By Brian Albright, Business Solutions magazine.
Digital video technology in the consumer space has evolved dramatically over the past five years, and the video surveillance market has benefited from these advancements with the introduction of high-definition, multi-megapixel cameras that can be directly integrated into a company's IT network. "As HD video has proliferated in everyday life, the demand for high quality video for professional surveillance applications has not only increased — it's expected," says Raul Calderon, senior vice president of marketing at Arecont Vision.
Interest in video surveillance systems is strong in retail, education, gaming, healthcare, and government markets. For VARs to succeed, however, they have to stay on top of new technology and find ways their customers can leverage the benefits of video beyond security.
"VARs need to be conversant with the range of security applications/integration points available and stay abreast of what the future holds," says Yvonne Schwemmer, product marketing manager at Schneider Electric. "This area is ripe for growth. Video as a security application is common; integrating with alarms, climate controls, and building management systems requires a wide range of expertise and is more cutting-edge. VARs truly need to apply in-depth needs analysis with various stake holders if they want to engage in consultative selling — this can be an opportunity to differentiate."
Video surveillance cameras have become less expensive, smaller, and more reliable and have incorporated superior low-light capabilities, widedynamic range, analytics, edge-recording, and megapixel capabilities. "Ever-improving imaging sensors and lens technology have paved the way for higher-resolution video, including efficient three and five megapixel and HDTV resolution," says Fredrik Nilsson, general manager at Axis Communications. "HDTV resolution in particular has had a huge influence on the industry because these cameras conform to the same standards used in the entertainment industry, which means security directors and business owners experience the same video quality as they have on their flat screens at home."