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Bosch Sensortec launches combo MEMS solution with integrated gas sensor

Bosch Sensortec launches combo MEMS solution with integrated gas sensor

Editor / Provider: Bosch | Updated: 1/6/2015 | Article type: Security 50

Expanding Bosch Sensortec's existing family of environmental sensors, the BME680 integrates a gas sensor with best-in-class air pressure, humidity and ambient air temperature sensing functions within a single 3.0 x 3.0 mm2 footprint package.

The BME680 environmental sensor enables multiple new capabilities for portable and mobile devices such as air quality measurement, personalized weather stations, indoor navigation, fitness monitoring, home automation and other applications for the Internet of Things (IoT).

The gas sensor within the BME680 can detect a broad range of gases in order to measure indoor air quality for personal well being, including Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) from paints (such as formaldehyde), lacquers, paint strippers, cleaning supplies, furnishings, office equipment, glues, adhesives and alcohol.

“Our latest, integrated environmental sensor provides the opportunity to deliver differentiated mobile devices,” says Dr. Stefan Finkbeiner, CEO of Bosch Sensortec. “With its high accuracy, low power consumption and tiny package, the BME680 enables developers to integrate new functionality within their products in an efficient and cost-saving manner.”

Combination of four sensors in one package fulfills needs for the Internet of Things (IoT)
With its combination of four sensors in one package, the BME680 provides the accurate, detailed real-world data required for many IoT applications. Expected uses include smart homes, smart offices and buildings, smart energy, smart transportation, HVAC, elderly care and sport/fitness applications.

Accurate performance
The BME680 builds on the success of Bosch Sensortec's existing BME280 environmental sensor module. By integrating a new gas sensor, the BME680 delivers superior environmental measurement performance, made possible by the internal compensation and calibration of the gas, pressure, temperature and humidity sensors. The gas sensor can detect Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) down to the ppm range.

The BME680's pressure accuracy of ±0.12 Pa provides precise altitude information to ±1m, making it ideally suited for applications such as indoor navigation with floor level tracking. Additionally, the best-in-class response time for measurement of humidity and ambient temperature enables new applications such as personalized weather information and air quality monitoring for well being in the home.

An offset temperature coefficient of only 1.5 Pa/K enables altitude stability over temperature of 12.6 cm/K. This is important in applications requiring the user's vertical position within a building over a wide range of ambient temperatures.

Features and package
The BME680 is equipped with both I2C and SPI communication interfaces. Three power modes and oversampling rates for pressure and temperature measurements that can be configured separately help designers to easily adapt the BME680 to different applications. An integrated IIR filter eliminates short-term measurement fluctuations caused by potential environmental influences. Proven settings are available for specific applications such as weather logging or indoor navigation.

The BME680 is housed in a 3 x 3 x 0.93 mm3 LGA metal lid package.

Availability
Samples are scheduled to be available to selected customers within the first quarter of 2015.

Surveillance gets ultra clear with 4K

Surveillance gets ultra clear with 4K

Editor / Provider: Lisa Hsu, a&s International | Updated: 1/6/2015 | Article type: Hot Topics

4K has made a place for itself in the consumer market, with 4K television and displays becoming increasingly popular. Now, it is slowly making its way into the security industry. “4K video systems are not only a trend of the future, but also a ready solution going to impact this market. With the capability to cover wider areas, budget can be saved due to fewer units and installation,” said Ken Huang, Marketing Specialist at DynaColor. With the release of 4K, new solutions can be explored in several verticals to make use of the UHD resolution.

DEFINITIONS AND VERTICALS
Boasting 4,096 x 2,160p (8.3 megapixels; around four times that of full HD resolution), 4K has the ability to display UHD video footage. In the same way 1080p was first introduced, the initial 4K applications tend to be for outdoor surveillance with a large field of view and the need to resolve detail (e.g., sport stadiums). According to Andres Vigren, Product Manager of Axis Communications, “HDTV network cameras are already used for installations where there is a requirement to overlook an area with the capability to zoom in on details with high precision. 4K UHD takes this to the next level by allowing larger areas to be monitored with a single camera without compromising on level of detail should this be required when an incident occurs.” The ability to capture a large scene and zoom in on images without sacrificing pixels makes 4K ideal for monitoring large areas, which is useful for city surveillance and transportation. Additionally, as one 4K camera can substitute many HD cameras, it presents as a cost-effective solution while minimizing blind spots.

With 4K, data collected from video recordings creates opportunities for improved investigations, but also business intelligence. For instance, personnel and customer paths are more accurately traced, and the resolution is high enough to support multiple content analyses for functions like people counting and license plate recognition (LPR), which provides more precise identification and reduced false alerts. This also allows for faster and more accurate monitoring in crowd management and perimeter protection requirements. 4K can also be applied to safe cities, wide-lane traffic monitoring, police dispatching using geographic information systems (GIS) maps, and more. “Optical zoom becomes a useful feature thanks to the 4K cameras. The quality of the camera means it can provide a stream of information, such as metadata for marketing, operations, and processes purposes,” said Gerard Figols, European Head of Product Marketing at Panasonic System Communications.

CONSUMER CONCERNS
Although it holds great potential, 4K systems are not yet mature. There are a few things consumers need to keep in mind when purchasing a 4K system: is it suitable for the application and whether they have a full 4K-compatible system. “The main factors for 4K video systems to be ready mainly depend on the development of (well-matched) codec capability of camera and backend devices, as well as storage capability and display devices such as TV walls and monitors,” said Adler Wu, Product Marketing Manager at Hikvision Digital Technology. With Theia and Fujinon as the only two companies currently offering 4K lenses, the market is still limited in 4K lens choices. Moreover, these products are still early in development; therefore, it is likely that most video surveillance system operators will be using a standard HDTV monitor. And, with complications in low-light environments and limitations in capturing fast movements, 4K still has much room for improvement.

In addition, many misunderstand that 4K will replace current panoramic cameras; however, for now this is not true. This is because where there is a large area to be monitored that requires situational awareness, a regular 4K camera will have the same limitations with respect to blind spots in terms of wide-angle monitoring. At the moment, 4K fisheye lenses have yet to be developed, as many are experiencing difficulties in eliminating distortion on the side of the lens. “4K is not optimal where large panoramic scenes need to be covered. Loading docks, hotel lobbies, and parking lots will continue to be better served by multisensory panoramic camera systems,” concluded Brad Donaldson, Director of Product Management at Arecont Vision.

Companies are tripping over themselves to be one of the first to release their own 4K cameras, yet very few provide a whole 4K system, which forces users to buy 4K NVRs and monitors separately if they want to employ the system. This may also create compatibility issues when companies do decide to release other 4K products, or when customers upgrade to H.265 chipsets. In a hurry to promote that their own 4K cameras are using H.265, many companies have cut corners in efficiency, meaning early adopters using products embedded with “H.265” may in fact be less efficient than the now-standard H.264, Ed Thompson, CTO of DVTel warned.

Suggestions
Moreover, one must consider the storage and bandwidth required to stream and store 4K, especially when using H.264 video compression technology and older hard drive disks, as 4K systems are resource intensive products. Luckily, advances in network architecture and technology have developed 40 gigabit Ethernet technology, enabling transfer of Ethernet frames at speeds of up to 40 gigabits per second, which is suitable for 4K media workflows. “That said, the ability to compress 4K files for easy transmission while maintaining image performance and integrity is still important even on a 40 gigabit Ethernet,” said Riki Nishimura, GM of Visual Security Solutions for Professional Solutions Company (PSAP) for APAC at Sony Electronics.

