Tailored Solution — The Way to Stand Out in Network Surveillance
Editor / Provider: OB TELECOM | Updated: 5/25/2012 | Article type: China Corner
Over the past two years the development of network surveillance has increased rapidly, many surveillance equipment manufacturers have one question in mind — what should manufacturers do in an IP orientated application? Some believe that storage and the manufacturing process are the main priorities, but from a market point of view, the ability to meet customer demands is of great importance as this is the fundamental element to win market shares for manufacturers.
Network surveillance technology has become a core information system for the security industry, what is driving this development is information and knowledge of the security industry. Although technology is becoming mature and numbers of IP-based projects are increasing, market application has not been smooth for manufacturers as there are many problems to offer a solution. However, increasing applications lead to varied demands, in order to penetrate this market, how to satisfy different needs is important.
Diversified Market Demands
Within the security industry, customer demand is often neglected by manufacturers. The most common case is manufacturers often design a solution which has a whole host of new functions, but what they have forgotten in the process is what customers actually need.
Therefore, entering into the IP era, understanding and grasping customer demands and releasing customized products are a must for manufacturers. Although there are diversified demands in the market, these can be divided into the following three situations as illustrated in figure one.
Firstly, different standards have certain requirements for images. For example as stated in figure one, broadcasting standards and video standards by national transportation department are very different, the figures below represent an image quality measurement index. These figures suggest that even though both are video signals due to different standards, the results will differ.
Secondly, different vertical market leads to different image requirement, e.g. Safe City and Highway. Currently, in Safe City projects, there is no specific testing criteria while Highway testing criteria are a must-have. Another example is for intelligent transportation projects as it requires capturing higher resolution images of license plates. In intelligent transportation projects, real-time is another critical issue while in Safe City projects, latency is less demanding.
Thirdly, in some cases, despite the same standards and applications, image demands may differ to customer needs. It is because some end-users choose products based on their preferences or products, themselves, are unable to meet end-users' requirements.
Conclusively, tailored video solution is required for different vertical markets. This is, for device providers, an opportunity as well as a challenge. To satisfy customer's demand will be the strategy to stand out among other manufacturers.
If a product provider wants to enjoy greater market share, its capability to provide customized products will be the main issue. There are several technologies and solutions which can ensure customer needs are met for video surveillance. For example, the traditional analogue, network video technology, high definition, HD-SDI as well as GigE Vision.
To date, IP draws most attention as it brings scalability and large-scale networking management. In comparison to the traditional fiber optical transmission system and analogue matrix, IP simplifies the whole system setup and is available for networking. Besides, IP also offers different compression algorithms, such as H.264, MPEG-2 (broadcasting) and JPEG (used in intelligent transportation).
Although there are many advantages of IP, there are also fundamental problems — delay and loss of image. In some applications, uncompressed images are required and some analytics function may not well incorporate with compressed video images. Therefore, these create further problems in the future.
The bandwidth and unstable systems continue to trouble end users and manufacturers. On the contrary, these problems can be an opportunity for companies due to the market becoming more concentrated. As the high definition becomes more obvious, some companies have released new high definition solutions such as HD-SDI. This supports high speed and, basically, zero latency in transmission. This provides conventional analogue system to embrace high definition based on its existing wiring, which saves time and cost. To installers, they do not require IT background.
Basically, IP and HD-SDI both have their advantages but these two are not enough to cater all demands. In the future, HD-SDI and IP will both exist based on different applications. Furthermore, some manufacturers offer GigE Vision for those who wish to use network technology and still retain image details and real-time transmission. Created by Automated Imaging Association (AIA), the GigE Vision technology is based on a 1,000 megabyte Ethernet, which is mostly used in scenario with a 10-megapixel or above camera.
Different technology and standards require development and customization in order to satisfy customer demands, as the market develops both will oexist for a long period of time. Employing the correct technology and standards to fulfill clients' needs is the way forward to maintain customers and arket