Ongoing profile and specification development in 2020

Issue 2 2020 News & Events

In an industry where proprietary technology was the norm, ONVIF was founded in 2008 by Axis Communications, Bosch Security Systems and Sony. The goal of ONVIF was to standardise the communications processes between IP-based physical security products and to allow for interoperability between these devices, regardless of the brand.

Per Björkdahl.

Speaking to Hi-Tech Security Solutions, ONVIF chair, Per Björkdahl says today there are over 500 companies that have joined in various membership categories, and there are over 15 000 conformant products in the market. Furthermore the organisation has developed six Profiles, with Profile T being the latest one.

Profile T supports video streaming features such as the use of H.264 and H.265 encoding formats, imaging settings, and alarm events such as motion and tampering detection. Profile T should be differentiated from Profile S, which is focused on basic streaming.

Coming up in 2020 we should see a new Profile, which is currently in development, that combines different feature sets, such as access control and video surveillance – since many entrances include both access control and some form of video. However the time frame for this Profile will depend on feedback received and any further development required.

ONVIF has also progressed beyond Profiles and is releasing specifications to ensure standardised and reliable communications over IP-based networks and for cloud communications. This includes, for example, policies for a camera to be included as a resource in a network directory.

One popular specification that made the news is ONVIF’s Export File Format. This was recommended by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) for the exporting and playback of video surveillance recordings in 2019. (Read more at

ONVIF is also working with the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) to support international standardisation specifications related to cloud connectivity and the interoperability of many systems. This continues the organisation’s work with the IEC, which saw access control specifications being included in IEC 60839-11 in 2016, as well as the 2014 inclusion of video surveillance specifications in IEC 62676.

While the organisation may have passed the 10-year mark, it is still busy promoting and advancing standardisation across the industry, making it simpler to ensure IP-based products work together efficiently, and ensuring the latest changes in the technical environment, like the cloud, are not left out of the equation.

See more at


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