In South Africa, the relentless march towards the convergence of legacy analogue video surveillance systems with new-generation digital technologies continues to drive developments in the security industry.
“Within the next 24 months we can expect a high percentage of all video surveillance installations to feature HD and megapixel resolution digital cameras,” says Andy Robb, chief technology officer at Duxbury Networking.
“From a technological perspective, some of the most impressive advancements have come in the area of data storage and retrieval,” he says. “Today, there are a variety of solutions on the market from traditional storage companies – including Netgear and Pivot3 - geared to meet the special demands of the security industry.”
He says two key factors drive storage system design, the proliferation of higher resolution cameras and the demand for longer image retention.
“Gone are the days of fuzzy images, the security industry has an insatiable desire for high resolution,” he stresses. “As a result, modern high-definition security installations incorporating megapixel cameras have put the spotlight on ‘unlimited’ storage capacity and scaleout storage, placing emphasis on high bandwidth availability and network performance. This puts a premium on network planning and engineering, from a total solution perspective.”
Addressing the small to medium size (SMB) market, Robb says technology advancements have created security offerings attractive to this sector, adding more marketing opportunities for security industry professionals. “Today, even small businesses and corporate branch offices require powerful and sophisticated options for protecting physical assets, but may lack the expertise or big budgets of their larger contemporaries.
“New solutions that wrap critical components, such as network video recorder (NVR) software, network storage devices, smart and managed switches, and management software into a single package are targeted at this sector, ensuring connectivity, configuration and monitoring across all storage and switching components at low cost.”
He points to new-generation IP surveillance solutions that allow the connection of thousands of IP cameras and combine business-class IP video technologies with flexible, customisable endpoint options for building affordable and simple video monitoring solutions.
Robb says an important catalyst for storage enhancements and availability is the cloud and hosted video or video surveillance as a Service (VSaaS), the market for which grew by 30% in 2011. “As more companies turn to HD recording, storage requirements are outpacing traditional hard drive technologies lending more credibility to cloud technologies which also provide value to the end user in the form of reduced storage costs.”
He expects the cloud to play a significant role in remote storage and other technologies in future. “Hosted video, for example, is a growing trend and will become an integral part of new security strategies as it allows access to video images anytime from anywhere, with no need for special IT skills or major infrastructure investments.”
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