HD-SDI shows a lot of promise as an alternative to high definition IP video. One advantage is that it makes use of old analog cabling. Rok Bajec, CEO, Mobicom, said that he hopes HD-SDI will help bring some of the old installers back to the industry.
“It is a good solution for legacy projects, which allows people to save most of their cabling,” said IIya Malkin, CCTV Manager, Central Security Distributor. “Cabling is the major part of CCTV projects. Usually the equipment doesn't cost as much as cabling and labor. Maybe it would have a good market in the UK and Germany because of the amount of old analog cabling there.”
However at the moment, HD-SDI is not seeing a lot of movement in the market. As a relatively new technology with a high price tag, there is still a lot of skepticism associated with HD-SDI. “The biggest factors behind slow uptake of HD-SDI is its high cost and low awareness of the product,” said Behl. “HD-SDI is new, appearing perhaps only in the last 1.5 years. New technologies always take time, it takes time for people to understand what it is. When using technology, people need to be happy with the cost first, before using it. Once they start using it, it will get more popular.”
Another reason behind its limited uptake may be because of limited HD-SDI solutions and back end products. “There are lots of HD-SDI cameras but no recording solutions,” said Ervin Langebraun, Purchase Manager, Videovalve. “If this issue is solved, and vendors start to offer more solutions, I think the HD-SDI market share will be able to grow faster.”
“HD-SDI doesn't have proper recording solutions,” said Malkin. “Conventional DVRs are much more powerful than the DVRs that are being pushed for HD-SDI.”
Novelli also commented on the lack of video volume for HD-SDI. “To transfer video 1000 meters, you need to use optical fiber — that is a weakness.”
With the high price and incomplete offerings, HD-SDI just isn't a very powerful sell right now. “The price to performance ratio is not there yet,” said Shirdhar Kadam, VP of Product Management and CTO, Smartlink Network Systems.
Though there is room for improvement for HD-SDI technology, some believe there is also a potential market if HD-SDI addresses its problems. “I think that HD-SDI will come sooner or later,” said Bajec. “There is a lot of skepticism right now, about how it will work with previous technologies and recordings. Further advancement in HD-SDI will help. HD-SDI has been used for other applications for 10 years, and now, almost every booth at Secutech has HD-SDI.”
However, in light of the quick pace of IP video, others may see HD-SDI as a quick pit stop on the road to IP. “HDcctv is giving analog a little bit of breathing space, allowing them a little more time before exiting the market,” said Ali.
Cloud is also seeing slow uptake in the market. One of the big problems for cloud is that network infrastructure is not very developed in many places. “I think that the bottleneck for uptake of cloud is in streaming,” said Ali. “We have to pay an arm and a leg for data in Australia. The concept of cloud sounds good, but right now, they just can't deliver what they promise. There is still a long way to go in terms of bandwidth.”
Some cloud products may not be ready to handle the bandwidth limitations. “Not all systems are smart enough to buffer their data, and not lose information when there isn't enough bandwidth,” said Malkin. The other problem with cloud in security is a trust issue. “I am skeptical about cloud. I don't think that cloud will work with security,” said Bajec. “People are not confident in where their data is stored and who has access to their data. In Slovenia, cloud is used for other applications, but people are skeptical; there is a lack of trust.”
“We think that customers are scared of letting go of the way things used to be, where everything was stored in house, where it could be touched, looked after and static,” said Tilly. “But things are becoming virtual. This may help us with our daily work, and it may help us inspire customers. There's always time to transform."
Cloud may be a market that starts with the smaller market segments. “We think that perhaps retail or small offices will take the first step,” said Kadam. “They can use services like Google, which are cheaper.”