Koreans step into smart home, automotive, fleet vehicles, with security tech (part 1)

Koreans step into smart home, automotive, fleet vehicles, with security tech (part 1)
The a&s Editorial Team sat down with several leading Korean companies to discuss their future development. Despite many small-to-medium Korean video surveillance companies getting pushed out of the market in the past five years, those leading the market — Commax, Hanwha Techwin, IDIS, Iris ID, Nextchip and Suprema — remain quite active and strong, relying on their unique technologies and market approach. Each are technology driven companies and put a strong emphasis in R&D and manufacturing in Korea. To avoid price competition, they understand that by providing high-quality and unique products they can ensure their leading position in the market. Based on our interviews, we also noticed more and more Korean companies finding new markets in non-security fields, such as smart home, automotive and fleet management. With advanced video processing capabilities, these companies have also gradually found their niche market.
 

Commax presents IoT solution for smart home and security

Bong Duk Byun, Chairman and
CEO, Commax

With a strong background in audio communication, Commax has been first in the industry to launch intercoms, interphones, video doorphones and home automation systems in Korea, since the 1960s and 1980s, according to Bong Duk Byun, Chairman and CEO of Commax.


This year, the company’s 49th anniversary, it announced another innovation in the smart home application, combining the Internet of Things (IoT) and security technology. 

The company focuses on providing high quality smart solutions for residential and commercial buildings, as well as hospitals and manufacturing sites. Their comprehensive product portfolio allows them to fulfill the requirements for special environments and specific geographic regions. With hundreds of product lines that range from analog to home IoT systems, Commax is able to accommodate both countries that have good network infrastructure and those with bad connectivity.

Over its 49 years of effort in globalization and localization, “We have acquired a strong brand awareness in the Middle East, South America, Asia, Eastern Europe and Russia. Lately, we just got an over 300 households project in a new town in Egypt. The products will be shipped this December. Some other projects are under negotiation in Qatar, Iran and Saudi Arabia, too. Besides the residential buildings, Commax systems have also been installed at many landmarks all over the world; for example, the Parthenon in Greece, Burj Dubai in the UAE and a new airport in Russia,” said Byun. 

In the Middle Eastern countries, there is an increasing popularity indoor entry systems and IoT-connected products. Furthermore, Commax plans to introduce its new home IoT system in the region this year. Its home IoT system has a strong door entry function with advanced safety features. Users can connect to the system with their mobile phones anytime, anywhere. Users can also receive alarm notifications for emergency situations such as intrusion detection or gas leak. All of these functions are connected to the IoT cloud platform so users can monitor and control everything via their smartphones.
 

IDIS demonstrates achievement in the brand business

Joon Jun, President, Global
Business Division, IDIS

IDIS celebrated its 20-year anniversary in 2017, which was also the fourth year of its brand business.


Joon Jun, President of the Global Business Division at IDIS, highlighted the growth of the company’s brand business by nearly 50 percent in the global market in 2017. Jun attributes this achievement to IDIS’s success in building the foundational aspects of the company’s brand business — delivering a complete and total end-to-end solution, including cameras, recorders, software and smart technologies all designed, developed and manufactured “in house” in Korea — exemplified by the continued strength of the company’s flagship solution, IDIS DirectIP.

With two decades’ experience providing ODM services to major global brands, now including more than four years of dedicated development of solutions for the IDIS brand business, IDIS has proven itself as a technology-driven company. By focusing on innovation in video surveillance, and providing high quality systems, 100-percent manufactured in Korea, IDIS has staked a claim as a manufacturer of quality technology that is feature-rich, dependable and easy to use. The unique selling point of IDIS DirectIP, the company’s HD IP surveillance solution, is the assurance of complete interoperability and compatibility with legacy security systems. Easy installation, high scalability and the low total cost of ownership have made DirectIP among the best choices for many significant projects around the world, including Europe, South  America, Australia, Russia and Southeast Asia. The four IDIS subsidiaries in the U.S., U.K., Netherlands and UAE play a major role in supporting these projects.

