker and consultant that provides property and casualty (P&C), corporate benefits, retirement, and individual solutions, to provide its broking manager product to NFP professionals worldwide. Broking manager will support NFP’s cyber business growth with tools that quantify and explain the sources and financial impact of cyber risk exposure to clients. Relevant cyber events The platform also produces reports that can be used to educate prospects and clients on potential sources of loss, recent and relevant cyber events, and peer-to-peer benchmarking. Broking manager is the first software-as-a-service application CyberCube has built specifically for the insurance broking community. Broking manager complements CyberCube’s two other products, portfolio manager and account manager It offers a streamlined approach to generating financial exposure impact that helps clients make informed decisions on coverages and limits. Broking manager complements CyberCube’s two other products, portfolio manager and account manager, which are designed for risk carriers and used by companies across the insurance ecosystem. Providing cyber risk insight “NFP was looking for a tool that could provide cyber risk insight for their diverse portfolio of clients, which spans industries and business sizes,” said Pascal Millaire, CEO of CyberCube. “Broking manager does just that, giving the NFP team the analytics and benchmarking it needs to grow its cyber business significantly and more effectively serve its clients and prospects.” “After a thorough review of offerings, we found that Broking manager fits our needs perfectly,” said Akhil Chopra, Managing Director and Head of NFP’s Cyber Liability Practice. “We’re focused on growth and new technologies, to offer our clients the very best possible insights into their cyber vulnerabilities and what they can do to address them.”
FLIR Systems announces the availability of two premium visible-camera options as part of its full lineup of Quasar™ security cameras. Designed for use in demanding indoor and outdoor environments, the new FLIR Quasar Premium Mini-dome and Quasar Premium bullet deliver the forensic image quality, tight integration, and advanced cybersecurity features required for critical infrastructure sites, remote facilities, or large areas requiring close monitoring. The new Quasar Premium lineup offers the highest quality video surveillance in the product family, delivering optimal performance for forensic review. Extended range performance The FLIR Quasar Premium Mini-dome is available with 5MP HD or 4K Ultra-HD resolutions and the FLIR Quasar Premium bullet series is available with 4MP Quad HD and 4K Ultra-HD resolutions, coupled with a variety of lens options for extended range performance for perimeter security. Both cameras have an SD-card for on-edge recording and redundancy, while also meeting the H.265 video compression standard to minimize network bandwidth and storage space. The versatile FLIR Quasar Premium Mini-dome series is IP66 rated for dust and waterproof protection and can be ceiling- or wall-mounted in minutes. In no-light conditions, the unit can provide up to 40 meters of visibility via on-board near-infrared illumination. Improved three-shutter wide dynamic range (WDR) (130db) offers optimal light balance in scenarios with both light and dark spots. Additional cybersecurity enhancements The FLIR Quasar™ Premium bullet series is also IK10 vandal-proof and designed to be permanently installed The camera has an IK10 vandal-proof rating and is available with an optional smoke bubble accessory used to obscure camera position. The FLIR Quasar™ Premium bullet series is also IK10 vandal-proof and designed to be permanently installed, typically pole-mounted, for video surveillance. It covers up to 60 meters of visibility via on-board near-infrared Illumination and also features three-shutter WDR (130db). The camera is IP67 rated for dustproof and waterproof protection while offering an extended operating temperature range from -40 degrees Celsius to 60 degrees Celsius (-40 degrees to 140 degrees Fahrenheit) for use in extreme conditions. Similar to other Quasar products, the Quasar Premium bullet, and Premium Dome editions are National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)-compliant and include industry-standard security protocols and additional cybersecurity enhancements. Reduced bandwidth issues These features include unique protection from log-in attacks, hardware and software authentication, and encrypted communication to help keep facilities safe from cyber threats. They maintain open platform compatibility and can be used with a large variety of third-party VMS solutions or FLIR United VMS. They also include bi-directional audio and operator control of input/output devices for remote monitoring and responding to events. To further lower the cost of ownership and ease of installation, the cameras include the FLIR accessory and mounting ecosystem. The cameras support the 1G network for better streaming and reduced bandwidth issues. Both cameras also include customized video flow options for live and recorded video, including frames-per-second output adjustment and encoding for extra streams. The Quasar Premium bullet and Premium Dome editions are available for purchase globally from FLIR or authorized distributors.
With its 16th annual MIPS - Milestone Integration Platform Symposium 2021, 100% virtual and free of charge, Milestone Systems invites partners, customers and media to explore the future of video technology under the theme of ‘Shaping the New Next’. With more than 2,000 registered attendees from across the globe, MIPS (Milestone Integration Platform Symposium) is where the Milestone Systems community comes together to share insights, experiences, best practices and the latest innovations. Virtual MIPS conference Due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic spread, this will be the first virtual MIPS conference and the first where attendance is free of charge. At the event, Milestone Systems will investigate how video technology is transforming business and society, and why video management systems are at the core of this change. During the two-day event, Milestone Systems will share inspiration from global innovation experts and Milestone Systems executives, and present success stories and industry insights from partners. Milestone Systems’ newly appointed CEO Thomas Jensen will talk about how video technology has moved beyond security and how we will be working with partners to embrace this shift. Discussion of macro-technology trends The MIPS event also offers a deep dive into the impact of video technology on city management Milestone Systems’ Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Bjørn Skou Eilertsen and CSMO, Kenneth Hune Petersen will discuss macro-technology trends, accelerated technology adoption in key industries, and why Milestone Systems believes that video technology is the electricity of the 21st century. The MIPS event also offers a deep dive into the impact of video technology on city management, how video technology is improving every facet of transportation, and how computer vision and analytics are creating new opportunities in the retail industry for automation, personalization and even combatting Covid-19. Latest deployment possibilities of Milestone VMS Moreover, Milestone Systems will share insights into the latest deployment possibilities of their video management software, give an exclusive intro to Milestone Systems’ future direction, and present a new product launch. “Not only does MIPS bring together Milestone Systems’ global partner community to discuss our vision of where we are going and how we can contribute to each other’s success. This year, we are looking into how our technology is transforming how we work and live and how we can empower people to make the most of video technology – in security and beyond,” said Milestone Systems’ Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Thomas Jensen. MIPS will be held on March 1-2, 2021 for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and March 2-3, 2021 for both the Asia-Pacific and Americas events.
