Navigating the road from Analog to IP Video

For those of us who operate in a 24/7 physical security technology world, the migration from analog to IP based systems may seem like a done deal. After all, the security industry publications are busy touting the next big developments such as surveillance in the cloud and HD vs. 3D and have presented case studies on analog to IP conversion for the past decade. Doesn’t that signal that everyone has gone down this road already and the process is complete?

Truth be told, the reality is far different. There are still plenty of companies and institutions with analog systems that are just embarking on the migration journey. According to IMS Research, a U.K.-based market research firm, it will likely be 2013 to 2014 before sales of IP and network-based equipment surpasses the sales of analog products. Granted, analog sales are flattening out and IP video product sales for cameras, NVRs, encoders and video management systems are growing at about 30 percent a year, based on IMS’ data, but there remain buyers in both categories and analog hasn’t disappeared from the radar as quickly as may have been predicted.

In this ongoing migration to IP network video, many are beginning to weigh the benefits of replacing or supplementing their existing analog-based products. They are asking themselves a host of questions: Will switching to IP improve the resolution and quality of my video? Will IP products perform better in both day and night conditions? Will I be able to do more with the video I am capturing?

Likewise, they are exploring not only the possible benefits of a conversion, but also the challenges presented by taking a new path: How do we get in sync with the IT department on how this will work? What training will be required for the security staff on this new system? Do I need to start from scratch, or can I integrate some IP based products with what I already have in place?

These and other questions are addressed in the Webinar: Uniting Analog CCTV and IP Video Security Systems. If you’re in the process of evaluating this migration and would like to learn more about what steps to take, please watch the recorded webinar.


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Have you thought about, started, or completed the migration? If so, leave us a comment below with your biggest concerns?

Retail Security: IP Video helping prevent shrink & improve operations

A few weeks ago the National Retail Federation (NRF) held its 101st Annual Convention & Expo in New York City, bringing together some of the biggest names in retail, such as Target, Macy’s and Walmart, to network, participate in educational programs and view the latest retail technologies.

NRF 2012 ExpoKnown as “Retail’s Big Show,” an important element of this annual expo is retail security, as the industry continuously grapples with loss prevention issues on a daily basis. Not only do loss prevention professionals need to ensure that merchandise remains secure after hours, they also have to contend with employee theft, shoplifting by individuals, and organized retail crime rings.

What tools will loss prevention professionals deploy to tackle these many problems? IP video is expected to play a large role in helping to solve the retail shrink problem, as more retailers look to harness the full benefits that technology has to offer.

The Global Retail Theft Barometer reports that total global shrink in 2011 costs retailers $119 billion a year which includes Organized Retail Crime (ORC). According to the National Retail Federation’s Organized Retail Crime (ORC) Survey 2011, nearly six in 10 senior loss prevention executives say senior management understands the severity of the organized crime problem. Because of these staggering statistics, many retailers reported they are investing in additional technology to mitigate losses from ORC.

IP video can help retailers reduce shrink by identifying shoplifting activities quickly. Built-in intelligence helps to reduce the number of uneventful recordings and send alarms when suspicious behaviors occur. A store manager can easily search thousands of hours of video to find a specific video clip quickly for forensic evidence after an incident has occurred.

The intelligent capabilities of IP video enable store managers responsible for many stores to remotely monitor each store for suspicious behavior from any location with a network connection. Both live and recorded video can be viewed at any time thus reducing the need for dedicated loss prevention specialists to monitor shoppers at each store. Also, remotely monitoring store activity using high-definition IP cameras gives a clearer picture of activity across all stores. Gone are the days of dealing with grainy footage to capture a crime in progress or to identify the perpetrator of the crime after the fact. The clarity of an overall scene can help determine whether a shoplifter acted alone or as part of organized crime ring that moves from store to store.

IP Video SecurityIn fact, the Illustra IP cameras enable rapid evaluation and recognition of ORC members through their interoperability with Sensormatic EAS pedestals. Taking an alarm from the pedestal, an Illustra camera can instantly send an image or a clip anywhere via email. Clear face shots of potential perpetrators can be evaluated and redistributed to other locations as ORC teams move from store to store. 

The Illustra 600 HD IP cameras extend the reach of IP cameras by intelligently targeting high-definition resolution directly at faces in the scene. A properly situated Illustra 600 camera can detect faces dynamically and increase the bit-rate or clarity around those faces in real-time. That means a full HD camera can operate at a network-friendly level, but deliver crystal clear face shots in the blink of an eye.

Learn more about how IP video can help retailers solve their unique security requirements by watching an interview featuring Karen Olsen from Tyco Security Products taken during the NRF show.

How is IP video helping you curb retail shrink and improve store operations? Let us know by leaving a comment.