In terms of vertical markets, IDIS has set its focus on banking, education, retail and other commercial applications, Jun said. Since IDIS has very high standards for system quality and reliability, IDIS’s product strategy is to stay in the medium- to high-end portion of these vertical markets; differentiating the company from other Asian companies. Another way IDIS successfully differentiates from competitors is by providing the industry’s longest warranty for users — five years for recorders and three years for cameras are provided as basic warranties. 

The IDIS 12-megapixel fisheye camera, smart user controls for PTZ cameras, and advanced video analytics features are among the company’s latest offerings, which further drive the advancement of the DirectIP solution and support the company’s global growth.
 

Hanwha Techwin stays focused on “Wisenet” brand with technology innovations

Cheolmin Jeon, Director, Global 
Marketing Team, Sales and
Marketing Division, Hanwha
Techwin/Security

It has been two years since Hanwha Techwin has successfully transformed itself from Samsung Techwin.


Now Hanwha Techwin is ready to move forward with its leading brand “Wisenet.” The brand has been representing Hanwha Techwin’s excellent technologies as well as successful product line-up in the global market. Beyond the existing excellence, “Wisenet” will be the company’s leading brand along with its core technologies, which can be applied in all security applications, ranging from small offices to mission-critical commercial applications.

Through technical strengthening, Hanwha Techwin will keep carrying on its business against price competition. “Our core technologies, the SoC (System on Chip) and optical lens, determine the quality of our video surveillance products,” said Cheolmin Jeon, Director for Global Marketing Team of Sales and Marketing Division in Hanwha Techwin/Security.

In talking about the company’s growth this year, Jeon said, “This year we have achieved steady growth in North America, Western Europe and Japan by building on the trust we have established in our distribution and technology partners. In Asia and the Middle East, we are developing an advanced sales structure to meet our customers’ needs more closely.”

“Our accelerated growth can be attributed both to the our strengthened sales structure as well as the successful launch of the Wisenet X series,” emphasized Jeon.

Equipped with industry-leading wide dynamic range (WDR) and extreme low-light performance, Wisenet X cameras can fulfill the requirements of most critical missions in different vertical projects. Wisenet X high-definition cameras are supercharged by Wisenet 5, a powerful SoC incorporated into a full camera range. “We truly believe the Wisenet X series sets a new standard making able to meet the requirements of virtually any video surveillance project, regardless of the lighting conditions, from bursts of bright sunlight to almost total darkness,” said Jeon.

In addition, personal privacy protection and public safety issues are growing every day. Hanwha Techwin also shows a strong commitment to combat cybersecurity threats. “We have a sustained testing and monitoring program designed to identify evolving new threats to the integrity of our solutions. By running an S-CERT team (Hanwha Techwin’s dedicated Security Emergency and Incident Response Team), we are committed to ensure cybersecurity,” said Jeon.
 

Iris ID continues to penetrate iris recognition market

Mohammed Murad, VP,
Global Business Development
and Sales, Iris ID Systems

Iris ID Systems has pioneered iris recognition research, development and production since 1997.


IrisAccess, now in its sixth generation, authenticates the identities of millions of people in thousands of locations on six continents. More organizations rely on IrisAccess identity authentication than all other iris recognition products combined. “We are an American-Asian company with presence in both regions, giving us a greater appreciation of our customer’s needs,” said Mohammed Murad, VP of Global Business Development and Sales at Iris ID Systems.

With iris recognition technology getting more market buzz, Iris ID is seeing tremendous growth globally. “Our systems have been included in major projects in China, South Asia, the Middle East and North America. Also, we recently reached a major agreement with a time-and-attendance device manufacturer as an OEM of our technology,” Murad said.