Eagle Eye Networks, the globally renowned company in smart cloud video security, has shared the trends that will have the biggest impact on video surveillance, security, and use of analytics, to drive business intelligence and improvement in 2021. Cloud and advanced analytics Customers are asking for the cloud and advanced analytics will transform video surveillance systems into even more valuable business solutions. Compliance requirements are constantly evolving and IT departments are engaging with, and in many cases, owning video surveillance systems and customers are expecting systems to be open and connected. “A number of factors are driving the video surveillance trends in 2021,” said Hans Kahler, Vice President of Operations at Eagle Eye Networks, adding “Innovation from companies like Eagle Eye Networks and our partners is leading and meeting the demands of customers for their video surveillance systems to provide business insights in addition to security.” Combining AI and cloud video surveillance Combine the promise of AI and cloud video surveillance with the volatility, instability, and remote work environment of 2020" Hans Kahler adds, “Combine the promise of AI and cloud video surveillance with the volatility, instability, and remote work environment of 2020 and we have an environment where people are looking for their video surveillance and security systems to deliver more business value than ever before.” He further said, “The acceleration of cloud adoption and use of analytics to provide improved security and drive business improvement will make 2021 a transformative year for the industry.” Video Surveillance and Security Trends for 2021: Customers are asking for Cloud: The shift to the benefits of cloud in the video surveillance space are powerful and undeniable, including major cost savings, heightened data security, remote access and maintenance, flexible storage and retention, scalability, increased stability, and disaster recovery. Analytics and AI turn security systems into business solutions: Video surveillance systems are not just for security anymore, they’re also a valuable tool for business intelligence (BI). While AI has been talked about for several years, its deployment has lagged. This year, we’ll see AI move from the lab to practical adoption. Compliance requirements are constantly evolving: As video surveillance becomes a more widely adopted tool across industries and continents and more industries are using video for compliance purposes, regulating its use is becoming more prevalent. IT departments more engaged and owning video surveillance: IT leaders have not only got involved in the video management system, but have also started owning it. As part of their IT strategy, corporations are leveraging video for business process improvement while reducing unnecessary operational overhead. Demand for open, integrated systems: An open and connected ecosystem makes it possible for businesses and developers to integrate any number of applications on a single video management system (VMS) platform. The VMS platform handles all the heavy lifting of interfacing with the cameras, recording video, securely transmitting and storing video to the cloud, and making video available for use in the integrated applications. The days of vendors ‘locking’ users into their cameras or touting ‘hybrid’ systems (which require upgrades to vendor hardware to get new features) will not be accepted.
Urban populations are expanding rapidly around the globe, with an expected growth of 1.56 billion by 2040. As the number of people living and working in cities continues to grow, the ability to keep everyone safe is an increasing challenge. However, technology companies are developing products and solutions with these futuristic cities in mind, as the reality is closer than you may think. Solutions that can help to watch over public places and share data insights with city workers and officials are increasingly enabling smart cities to improve the experience and safety of the people who reside there. Rising scope of 5G, AI, IoT and the Cloud The main foundations that underpin smart cities are 5G, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT) and the Cloud. Each is equally important, and together, these technologies enable city officials to gather and analyze more detailed insights than ever before. For public safety in particular, having IoT and cloud systems in place will be one of the biggest factors to improving the quality of life for citizens. Smart cities have come a long way in the last few decades, but to truly make a smart city safe, real-time situational awareness and cross-agency collaboration are key areas which must be developed as a priority. Innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping center, or the main roads through towns Public places need to be safe, whether that is an open park, shopping center, or the main roads through towns. From dangerous drivers to terrorist attacks, petty crime on the streets to high profile bank robberies, innovative surveillance cameras with integrated IoT and cloud technologies can go some way to helping respond quickly to, and in some cases even prevent, the most serious incidents. Many existing safety systems in cities rely on aging and in some places legacy technology, such as video surveillance cameras. Many of these also use on-premises systems rather than utilising the benefits of the cloud. Smart programming to deliver greater insights These issues, though not creating a major problem today, do make it more challenging for governments and councils to update their security. Changing every camera in a city is a huge undertaking, but in turn, doing so would enable all cameras to be connected to the cloud, and provide more detailed information which can be analyzed by smart programming to deliver greater insights. The physical technologies that are currently present in most urban areas lack the intelligent connectivity, interoperability and integration interfaces that smart cities need. Adopting digital technologies isn’t a luxury, but a necessity. Smart surveillance systems It enables teams to gather data from multiple sources throughout the city in real-time, and be alerted to incidents as soon as they occur. Increased connectivity and collaboration ensures that all teams that need to be aware of a situation are informed instantly. For example, a smart surveillance system can identify when a road accident has occurred. It can not only alert the nearest ambulance to attend the scene, but also the local police force to dispatch officers. An advanced system that can implement road diversions could also close roads around the incident immediately and divert traffic to other routes, keeping everyone moving and avoiding a build-up of vehicles. This is just one example: without digital systems, analyzing patterns of vehicle movements to address congestion issues could be compromised, as would the ability to build real-time crime maps and deploy data analytics which make predictive policing and more effective crowd management possible. Cloud-based technologies Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation Cloud-based technologies provide the interoperability, scalability and automation that is needed to overcome the limitations of traditional security systems. Using these, smart cities can develop a fully open systems architecture that delivers interoperation with both local and other remote open systems. The intelligence of cloud systems can not only continue to allow for greater insights as technology develops over time, but it can do so with minimal additional infrastructure investment. Smart surveillance in the real world Mexico City has a population of almost 9 million people, but if you include the whole metropolitan area, this number rises sharply to over 21 million in total, making it one of the largest cities on the planet. Seven years ago, the city first introduced its Safe City initiative, and ever since has been developing newer and smarter ways to keep its citizens safe. In particular, its cloud-based security initiative is making a huge impact. Over the past three years, Mexico City has installed 58,000 new video surveillance cameras throughout the city, in public spaces and on transport, all of which are connected to the City’s C5 (Command, Control, Computers, Communications and Citizen Contact) facility. Smart Cities operations The solution enables officers as well as the general public to upload videos via a mobile app to share information quickly, fixed, body-worn and vehicle cameras can also be integrated to provide exceptional insight into the city’s operations. The cloud-based platform can easily be upgraded to include the latest technology innovations such as license plate reading, behavioral analysis software, video analytics and facial recognition software, which will all continue to bring down crime rates and boost response times to incidents. The right cloud approach Making the shift to cloud-based systems enables smart cities to eliminate dependence on fiber-optic connectivity and take advantage of a variety of Internet and wireless connectivity options that can significantly reduce application and communication infrastructure costs. Smart cities need to be effective in years to come, not just in the present day, or else officials have missed one of the key aspects of a truly smart city. System designers must build technology foundations now that can be easily adapted in the future to support new infrastructure as it becomes available. Open system architecture An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations For example, this could include opting for a true cloud application that can support cloud-managed local devices and automate their management. An open system architecture will also be vital for smart cities to enhance their operations and deliver additional value-add services to citizens as greater capabilities become possible in the years to come. The advances today in cloud and IoT technologies are rapid, and city officials and authorities have more options now to develop their smart cities than ever before and crucially, to use these innovations to improve public safety. New safety features Though implementing these cloud-based systems now requires investment, as new safety features are designed, there will be lower costs and challenges associated with introducing these because the basic infrastructure will already exist. Whether that’s gunshot detection or enabling the sharing of video infrastructure and data across multiple agencies in real time, smart video surveillance on cloud-based systems can bring a wealth of the new opportunities.
