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OSSA releases new tech stack, expands membership to software developers

OSSA releases new tech stack, expands membership to software developers
Prior to the cancellation of ISC West due to the coronavirus outbreak, Pieter van de Looveren, marketing chairman of the Open Security and Safety Alliance (OSSA), was looking forward to introducing the latest developments in the alliance to the visitors of ISC West. Despite the recent disruption to travel and events, the alliance is continuing in expanding its reach in the physical security world.

Changes and updates to OSSA from 2019 ISC West

OSSA is now a little over 18 months old. “Last year in ISC West we had around 20-25 members, now we have many more people at the table, around 40 members including Anixter, Carrier/United Technologies, Johnson Controls, and more. In the beginning the alliance was made up of predominately manufacturers. Today we have a nice mix of manufacturers, system integrators like Stanley Security, management software providers, app developers and SoC and component manufacturers,” explained van de Looveren. “From a product perspective, the alliance is still video-centric: we see the camera as the main sensor in a connected grid and our work is also dealing with creating unity across cameras. Last year at ISC West we were discussing our goals. This year it would have been a showcase of the first products based on the OSSA Technology Stack: outlines the use of a common, vendor-agnostic open Operating System (OS) for video security devices and defines standard application programming interfaces (APIs),” he added.
Among the launches planned for the cancelled show were the first cameras “driven by OSSA” running on an Android Open Source Project-based operating system for cameras developed by Bosch start-up and OSSA member Security and Safety Things. In addition, OSSA also planned to support Security and Safety Things as they launch an app store and device management portal. Cameras following OSSA’s Technology Stack ensure seamless connectivity with this store and portal.

Member profile: Looking for more app developers

In the coming two years, the alliance will focus on including more app developers among its members. “There are no preset criteria for membership like company size,” explained van de Looveren “What we are trying to do is to bring together the people that can deliver solutions for end users.”
Innovation in the apps being developed is still at a nascent stage according to van de Looveren. “App development is a mixture of problem-driven solutions, but also solutions that are looking for a problem. Innovation is starting to exist in the market place and we see more solutions being created. For example anonymizer apps for GDPR compliance, facial recognition apps, analytics, etc. What I find impressive is the time to market: an app developer can roll out a solution within 2-3 months,” he said.

Future roadmap: Creating a strong quality guarantee

Looking into the coming two years, the alliance will focus on increasing the number of app developers among its members. Additional work is being carried out to strengthen the alliance’s quality guarantee and value proposition to the security industry. Other industry efforts like ONVIF, for example, establish good quality interoperability standards, but do not necessarily describe how standards must be interpreted and implemented. OSSA wants to complement these standards with additional specification, best practices and common agreements on how the standards are implemented. To support the launch of the first commercially available products following OSSA’s specification, OSSA is creating a seal of trust. A trademark that will represent that a product was tested by the alliance or a third party and can give assurance that a product is certified by OSSA. Work on this initiative has already begun and planned to roll out in 2021.

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