The upgrades and additional equipment needed in order to fully deploy a 4K system can be costly at this time, although prices for 4K lens are dropping drastically. “Last year a true 4K resolution lens could cost several hundreds of dollars, but prices have now dropped to below US$20 for a decent lens,” commented Bengt Christensson, Senior Director Marketing at Ambarella. Growth of 4K systems will be more widespread once the cost for 4K equipment drops, which will allow solution providers to explore more ways to use recorded data where 4K footage is applicable.

Additionally, Peter Pan, Product Manager at Dahua Technology believes that 4K real-time streaming is not absolutely necessary when it comes to surveillance monitoring. This largely depends on the user's budget, project requirements, as well as bandwidth consumption.

FUTURE DEVELOPMENT
In the near future, 4K will inevitably become the new standard for surveillance resolution; however, there are many challenges manufacturers have yet to conquer — management of the increased amount of video data (higher bitrates), capture of fast moving objects, and challenging lighting conditions, according to Pieter van de Looveren, Marketing Communications Manager of Video Systems at Bosch Security Systems.

4K's problem in low-light environments is due to the small sensor and pixels crammed in an image, resulting in less light absorbed. “Most models use a lower quality sensor with slower aperture lens and do not provide any infrared (IR) illumination; these are poor choices for many applications where the lighting is not ideal,” explained Thompson. Similarly, Donaldson also noted most verticals will benefit from high resolution and faster frame rates, however low-light environments might prove to be challenging due to the pixel size on the sensor. Companies are overcoming this issue by embedding different features in 4K cameras that will perform better in low light, such as Arecont Vision's camera with a 1-inch sensor that creates larger pixels, and DVTel's implementation of IR illuminators with F1.4 lenses to provide optimum low-light performance. This development will prove to provide better surveillance for applications like casinos where the premises are often filled with flashing or low lights from gaming machines.

Once 4K is fine-tuned for better use in various applications, it will definitely bring change to the security industry. With H.265 in the works, it will still be at least a year before it becomes commonly available. “We see the first generation of 4K cameras use H.264 with optimized low-bitrate tuning, and that H.265 will mature and become the next standard in the years following,” said Christensson. Though the current compression technology can handle the high resolution, and manufacturers are developing other technologies to reduce bitrate, such as Bosch's Intelligent Dynamic Noise Reduction technology that reduces noise based on motion and light levels, it is predicted that H.265 will be more appropriate to compress the hefty data. It's no doubt that H.265 will become the best solution of high resolution camera applications. With the latest compression technology, H.265 is promising to reduce up to 50 percent of bitrate usage. This brings great advantage to the most important part of high resolution surveillance solutions: Internet bandwidth and storage capacity control,” said Huang. To solve the current problem, Vigren suggested, “to manage bandwidth consumption, users can view the live video stream in HDTV 1080p and take advantage of 4K UHD recordings for forensic purposes.”

To further accommodate application needs, such as monitoring outdoors, it will be essential that 4K have features such as high dynamic range (HDR). “Due to the high resolution of 4K video and common outdoor applications, HDR will become a valuable feature and over time a requirement. There is a focus from the main sensor vendors on new 4K sensors, benefitting from increased sensitivity technologies and combined with advanced noise reduction processing one can expect 4K cameras to improve low-light performance considerably,” said Christensson.

4K: FROM CONCEPT TO REALITY
4K has come a long way since 2013 when the International Telecommunications Union set the standard specifications for UHD television. As manufacturers continue to improve and upgrade systems to provide users with more detailed resolution and smoother streaming, it is evident 4K will not only be the standard in future surveillance solutions, but also the key to opening a door to new ways of using the data collected.

4K Application Challenges
Although 4K can bring a clearer picture and better user experience for security, compared to 1080p HD, data collection, encoding and decoding, transmission, display, storage, and processing for 4K all require higher standards.

  • Higher resolution lenses: Lenses need to be at least 8 megapixels in order to display the full effect of 4K resolution; however, cost for these high resolution lenses are expensive and limited, especially ones that are suitable for surveillance and are able to support zoom lens movement.
  • Network transmission, higher bandwidth, and greater storage capability: In security applications, transmission of 1080p HD video requires around 4 Mbps bandwidth; under H.264 encoding, 4K resolution at present requires at least 12 Mbps bandwidth in order to achieve better image quality. Meanwhile it is foreseen that the era of 4K will soon lead to double the storage requirements as surveillance demand for reliability and safety increases.
  • Chip encoding performance: In order to reduce 4K resolution pressure caused by high bandwidth and storage capacity, it is necessary to optimize the performance of H.264, or deploy the new HEVC standard H.265. Currently many manufacturers have started to optimize the H.264 chipset focusing on various applications to lower bitrate while maintaining quality for 4K resolution.
  • Stronger back-end decoding and display capability: Powerful graphics processing units are required both to process 4K resolution output as well as to display 4K video.
  • Higher resolution display devices: 4K compatible monitors are required to display the full effect of 4K resolution. Since a reliable and cost effective display compatible for 4K streaming is not yet available , widespread adoption is difficult. Although LCD 4K monitors are available for consumers, it is not yet suited for the security industry.
  • Video processing capability: For 4K resolution surveillance images, elements displayed are more detailed, but at the same time computing power is needed to handle the richer detail, especially for abilities such as image enhancement, de-fogging, and video analyses.
  • Price: Currently, 1080p and 720p HD resolutions are able to meet the needs of daily monitoring; however, as costs for 4K systems drop, popularity for 4K will increase.
  • Dahua introduces 3-inch network mini PTZ dome camera

    Dahua introduces 3-inch network mini PTZ dome camera

    Editor / Provider: Dahua | Updated: 12/30/2014 | Article type: Security 50

    Dahua Technology, one of the world-leading manufacturers and suppliers of video surveillance products headquartered in Hangzhou, China introduces its new 2-Megapixel3-inch Network Mini PTZ Dome Camera—SD32203S-HN.

    Dahua SD32203S-HN is the updated model featuring compact design with powerful functions which bring new experiences to the user. IP66-rated weatherproofing and dust-proof ensures the cameras can withstand even the harshest weather environments. Furthermore,IK10-rated vandal-proof can effectively prevent violent destruction.

    New Generation Block Camera
    Dahua SD32203S-HNis using new block camera with 3 times zoom-in function. The lower bit rate is able to reduce the storage space. The angle of view reaches to 116.5-degree which provides wider monitoring area.

    New Structure Design
    The block camera holder of SD32203S-HN is made of aluminum which is much more fastness than the old generation. Moreover, the vertical transmission model has changed from gear drive to belt drive. This upgrade can improve the accuracy of preset as well as reduce the mechanical noise.

    Outstanding P/Z Performance
    Dahua SD32203S-HN adds the conductive slip ring to achieve 360° unlimited rotation. High speed stepping motor offers max 240°/s pan speed and 160°/s tilt speed which makes SD32203S-HN become a veritable high-speed PTZ dome camera.

    This network mini PTZ dome camera features more advanced functions but also maintains cost-effective offering. With ease of use installation, advanced features and performance, DahuaSD32203S-HN can be a good extent to existing product line to meet more market demands.

