by Bob Cutting
I doubt if the best way to track video analytic progress and adoption is by listening to what the analytic vendors are saying and doing. That’s why I like to visit video management and PSIM booths at shows to see what they are doing with analytics. I find they have a unique perspective as customers often turn to them to bring video management, storage, analytics and other data together. So rather than looking just at “what analytics can do,” it’s interesting to see how users want to leverage analytics as part of an overall video system. And that’s consistent with what OV has been professing for a long time—analytics IS a vital ingredient to video surveillance applications, but not an application in itself.
At ASIS 2009, after looking around the booths of companies like Milestone, Genetec, ONSSI, VidSys, Synectics, Cisco, Instek, and a few others (some OV partners, others not), and talking with the people there, it’s pleasing to see a much more advanced take on analytics. More of these companies are making analytics a strategic part of their offering. What Synectics is doing with their Dataveillance program is spot on. As well, I saw applications that I have not tracked in the past (e.g., SoleraTec) leveraging analytic data to solve things such as intelligent video storage, search and retention. This is great for the end user as it enhances the usability of analytics and delivers the necessary video + analytic integration—two obstacles that have hindered analytics adoption in the past.
Unfortunately, I still saw the side-by-side demos; those vendors who just want to “plug in” analytics may find themselves late to the game. And why would you have a separate analytic search tool from an analytics vendor in addition to your video management platform? Leading VMS’s are building those analytic capabilities into a unified video system, and it’s clear that that is what system integrators and end users want to buy. Standardization efforts will help in coming months, but it will take more vision and “listen to the customer” activity from analytics vendors to not just deliver functionality, but deliver it in a more usable and scalable way.