SecurityWorldMarket

05/11/2013

"The view on security cameras will change"

Lars Thinggaard, CEO of Milestone

The security industry in general and the camera segment in particular are now entering a time of big scale innovations that will change the view on security cameras and their use. This, according to Lars Thinggaard, CEO of the VMS company Milestone, who here answers some questions on innovation and video surveillance.
Where will the major innovations in video surveillance come from in the next five years?
"In the next five years, some of the major innovations will come in the way surveillance video is used by companies to optimise their business. When you look at what is happening in our industry from a higher level, you see that it has evolved through three phases. Today, we are entering the third, or video enabling phase and this is where some of the most interesting innovations will occur. As the adoption of Cloud technology and managed video as a service (MVaaS) increases in security solutions, the trend of video being used to enable business applications will accelerate."

What have the three phases meant?
"Phase one was about video technology, the convergence of IP and analogue to make innovation possible. Phase two followed with video integration. This phase was about making the solutions easy to use and more intelligent with things like video analytics. The Milestone open platform is a major driver for this phase because it makes it possible to use surveillance video together with other security systems, such as access control, analytics and perimeter devices.

Phase three is where we will really see innovations blossom; we call this phase "video enabling." Here, we will see surveillance video used to give better customer service and improve business processes in many industry sectors. This phase will change the way the world thinks about using surveillance video."

How does Milestone intend to innovate the market in 2013?
"We have created a separate business unit, Incubation & Ventures that operates in parallel with our day to day business to drive innovation. This team is focused on creating new game changing products and bringing them to market. Milestone Arcus is our first product from this new business unit. The product is an embedded VMS platform for large hardware companies. It was hot news at ISC West and we have more than 50 companies interested in the platform."

Any other plans?
"You will also see innovation through our ecosystem which is a force multiplier because we share our partners' technical and market research. In the ecosystem, innovation takes place as a collaborative effort between our own engineering team and our technical partners. Today, we have over 200 software engineers developing solutions with Milestone open platform technology in addition to our own team. We simply have more engineers developing with Milestone technology and this drives innovation faster."

Is the security industry's resistance to change creating opportunities for start-up businesses?
"At Milestone we see the security industry as focused on reliability rather than resisting change. New innovations have to prove themselves first, and show that they work reliably. When you're dealing with evidence, it is just not acceptable to find out that the video you need is not there, or unclear. You might call this resistance, but it's a fact of our industry."

The industry is seeing a shift in security services; moving from just a cost centre for businesses to actually driving operational savings and delivering real ROI. How will this impact on the industry and how far can this trend go?
"We agree. As I described earlier we see the industry evolving through three distinct phases: video technology, video integration and the next phase, video enabling. Today, we are at the start of the enabling phase. You see access control, license plate recognition and, analytics, mobile technology, laser, RFID, and many other types of technology all working together seamlessly through the Milestone open platform.

Manufacturers and endusers have engaged with the open platform and are realising the benefits. They are beginning to ask what else we can use video for, and how this might help optimise our businesses. This phase is really about the realisation of Milestone's vision, driving the convergence of video surveillance and IP based business systems."

How important is the openness?
"The open platform is the enabler for many of these changes. The effect has been to redefine the industry's expectations of how we use surveillance video. The enabling phase is the proof-point. We are seeing customers look beyond using surveillance video for security and protecting assets and seeing how it can help them to optimise their operations."

As a platform for sensing and analysing data, the video camera has enormous potential. How will it fit into the "Internet of Things" (IoT)?
"What I think we are seeing here is that the video camera itself is becoming a DVR. It will have, or in some cases already has, analytics capabilities and recording on the edge capabilities. As the price of RAM cards decrease over time, the camera will take on many more functions.

This is where Milestone Arcus as an embedded VMS platform comes into play, and this is where you will see the overarching Milestone vision becoming even stronger. As cameras get more and more powerful, they will accelerate the convergence between the edge components and IP based business systems."

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