Ambarella Pushing These IP Camera Trends

By John Honovich, Published on Apr 13, 2016

Will the market soon be ruled by H.265 and 4K Multi-sensor cameras?

Ambarella is the largest supplier of IP camera chipsets to high-end manufacturers like Avigilon, Axis, Bosch, Samsung / Hanwha, Nest and many others. What Ambarella develops and advocates often has a major impact on the future of IP cameras as manufacturers adopt Ambarella's chips and use those new features.

We met with them during ISC West 2016 to discuss their new chipsets (the S5) and what they are focusing on, including:

  • 4K Growth
  • H.265 Development
  • Greater Super Low Light
  • Multi-Imager Expansion
  • IoT Growth
  • 8K Cameras

4K Favored **** ***

********* ** ********** *** manufacturers ** *** ** chipsets *** ******* **** *** cameras. 

**** *** *** ** * security-specific ********** *** *** something *** **** **** in ********** ******** *******, unlike **, ***** ******* is.

****** ** * ******* factor *** ***** ***** in ******* *************, *** volume ** **-***** ******** outside ** *** ******** industry ** ******. * or *** ******* *** lose any **** ******* ******* over ****** ********** ** cameras, ******* ************* ** drop **** **** ******* lineups.

H.265 ********

********* ****** ******* *** *********** **** ******* *.*** encoding.

**** ********** ********* **** Ambarella ** *** ****** with *.*** *****.  ** tested ***** ******* ***** on ********* ***** (*.*** ** *.*** *******) *** ***** ***** *.*** cameras did *** ******* ********** bandwidth *********.

***, ********* ** ****** theirs **** ******* ***** bandwidth *******.

********* ** ******** ****, with ***** ***** ********, that ***** '*****' *.*** will ******* **% ********* reduction **** ******* ********** H.265. **** *** * demo ********** ****.

Low ***** ********** ************

** ******** ** ********* savings, ********* *** ******* ******** encoding ************ ** ***** of ***-***** ***********, ***** accuracy, *** ***** ******.

** ***** ** *********'* comparison *****, **** ***** their *** *** **** **** empower */*" ******* ** deliver ****** *** ***** performance **** ******* */*" imager *******. ** ****, this ***** ** *********** because ***** *** **** recent */*" ******* **** tested ***** **** ** low ***** *********** (*.*., ********* *********** */*" ****** Camera ************* ****' */*" ***** Camera, ***.) **** **** **** quite ********* ******* ** the ****** ****** *** lens.

 

******* ******* ****** ****** size *** ****, ************ when ** ***** ** lenses.

IoT ****** ******* *******

** ******** ** ********* chipsets, ********* **** ******** "reference *******", ** ****** hardware ******* **** *** chip ****** ******* ** show ********* *** ** build * **** ******* with ***** *****. ************* then ***** *** ********* designs, ****** ** ******** features **** ******* */*'* or **-**** *****.

*** ***** ** ****** reference ******* **** *****, a ***** ********, *** a ******-********* ****** ******* to ** ******** ********* concept.

********

*** ******** *** ******** on-board ********* **** ** part ** *** ** and ** ******* ********.

**** **** ********* **** it ****** *** ******* competitors ** *****, **** may ** **** *** Ring ***********.

Motion ********* / ******* ******

** *** ******-********* ******, a *** ****** ******* motion, *** *** ********* chip **** ********** ****** filtering ** ****** ***** alarms. *** ****** ******* can ***** ** * very *** ***** ****, and **** ** ** instant **** **** *** PIR **** *********.

******* **** ** ~*** days *** ******* *** the ********** ** * 4 **-**** ******, **** 5 ******* *** *** worth ** *********.

** **** *****, **** and ***** **** ******* gained *********** *********. *********'* reference ****** **** ***** help ******** ***********.

S5 *** Chipset ******* ** *****-*******

** *** ****, ********* announced * *** ***-*** chip, **. *** ** *** support (*) ** *******, and ** ********* ** image ********* ** *** chipset.  

**** **** ******** *.*** ******** and ***** ******** **** the ******* ** ******* on-board ********* *** ****-*******.

*** *****-****** ****** *** been ***** ** ******* until ********.  ** **** seen **** (**** ******* *****-****** ******), ******** (******** ** *********** ****** Tested), ** (*** *****-****** ********* ********** to *******) *** ***** (***** ****** **** *****-****** Tested) ******* *****-****** ******, though **** **** ******* in *** *-*** *****.

*** *****-****** ****** *** seen ****** ** ******* product ************, *** *** in ******** **** **-***** analytics.  

* ** *****-****** **** did **+***, **** *** ability ** *** **** analytics ***** ** * more *********** *********** ** the *****-****** *****.