    Features
    * 3.0mm ~ 9.0mm(3x)optical zoom
    * H.264 & MJPEG dual-stream encoding
    * Max 25/30fps@1080p resolution
    * DWDR, Day/Night(ICR), DNR (2D&3D),Auto iris, Auto focus, AWB, AGC,BLC
    * Multiple network monitoring: Web viewer, CMS(DSS/PSS) & DMSS
    * Max 240 °/span speed, 0° ~360° endless pan rotation
    * Up to 255 presets, 5 auto scan, 8 tour, 5 pattern
    * Built-in 2/1 alarm in/out
    * Support intelligent 3D positioning with DH-SD protocol
    * Micro SD memory, IP66, IK10, PoE

    Time to check-in: Video analytics automate airport security

    Time to check-in: Video analytics automate airport security

    Editor / Provider: Israel Gogol, freelancer, a&s International | Updated: 12/30/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

    Airports are at the forefront of using intelligent video analytics to automate their surveillance and operational needs. Recent advances in video footage search as well as better computing options at the edge promise to show an even greater future use of video analytics. However, market education is still needed to fulfill its potential.

    Video surveillance cameras have long been used in airports. The introduction of video content analytics (VCA) is a power-multiplier for cameras. “The primary goal of analytics is to transform the cameras into intelligent detectors in order to provide more reliable incidents detection and minimize human error factor,” said Denis Castanet, Director of Business development for EMEA at Bosch Security Systems.

    “Video analytics is identified as a lead technology in the growing trend towards reliable, automated systems within airports,” said Bill Flind, CEO of Ipsotek. Flind named some of VCA‘s main benefits: a wise use of VCA reduces human error, reduces man-guarding costs, provides secondary support to other systems, and greatly improves reaction time from alert to action with the use of automated triggers and alerts. Josh Phillips, Director of Marketing of Enterprise & Critical Infrastructure at Video Intelligence Solutions, Verint Systems, also echoed that “VCA is used in areas where alternative sensors are not practical or reliable, or where maintaining security staff for live personnel monitoring is impractical or unreliable.”

    New Developments in Video Search
    Apart from triggering alerts, VCA plays an important role in searching through the video feeds. The vast amounts of video footage collected daily in a busy environment like an airport is almost impossible to search manually. One of the key strengths of VCA is the ability to enhance the speed of searching through hours of recorded video. There are a variety of VCA manufacturers that can perform a search on the recorded video for different criteria; including color, shape, speed, and time spent in an area. In addition, some can compress hours of recorded video into a stream that shows all activity for a certain time frame, thus simplifying searches for only the things the user is looking for.

    “Technology now not only locates a person, but also tracks their route and determines their last known location,” said Jamie Wilson, Security Marketing Manager for EMEA at NICE systems. It works by creating a searchable database of images in real-time, of all the people who have been ‘seen' by surveillance cameras on the network. The investigators can search this database to identify the person they are looking for either according to a time frame or based on a description or picture of the suspect. Using this information the investigator is able to rapidly screen the results to see if the person they are looking for is displayed. Once they have located the person the system presents the investigator with a time-stamped map highlighting where the person has been and at what time and the route taken. Crucially, it will also display the last point the person was spotted, for action to be taken.

    Multipurpose use of VCA in Airports
    The most common video analytics features are intrusion detection and unattended baggage. Examples are detection of people entering the baggage area through the exit, loitering in secure areas, walking in the wrong direction, detection of vehicles parked in no parking zones, detection of people near the runways or near parked aircraft, and queue management for check-in areas and security lines (measuring the amount of time a person has to wait in line).

    VCA is used mainly for security purposes; however, as it becomes more common, more uses are adopted at airports. “Our experience with VCA is that it is used only to the extent that the end user understands its capabilities. This commonly results in the VCA being used for security purposes initially and as its potential is realized by the end user, migrates into lots of other uses,” said Kirk Huss, System III Engineer for G4S Technology USA. “Like any technology, as users become more familiar with VCA, they realize its potential and begin using it for things other than security related issues. Once trained on the system, they get very creative and apply it to all sorts of their business operations.”

    Examples of this “dual-use” are re-using existing systems for customer service (queue management for instance) or marketing (customer behavior analysis). “The more advanced VCA is going a step further and actually forecasting with high confidence when a long line will develop, not after it has already happened,” added Phillips. This allows retailers the ability to maximize staff members who sit idle when lines are empty.

    Information can be shared also between parties in the airport. Store owners in the airport will usually have their own video surveillance systems inside the store. Even though they are not connected to the airport's system, information can still be shared through mobile applications (e.g., send a picture of a suspect from the store to the airport police), described Todd Brodrick, Director of Sales for South West USA at Pelco by Schneider Electric.

    Future: VCA to Initia te Camera Trac king
    Today, a major constraint is in making analytics work in a crowded environment. As VCA algorithms improve, so will the ability to overcome the crowded environments at airports. The next challenges in line are successful tracking and hand over from camera to camera. Crowded scenes or obscured views can make reliable tracking across multiple cameras intricate to achieve. However combining other technologies and systems to assist tagging and tracking of individuals through busy scenes such as airport terminals can deliver better results.

    “Beyond the analytics themselves the next step is automating the entire process — somebody leaves a bag and the system will automatically jump back and look for the person who left it, recognize him from the database, follow him around as he passes through other parts of the airport, and alert the nearest police officer or guard on duty,” stated Dr. Rustom Kanga, CEO of iOmniscient. “Already we have started using multisensor technology — sound and smell in addition to the video. Humans use all their senses and analytics should too. For example, if the camera detects someone falling down and detects the sound of a gunshot it is a different situation than a simple slip and fall. In years to come such multi-sensor analytics will become ubiquitous.”

    VCA is Not a Cure-all Solution
    Market knowledge levels are still a concern for vendors and systems integrators implementing VCA solutions. One of the major challenges facing vendors and systems integrators is explaining that VCA is not a panacea and explain its realistic expectations.

    “The commercial challenge is for customers to understand what the technology can and cannot do,” explained Kanga. “We focus on educating the market. Most customers use a tender process for their purchasing. If the specifications in the tender are vague the customer may get something that meets the specification but does not work in practice. For instance, if the specification asks for ‘abandoned object detection' they will get a different response than if they ask for ‘abandoned object detection in a very crowded place.' Those few words can make a difference between whether the customer gets something that will work or not.”

    “I think the challenge is always the culture. Video analytics is a real new thing in our market, so we spend a lot of time showing to our customers the power of the solution. After that, the solution's technical needs must be redesigned. Usually the customers look at video analytics as a showcase, not as a real solution. We always take potential customers to visit actual customers in order to demonstrate the incredible power of the analytics solution,” explained Jorge Heller, Technology Director of Redisul, a Brazilian systems integrator that took part in securing some of Brazil's airports prior to the last FIFA World Cup.

    “We continue to witness a large variation in client knowledge for analytics from those procuring solutions from a zero base through to consultant experts. Even within procuring teams knowledge can vary significantly and it is not always those with the most knowledge that are permitted the most procurement authority,” added Neil Norman, CEO of Human Recognition Systems.

    Norman too stressed that education is a critical element of the business development and delivery teams' role for analytics is still to avoid disappointment or underuse of the systems.

    Where to Run the Analytics?
    Video analytics are generally built on two different types of architecture: server-based and edge-based, performed on the camera. “Camera-side offers scalability and redundancy but lacks in features, performance, and management, whereas server-side offers enhanced performance, features, and management capabilities, but lacks in scalability and has high bandwidth requirements,” explained Zvika Ashani, CTO of Agent Video Intelligence (Agent Vi).

    Server-based analytics enjoy several advantages since the servers are all at one central location: easier configuration, management, and maintenance. Since power supply and cooling are less of a concern, it also allows for increased processing power and support for complex video analytics algorithms that provide high performance and easier integration with VMS and PSIM systems. Running the analytics at the edge saves on bandwidth, as constant video transmission over network is not required. It allows for direct control of PTZ camera with minimum latency and since the uncompressed video is analyzed directly at the camera the video analytics performance improves (the video feed doesn't change due to compression). Video can be transmitted on demand or automatically when an event of interest is detected (black screen technology). The major obstacle is the camera's size, power consumption limitations, limited computing power, limited storage space, and limited temperature tolerance operating in direct sunlight or freezing conditions.