As the multi-billion-dollar market for artificial-intelligence-based video analytics continues to grow, so does the number of video analytics solution providers. In Q3 of 2018, Stockholm-based consulting company Memoori identified 128 active companies in the supply chain for AI video analytics [i]. This list is far from exhaustive, considering how analytics has been gaining interest and becoming mainstream in 2020, with users expecting more accurate alerts based on object detection instead of motion detection, hardware providers developing more powerful but compact chip sets for deployment, and more startup solution providers carving out their niche in the market. Given so many choices, the question arises as to how a system integrator can evaluate and select the best solution for his customer. Although the criteria vary for each vertical, there are some key metrics to consider across the field: Open platform Ease of use Robustness and reliable performance Versatility Good support and integration Low total cost of ownership 1. Open platform Open platform allows the user to have complete flexibility, avoid being locked into any particular manufacturer, and utilize the best-of-breed solution available in each category. Analytics has been gaining interest and becoming mainstream in 2020 In 2019, an IPVM survey shows that 51% of system integrators always prefer an open platform to an end-to-end solution (i.e., all components including camera, VMS, analytics, etc. provided by one manufacturer), and 24% select open platform or end-to-end depending on customer requirements [ii]. For analytics, as the users commonly have an existing infrastructure, investing in a technology overhaul would be too expensive. An open-platform analytics product, i.e., a camera-agnostic, VMS-agnostic, and computer-server-agnostic product, will add value to the existing infrastructure within a reasonable budget. Open platform also makes it easier and more cost-efficient to upgrade each component when necessary. 2. Ease of use One of the main reasons and goals of applying AI to security is to help the user automate the process of watching hours and hours of surveillance videos, extract useful information and send alerts when necessary. In other words, AI should make it easier for the user to operate the security system. Thus, a good AI video analytics solution must be easy to set up and connect to the existing infrastructure, easy to use on a daily basis, and easy to scale with the expansion of the business. Let us examine each point in more details: Easy to set up: a turn-key, plug-and-play solution helps save time and money. The system integrator can spend a couple of hours instead of days to help the customer set up. In both 2018 and 2020, the most common reason that integrators cited for choosing a solution is that “it just works” [iii][iv]. Easy to use: an intuitive, no-learning-curve user interface allows the customer to make the solution second-nature, maximize its utility and gets the highest return on investment. The best-case scenario is that everyone in the user’s organization, e.g., every police officer in a city police department, can use the solution on a daily basis, not limited to a technical staff with rigorous training. Easy to scale: the solution must be designed to seamlessly scale in different ways: number of cameras (e.g., from a few to a few thousands); deployment locations (e.g., can we access data in our branch office in another city? how about another country?); types of device and deployment (e.g., body-worn cameras, in-vehicle, control center, cloud). 3. Robustness and reliable performance Traditional VMD (video motion detection) -based analytics have many limitations and false alarms, so AI-based analytics were developed, primarily to identify different objects in the videos with high accuracy. However, such accuracy must be achievable in different real-life environments. The best solution does not let low lighting, snow and rain, spider crawling in front of the cameras, etc., interfere with human intrusion detection or license plate recognition at night. In the case of temperature detection, users should be able to walk by the system at a normal pace without removing the mask to minimize disruption and maximize worker efficiency. A more robust solution means less time and resource spent on false alarms. 4. Versatility A versatile, feature-rich, multi-functionality video analytics is the most effective choice for system integrators in the long term. Not limited to only object detection, AI can be trained to recognize higher levels of details (e.g., faces, age, gender, license plates), track objects (including people and vehicles), and detect certain behaviours (e.g., loitering, theft). In other words, a more versatile analytics solution can recognize more types and behaviors of objects for more use cases. Most users have certain pain points today and are looking for only one or a few solutions. However, as the organization grows, new situations and requirements may arise, which call for new detection functions in video analytics. The costs and complexity will add up quickly if each solution has only one function. A few examples: An LPR camera may be perfect for the need to record all license plates today, but if the police wants to find a black Toyota Prius with “A23” in the plate number, a solution that can detect the plate number, vehicle make and model will save much more time and effort. Intrusion detection based on the ability to distinguish human from other moving objects (e.g., animals) is only the first step. What if the user needs an alert for people that enter a construction zone without a hard hat and safety vest? The answer is an AI solution that can grow its repertoire. In the current pandemic, business must adopt temperature screening, distancing detection, occupancy detection, and mask detection; a solution that can provide all four analytics in one platform is clearly more useful than four individual solutions, not to mention whether the solution can be repurposed after the pandemic has been resolved. 5. Good support and good integration One of the main reasons that system integrators might select an end-to-end solution instead of an open-platform one is technical support: more responsiveness and less finger-pointing. In terms of responsiveness, good technical support is a part of the ease of use, where the system integrator and the user can rest assured that any question can be answer via email or a phone call to the manufacturer. A more robust solution means less time and resource spent on false alarms In terms of having a one-stop-shop solution to reduce finger-pointing, good support means the manufacturer can provide easy integration to 3rd-party systems, which includes API interface support. One example is access control. Video analytics is a great tool to enhance access security (e.g., face recognition to open doors for employees; LPR for parking management; weapon detection linked to automatic locked-down system), but only 24% of video surveillance systems today are integrated with access control [v]. Two of the main reasons: (1) integration is expensive, and (2) the systems are not compatible. Both hurdles can be overcome if the analytics solution bridges the gap between cameras and access control system via its API. 6. Low total cost of ownership These six criteria help both the system integrator and the end-user save time, money, and effort Cost is always a determining factor, especially in the SMB market [vi]. Customers’ expectations are high, and higher-resolution cameras are decreasing in price and increasing in numbers, which means more data to process than ever. A good analytic software solution is not only capable of many functions, its algorithms are efficient enough to fit more into the same server specs, and it does not require expensive cameras to have good accuracy, thereby increasing cost saving for the entire system. In summary, these six criteria help both the system integrator and the end-user save time, money, and effort and get the most out of video analytics in the long run. A high-performance, versatile, turnkey solution is already a reality with today’s technology, and it will only continue to improve, so there is no reason to settle for less. [i] Memoori, The Global Market for Intelligent Video Analytics 2018 to 2023, 2018 [ii] IPVM, Open vs. End-to-End System: Statistics 2019, November 11, 2019 [iii] John Honovich, IPVM, Favorite Video Analytic Manufacturers 2018, April 2, 2018 [iv] IPVM, Favorite Video Analytic Manufacturers 2020, February 25, 2020 [v] Brian Rhodes, IPVM, Access Control and Video Integration Statistics 2020, October 8, 2020. [vi] Brian Karas, IPVM, Low Cost, Low End Competitors Challenge SMB Surveillance Market, September 1, 2017
With the pandemic still in full swing and no certainty as to when exactly it will come to an end, the world has been battling anxiety for months now. And with each day, circumstances change quickly and almost make it impossible to predict what will happen next, how events will unfold, and what actions to take in light of a new situation. But one thing is certain: the world has been shut down and paralyzed for way too long, and the eventual reopening is unavoidable – in fact, it’s well under way. In this situation, what is possible to control is how the world will continue reopening – and specifically, how to ensure the safest possible reopening that will ensure the return of some degree of normalcy to people’s lives and business operations, while also managing the risk of COVID’s spread in the most efficient way. Our highly digitised, technologically advanced world This is when the power of technology comes to rescue the day: what truly sets the global crisis we face today apart from other calamities that humanity has encountered over year is the fact that it has developed in a highly digitised, technologically advanced world where each day brings about innovations with a sole purpose to make daily life and operations easier and more streamlined. And among these, the star of the past decade has been artificial intelligence. The world has been shut down and paralyzed for way too long, and the eventual reopening is unavoidable – in fact, it’s well under way While AI has many avenues of introducing efficiency and fast problem-solving, there is one specific application that will further fuel the reopening of the world and successfully keep the spread of the virus abate. This “collaborative security” application includes a synthesis of smart video analytics, facial recognition, object identification/detection, and thermal cameras that can support the reopening of businesses globally when installed within those facilities frequented by customers. With such a level of sophistication that can ensure uninterrupted monitoring and analysis of large public spaces, these AI technologies