Axis traditionally has downplayed the fact that they sell VMS software. They have intentionally made it uncompetitive, so as to not make their much needed VMS partners anxious. They reaped the rewards of their strategy thru the pervasive partner integration of their product line. All the majors VMSes would cover most Axis products.
Certainly this was a good strategy for a long time, and was one of the many reasons for their success.
But now that most of the major VMSes are married off to companies who have their own camera lines, who exactly are they worried about? Regardless of their openness, over time Milestone will feel the slow gravitational tug of their immense parent, pulling them into the fold, and further off Axis. Ditto Exacq and Tyco. Why should Axis be faithful to them any longer?
Furthermore, things have changed in terms of driver integration as well. As ONVIF has progressed from its helpless infancy to its awkward adolescence, it has reduced the need for numerous one-off driver support and the associated partner resource burden. Since major VMSes will likely continue their adoption of new ONVIF functionality, Axis cameras will have a way in with or without partner integration.
Finally, there is no doubt significant internal pressure to improve their ailing financial results. The possible benefits of being an end to end solution provider can not have escaped them. Think a kinder, gentler Avigilon. But Axis needs to consolidate its brand in the marketplace while it's still a leader.
All this makes me think that it's going to be sooner rather than later before Axis charges the VMS marketplace with a competitive no-punches pulled product.