    Industry professionals predict a trend towards more VCA-at-the-edge units to overcome the limitations of the camera is via two approaches: sharing the workload between edge-unit and server or adding computing power to the camera with an external device.

    “A distributed processing approach which utilizes both camera and server processing provides the best of both worlds in terms of scalability, performance, feature set, manageability and bandwidth consumption,” noted Ashani.

    Singapore holds the smart key to success

    Singapore holds the smart key to success

    Editor / Provider: Lisa Hsu, a&s Asia | Updated: 12/30/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

    Singapore, one of the most innovative countries in Asia Pacific, is taking matters into its own hands. With the economy and political issues that have pushed the country to further employ automated systems, Singapore is at the forefront of smart technology.

    Rated as one of the top places in the world to do business, Singapore is home to many multinational company regional headquarters. With an English-speaking environment and highly developed infrastructure, Singapore is an ideal country for companies to expand to other Southeast Asian nations. As a hub of the Southeast Asian region, the country is famous for a high level of technology adoption. In recent years, its trend migrates to smart and intelligent technologies in the Singaporean security industry. The foreign worker policy has further pushed Singapore's adoption of new technology to help reduce manpower and save cost on human monitoring due to the tight labor market. Both government and commercial projects are growing in recent years, employing additional use of smart technology. According to Rick Huang, Business Development Manager at Alstron, the government is looking at using cameras with suitable back-end VCA solutions to improve productivity to replace labor intensive jobs like traffic monitoring and illegal parking. Ken Lee Kim Keong, Director of KZTech explained, “there are already many analytical software companies entering the market, and projects releasing from both commercial and government sectors are putting VCA as part of the package.”

    “In the low-end market, it is obvious that the customers are after box solutions, where packages offer hardware with software solutions. While in the high-end market, the end users are after value adding through application driven products (surveillance) where they have the freedom to choose applications for their video centric operation needs,” said Sunny Kong, Director of Sales for APAC at Milestone Systems.

    SMART SOLUTIONS FOR PROJECTS
    A “smart” solution conceptually is a breakthrough for energy conservation, management, and monitoring in buildings and campuses through a mean of enhancing energy efficiency, data center reliability, comfort and analytics, according to Kenneth Tsang, Director of R&D and Technical Services, Video & Situation Intelligent Solutions for Verint Systems.

    Transportation
    There are a number of promising projects rolling out in recent years using smart technology. They can be seen in various verticals, one of which is transportation. Recent projects include use of surveillance and custom software solutions to detect illegal parking in pickup areas along mass rapid transit (MRT) stations. Surveillance solutions with smart software are being implemented to detect speeding cars, and detect over height vehicles that are entering height restricted areas.

    The transportation sector has also incorporated smart systems in projects as tourism continues to grow in Singapore due to the opening of Integrated Resorts to attract more visitors. Changi Airport has access control systems and hundreds of intelligent card readers by CEM Systems from Tyco Security Products implemented that support smartcards and fingerprint biometrics. An intelligent building security system was also deployed that is integrated with the Singapore Airlines Human Resources SAP system, an interface with the existing visitor system and digital video surveillance/DVR systems integration. This leads to opportunities for smart security solutions when Terminal 4 of Changi Airport finishes construction in 2017.

    Smart Buildings
    Demands for security products in smart buildings are likely to be in the aspects of full integration and automation, able to provide time efficient incident management, low maintenance cost, easy-to-use manageable systems, remotely controllable systems without distance limitations, efficient system have the ability to integrate with business continuity management systems. According to Masami Eguchi, GM for APAC at Panasonic System Communications, a lot of video surveillance projects are implementing video surveillance and recording with a high-end VMS system into a single platform.

    However, combining intelligent solutions in buildings itself is not a new concept, but with most recent technologies that allow for more integrated solutions, smart buildings will in time be highly sophisticated and automated for the user's needs. For instance, data available for building facilities can be shared across relevant users within the organization for other analyses such as business processing, explained Stella Neo, GM for CSO-Singapore at Bosch Security Systems. “Customers are looking how to best maximize the usage of various systems in the building that contribute to the business, organization efficiency and productivity, e.g., maximize security, maximize communication, maximize safety.”

    Education
    Opportunities in education are growing, with Singapore working with major educational institutions to reinforce its educational hub status using smart technology. Such technology can be seen in SimonsVoss Technologies' projects at Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), and Yale – National University of Singapore Campus and Hikvision's projects in the National University of Singapore and Nanyang Technological University.

    Hospitality
    Solutions used for resort projects incorporate smart technology to secure the premises. ST Electronics was awarded the Resort World Sentosa project, worth US$71.7 million, to provide an integrated security system, network infrastructure, and an intelligent car park system for the facility. CEM Systems from Tyco Security Products was awarded the $6.3 billion Marina Bay Resort project to implement 15,000 card holders, and more than 650 card readers. The project provided for the resort access control, alarm processing, and a photo badging system.

    Healthcare
    Smart security solutions in healthcare are expected to roll out due to a shrinking workforce and aging population. Smart card technology is used in hospitals for staff and visitors to have access to multiple doors, as well as tracking attendance at staff events or trainings. Regulated by the government's Ministry of Health, more projects are anticipated to launch, considering the government's spending in this sector, said Giridhari Ramamoorthy, Director of Sales and Business Development at Pacom Systems.

    SAFE CITY FOR A SAFER CITY
    Singapore launched its first safe city test bed initiative last year to explore possibilities of deploying a city-wide integrated surveillance system. Technologies tested and developed in the project included analytics and sensor engines, facial recognition video analytics used in combination with location-aware analytics, and technology to authenticate video streams. Industry players collaborated with the government to develop possible solutions in the urban landscape with real-time data and scenarios through advanced monitoring and analytics. According to Jason P. Kurek, MD of Asia at SimonsVoss Technologies, this enabled the Singapore government to gain awareness of capabilities, solutions, and innovations from the research and development of private sector industry players. “By actively engaging industry players through the test bed platform, Singapore government shall be in a good position to leverage on them to develop innovative capabilities elevating safe city initiative to a greater height. With the government's strong support, it is therefore opined that safety and security industry shall become the next in-thing for Singapore,” said Joshua Kwai, Group CEO of JK Consultancy Holdings Group. With the initiative mandated and encouraged by the government, the safe city market in Singapore will have great potential. According to Tsang, “there will be a need to apply intelligent detection, real-time situation monitoring, and strategic analysis to help the city collect and analyze information faster, manage and respond to situations efficiently, and keep their citizens safe.”

    For the future of the safe city initiative, new projects are continuing to roll out. Sensors that will monitor air and water quality, as well as public safety will be deployed at high traffic areas, and various proof of concepts have been completed.

    Singapore Turns to Technology
    As future projects for safe city are expected to roll out, Singapore is at the forefront as one of the world's top technology hubs. With tight labor markets and rising cost affecting the economy, many are motivated to relook at incorporating smarter and more innovative technologies to move away from a labor intensive security landscape. As the country's economic growth continues to improve, hopefully smart technology is the key Singapore needs to get back on track.

    Chinese Players Entering the Market
    The entry of China in the world market has triggered heated price competition in Singapore. Introducing products with cheap prices, the government has started incorporating Chinese products in projects due to price budgets. “China-made products have made a great leap into the low cost segment and are also starting moving into government projects,” said Masami Eguchi, GM for APAC at Panasonic System Communications.