can ideally operate best as cloud solutions to ensure a collaborative network with maximum scalability and widespread implementation. As these technologies increase in ubiquity and find their way into daily operations of businesses globally, the cost of the smart solutions will decrease proportionally to the growth of their reach. There are some highly specific ways to create this collaborative network of interconnected safety tools in the current climate. Here are some applications that have been successful to date and will increase in usability in the foreseeable future, creating “smart cities” working together towards a safer, more secure world. Maintaining social distancing practices The most important step everyone around the world has taken to contribute to the effort of slowing the spread of the virus has been social distancing. A six-foot-distance has become a new social norm that has quickly been adopted globally and become a habit to people who are naturally used to being close to others and socialising without giving distance a second thought. The star of the past decade has been artificial intelligence So, it is natural that such distancing measures take time to get accustomed to – and it is also natural that individuals may forget about them from time to time. To help maintain the six-foot distance between people at all times and give them slight nudges to keep the rule top of their minds, AI video technology can be trained to estimate the distance between individuals in public and commercial areas and identify the cases in which people get too close to each other. By notifying local merchants or authorities about such cases, the system can help ensure the safety of everyone in the area at all times while positively reinforcing the public to gradually get more accustomed to maintaining the distance and thus helping stop the spread of the virus. Detecting the virus through facial recognition Perhaps the straightforward application of such high-level technology is using video surveillance to identify persons of interest who have tested positive for the virus. Modern AI has the ability to identify facial features and characteristics with a unique level of granularity, making it possible to identify individuals whose records show they have antibodies from those who can be potential carriers of the virus. After the initial differentiation and identification, the system can then notify the employers and employees of the facility about the results of the conducted analysis and the pursuant results, allowing them to be more vigilant and take action where necessary to ensure a safe experience for everyone. PPE reinforcement Wearing a mask or some sort of face coverage in public spaces and especially within facilities (such as stores, for instance) has been - and will continue to be - a requirement for maintaining a safe and healthy environment for people to continue with their day-to-day lives and businesses to resume regular operations. To this extent, the object detection and identification abilities of smart cameras can further reinforce this requirement and ensure that the absence of protective equipment doesn’t go unnoticed. Essentially, these cameras can easily identify if an individual has coverage at any given point of time or not, notifying the local authorities about any risks immediately and helping them maintain necessary safety measures without having to interrupt their workflow or worry about missing a visitor without a mask. Detecting high temperature One of the key (and the most widespread) symptoms of COVID-19 is a high fever - a certain indicator of whether an individual may have been infected with the virus or not. While identifying fever with a regular human eye is nearly impossible, AI can do so at a fraction of time by quickly scanning body temperatures of any incoming individuals and determine whether it’s above CDC’s recommended temperature of 100.4F in order to determine the risk factor and notify the local authorities to take action. Modern AI has the ability to identify facial features and characteristics with a unique level of granularity This technology is a good tactic to objectively assess potential risks that come with elevated temperatures - and sometimes, the people themselves might not realize they might (unconsciously) be carriers of the virus and thus endanger the safety of others in their vicinity. The technology is yet another step towards ensuring a safer reopening of the global economy and a more streamlined way of getting back on track while minimizing the risk of spreading the virus further. It’s not all about the theory We have tested the described approaches in our own R&D campus in Europe. The latest release of the IREX cloud enables remote fever detection and monitoring of social isolation and mask policies with AI. We have integrated thermal cameras to detect people with elevated temperature and CCTV cameras for identification and notifying those who potentially ill. In case of any health threat, the venue manager gets an instant message with a picture and exact location. These preventive steps helped our employees return to the office months earlier than it's happening in other countries. Moreover, personnel coming back to the office by their own wish as now they feel a virus-free environment in the campus - even safer than in their own homes. Now we are launching a pilot project for a well-known pharmacy chain in Florida, USA. With the help of a Computer Vision platform, staff will be able to divide customer traffic into those with normal body temperature and those who come in with elevated temperatures, as well as effectively monitor social distance norms. The goal of our potential client is to maximize the safety of customers in the post-pandemic period. Also, IREX is already deployed across hundreds of locations in the UK and will add health monitoring capability soon.
Many venues are using access control, video surveillance systems, sensors, and additional hardware solutions as part of a broader security strategy. By utilizing so many disparate systems, corporate security teams are left with information “silos” that create inefficiencies and hamper communication. This abundance of hardware has left teams with too much data or too many tools, to manage effectively. Armored Things offers a software solution. The company’s “spatial intelligence platform” currently collects more data than other security intelligence solutions, utilizing a broader range of sources and fusing data together rather than integrating it. The platform currently focuses on taking in data from WiFi, access control, and video surveillance systems and applying machine learning to deliver customers features such as real-time predictive analytics to prevent incidents like bottlenecks or overcrowding. Spatial Intelligence is an approach to physical security that enables users to collect, manage, and interpret data in a single platform. Combine machine learning with data The term can best be used to describe how digital transformation has affected physical security. Spatial Intelligence in its infancy looked like video surveillance data combined with machine learning to produce video analytics. The spatial intelligence solutions of today can combine machine learning with data of any source, type, and size to deliver value across a large organization, not just the security team, says the company. Armored Things’ Spatial Intelligence platform unifies data from information silos to support data-driven decisions around operations and security. By fusing data from multiple sources, we can produce more consistent and useful insights for our customers” A suite of analytics, reporting and visualization tools helps customers gain a real-time understanding of people and flow in their space. By removing the guesswork of everyday decisions, the product enables customers to make data-driven decisions at a moment’s notice, according to the company. Armored Things is more than a data management tool. “By fusing data from multiple sources (rather than only cameras or only WiFi), we can produce more consistent, accurate, and useful insights for our customers,” says Kevin Davis, Chief Security Officer at Armored Things. "Being able to collect the data is the first step, but turning it into actionable intelligence is where Armored Things excels.” IP cameras and other IoT-enabled devices The range of data sources includes IP cameras and other IoT-enabled devices and even outside data sources like bus schedules and weather reports. Armored Things has built a team of public safety and technical experts with the mission to keep people safe where they live, work, and play. By leveraging emerging technology to enhance physical security, the company built the software-centric Spatial Intelligence Platform for large organizations to enhance the safety and operations of their space. Schools and education facilities are among the customers that can benefit. The leadership at Armored Things cares deeply about school safety, so the recent epidemic of campus violence has definitely been a large topic of conversation, according to the company. “By delivering our products to a greater number of customers, Armored Things hopes to continue making schools a safe place to learn and gather,” says Davis. Recently, there was a significant bottleneck lasting nearly 30 minutes at the Syracuse-Clemson soccer game. Unifying data into one platform Digital transformation is disrupting the way our customers think about physical security,” Using Armored Things technology and providing real-time data to security and operations personnel could have identified the bottleneck as it began to form. This would have notified relevant personnel, who could have taken steps to mitigate the problem before it turned into a security risk. Keeping the security infrastructure simple is imperative to success. Integrating a software solution into the security strategy shouldn’t complicate existing operations, says the company. “Armored Things Spatial Intelligence Platform can bring your security and operations into focus by unifying all of your data into one platform for ease of use,” says Davis. For this reason, the team chose to integrate not only with customers’ existing security infrastructure but with non-traditional data sources (e.g. WiFi, event schedules, ticketing) as well. “By combining and analyzing a more diverse dataset, Armored Things can help our customers make better decisions with deeper data-driven insights,” says Davis. "Digital transformation is disrupting the way our customers think about physical security,” says Davis. “As a team, our aim is to help our customers adapt to the digital age, as they transition from hardware to software-centric security solutions. Fostering organizational change is difficult, and our team hopes to make the transition process easier for our customers.”
