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IFSEC 2014: the interesting bits

ifsec-logoWe’ve just spent three days at the annual security exhibition IFSEC, taking place at the Excel in London this week. It’s a huge show and impossible to look at everything but overall the sense is that the evolution of IP-based security technologies is continuing to gather pace and analogue-based solutions have now been marginalised. I did not see one analogue camera on the show at any of the main stands, but then I was not looking for one.

The flavour this year seems to be 4K cameras, which in basic  terms offer four times the resolution of HD 1080p at 30fps, with a number of manufacturers launching their first 3840 x 2160 capable cameras. Axis showed the P1428-E outdoor 4K bullet camera, which should become available in July – August, Sony had a unit on the stand and LILIN displayed its new UHG1182 which is due out later this year also. However, as with HD a few years ago, it will take time before 4K technology can be deployed to its full potential. Light sensitivity, lens and compression technologies will need to be further developed, and the cost of 4K monitor displays will need to come down for 4K video to grow into the next benchmark within video monitoring applications.

What did catch our eye was qulu, a very sleek looking new VMS (video management software) from Vista. It was tucked away on Vista’s stand and not much noise was made about it, probably because the official launch is not until July. We had as close a look at it as we possibly could and we were very impressed by what we saw. Clearly, qulu’s development team started with a clean sheet and has developed the qulu software with the simple and minimalistic approach we’ve become so used to from Apple. Vista probably won’t be too happy if we expand on the product’s key USPs before the official launch – so we won’t. But, a few weeks ago I commented that the VMS products of the future will need to more easy on CPU and qulu seems to do exactly that. We’ll definitely be selling qulu and will share our findings with you once we have received the first release in the next few weeks.

Topic of conversation at this year’s conference was the acquisition of Milestone by Canon last week. At a public announcement on the first day of the show Canon emphasised that it will not interfere with the Milestone business or its open platform model and will merely be a new owner, letting Milestone get on with it, and that all is business as usual. Understandably, this was greeted with some general scepticism by industry insiders.

As one of Milestone’s leading partners we and, more importantly, our customers have a vested interest in how this will develop. It is too early to tell but I’d guess that camera manufacturers will be sitting down to review their partner strategies and we’ll find out how it will pan out over time. Our main aim in the process will be to protect the interest of our customers for the long term.

Also interesting was the launch of a boxed, all-in-one cloud solution by Cameramanager, comprising a new Panasonic IP camera designed solely to work with the Cameramanager cloud hosting service. The deep integration of the camera with the cloud software has made the setup process a lot smoother and the feature-set a lot stronger. An example of this is the introduction of CLVR (Clever without the ‘E’s), which is a video motion detection system that takes place on Cameramanager’s cloud servers instead of on the camera, and does so with great accuracy. With the launch also comes a new feature allowing for CCTV storage to be recorded on the camera instead of on Cameramanager’s servers, which makes a lot of sense not least because of bandwidth considerations. Users will now simply pull in live or recorded video from the camera via Cameramanager’s web interface or mobile apps. Using the on-camera storage facility will also halve the monthly subscription cost, from £9 to £4.50 for the basic package. This makes Cameramanager an attractive option for people who want an easier method of accessing their cameras at any time using a mobile, tablet or computer.

But the biggest news during this IFSEC week was the shock exit of Spain out of the world cup. As we have seen in our industry a few times over the last few decades, domination never lasts forever. But can they make a come back? Watch Vista

Published on June 20th, 2014 by Frank Crouwel

One Response to “IFSEC 2014: the interesting bits”

  1. John Guest says:

    Excellent blog post Frank, it was our third year exhibiting but I did get to spend most of Thursday pacing the floors and looking at new technologies and the real focus on IP, professionals in the industry want to be working for companies at the forefront and it was good to see manufacturers demonstrating products that haven't been officially launched yet , I met with loads of very interesting people from both the UK and throughout Europe and am looking forward to next year!