    Initially, Chinese products were deemed as unreliable and easily worn out, however over the years, the quality of some Chinese brands have improved, gaining approval from the Singapore government. According to Derek Yang, Asia Business Manager at Hikvision Digital Technology, Hikvision's growth rate achieved an exponential amount in sales revenue in Singapore last year, compared to the previous year.

    However, it seems that Chinese products are more accepted for basic products, such as cameras and video surveillance systems. Patrick Lim, MD of Ademco Security Group, explained when it comes to more complex systems such as security management platforms and access control, there is still a strong preference for established global brands that can meet the government's quality and unique technical requirements. As Chinese products maintain its product improvement growth and provide adequate support, it will be likely that more and more people will start to use Chinese products due to the low cost.

    Government vs. Commercial Sector
    The security industry has grown in recent years, as Singapore is keen to maintain the country's position as one of the safest countries in the world. “This is evident in the island-wide installation of security cameras and systems in key areas such as train stations, transportation hubs, highways and roads, public housing estates, and even in low lying areas for flood monitoring,” explained Riki Nishimura, GM of Visual Security Solutions, Professional Solutions Company (PSAP) for APAC at Sony Electronics. In Singapore, both government and commercial projects are growing in recent years, with the government sector taking up a larger market share due to the large quantities required for projects.

    The government sector has been the main driver for medium to large project and infrastructures, mainly focusing on surveillance, to ensure the safety of both old and new infrastructures, and to curb crime related incidents. “The government sector will be enhancing many public facilities and infrastructure that were long overdue,” said Patrick Lim, MD of Ademco Security Group. Whereas for the commercial sector, projects rolled out for office, retail, and residential space are suffering from slight excess due to the poor economy. “Both government and commercial sectors are developing in tandem and are entwined, however there are still certain structural and productivity changes that are painful for some sectors of the economy, and the successes of the private sector would be indicative of the success of the implemented policies of the government,” Jason P. Kurek, MD of Asia at SimonsVoss Technologies explained. For instance, big commercial projects such as the Integrated Resorts and Universal Studios in turn add growth to the government sector as well as the commercial sector.

    Brooklyn Cooperative Federal Credit Union creates safe and open environment with Avigilon's systems

    Brooklyn Cooperative Federal Credit Union creates safe and open environment with Avigilon's systems

    Editor / Provider: Avigilon | Updated: 12/29/2014 | Article type: Commercial Markets

    Secure $15 million in assets, protect staff and members, and meet key insurance requirements while maintaining an open environment where members can freely enter and exit to receive services.

    Solution
    Brooklyn Cooperative's staff manage the system from their desktops using Avigilon Control Center (ACC) with High-Definition Stream Management™ (HDSM). The company installed Avigilon HD 5 MP cameras with exceptional low-light performance on the exterior of the building to monitor all entrances. Avigilon HD 1 MP and 2 MP cameras were installed in other high-traffic areas including: the ATM vestibule, main lobby, teller station, office area, workshop, and storage and server rooms. Brooklyn Cooperative stores 120 days of continuous surveillance footage on an Avigilon Network Video Recorder (NVR) – a vast improvement over the 30 days previously attained and a top insurance requirement. The credit union can also monitor the system remotely from home during off-hours.

    Benefits
    Brooklyn Cooperative can meet and exceed the requirements set by their insurance provider to ultimately lower premiums. With detailed coverage of the ATM vestibule, the credit union can also resolve claims of debit card fraud to lower liability costs. Brooklyn Cooperative monitors the storage area and offices to protect confidential member information from loss or theft. Users can search and locate footage in a fraction of the time of the previous system. The company has also eliminated the risk of false alarms by being able to monitor the system remotely during off-hours before contacting police. Brooklyn Cooperative has had no network bandwidth issues since deployment and plans to integrate its new branch when it opens later this year for central management.
    * Meet insurance requirements
    * Resolve debit card fraud claims
    * No network bandwidth issues

    Brooklyn Cooperative Federal Credit Union Creates Safe, Open Environment to Help Members Build Assets with Avigilon High-Definition Surveillance System
    As New York City's fastest growing credit union, Brooklyn Cooperative is dedicated to supporting the economic development of two of the city's most under-banked and low-income neighborhoods, Bushwick and Bedford-Stuyvesant. By offering a range of services to its 6,800 members (including homeownership and foreclosure prevention counseling, free tax preparation, and core financial services), Brooklyn Cooperative helps families and businesses build assets and secure their economic success. With workshops and financial counseling sessions running after hours, Brooklyn Cooperative operates outside traditional bank hours in an open environment. Security solutions suitable for closed banks, such as time stamps, physical gates, and motion detectors, are not practical in this environment. To secure its $15 million in assets, protect staff and members, and meet insurance requirements while ensuring member accessibility, Brooklyn Cooperative deployed the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system for its exceptional image quality and detail, efficient storage, and ease-of-use.

    Security in Open Bank
    Located on one of the city's busiest streets, Brooklyn Cooperative's main branch spans a city block, with both front and back entrances. The credit union has an ATM vestibule, teller station, and main lobby at the front, offices in the center, and an open workshop area in the back. Files are stored in the basement, which also houses several additional offices and the server room. “Our physical location and unconventional hours make security a challenge,” explained Samira Rajan, CEO at Brooklyn Cooperative Federal Credit Union. “We selected the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system on the recommendation of a board member who is responsible for physical security at a large bank in Manhattan.” Rajan chose to partner with Digital Provisions, Inc., a local technology integration company, for their expertise, support services, and cost.

    Range of Coverage
    Staff manages the surveillance system from their desktops using Avigilon Control Center with HDSM. The company installed Avigilon HD cameras ranging from 1 MP to 5 MP for complete branch coverage. “The fact that Avigilon offers such a wide range of cameras was a top selling feature for us,” commented Rajan. The credit union installed Avigilon HD 5 MP cameras with superior low-light performance on the exterior of the building to monitor all entrances and installed Avigilon HD 1 MP and 2 MP cameras in all other hightraffic areas. “By installing higher resolution cameras in only key areas and leveraging Avigilon's advanced motion detection technology, we lowered our investment costs and can store 120 days of surveillance footage – a vast improvement over the 30 days we previously attained to help meet a key insurance requirement.”

    Lowering Insurance Costs
    While asset protection and staff safety are top goals for the new high-definition surveillance system, so too is the ability to meet critical insurance standards. “The Avigilon high-definition surveillance system allows us to meet insurance requirements such as achieving 120 days of storage and delivering indisputable evidence for police investigations,” explained Rajan. With coverage of the ATM vestibule, which is a target for fraud and debit card misuse, the credit union can more accurately address false liability claims to save money and lower insurance premiums. Brooklyn Cooperative can also monitor the storage area and offices to protect confidential member information from theft. “I expect to lower our premiums because we will be in a better position to meet more insurance requirements,” added Rajan.

    Smooth Operations
    After a brief training session, Rajan and her team were up and running on the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system in no time. “Avigilon is a thousand times easier to use than our previous system,” stated Rajan. In fact, Rajan was able to quickly investigate a report of stolen funds using the Avigilon Control Center software. “We identified the perpetrator in less than 10 minutes and successfully recovered the lost funds.” Rajan has also been impressed with how easily the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system has integrated into its existing network. “We've had no glitches or bandwidth issues at all – it is running very smoothly,” observed Rajan.