Video is a more common feature of security systems than ever before, driven by implementation of Internet Protocol (IP) networks. In addition, various computer analytics systems are now being implemented as a matter of course. The combination of the two trends is changing – and expanding – the operation of security operations centers (SOCs). Intelligent security operations "Intelligence is central to the next evolution of security", says Alan Stoddard, Vice President and General Manager, Situational Intelligence Solutions, Verint. An architecture is needed that can gather information from multiple devices and process it using intelligence and analytics engines. Cross-domain analytics create a higher level of security. Exposing data to best-in-class analytics provides information tailored to each security operator" “Exposing data to best-in-class analytics provides information tailored to each security operator,” says Stoddard. “There is so much data, and people need to react to it.” The result is the emergence of intelligent security operations centers (iSOCs). Consider, for example, any recent security event: “As people look to understand and get ahead of these incidents, how do they synthesize information? How do they move ahead from response to prevention?” asks Stoddard. Video-centric command-and-control Because of the expanding uses for video, Stoddard sees movement in the industry toward video systems being the focal point for integration of data sources into a command-and-control environment. “Everyone is visual, and video provides a mechanism to understand your environment,” says Stoddard. “Video-centric command-and-control marries the value of video with a map that is easy to navigate and understand. He adds, "Video is pulled in from each location, and various subsystems are integrated into a unified environment. The video management system (VMS) is a natural integration point.” To serve the combined emphasis on analytics and video management, Verint has introduced its VMS One system, a single product that combines video and integrated command-and-control for iSOC environments. The new product serves a need in the marketplace to manage diverse data streams, to analyze data for greater intelligence and to automate workflows. Integration with third party VMS VMSOne combines a VMS with a command-and-control system and is targeted to large facilities and campus-like environments with SOCs. Examples include transportation hubs, large manufacturing sites, critical infrastructure, safe cities and higher education. For even larger, enterprise-type customers with multiple locations and plenty of subsystems, Verint offers its Situational Awareness Platform, which can integrate with third party VMSs and other systems. The scalable system for very high-end customers can manage tens of thousands of devices and subsystems. VMSOne, which had a preliminary launch at ISC West and is featured at the 2019 GSX show in Chicago, is targeted to the next lower tier of customers. Customer shipments will begin in September 2019. Verint’s Situational Awareness Platform can integrate with third-party VMSs Physical and cyber security Increasingly, the security needs of end users are being converged, says Stoddard. They encompass information technology (IT), physical security and cyber security, combined with a corporate security officer (CSO) in charge of decision-making. More sensors and subsystems create the possibility of data overload for security operators, and more intelligence and analytics are tools to filter and manage that data and present it in useful form for better decision-making. Verint recently hired Jeffrey Lewis as Vice President, Marketing, to lead its marketing effort from an IT-centric perspective and talk to customers in a new way about the concepts of converged security. New technologies and a more converged environment create higher expectations and greater demands on the integrator/installer community, too. In response, Verint has launched a VIP Partner program to develop stronger and closer relationships with a select group of integrators. These “VIPs” are the “best of the best” – the most capable in the industry, knowledgeable about new technologies, and able to provide more value to end-customers. VIP Partner program Dealers are screened based on modest volume sales requirements and whether they have the right skillsets, technical capability and training. There are currently several dozen VIP partners, who “lead with” Verint solutions where they make sense in the marketplace. The VIP Partner initiative complements Verint’s other partner channels. Providing another tool to manage the flow of data in an organization, Verint recently acquired Nowforce, a small Israeli company, that provides an enhanced computer-automated dispatch system. Verint offers the integrated dispatch and response capability as either a stand-alone product or as part of the larger Situational Awareness Platform. Situational Awareness Platform Getting ahead [of security threats] requires looking at social media and other data sources" “It allows SOCs to take information in and handle response in an integrated fashion,” says Stoddard. “It also extends the security workforce, enabling customers and employees to take part in the security environment.” Stoddard adds, “Getting ahead [of security threats] requires looking at social media and other data sources, information on site, and creating a holistic security view for greater understanding,” says Stoddard. Verint’s Situational Awareness Platform integrates with third-part systems that track social media, such as Liferaft Navigator, NC4 and Dataminr,” Nowforce creates 360 degrees of control, extends the control center into the virtual workforce, and enables everyone to be managed. Information such as visuals and maps are pushed to security personnel on smart phones, and security officers get to the scene faster.
The cloud and deep learning are two technologies on the verge of transforming the video surveillance market. You often hear the two technologies mentioned as separate trends, but lately, I have been hearing about how interdependent they are. Economies of scale provided by the Cloud (Software as a Service, or SaaS) are making the sophisticated capabilities of deep learning affordable to a wider audience. Meanwhile, deep learning augments cloud systems with capabilities that may not be available (or affordable) in on-premise systems, thus accelerating the broader move to cloud systems. A New Era Of Autonomous Video One company that is combining the cloud and deep learning in an end-to-end system is Umbo Computer Vision, an “autonomous video security technology” company built on its founders’ expertise in deep learning and machine vision. The company’s cameras are equipped with basic video analytics, and they are tied into a cloud infrastructure that provides additional deep learning algorithms. The cameras provide computer vision pre-processing, with the bulk of detailed analysis happening in a neural network in the cloud.One customer benefits from another customer and all the knowledge is aggregated together" “Having a SaaS model gives companies like ours the resources to improve the deep learning model,” says Shawn Guan, CEO and co-founder of Umbo Computer Vision. “We can make more accurate systems that scale better and faster. SaaS enables vendors to do something great with deep learning. You don’t have to redo it for everybody. One customer benefits from another customer and all the knowledge is aggregated together.” Adapting To A Changing Landscape Umbo’s deep learning analytics provide higher accuracy, says Guan. For example, the system can provide accurate alerts on people climbing a wall, and it can accommodate for elements such as shadows and adverse weather conditions. The cameras can also provide occupancy information from a video view of a room; unlike people-counting applications, the camera does not need to be mounted above the door. The algorithms can detect loitering and can track a subject even if he or she disappears briefly from view (such as walking behind a building). Umbo developed the algorithms from scratch using the company’s deep roots in technology. Guan says the company was “built on data and using data.” The company’s cameras are equipped with basic video analytics, and they are tied into a cloud infrastructure that provides additional deep learning algorithms The Cloud Serves As A Media Gateway “Cybersecurity is ensured,” says Guan. The cloud provides built-in authentication with the camera; user names and passwords are handled in the cloud, so there is no manual reset of the password at the device level. The cloud serves as a media gateway, and two-way communication between the camera and the cloud addresses how much data is streamed. Data in the camera has 256-bit encryption, and there is a secure “tunnel” through which data moves in the Internet. In the cloud, the host provider, such as Google, Microsoft or Amazon, protects the data to their own high standards. Each camera has industrial grade SD providing 30 days’ storage of full frame rate, 30fps video at 1080p, with backup in the cloud. In effect, the camera operates in-lieu of a network video recorder.The end-to-end system is designed to handle an essentially-unlimited number of cameras and can also be integrated with other products Handling Unlimited Cameras Customers interface with the system through the cloud’s software user experience. The end-to-end system is designed to handle an essentially-unlimited number of cameras and can also be integrated with other products. Umbo targets the enterprise market and has around two-hundred enterprise customers in the United States - their biggest market - as well as offices in London and Taipei, and customers around the world. The cost structure involves an annual payment per camera, between $280 and $600 depending on features/capabilities. Umbo is introducing a new bullet camera with a zoom lens for exterior applications, incorporating a higher-end Sony sensor for good low-light performance and wide dynamic range (WDR). The camera’s modular design enables the addition of features such as longer-range infrared – increased from 100 to 160 feet – white-light LED to provide a color image, and greater deterrence, at night, and a long-range microphone for audio. The company also offers a fixed-lens dome camera for indoor applications.
