Despite the fact that the world market for physical security products grew by 7.5% in 2015 according to Memoori’s 2015 Annual Report, there is an undercurrent of pessimism in some sectors of the business, because the rate growth has declined.
This particularly applies to video surveillance cameras, where unit prices have fallen over the last two to three years; and with an accelerated decline in the last 6 months. Without a similar increase in volume growth then the value of business must decline in a saturated market. However the security industry is far from being saturated and potential demand for improved anti– terrorism measures, integration across all three branches of the business and value add services to deliver gains for the business enterprise, should release this latent potential.
There are a multitude of technologies that support the physical security industry and all are currently active in developing and improving the performance of the industry. In this article we have selected just three out of six categories that today appear to be having most influence on the industry and have the capacity to increase the value of this market given that global economic trading conditions do not worsen.
Whilst this shift from analogue to IP has been the most important single factor in shaping video surveillance and now the access control business, it has been the game changer in introducing technologies which are also expanding business opportunities. IP has not run out of steam, but it has stalled through Chinese imports of HD Analogue at very low prices; so far thwarting the efforts of IP to take a bigger share of the SMB business.
We are now coming to the final phase of the move towards IP technology, which is now about connectivity within the concept of the Internet of Things in Buildings (BIoT) and not just about the direct performance of security issues. This may move forward sooner than the security industry thinks and it will reduce analogue cameras to having a very minor role in video surveillance not just in the developed markets of the west but also in Asia.
Wireless network technology has played an important but minor role in the security market for two decades but it is only in the last two years that it is now being regarded as a serious contender to hardwiring. In a number of relatively new and growing market applications it is the most cost effective solution. This dramatically reduces the cost of installation and the final price to the buyer.
It still has a massive inertia to overcome but driven by the benefits of BIoT, wireless sensor and device networks are penetrating the commercial building markets and will slowly continue to gain traction against traditional hardwired solutions. This is due to their ease in extending monitored sensor types, speed of installation, cost savings in retrofitting and the need for mobility.
Major investments in wireless technology and energy harvesting are being made, driven by the fact that wireless network technology is vital in order that the BIoT can be effectively applied across the full spectrum of Building Automation services in all types of buildings.
Today’s security needs are different than they were a decade ago. People and assets are now much more mobile, so security needs to be as well. People are ‘connected’ thanks to mobile devices so they can stay linked to their security and data systems in real time and these will need to be changed and added to and wireless provides this capability.
The latest wireless sensors and devices are much cheaper to install and have the flexibility to be scaled, changed and added to anytime in the future. This means that when BIoT becomes standard practice, wireless will be the preferred technology for retrofit projects.
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Cameras with embedded video analytics, such as motion, face, and object detection; analyse image data at the point of capture and can effectively eliminate the need to transmit video and data to a central server. This enables very efficient use of both transmission and recording bandwidth. Using analytics, some cameras can also be set to record video at a lower resolution and/or frame rate, and then automatically increase resolution and frame rate to capture higher-quality video when triggered by an event.
New system models are being developed that push recording functions to the edge as opposed to centralized servers. One way this is being achieved combines the use of new IP surveillance cameras with on-board SD card recording and analytics along with local NVRs and new video management system (VMS) solutions.
However all of these new developments will account for little unless they meet customer buying propositions and deliver benefits to all those in the supply chain. Whilst it is not possible to quantify what these emerging technologies have contributed to increasing the demand for security products the general consensus is that in 2015 its contribution has slowed down in the IP Video Surveillance business.
Various reports have shown that attention to improvements such as H265, 4K and Cloud have won little acclaim from the supply chain on the basis that it only delivered incremental gains. Whereas Video Analytics software is creating much more interest, particularly camera based analytics where system integrators feel there is much more demand with new situations and problems to be solved. Whilst it would appear many more manufacturers offer video analytics now the market is not yet satisfied that they are sufficiently robust.
Yes the competitive landscape is changing and in North America western manufactures will need to trim their prices of video cameras, but unless the recent China turmoil takes us back to 2008 the physical security market will continue to grow.
This article was taken from Memoori's recently published report on the Global Security Industry - The Physical Security Business 2015 to 2020; Access Control, Intruder Alarms & Video Surveillance