    Eliminating False Alarms
    With the ability to monitor the surveillance system from home, Rajan can rest easy that the credit union is safe both day and night. “Previously, any motion would trigger the alarm and our monitoring firm would automatically call the police, resulting in more than 60 false alarms,” said Rajan. “Now, the Digital Provisions service center can check footage before calling the police, giving us greater peace of mind.” Employees now enjoy a greater sense of security and are no longer distracted by old security procedures such as panic buttons, motion detectors, and time stamps, which required time and effort to properly manage.

    An Integrated Future
    Another advantage of the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system is its scalability, which will make it easy for Brooklyn Cooperative to integrate its new branch when it opens later this year. “I am looking forward to having a coherent surveillance system that can be centrally managed,” concluded Rajan. “We are very impressed with how well the Avigilon high-definition surveillance system addresses all our requirements, performs as promised, and will meet our future needs.”

    ZNV, new rising star, builds up global strengths

    ZNV, new rising star, builds up global strengths

    Editor / Provider: Sponsored by ZNV, a&s Asia | Updated: 12/29/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

    ZNV Technology, a world leading security company and ZTE's spin-off, just announced its launch of H.265 IP cameras this September. By debuting this H.265 IP camera, ZNV is able to fully demonstrate its recent accomplishment in technological innovation and further sustain its global presence. Despite being a new name in the security industry, ZNV positions itself as a professional solution provider, setting themselves apart from most other Chinese competitors.

    ZNV Technology, carrying a strong technological background from ZTE, is ready to take a bolder approach in the global security industry. Even though the company remains new in most countries, its strong local presence in China has resulted in high recognition. ZNV was ranked as “a&s 2013 Top 10 Security Brands in China,” selected by engineering/systems integrators and end users.

    Forming a World Class Management Team
    Through the latest appointment of Robert Zhu as Executive Chairman in May 2014, the company is fully demonstrating its determination to focus on security. Zhu, with rich experience in global security business management, was former VP and GM of South Asia for ABB Group and former President for APAC and China of Tyco International. Zhu said, “The first mission for my appointment is to elevate the company to be greatly involved in global business.”

    With its abundant knowledge and experience in the telecommunications industry, ZNV is quite unique with specialties in wired/wireless communication, sensing technologies, and signal processing. Now the company is able to develop industrial solutions in a full spectrum, Zhu continued.

    Besides appointing the new Executive Chairman, in order to form a world-leading security team and further become a competitive company, ZNV has also strengthened its sales management team by hiring the former GM of Honeywell Security, as well as other industry experts in different sales channels. By doing all this, ZNV hopes it can stand out from other strong competitors. Instead of its hardware manufacturing capability, the company is focusing on penetrating and concentrating on different verticals and industries.

    Solutions, Not Just Products
    The global demand toward security equipment is increasing rapidly. Not only are the frequent major global security breaches propelling technological breakthroughs, but so are new applications such as high or ultra-high resolution or ultra-low illumination. However, merely providing high-quality and special products for customers is not enough. Zhu, therefore, suggests that the security industry should focus more on how to maximize overall value of security devices and services, particularly for operational and business management efficiency for certain market sectors. In the future, security systems will become a tool for corporate management.

    Therefore, in order to elevate a company's overall corporate capability during the transition from product manufacturing to solution design, the company should be knowledgeable in communication, signal analysis, and management platform in order to satisfy the specific needs for some particular vertical markets. These indeed are the specialties of ZNV, Zhu highlighted. “ZNV is a technology company, which is able to do an in-depth research on projects and then provide the pertinent solutions to them,” he continued.

    ‟We do not just merely think about how to apply the products for a certain application but care about what the project really needs and wants. However, most of the Chinese companies only think about how to let users see clear pictures and that's it, with nothing more.”

    Specialized in Industrial Solutions With Unique Design
    By positioning itself as a solution provider, ZNV is taking quite a different approach to the security business. First, the company utilizes its own strength in the telecommunications sector where ZNV has the largest market share in China. “In these projects, what we accumulated is not just video surveillance but also the know-how of monitoring the generator room of an industrial environment,” said Zhu. ZTE provides communication services to more than 1.2 million substations in China and ZNV is in charge of one-fourth of their video monitoring projects, including HD picture quality transmission, temperature and humidity control, HVAC system control, battery management (uninterruptible power supply and regular charging and discharging power), and access control. “We intend to combine these know-hows with our in-house video content analytics (VCA) R&D lab and apply both to other industries, such as railways or power stations, which also require an independent and integrated security system,” said Zhu.

    In terms of product features, ZNV also stands outs in communication and transmission capability in its video surveillance cameras. For instance, Zhu mentioned, “We add a special communication function in a 4G-LTE camera. Normally, the regular camera only transmits via cables. However, in many of the industrial environments, the cables are usually under the risk of being cut off. Therefore, our products support Wi-Fi wireless connectivity. When the cable transmission fails, the Wi-Fi connection will automatically be activated. If the Wi-Fi connectivity also fails, we also have our preset SIM card which can also immediately turn on the wireless telecommunication function to keep the normal operation of data transmission. ZNV is able to provide all these extra added values to our customers.

    Restructing R&D Team
    ZNV, then, began restructuring its R&D team right after Zhu joined the to tailor solutions for specific vertical markets. Zhu mentioned that now the company has around a 400-person R&D team. Instead of taking the traditional way to divide the team by technologies, ZNV now divides them depending on the solutions and projects. He said, “According to what the specific project needs, we form the designated team by its requirements toward software, hardware, and encoding and processing technologies to accelerate the speed of product development. For instance, the R&D team developing H.265 would normally need around 30 people, but we transfer and borrow some manpower from other teams if necessary. Just because of this, we are able to stay flexible and quickly develop products according to what the market really needs.”

    H.265 IP Cameras Lift ZNV to Global Technology Leader
    High-definition cameras for security monitoring, remote machine operation, or other applications are required mostly because the sharp images will help users identify security threats or control a machine remotely. The current challenges are the cost of transmission and storage of largesized data over the network and cloud. By overcoming the bandwidth and storage challenges that the security industry has been facing for years, ZNV has finally made a market breakthrough, launching H.265 high-definition IP cameras this September.

    H.265 is the latest compression technology which can save up to 10 times the bandwidth and storage space compared to the current H.264 compression technology. The company predicts H.265 IP cameras will quickly be adopted by some retrofit projects where end users expect to upgrade their video surveillance systems, such as the education sector. Other target customers are end users that have demand for high capacity storage devices, such as a smart city project. “Normally, H.264 cameras can store video images for 12 months with 20 TB storage. However, keeping the same high-definition videos, H.265 technology can reduce the data size by three times in dynamic scenes like a busy street and up to 10 times in static scenes like a guarded warehouse. So, it is very attractive for a large scale project in greatly reducing the total cost of ownership,” said Robert Zhu, Executive Chairman of ZNV.

    “ZNV is very focused on developing our own technologies about H.265 compression. We have been developing H.265 technology for two years and acquired many patents in decoding and encoding technologies, and system design. H.265 algorithm is more complex compared to H.264. It has to be flexible and accurate, and follow many international standards. An example is we owned a patent in motion encoding technologies in order to largely reduce the bandwidth in the static scenes, which is useful for end users who want to save the bandwidth and also cost of storage. A major issue of H.265 cameras is the overheating problem. We have solved this problem from the hardware design to the internal design for heat dissipation. We now are working on the application for this patent,” said Zhu.

    The company further predicts that in a year, H.265 will be ready to grow in double digits.

    Abundant International Experience
    Even though ZNV just recently got fully involved in international business and marketing, ZNV products and services have been applied to 70 countries globally via ZTE. Zhu provided an example that ZNV used to implement their security equipment for a ZTE project of a substation in Pakistan. “Luckily, we acquired the overseas experience quite early compared to other companies. Our goal right now is to explore more new markets other than telecommunications industry. In order to achieve that goal, we have started to quickly establish our international partner network in some geographic markets. Our showroom in Malaysia was just set up recently to showcase our latest products, systems, and solutions. This year, we started some new partnership in South Africa and South America too. In the near future, we are expecting more from the U.S. and Europe.”