A Wisenet video surveillance camera, which might normally be expected to see installed at airports, car parks, stadia, industrial estates, or within city centers, has been deployed to monitor activity at a volcano erupting near Reykjavik, Iceland. Wisenet PTZ camera The Wisenet XNP-6040H PTZ camera, manufactured by Hanwha Techwin, is being used by media company MBL, to stream live video to the world of the eruption and despite the exposed conditions, it is proving to be more than up to the job by continuously capturing 2-megapixel color images of the volcanic activity. The camera was installed in February 2021 following on from the start of strong seismic activity within the Reykjanes Peninsula. This included several 5+ magnitude earthquakes and thousands of smaller ones, with an eruption occurring on 19 March 2021. The last eruption was approximately 800 years ago. Reliable services The XNP-6040H, which was supplied to MBL by Hafnes EHF, Hanwha Techwin Europe’s authorized distributor in Iceland, was installed within a weather-proof housing and is powered by solar panels. “We are delighted to have had the opportunity to provide MBL with a robust and reliable camera to help them share images of this dramatic event which has attracted viewers from around the world”, said Hafnes EHF's manager, Hafliði Jónsson. “The intention is for the camera to remain in place long term so that in addition to entertaining the general public, it can also be a valuable resource for geology students and volcanologists”.
Johan Cruijff ArenA will utilize innovative video analytics to improve visitor flow, optimize parking utilization and offer fans an anonymous way to provide feedback about the stadium experience, among other uses. The Security & Safety Things IoT platform for smart cameras will integrate into the ArenA’s operational software to provide key insights into stadium operations and ongoing health and safety measures, especially useful since the pandemic. The partnership will provide a potential model for other organizations looking to deploy technology solutions to safely reopen. IoT platform for smart cameras Security and Safety Things GmbH and the Johan Cruijff ArenA are partnering up and will deploy S&STs IoT platform for smart surveillance cameras to enhance overall fan experience, optimize ArenA operations and increase visitor security and privacy. The ArenA is home to AFC Ajax and the internationally renowned Amsterdam Innovation ArenA (AIA), a living lab established by the ArenA and the City of Amsterdam to enable development and testing of innovative stadium and smart city solutions. Security & Safety Things IoT platform S&ST IoT platform and network of cameras is integrated into the ArenA’s dashboard software The Security & Safety Things (S&ST) IoT platform and network of cameras is integrated into the ArenA’s dashboard software to provide information and analysis for safety and security as well optimization of stadium operations and visitor engagement. “Every technology selected for our innovation environment is strategic because of the potential benefits not only to our ArenA, but to the City of Amsterdam and other stadiums and large event venues seeking technological solutions to help to re-open safely and operate their facility more intelligently,” said Sander van Stiphout, Director International, Johan Cruijff ArenA. Sander van Stiphout adds, “The unique flexibility of the Security & Safety Things approach enables us to simultaneously deploy COVID-19 health and safety analytics along with business optimization tools and easily re-equip the cameras with other analytic applications as our needs change.” AI-enabled video analytic applications A series of smart cameras on the S&ST IoT platform are installed in key areas throughout the stadium. Using specialized, Artificial Intelligence-enabled video analytic applications from the S&ST Application Store that run directly on each camera, each device will provide the ArenA with valuable operational insights. When the stadium reopens, crowd detection analytics will monitor social distancing compliance and visitor flow around entrances and food or merchandise kiosks. License plate recognition cameras will assist with real-time occupancy monitoring for parking and traffic flow optimization. Queue detection applications Queue detection applications can be employed to reduce visitor wait times by directing fans to less busy areas and by providing the insights required to optimize staffing levels at peak times. In one specific area, a camera also provides the ability for visitors to provide feedback about their stadium experience in an anonymous and contact-free way by detecting the visual of a ‘thumbs-up’ or ‘thumbs-down’ from a visitor, collecting only the rating without disrupting people flow. Smart camera platform We’re honored to be joining the Johan Cruijff ArenA as an innovation partner" “The flexibility of our smart camera platform and the ArenA’s mission of innovation are very well matched to produce the intelligence necessary to address real world issues of privacy, health and safety but also new and creative ideas for stadium and event management,” said Hartmut Schaper, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Security & Safety Things GmbH. Hartmut adds, “We’re honored to be joining the Johan Cruijff ArenA as an innovation partner and to help them provide a seamless and safe visitor experience.” Smart surveillance camera system The camera system and how it is used complies with all European and Dutch privacy regulations. Furthermore, there are various advantages to this camera system, when it comes to privacy. These cameras are equipped with powerful processors that analyze the images directly on the camera, reducing the need for a constant video stream to be passed on to a central location, where it can be monitored or further processed. Instead, the cameras can be configured to send only the information about relevant events such as when a long queue is forming, groups of people gather too closely, or individuals are not wearing face coverings as required. Only then will respective images be passed along. This reduces the processing of visitors’ personal information to an absolute minimum as opposed to a traditional set-up where all footage is transmitted and centrally processed at all times.