8K ***** ** ****?

*** ** ******* *** also ** ** ********** *** a ****** ******.  ** *********, 8K ******** * **** image.  ******* ***** ** expensive, ** ***** ******* for ** ***** ****** that *****, ******* ******** has ***** ***** ** at ***** **** ******* of *** ****** ******* to **** ***** *****.  

********* **** ******* ******* Avigilon ** ***** *  closed ****** **** ***** high-resolution *******, ********* ** now *********** ******** *********** to ****** ** ****-****** super **** ********** ******.

*******

********* **** **** * track ****** ** ******* IP ****** *** ******** (e.g., **, ***** ******, super low ***** ***********, *******'*, etc.). ** **** ***, they **** * ****** chance ** ** ********* for *.***, ***, *****-*******, 8K, ***.

*** **** ******** ** time. **** ******* ********* releases * **** **** not ********* **** *** cost, *** ******* *******. It ***** **** *** manufacturers ** ***** / integrate / ******** / release, ***. **** ** will **** ******* **** for ************* ** ***** a ******** **** ** offerings **** **** **** the ***** / *********** optimized *** *** **** market.

Comments (13)

Wow, this chip still hasn't made it in a production camera yet?

H.265 IP Camera Chip Announced (Ambarella S3)

Did they give any indication what model or manufacturer might get them first and when?

Ambarella couldn't comment on deployments of the S3 chip. Given that it was just announced 18 months ago, when you factor in time to production and time for manufacturers to develop, test, and ship product based around a new chipset it's not surprising that it may not be incorporated into many (or any) products yet.

They are recommending the S5 chip for all new designs, though we do not know price delta between the two chips and if manufacturers would decide to leap to the S5, or if S3 will start showing up in more products soon.

...it's not surprising that it may not be incorporated into many (or any) products yet.

IMHO, 18 months is long enough that Ambarella should be shipping some chips even if the cameras themselves have not.

Though as you would be quick to point out, they may not wish, or be able to disclose this info.

Were all the 'demo' cameras just breadboarded, with no finished goods displayed?

long enough that Ambarella should be shipping some chips even if the cameras themselves have not.

Sure, that is reasonable.

but you asked originally:

this chip still hasn't made it in a production camera yet?

So that's what we were addressing. I assumed Ambarella has shipped chips to a number of manufacturers but I also assume that not a lot are shipping right now. That said, based on historical patterns, I suspect this would ramp up in the next year.

Cool article, Brian. But you have to work on your subject titles. Next time try...

Ambarella Aiming to Mercilessly Crush Competition!

Chips that can auto stitch multiple imagers would be a welcome development and offering.

Thanks. If I'm stuck for a headline in the future I'll make sure to reach out to you :)

Heyell yeah. Each of the categories they crush... alone! Including the "Apparently Vapor-Ware" category. 

Where........ are they?   :-o  Me wants

Customers have rightly accused Avigilon of being a closed system with their high-resolution cameras, Ambarella is now potentially allowing competitors to create an open-format super high resolution camera.

Is the image processing chip on the Avigilon HD Pro cameras today something that can't be procured by others? Is it designed by Avigilon?

Have no idea, but I always assumed it was a chipset for pro photography...

A rival just popped into the news today.

Their self written TechCrunch Article

Movidius Website

I'm not sure Movidius is a direct rival to Ambarella.

Ambarella chips handle things like encoding the data from the image sensor into a video stream.

Movidius looks more like an alternative to a DSP, that is usually downstream of the encoder chip (Ambarellas product) in the video pipeline, analyzing the image stream produced by the camera.

Ambarellas newer chips have the ability to perform some level of analytics/analysis on the encoder chip itself, eliminating the need for an external DSP (which has commonly been a Texas Instruments chip). So in some sense they could be competitors.

Hi Brian,

Being heavily in the mix of both those companies right now, I can tell you that they ABSOLUTELY consider each other as competitors. Ambarella even lists Movidius in the quarterly shareholder conference calls under the "threats" category. Movidius is a new software designed SoC/Image Pipeline with a ton of processing power on chip. It is going directly after Ambarella in the drone and surveillance camera space.

Thanks for the additional detail. We will continue to watch Movidius, do you know of anyone using their chips in security cameras yet?

Amba S3L (4K) and S3Lm (upto 5MP) still have juice in them and I still don't see too many main stream CCTV products using S3L out there right now. Most companies using AMBA are still on S2L (correct me if I'm wrong?). I wonder whether one should skip S3 and move straight to S5 generation?

@Brian - is the H.265 HEVC implementation (achieving 128 Kbps bit rates on 1080p) for S5 significantly different than the H.265 implementation for S3? If not, will AMBA port the CODEC efficiency for S3 as well?

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