“We are doing a channel-focused business and our opportunities are developed and delivered with our systems integrator partners. Our entire product line is in high demand and in most cases for use in access control and workforce management applications,” he added.

The signature product of Iris ID is the iCAM 7S series, the advanced multifactor biometric iris reader, which provides a robust and highly customizable solution for access control and workforce management.

The iCAM T10 USB iris camera and iCAM TD100 iris recognition and face camera are also very popular for identity authentication applications, according to Murad. These robust products are designed for use in the most rugged environments, while still providing great flexibility to customize the identity authentication solution.

Iris ID continues to educate the market with the benefits of iris recognition. With the market gradually opening up and becoming more mature, the company is sure to gain more recognition.
 

Nextchip targets automotive companies with ISP solution

Sophie Jeon, Manager, Strategic
Marketing Department,
Nextchip

Nextchip, a well-known semiconductor supplier for video surveillance, provides image signal processors (ISP) to ensure high definition video quality for imaging systems.


For security applications, the company provides ISPs for 4K ultra-high definition (UHD) video systems and analog high definition (AHD) systems, which are applicable to coaxial, UTP and other various cables, which adopt advanced signal filtering technology and ensure visual loss-less and mass data transmission over 500 meters. After the success of AHD penetration in the security industry, Nextchip would like to target automotive vendors by providing QHD video quality and long transmission for in-vehicle cameras. Image quality is the most important thing for the ISP field. “Even though our mass production is not ready yet, we have started  to promote it continuously in Japan, China, the U.S. and Europe. We regard these countries as the main markets due to their strict regulations on driving safety for cars [except China],” said Sophie Jeon, Manager of Strategic Marketing Department at Nextchip. 

“There are several applications for automotive cameras like in rear view and e-mirror cameras, AVM (around view monitoring) systems, and so on. However, image quality requirements, involving controls like automatic exposure (AE) and automatic white balance (AWB), would vary depending on the application. As the role of ISP is continuously growing, Nextchip’s technical know-how, gained from 20 years of experience in the field, and abundant tuning parameters has enabled us to get good feedback in this respect,” she added.

“Furthermore, AHD is a great technology to leverage. TX embedded ISPs for camera module size reduction can offer QHD resolution without repeaters with analog technology, according perfectly with automotive camera requirements. This is especially ideal for multiple channel solutions like mobile DVR and AVM, because AHD RX supports up to four channels,” explained Jeon.

In addition to high definition video quality, Nextchip’s vision-based ISP also supports advanced driver assist systems (ADAS), offering multiple benefits such as the detection of cars, people, moving objects and lanes. “We have started ‘before market’ promotions but they don’t usually use or understand much about ISP, and Nextchip is very new to them. So we will continue to promote not only to vehicle camera manufacturers, but also car systems integrators and vendors,” said Jeon.
 

Suprema migrates to become access control solution provider

H.C. Kim, Director, Global
Business, Suprema

Suprema, a well-known fingerprint algorithms developer, now has a complete product portfolio in access control, ranging from biometric access control systems, time and attendance devices and fingerprint/live scanners to embedded fingerprint modules.


Suprema’s ultimate goal is to become a total access control solution provider. Its success in the biometric modules business continues to support the company to extend its product portfolio. This year, Suprema launched its intelligent door controllers to realize centralized management for access control systems, based on its BioStar 2 platform, said H.C. Kim, Director of Global Business at Suprema. For a large-scale project, Suprema also partners with many leading global access control software and video surveillance companies by providing biometric technology and access control devices. As a professional technology partner of biometrics and access control, Suprema has gained a significant presence in the global access control market. “For access control and time attendance, Suprema has steadily grown in Europe and the U.S. For the biometric-related applications, Suprema grew the most in the Middle East, South America and other emerging countries, with the support of local subsidiaries in Brazil, U.K., Germany and U.S.,” Kim said. Along with healthy growth in the access control industry, Suprema continues to complete its offering in access control solutions for global customers.
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