The challenge was to provide a means for monorail attendants to see customers when speaking with them while simultaneously being able to communicate from the Shonan Enoshima station to the Ofuna station. The solution that recommended was to install the IX Series Peer‑to‑Peer IP Video Intercom to see customers clearly on a 7” touchscreen and reach other attendants with station‑to‑station communication. “We would like to create an environment where our customers feel safe,” says Mr. Nishino Transportation Dept. Subsection Chief, Shonan Monorail Co., Ltd. The situation Shonan Monorail opened in March of 1970 and sees more than 10 million passengers annually. The line features a pioneering suspended monorail, which connects Shonan Enoshima, a major tourist destination, to Ofuna in about 14 minutes. As a community-based transportation infrastructure, it improves convenience for residents in the area and expands tourism demand. The intercom used by customers to request assistance at unattended stations was audio‑only. If the situation had required the station attendant to view a customer, they had to go to a different location where they could see the surveillance camera. This was an inconvenience for both the staff and the customer. To communicate between the Shonan Enoshima station and the ticket office at the Ofuna station, attendants had to leave the ticket booth and use the telephone in the control center, further hindering ticket booth operations The challenge Intercom used by customers to request assistance at unattended stations was audio-only The intercom used by customers to request assistance at unattended stations was audio-only. If the situation had required the station attendant to view a customer, they had to go to a different location where they could see the surveillance camera. This was an inconvenience for both the staff and the customer. To communicate between the Shonan Enoshima station and the ticket office at the Ofuna station, attendants had to leave the ticket booth and use the telephone in the control center, further hindering ticket booth operations. The solution Integration of the IX Series offers audio and video communication, making it easy for employees to verify customers quickly, without leaving their booth. With the ability to call directly between IX Series video masters stations, staff at the Ofuna station can see and speak to fellow employees at the Shonan Enoshima station without leaving their ticket office. Installed Equipment: 3 IX-MV7-HB video master stations 11 IX-EA video door stations 11 third-party network cameras Remote monitoring It is essential to have an IP intercom in the railway industry, where remote support is required for customers using unattended stations. Shonan Monorail is a pioneering suspended monorail that operates two attended stations and six unattended stations. In recent years, it has not only improved customer convenience by introducing a prepaid transportation card but is actively working on social contributions, such as supporting Breast Cancer Awareness through events and car wrapping. In order to respond to customers using unattended stations, IP video intercoms have been used. Compared to conventional intercoms, IP intercoms are less susceptible to restrictions such as wiring distance, making IP intercoms popular in the railway industry, where unattended stations are increasing. Customer-centric solution For Shonan Monorail, which manages all unattended stations at the Ofuna station, the IP video intercom is an indispensable function for supporting customers in a remote location. Before upgrading the IX Series, the only way to check on customers using video was to check the display of a surveillance camera in a separate place. Station employees suggested upgrading to an IP intercom with video so that verifying customers and railway surroundings was more convenient. The IX Series centralized audio and video communications made it more convenient to assist customers and upgraded the current intercom system by using existing equipment. The IX Series provides an IP video intercom system that allows station employees to verify customers, by displaying the customer’s face and surroundings through the network camera. Easy to Use With the ability to use existing infrastructure and PoE switches, the IX Series helped reduce both installation times and cost An IX Series door station with a camera is installed at each unattended station, and inquiries from customers are handled by the IP video intercom at the Ofuna station. The attendant can talk while checking the video that captures the customer’s situation at hand. If the attendant is away from the ticket office, they can use the call transfer feature to connect customers to a station that has a staff member available. Since Shonan Monorail had been using IP audio intercoms for a long time, they were able to upgrade to the IX Series while using existing equipment, such as fiber optical cables and PoE switches, reducing the overall installation cost. Each IP intercom station is PoE and can be wired without a separate power supply. In addition, the connected network cameras share the IP network. With the introduction of the IX Series, one station employee said, “It’s easy to understand the customer’s situation and our work has become easier.” Aiphone’s IX Series contributes to improving convenience for both customers and station employees. Aiphone’s IX Series provides Shonan Monorail attendant’s clear, remote communication to assist customers. It also has the ability to: See anyone who calls with an inquiry Call with two-way video from the Shonan Enoshima station to the Ofuna station Expand the system to virtually any size, while saving on resources Add mobile apps for attendants who need to monitor stations while away The feedback Mr. Nishino and Mr. Yamabe help lead the transportation department at Shonan Monorail Co., Ltd. Their personal insight goes into great depth on how the IX Series Peer‑to‑Peer IP Video Intercom added both security AND convenience in day-to-day operations. Q: What are the immediate benefits of the IX Series after installation? A: Not only can customer identities be confirmed by the video, but attendants can verify commuter passes via the camera. The IX Series offers more features and capabilities, leading to improved response quality. A proven track record Mr. Nishino: There were comments from station employees that they wanted to see and respond to customers visiting unattended stations. We recognized there was a need to upgrade to a system that had audio and video capabilities. Regarding the selection of Aiphone’s IX Series, there were installation records from other railways that had unattended stations, and we felt confident that the product would solve this challenge. Another reason for this selection was that the IX Series was already being used by our group company. Mr. Yamabe: The ticket booth at the Ofuna station is always busy, as it’s handled by one attendant. In addition, inquiries from the six unattended stations need to be handled too. Customers frequently call in from unattended stations, and their requests vary. They range from emergency reports to transportation cards not working properly, making the IX Series a convenient necessity for station employees. Provides a wider range of support Aiphone’s IX Series offers audio and video using only a master station, making it easy to verify and respond to customers Mr. Yamabe: "The IP intercom used previously only offered an audio function, so when we would need to check video surveillance of customers, it would take time away from our other duties. Aiphone’s IX Series offers audio and video using only a master station, making it easy to verify and respond to customers." "If customers have forgotten to touch the IC commuter pass at the time of entry, an employee can verify the pass by having the customer show the ID on camera. This makes it simple to check all the detailed information through the camera of the IX Series door station, like which station the pass originated. The camera offers a clear image that shows the customer’s surroundings and it’s easy to use. Onetouch enlarges the bird’s-eye view of the camera and assists in the operation of the prepaid transportation card machine while monitoring the customer." Extension call feature Mr. Yamabe: "Apart from customer service, the “extension call feature” can be used to communicate with the Shonan Enoshima station. The monitoring center next to the ticket office is equipped with extension call equipment, but it’s more convenient to make the extension call with the IX Series master station when employees are busy at the ticket office and unable to leave. When customers come to the ticket office, the call can be disconnected and we can immediately assist the customer, so they won’t have to wait." Mr. Nishino: "We would like to create an environment where our customers feel safe. We would like Aiphone to continue enhancing the functions of the IX Series, like offering a two-way camera that would allow customers to talk and see the station employee at the same time they are communicating."
The challenge is to replace an existing variety of intercoms with a single model type to create a unified building design. The solution found was to install the Aiphone JF Series video intercom at each office door to allow tenants to identify their own visitors and control visitor management independently from the other tenants in the building. “The Aiphone product has been bulletproof for us with no unit failures. It’s easy to use so the tenants have had no issues,” says Drew Mulderrig Building Superintendent, eil Organization The Situation Opening doors in 1921, Seven Penn Plaza is a 17-story multi-tenant office tower bordering on Manhattan’s trendy Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood. Building owners recently completed an upgrade of the entire 368,000-square-foot structure to modernize its aesthetic to fit with its Class A location. Maintaining tenant security was an important part of the project, while still allowing convenient, daytime public access through the guard-monitored lobby. The challenge Over the years, Seven Penn Plaza tenants had installed at least a dozen different audio and video intercom systems of various ages, finishes, and states of repair. Some hadn’t worked for years. Building owners wanted them all replaced with one, unified model type. Requirements: Replace a hodgepodge of existing intercoms with one standard unit for all tenants Allow tenants to set their own policies for visitor entry Include built-in card readers for easy employee egress Building management liked the station’s all‑in‑one video camera, audio intercom, and optional embedded HID® proximity access, card reader. The solution The reader makes it easy for employees to use key cards to enter their suite Aiphone’s JF Series video intercoms were recommended by Cosmic Fisher Locks (CFL). Both the building owners and CFL agreed there was no need for a front door master station