    Looking to the Future
    ZNV, indeed, is taking a different approach to face the challenges of global market competition. Most importantly, ZNV has a high level of understanding in technology and specialtiers in industrial environments. It can be expected that ZNV will soon become another new star in the global security industry.

    AVTECH solution deployed by Lithuanian parking garage in a residential building

    AVTECH solution deployed by Lithuanian parking garage in a residential building

    Editor / Provider: AVTECH | Updated: 12/29/2014 | Article type: Residential & Consumer

    Description
    This new community is consisted of two luxury buildings, which is located in golden mile and occupied by political and business elites. Each of them are separated into 12 floors and needed to be installed surveillance system for fighting crime and protecting residents, especially the gate and parking garage. There are only two guardrooms set at the main gate to and the entrance to the parking garage for controlling access in this community. The guardroom at the main gate is for coming or exiting people, another is for vehicles.

    Customer's Needs
    1. License Plate Recognition(LPR) system is requested to confirm that vehicles entering and exiting the garage were authorized.

    * If not authorized, the guard will be informed and the camera must capture images of the vehicles as record.
    * If authorized, the barrier arm gate will be automatically open.

    2. Clear image even the insufficient lighting at night

    Solution
    1. AVTECH LPR system is allowed to import database to analyze the license plate. And the cameras AVM561 and AVM500 are set as high as the plate sends image of plate to the computer dealing with LPR system while the car approaching. AVM542A is set on the ceiling.

    * Authorized → Alarm device of AVM542A is triggered, and the barrier opened.
    * Not authorized → Guard is informed, and the monitor at the entrance shows error.

    2. The cameras featuring Solid Light and WDR provide crisp image even insufficient lighting or overexposure, enhancing the night security.

     

     

     

    Solid Light
    Advanced Smart Light Control
    When an object is close to the camera during night time, Solid Light will sense it and automatically control the amount of light to avoid over-exposure.

    Longer IR Effective Distancel
    Solid Light is able to produce stronger lighting under IR Enhance mode than traditional IR LEDs. It enhances the overall picture brightness and reaches longer distance in a dark environment.

    Longer LED Lifetime
    Solid Light applies special circuit design to avoid overheat and uses a heat sink to dissipate heat from LED more quickly. LED lifetime can last for 3 years with Solid Light design.

    C.M.S. "TRIDENT"
    AVTECH CMS software, “TRIDENT”, is a powerful system designed for all-scale projects. Global monitoring and control become so easy and efficient with its e-Map configuration and instant event pop-up display.

    License Plate Recognition
    The access gate of the parking lot will open automatically when the license plate is recognized and confirmed as registered in the CMS.

    WDR
    Increase image recognizability in overexposure and dark areas.

    Conclusion
    Benefit
    1. Press the button to get the access permission manually if you can't enter
    2. When events occur, Search Engine is for guards to do fuzzy search to check the access records
    3. AVTECH CMS system embeds with variable functions for further application with LPR system. For example, Event Live popup or E-Map. Event popup on CMS is to inform the guard that error occurs. E-Map on CMS is to figure the multi-layered maps with camera location. If needed, you can intuitively click the camera on the map you figure to have live view.

    Network Video Recorder gives you impeccable surveillance experience

    Network Video Recorder gives you impeccable surveillance experience

    Editor / Provider: Michelle Chu | Updated: 1/5/2015 | Article type: Hot Topics

    According to the latest Security 50 Industry Report, released by a&s International earlier last month, explosive growth in IP video surveillance sector is now gone. Despite an average growth rate of 25 to 30 percent could still be seen over the past couple years, some major pure IP surveillance suppliers have started to experience slowdown in 2013, according to their financial reports. This phenomenon reflects the maturity of IP surveillance technology; therefore, in order to stand out in this fierce competition, suppliers have started to offer more comprehensive IP surveillance systems and solutions, instead of providing single products alone. To maintain annual growth, Axis and VIVOTEK, for example, have recently developed NVRs and management software and systems.

    By the end of 2014, asmag.com would like to feature a series of NVRs that are ideal to deploy in enterprise environment, banks, public utilities, city surveillance, and retails manufactured by some of the leading players in the security industry.

    When it comes to selecting NVR for your surveillance systems, the compatibility between the cameras and recorder is the utmost crucial factor for an impeccable recording performance. Other than that, recording performance such as frames rate, resolution, and user's interface of the management system are all critical considerations for a better user experience.

    GKB DN1601 Presents True Plug & Play
    GKB standalone ONVIF NVR is a combo unit of video recording and hosting cloud-based server which features the easiest management and configuration through IE/ Firefox/ Chrome browsers,” said Anna Hsiung, Marketing Manager at GKB. “GKB NVR is specially designed as a two way communication device, indicating that any GKB IP cameras can be automatically detected by our NVR anytime and anywhere without extra setting time, which fulfills a real plug & play. It's not only for LAN but also the Internet application. It also integrates all ONVIF 2.0 series and seamlessly conforms to GKB IP portfolio as well. This NVR is most suitable for the SMB sectors.”

    I-View AnyNet-6424, Features Performance-Optimized NVR
    I-View's AnyNet-6424 enterprise server class Embedded NVR comes with a selection of 24 Hot-swap removable rack bays, up to 96 Terabytes recorded data and support Raid 0/1/5/6/10/50 capability. Flexible RAID function to secured every important data and reducing the risks of data loss.” said Yen Ou, Sales Branch Manager at I-View Communication. The NVR system makes data storage more stable and management interface more convenient. Plus, AnyNet-6424 NVR can support displaying and recording of up to 64 pcs of megapixel-IP cameras simultaneously with the third-party ONVIF or RTSP-compliant devices. With Ultra performance, reliability and high-level data protection features, AnyNet-6424 is the trustworthy for you.”

    QNAP VS-12164U-RP Gives Users Professional Video Monitoring Experience
    “The QNAP VS-12164U-RP Pro+ VioStor NVR supports up to 64CH high quality real-time video/audio monitoring, megapixel recording (up to 10 megapixels), and playback from multiple IP cameras. QNAP Security integrates electric engineering, mechanical design, and professional video management software into VioStor NVR series which supports 24/7 real-time surveillance video recording. QVR 5.0 video management software provides users a professional management system preloaded with intuitive, easy-to-use, and versatile QVR software that allows real-time monitoring, recording, playback, alarm notifications, and other management tools to safeguard assets and property when used with supported IP cameras,” said Joe Jen, Senior Manager of QNAP.

     

    >>> Click the image below to see the full NVR collection  :)

                               

     

    Vertical market: Hospitals combine forces and security

    Vertical market: Hospitals combine forces and security

    Editor / Provider: Israel Gogol, freelancer, a&s International | Updated: 12/22/2014 | Article type: Hot Topics

    Hospitals are in the business of serving people and their families. Their primary goal is to provide patients with medical care, comfort, and peace of mind. Traditionally security systems in healthcare have been used for access control, providing forensic video and personal alerts for staff in cases of violence, and monitoring at-risk populations such as infants or patients suffering from dementia to protect against kidnapping or wandering.

