Avigilon Sales Warning: Panoramics 'Useless for Investigation', 'Evidence Dismissed'

Author: John Honovich, Published on Jun 28, 2016

Are panoramics useless for investigation? Will evidence from those cameras be dismissed?

That is what an Avigilon sales person told one of our members. In this note, we examine the claims, share feedback from Avigilon corporate and review the risks of such sales tactics. 

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Comments (22)

I have had 4 cases where panoramic video went to court they were all up held.

Panoramic video has its place just like any other camera whether its single imager or multi.

I thought Avigilion had panoramic cameras / multi imager cameras. If they are talking this way they must have crap offering for Panoramic/Multi imagers cameras.

Or they think they still need 3 cameras to do the job of one. that would certainly boost sales volume..............

I thought Avigilon had panoramic cameras / multi imager cameras. If they are talking this way they must have crap offering for Panoramic/Multi imagers cameras.

They have what they call 'multi-sensor' cameras but they do not stitch the video, it's just N number of video feeds out. Also, Avigilon sells no fisheye nor panomorph cameras.

They have what they call 'multi-sensor' cameras but they do not stitch the video, it's just N number of video feeds out. Also, Avigilon sells no fisheye nor panomorph cameras.

I guess that explains the sales pitch

Avigilon FishEye, coming soon... Stay tuned

This sales person is stupid, and Avigilon works and promote some stitching software.

I have had 4 cases where panoramic video went to court they were all up held.

As in actual trials where the evidence was shown to the jury?

Did the defense ever try to suppress the video for any reason in any of the cases?

Thanks in advance, it's rare to come across someone with as much experience as you.

  • MPEG-4 video is not admissible in court
  • Video without a visible watermark is not admissible in court
  • Motion-only video is not admissible in court
  • Panoramic "stitched" video is not admissible in court
  • Cameras must be UL Listed
  • Fire alarm cable "fire wire" must be red
  • If you have sprinklers, you don't need smoke detectors
  • If you have cameras, you must put up signs informing people
  • A dummy camera will make you liable if something bad happens

We should start a thread on all the security myths out there.

  • If you have cameras, you must put up signs informing people

This one depends on site.

Privacy act here in Australia dictates that businesses as a general rule must notify you that your image may be recorded. However, cameras operated by an individual have no obligations to do so.

Campbell, agreed, there's definitely variations across countries. I believe the UK and many European countries have stricter rules about signage / privacy violation. The US is very lightly regulated in this area.

If you have cameras, you must put up signs...

And if you have signs, you must put up cameras.

"Beware of the Dog"

... more like "Dog will love you to death"

Legality aside, even the worst video has forensic value: Grainy Video Catches Alleged University Of Texas Murderer

Defense Attorney: You have been shown three seperate clips of compelling video evidence; of the killer at the entrance, the murder itself and the hasty exit. Yet, by the prosecution's own admission there was just one camera, I ask how is this possible?

Shopkeeper: I confess, I confess, I split the fisheye into streams, I'm sorry, I didn't know...

Judge: Arrest that man for premeditated dewarping with intent to stretch and stitch; the defendant is free to go.

The Avigilon sales team makes their commissions selling their own cameras so the motivation is high to block out rivals. And with Avigilon's sales team gunslinger culture, this is the type of move that has historically been rewarded.

Hopefully, Avigilon can improve on this as they move away from the old Schmode approach.

Meaning move away from FUDslinging, but not MUDslinging per se (as long as it's substantiated)?

Related: Go After Your Competitors

If the points are factual, I do not think it is even mudslinging. Avigilon has real advantages, tight integration, auto firmware upgrades, the multi-sensor have integrated motorized varifocal lenses, etc.

I agree. Avigilon has better tools in their bag than FUD to make use of in a sales pitch. I still consider FUD a sign of a rookie or non-proficient sales person. I'm hoping these type of anecdotes are outliers or remnants from the Schmode era. I do not see these antics from the regional rep and sales engineer I work with. If I did I may not stop selling the product, but I would certainly not bring them in front of clients.

I would submit that even good sales people use FUD in their pitches - they just don't do it overtly like the weak sales person mentioned by the OP.

Implied FUD (i-FUD) if you will...

example:

If company A has a flaw or defect of some kind - or simply lacks features and/or integrations in their products - the sales person for company B doesn't have to mention company A at all.

Instead, if they focus on Feature 1 and Feature 2 that their own Company B products have - and why they are so very important to have - there is then no need to point out that you should be 'afraid' of using company A's products because they do not have them.

Example:

If I were a sales person for Cam Co Z and I know that the customer is deciding between my cameras and Arecont cameras - I would spend some time in my pitch talking about all the time and money my customers save by having a reset button on the outside of the camera.

If I am persuasive in telling the story of the need for a reset button (by conflating it with real value) then I've employed i-FUD... the customer believes a reset button is of real value.

Hopefully, I get to pitch the customer before the Arecont person does... ;)

Disclaimer: I only use Arecont (and their lack of a reset button) as an illustrative example in my comment above. I am not making any comment about the strength or weakness of their products, and none should be inferred. :)

I would submit even good sales people use FUD in their pitches...

Yes, FUD is fudamental.

And there is no shortage of effective, plausible FUD to be had even on IPVM. Consider all the Chinese FUD around here about scenarios, vulnerabilities, motives, world domination, etc.

Talk about a trade imbalance.

Unfortunately, as this Avigilon sales person shows, the temptation to use Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt to knock out rivals remains high.

Is FUD unethical even if it's not based on falsehood?

For instance, a Hik dealer tells a prospect interested in Analytics that they are better off with Hik than Hanwha, because Hik is licensed by Avigilon and Hanwha is not. And although, Avigilon hasn't sued anyone yet, you don't spend a 100 million to let people use your stuff for free.

Its a reasonable point made in different forms on IPVM. It's could also be considered FUD when used in sales.

Would you be wrong to use it, then?

Just came across a Hikvision case study of fisheye panoramics being used inside in a US Police Department crime lab. Avigilon sales people, you know what to do....

Good to see the Chinese government is watching our police crime labs. :(

Avigilon sales people, you know what to do....

Oh come on now, do you really think they're gonna take that and spin it into some murky anti-Hik FUD? Right after you accused them of doing the same?

Really.

Not as useless as the Avigilon sales manager claimed 2 months ago, since Avigilon is now releasing their own fisheye / dewarped camera:

The new Avigilon™ H4 Fisheye camera line offers a complete, high-resolution, 360-degree panoramic view with no blind spots. Available in 6 and 12 megapixel (MP) camera resolutions, this cost-effective, easy-to-install solution is designed to provide broad coverage with fewer cameras.

The H4 Fisheye camera will be available for pre-order on August 30, 2016 and available for shipping in early October. Reach out to your Regional Sales Manager for additional questions on this launch.

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