Asia Update: LILIN revamps to embrace IP
Editor / Provider: LILIN | Updated: 3/11/2013 | Article type: Hot Topics
Merit LILIN, a company that is no stranger to the security industry, was established in 1980 in Taipei, Taiwan. Under the charismatic leadership of Cheng Chung Hsu, President of LILIN, it is one of the few dynamic Taiwanese companies that was able to confront and overcome the turbulent times associated with the economy. Today, it has successfully transformed and shifted its main strength from analog to IP video surveillance.
Hsu, the personification of honesty and determination, embodied his ideals into his company. Since LILIN cares a great deal about the quality of its products, its high manufacturing costs make it almost impossible for the company to accept orders for OEM/ODM. Hsu once joked that he had no other choice but to set up his own branches to sell his products. All humor aside, it is evident that LILIN is a company dedicated to upholding its ideals of product quality and company image. Over the past 30 years, though LILIN did not invest in flashy marketing hype, the company still earned a reputation for quality based on exceptional product performance.
Determination to Go IP
LILIN had originally focused mainly on hardware and analog video surveillance products, but the falling prices for analog products, along with the increase in competition from China, from 2006 to 2007, drove Hsu to redirect his focus to IP products. Slowly, Hsu led his company to embark on its journey of IP development. LILIN took four years to launch its IP line into the market. Underlying factors can be attributed to a number of reasons. IP requires vast software proficiency, but LILIN's strength had been in hardware. In comparison to analog, which required a team of no more than 10 to develop, IP needed a much larger team, including network communication and software specialists. To produce and manufacture IP products, LILIN sought experts in IP and software design.
After encountering a series of obstructions in its early stages of development, LILIN was able to overcome its obstacles and ensure the compatibillity of its products with third-party solutions. The company successfully launched its IP products in 2011. Currently, its products are fully compatible with the top 15 leading VMS brands.
LILIN's network cameras are aimed at the mid-to high-end market, and emphasize excellent quality and reliability, Hsu said. Taking into consideration its late entrance into the IP market, LILIN's prices are set to be more flexible, providing end users with more quality products at an affordable price.
Aside from network cameras, LILIN also developed back-end storage systems, such as NVRs, available in four, nine and 16 channels. LILIN launched the industry's first embedded stand-alone touch NVR that supports a multi-touch screen and records 16 channels in full 1,080p HD at up to 25 frames per second. This NVR is currently at the forefront of its kind, as NVRs of other brands can only record four channels in 1,080p or 12 channels in full D1. Hsu reasoned that if the NVR was stand-alone, it should not resemble traditional models with regular front panels. Thus LILIN incorporated touch-screen technologies into the device. When connected to LILIN's own network cameras, the NVR will automatically detect and connect to them, simplifying the setup process for end users.
The NVR touch is also supported by LILIN's own software, a VMS capable of face recognition, tamper detection, masking and other functions. LILIN had strict requirements for the VMS, since it plays a crucial role in an IP system. Not only does it have to possess smooth and reliable performance, it must not skip any frames, lag, or freeze. After all, each frame is critical in terms of video surveillance. As of now, LILIN's software is free for up to 36 channels, while registration is required for 72 channels and above.
Furthermore, LILIN wants to strengthen its solutions for vertical markets. The field of IP revolves highly around system integration, and that is something LILIN plans to concentrate on. It is focusing on the retail sector, which requires highly integrated solutions with POS, alarms and audio systems.
Reforms in Products, And New Organization for IP
Today, LILIN has successfully established 12 branch offices all over the world, including the U.S., the U.K., France, China, and even Germany and Australia. This is something rarely seen from companies founded in Taiwan.
In the five years since the company made the decision to go IP, about 70 percent of its foreign sales are from IP products and the remaining 30 percent come from analog. Each of the foreign branches is able to rapidly grasp the IP technology within a short period of time because each product manager must enroll in all the trainings. Strict implementations were set in place for new hires as well. Even new sales candidates must have prior knowledge of this technology or have previous experience in an IT-related environment. They must also be able to develop new clients, while they educate existing clients about the benefits of IP video. New employees with IT-related knowledge hired in foreign branch offices rose to 60 percent.
As for 2013, LILIN is more than ready to embrace this new year with a fresh start and leave 2012 behind. LILIN will begin a total restructuring of all of its offices worldwide. The company's regulations will also change accordingly to allow for further advancement. Not only will Hsu continue an internal review of all his branches, Hsu plans to have all marketing for its different branches centralized at its headquarter in Taiwan. As of right now, LILIN's US office assumes first priority since the U.S. makes up a larger part of the global market share. Hsu intends to increase the number of employees in his US branch and distribute the remaining employees evenly throughout his different branches. LILIN's Chinese branches assume the next priority of total restructuring, as the market potential is enormous and proper management must be put in place.
An industry veteran, LILIN humbly reforms its teams and products to accommodate the swift transformation to IP. The company is striding into the new world of IP with the same serious dedication it started with