    “The purpose of healthcare security management is to contribute to the protection and safety of all those delivering medical service and safeguarding public and private assets against loss, theft, fraud, damage, and disruption, which could be detrimental and a risk to the continuation of patient care. Patients, employees, and visitors assume that since hospitals take care of the community they are immune from local crime and the ills of society,” said Nick van der Bijl, an honorary president of the National Association for Healthcare Security in the U.K. and former healthcare security manager. However, by their nature, hospitals are violent places, some of which are of a clinical nature — post-operative trauma, serious mental health, and pain. But there are also instances when violence is of a criminal nature, such as violence against others.

    Behind the scenes, hospital security teams face numerous challenges that involve the safety and security of employees, patients, visitors, and confidential personal information, as well as safeguarding dangerous materials, pharmaceutical supplies, and more. A breach in any of these areas can cause financial, legal, and reputational damages.

    In addition, hospitals have to work under a strict regulatory environment complying with numerous standards. First and foremost is of course safeguarding patients' medical information. Many other regulations influence a hospital's daily operations: from financial regulations (for example in case the hospital accepts credit card payments) to regulations regarding the storage of hazardous and radioactive materials. The need for compliance is a significant factor for the performance of healthcare providers. “Healthcare by nature is a very open environment so any security systems put in place must work within this construct, providing a secure environment to patients, employees, hospital property, and regulated health information while having a negligible impact on the flow of patients, visitors, and staff,” explained Drew Neckar, Director of Security Services at the Mayo Clinic Health System.

    With many different departments, entrances, elevators, parking areas, etc., and a constant flow of staff, “hospitals are ultimate high-traffic sites,” explained Courtney Dillon Pedersen, Corporate Communications Manager at Milestone Systems. “Monitoring all of these scenarios can be aided by comprehensive video monitoring and access control, which today is in hot demand as a unified solution for greater efficiency.”

    Frequent M&As Creates New Demand
    Recent changes in the healthcare business environment in the U.S. have led to a series of mergers and acquisitions (M&As) between healthcare providers. These are driven by regulatory changes and strategic initiatives. Hospitals merge to gain economies of scale and deal with reimbursement cuts, to get a better strategic position in the market or purchase smaller, less profitable hospitals that became too strained financially as a result of high compliance costs.

    According to a report from strategic advisory and investment banking firm Hammond Hanlon Camp, in 2012, more than US$143.3 billion in healthcare M&As took place in the U.S., one of the highest volumes recorded in a decade. The U.S. is the global leader in healthcare M&As; however, this trend is not limited to the U.S. and appears also in Europe (mainly the U.K., Germany, and France) and APAC (Thailand, China, India, and Australia).

    From the security perspective this convergence has had two implications. The first is overcoming the challenges of managing a multi-site environment often with different systems that now need to work together. A second implication is a growing need for security systems to show a return on investment (ROI) that will justify their expense.

    “Security nowadays is turning into an ROI perspective — security managers need to prove they have a benefit and contribute financially for example through loss prevention,” said Sean Ahrens, Security Consulting Services Practice Leader at Aon Global Risk Consulting Security Practice. One way of achieving loss prevention is by preventing theft. In addition, the data collected by security systems is also useful. For instance, access control systems can provide information about how many people pass through a certain door. This data too has implications, if more people than planned pass through the door the hospital might want to schedule maintenance or re-plan emergency evacuation routes. This way the hospital can avoid potential bottle necks because too many people pass through one door.

    A major challenge in multi-site management is interoperability, an issue presented by M&As that requires the merging of several facilities. “Each one of these hospitals has different systems and the challenge is how to combine them successfully. This raises many issues — how to register all the employees to the system quickly and efficiently and how to prevent them from using multiple cards. Another key issue is employees or contractors not removed from the systems in time. For example, in one hospital I encountered 3,000 active cards in the system for only 700 employees,” said Ahrens. An additional constraint is that oftentimes hospitals do not have situational awareness in mind. There is no dedicated area to set up a control room and this hurts the efficiency of security operations.

    “In healthcare's current climate of acquisitions, reorganizations, and uncertain finances, a security professional rarely has the opportunity to choose a single new security system as a solution for a new installation in multiple sites. It is more often the case that they are tasked with allocating resources to integrate existing, often outdated, systems to work in parallel while trying to provide a seamless user experience at all facilities,” added Neckar.

    Placing More Emphasis on Training
    As in other verticals, the proper use of security systems and achieving their full potential is a challenge. All too often users fail to understand a system's capabilities and therefore underutilize the system. “The pressing problem about security systems is that we don't know what we are buying. We install them, but don't fully use them to their full potential — it's more of a ‘check-the-box,'” said Ahrens.

    Apart from the technological challenge, the human factor is important. “When integrating hospitals and other healthcare facilities, sometimes the technology isn't the problem as much as the psychology of the people involved and their different approaches to security,” explained van der Bijl. For example, employees of a mental health institution will have a more pro-security culture as opposed to a community care facility where employees have lower security awareness. In this case, the integration of the two facilities is more complex than just integrating the security systems. Van der Bijl recommends making security a concern for all hospital staff and not just security officers. “One of the roles of the security function is also to make sure security is visible and promoted among the employees. Reporting security incidents should not be in a stand-alone system but should be part of the hospital's reporting system,” noted van der Bijl. At the end of the day, a lot still depends on the quality of the security officer. “Smart security officers are highly critical, they are the face of security and should have the proper training on how to behave in a hospital,” he concluded.

    Choosing the right security system seems like the biggest challenge, however, healthcare operators should also emphasize education and training for their systems to ensure its proper use.

    Role of Video Analytics in Healthcare
    In the open and busy environment that exists in the majority of healthcare facilities, traditional analytics such as line crossing or license plate recognition have provided limited benefits. “Analytics are still at a price point that healthcare institutions can't justify,” stated Drew Neckar, Director of Security Services at the Mayo Clinic Health System. “However the next generation of ‘smart' analytics that rely less on a set of pre-programmed rules and more on providing alerts when situations vary from the ‘normal' conditions show significant promise.”

    A robust video surveillance set-up combined with powerful video analytics can alert security staff to incidents before they occur by flagging anomalies in movement or behavior. “Certain behaviors can be indicative of imminent criminal activity or an incident; intelligent video solutions can recognize these actions and alert security personnel, freeing up their time to respond to incidents rather than monitoring banks of screens,” said Daniel Wan, UK Channel Marketing Manager at Honeywell Security. Additionally, integrated systems with access control can let teams know who is entering premises and more importantly who is leaving and with what.

    Potential Role of PSIM in Hospitals
    Physical security information management (PSIM) solutions have the ability to overcome the obstacles of separate access control systems and integrate multiple disparate security systems. They can also add multiple sub systems in addition to video management software (VMS) systems and access control such as public announcements, patient tracking, equipment traking, panic buttons, IT systems and building management systems. “The benefit of PSIM is that it answers the requirement for standardization, however it should come after a thorough evaluation of pros and cons,” said Sean Ahrens, Security Consulting Services Practice Leader at Aon Global Risk Consulting Security Practice.

    PSIM can also help make sure the proper procedures are followed. “For instance, if equipment is tracked by RFID sensors and if it is not properly sterilized, the PSIM can alert to this missed step, allow for a corrections to be made, and save the hospital non-compliance fines. This is one way PSIM results in a strong return on investment (ROI) for healthcare customers,” explained Ellen Howe, VP of Marketing at Vidsys. Though its potential is recognized, PSIM in hospitals is still not widespread. “Many hospitals postpone decisions due to price concerns, but there is definitely a significant ROI when comparing this to running separate systems, for example in monitoring and auditing access logs, or in the case of an alarm,” said Ahrens. For example, if there is an alarm for an abducted child, the security officer can immediately see what the perpetrator looks like and take action instead of searching for footage in different systems.

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