The vast majority of end users will seek a video-based system for security and safety purposes, and with today’s advanced VMS solutions, they are sure to receive a powerful, flexible and smart system. However, the modern VMS can add value and boost the return on investment by providing a depth of real-time data which can be beneficial in a range of business management tasks.
Video technology is a great enabler across a whole range of business use-cases, and video surveillance is unquestionably one of the most valuable tools when mitigating risks and offsetting threats against people, property and assets. Video not only offers protection to a significant number of businesses and organisations around the world against a wide range of risks, but it also allows users to reap additional benefits via business intelligence, site management, automation and data sharing. In the 21st century, video is acknowledged as a benefit across a wide range of business functions.
Video data is of great value because it is something people can make sense of. It allows a high degree of intuition to be applied to incident and events, because of the nature of the information.
Because video captures data that humans easily understand – visual information – it enables operators, and software which has been designed for the task, to apply logic when making decisions.
This familiarity with the information contained in video also makes the decisions about what the system needs to achieve simpler. For example, if a video stream which covers a site entrance is captured, it is a simple task for the user to understand how they can use the gathered information. Do they want to be alerted if gates at the entrance are opened or closed? Do they need to take action if the entrance is blocked? How do vehicles or pedestrians behave when they enter the site? Is there a need to create a notification if pedestrians walk in the road, or if vehicles take a wrong turn?
Because people can easily assess visual information and make decisions based on it, the possibilities available from video surveillance are significant. More often than not, video-based alarms are created based on exceptions to typical behaviour which works well. Known exceptions are easy to legislate for. However, security is not always about the expected. Unanticipated events will need to be addressed, and video solutions can include features and functions to ensure operators and other personnel are more efficient when dealing with incidents.
Many who have worked with ‘traditional’ video surveillance will be aware of a few limitations of older technologies.
Predominantly hardware-based video systems weren’t always intuitive; often training was needed just to view and replay footage. Searching was slow and cumbersome, especially if the camera count was high. Extracting information about site activity and non-alarm events was nigh-on impossible, and sharing data with other departments was not a credible option. However, modern systems have eradicated these issues with the introduction of the VMS.
Although capable of delivering a high level of functionality and bespoke solutions, VMS systems are not expensive, nor are they complicated to use, and are not limited to sites with large camera counts. The size of the customer’s business, the number of devices used and the budget are not barriers to using a VMS.
It is important to also realise that VMS solutions are not just for video! VMS packages support connection with cameras, video codecs, recording devices, access control, intruder alarm systems (and standalone detectors and sensors of various types), perimeter protection systems, fire detection, safety and building management systems.
Increasingly, VMS software also integrates with a host of IoT devices which are ideal for smart solutions. These include – but are not limited to – lighting, audio broadcast, communications, environmental monitoring, digital signage and displays, elevator control, HVAC management, power and energy management, real-time status reporting, vehicle tracking, etc..
The functionality available from a typical VMS goes above and beyond that offered by hardware-based video systems.
Because the VMS is software-based, it is inherently more flexible. Creating a bespoke solution which might be complicated or impossible with hardware can be achieved with ease via a VMS, often using little more than drop-down menus and simple selection buttons.
VMS solutions do all the things traditional video surveillance systems do: record, play and display video. That much is expected. However, the software can also offer advanced management of video, whether that be sharing it across a business or organisation, tracking events and incidents, applying smart AI-based analytics for a range of tasks, managing data that makes the business operations more efficient, or using that data to control other systems and technologies.
VMS software makes use of an open platform approach in terms of support for third party devices. A VMS allows freedom to select the best-of-breed third party devices from a huge range including all the leading professional brands. This ensures the user can leverage the investment in legacy equipment, along with the ability to scale their future system as new technologies and devices become available.
The CathexisVision advantage
CathexisVision is an open-platform VMS package combining flexibility, feature-rich functionality and ease of use. It is available in a number of variants to suit specific site requirements based upon number of connected devices, the number of servers and sites needed, and advanced functionalities. This ensures users do not pay for features they don’t need.
CathexisVision features direct integrations supporting the majority of leading camera brands in the surveillance market, along with a number of specialist options such as panoramic cameras and devices using edge-based technologies. It also supports ONVIF.
CathexisVision boasts an extended range of features, which ensure access to a sophisticated and intuitive VMS software package. It dramatically reduces false alarms and provides accurate information for users who use event triggers. This is achieved through the use of Object Classification algorithms, which use sophisticated Neural Network technology. These algorithms allow use of an additional rule in the decision-making process, only triggering events if the detected object is of a pre-determined type, for example person or vehicle.
The advanced algorithms allow users to precisely identify objects and events in an area and act decisively. The object classification AI algorithm builds a database, which enables Object Searches of recorded video, for example searching for all red cars in a defined area within the previous week.
The VMS is also designed to be cybersecure, and to offer functions which prevent the loss of critical data.