Technological advances are allowing field services companies to more affordably tap into surveillance systems.
An article on the Security Management website highlights the impact such solutions have had in overcoming bandwidth and storage issues.
Consider that in 2004 one gigabyte of storage cost about $150. Today, a 32 GB secure digital card can be packed into a camera for around $40.
Another example of progress involves “new low-bandwidth ways of sending video back to a monitoring center.” For example, the compression format H.264 reduces bandwidth use by up to 90 percent.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that the more complex the product is, more sophisticated the service process has to be. Remember, it’s possible that one of the components could bring the system down. And parts are expensive, which is why field service companies don’t want to carry more than necessary.
It’s also interesting to note that these systems have monitors, and they run on these 4G networks, which means they’re like mini computers. An increasing number of companies want additional surveillance and the next level of field service software to manage those systems. They especially want portals that allow customers to create new calls online, see schedules and create connections.
New surveillance systems carry out analytics to the edge, meaning that HD video can be analyzed without being streamed. One company has gone even further by “giving its edge cameras the ability to form a sort of sci-fi collective hive mind that allows them to write video to each others’ hard drives for backup,” the Security Management article explains.
For times when video must be streamed, companies have developed ways to reduce data load without impacting the image information, while also using an existing 4G network. Another approach only sends 10-second clips during an alert-level event, allowing for the use of just a cellphone network.
Source: Security Management, December 2012