since the main entry remains unlocked during normal business hours. Visitors entering the building are required to sign in with a lobby attendant before getting on an elevator. Instead, CFL and the owners agreed to install a video intercom outside each office door. This empowered tenants to set their own office visitor entry policies Most tenants added the reader to make it easy for employees to use key cards to enter their suite. A few tenants also added a second‑ or third‑ interior master station so other staff members at different desks could monitor the entries when the receptionist was away. Ease of Use The JF Series intercoms allowed visitors to simply push a button to connect with office staff who could remain safe behind the locked door. Inside, video intercoms included high‑resolution color screens to let tenants clearly see visitors while being able to talk with them before deciding to buzz them into the office. The stations’ built‑in picture memory captures visitor images in case they’re needed for later investigations. JF Series stations can only be answered from inside a tenant’s office, ensuring all visitors are properly screened on site. The stations’ aluminum finish made the building owner, the Feil Organization, happy as it matched new doors being installed throughout the building. And by standardizing on the JF Series video intercom, CFL’s technicians didn’t need to cut different‑sized openings into the newly renovated walls. Other Advantages of the JF Series Include: Each tenant can increase their security with up to 2 door stations, 3 master stations Provides access control for the main entrance and an additional service entrance or elevator Colleagues can immediately reach one another with room-to-room communication Save time with pre-recorded messages to play for visitors at the door station
Globally renowned security video wall technology and audio visual solutions expert, Ultimate Visual Solutions (UVS) has announced that the company has secured its first contract in Poland, as part of a concerted sales drive across Central and Eastern Europe. The project deal, for a client in the energy sector, is to supply a control room with UVS Lucidity video wall controller technology. This deal takes the number of countries where Ultimate Visual Solutions has worked in or supplied equipment to 17 in the last two years. UVS Lucidity video wall controller technology The contract is the result of detailed online demonstrations of the UVS Lucidity video wall controller technology The contract is the result of detailed online demonstrations of the UVS Lucidity video wall controller technology during lockdown, to a client brought to UVS by the audio-visual distributor, Business International Group. The AV distributor, based in Warsaw, Poland provides professional solutions, devices and audio-visual accessories to a wide range of clients. UVS technology will be at the heart of a new operations center, where it will be providing the monitoring of key Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems and other critical data. Monitoring of SCADA systems and critical data Business International Group was introduced to Ultimate Visual Solutions by Pawel Religa, the UVS representative in Central and Eastern Europe, who was recruited to take advantage of the region’s fast-growing audio-visual markets. He was given technical support by UVS’s certified and authorized Eastern Europe pre-sale and after-sale service support partner, Robert Chlebowski of SIGE Poland. Pawel Religa has a wealth of experience in the AV sector, with previous employers including, Edbak (EDBAK Sp. Zo.o.). He is focusing on Russia, Poland and other key parts of the European mainland. Live demonstrations of UVS technology Pawel Religa commented, “The fact that Ultimate Visual Solutions (UVS) were able to provide Business International Group and their end client with very specific online live demonstrations and evaluations of the proposed UVS technology, and using the exact same SCADA application as the end client has implemented, convinced the end client that it was providing the correct solution.” Pawel further adds, “Ultimate Visual Solutions support during the sales, procurement and installation cycle has been excellent and Business Group are looking forward to a long term business relationship.” UVS remote services suite Ultimate Visual Solutions launched a suite of remote services, including a live online demonstration facility Earlier this year, Ultimate Visual Solutions launched a suite of remote services, including a live online demonstration facility, in order to provide full video wall technology evaluations for partners and their clients, even in lockdown or self-isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Steve Murphy, Managing Director of Ultimate Visual Solutions (UVS), which is based in the Business First - Burnley Business Centre, said “This contract is the first to come as a result of the many proposals we have been doing during lockdown for Business International Group in Poland, which have benefitted greatly from our ability to provide online demonstrations.” Video wall displays and AV solutions provider Steve Murphy adds, “The investment we made at the beginning of 2020 in our remote demonstration and remote support capability is proving invaluable and has contributed to a very strong finish to 2020.” Ultimate Visual Solutions (UVS), which has its headquarters at the Business First - Burnley Business Centre in Burnley, United Kingdom, provides video wall displays and audio visual solutions to a range of clients across the UK and the rest of the world. It changed its name from eyevis UK in September 2018, following the acquisition of eyevis GmbH by the Leyard Group.
One of the largest public train operators in the United Kingdom, Southeastern Rail Network, now relies on a smart video security solution from Bosch Security Systems to secure twelve train depots, including five unmanned locations, against theft and intrusion. The fully digital video surveillance system presents a significant upgrade to the British train operating company, which provides train services between London, Kent and parts of East Sussex and transports 6, 40,000 passengers each weekday on its 392 trains. built-in Intelligent Video Analytics Powered by cameras featuring built-in Intelligent Video Analytics, the solution was installed and configured to the specific requirements at the train depots by Bosch integration partner, Taylor Technology Systems Ltd., over the course of six months. Video security system relies on machine learning algorithms to automatically sound alarms on security threats Fully operational at all twelve locations, the video security system relies on machine learning algorithms to automatically sound alarms on security threats, such as intruders and perimeter breaches. Beyond security applications, the system also tracks important metadata on the arrival times of trains, while also monitoring deliveries at the train depots, among other AI-assisted functions that it carries out. IP-based cameras with Starlight technology The cameras portfolio installed across the twelve depots replaces an analog legacy solution with IP-based security cameras from the Flexidome, Dinion, and Autodome product lines of Bosch Security Systems. These smart cameras include Bosch’s Intelligent Video Analytics capabilities as a built-in feature, ensuring that the most relevant video data can be precisely applied to the requirements of the train depots. Because night-time security and surveillance is critical, especially at the five unmanned train depots on the network, the Bosch cameras rely on Starlight technology to provide full intelligent analytics at night and in low light levels. The Starlight technology supports color filtering down to a light level of only 0.0077 lux, so as to deliver detailed monochrome images where other cameras show no image at all, and guard against intruders and unauthorized entry around the clock. Featuring digital ‘trip wire’ to counter false alarms Highly resilient against false alarms, the smart cameras can detect movement at the perimeters of the train depots using a digital ‘trip wire’. In case of a security breach, the system alerts Southeastern Rail Network’s watch personnel, who can view live camera footage, as well as recordings of incidents for heightened situational awareness and total perimeter security. Instead of relying on the pre-configured capabilities, such as vehicle tracking and more, security personnel can also use the built-in camera trainer function to ‘teach’ new functionality, such as detecting certain types of objects or situations. Remote video recordings storage with Divar recorders Recordings from the depots are safely stored and managed remotely with Divar recorders in encrypted format As an integral part of this end-to-end Bosch security solution, recordings from the depots are safely stored and managed remotely, using Divar all-in-one recorders in encrypted format. When looking at the bigger picture, the video security solution adopted by Southeastern Rail Network is part of an industry-wide evolution from cameras as mere video capturing devices to smart sensors capable of collecting rich metadata. Insights beyond security This metadata unlocks unique insights beyond security, including video analytics at the train depots that support applications such as monitoring deliveries to onsite buildings, providing access to personnel and logging the arrival and departure times of incoming trains. The system thereby not only ensures that all train depots remain fully guarded and protected 24/7 against criminal access, but also provides a data-based foundation to keep efficiency gains and cost savings on track in the long run.
Round table discussion
Where does the time go? Before you know it, here we are at mid-year reflecting on an eventful first half of 2018 in the physical security market. It’s also a good time for our Expert Panel Roundtable to pause and look ahead at what we might expect in the second half of the year. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What technology development will have the greatest impact in the second half of 2018?
How much does a security system cost? We all know that total costs associated with systems are substantially higher than the “price tag.” There are many elements, tangible and intangible, that contribute to the costs of owning and operating a system. Taking a broad view and finding ways to measure these additional costs enables integrators and users to get the most value from a system at the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO). However, measuring TCO can be easier said than done. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable to share the benefit of their collective expertise on the subject. Specifically, we asked: How should integrators and/or end users measure total cost of ownership (TCO) when quantifying the value of security systems?
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