Axis: "Everything is IP" - False

Author: John Honovich, Published on Feb 24, 2017

Axis is congratulating itself, with executive Fredrick Nilsson declaring:

"Now the conversion is all done and everything is IP and analog is rapidly on the decline... It's kind of fun to reflect...."

It surely is 'fun' for Axis to say that but it is simply false.

False Claim

Axis cited / blamed IHS for their anti-HD analog / HD CCTV position the last time they falsely claimed this (see: Axis: HD Analog Will Die Out).

By contrast, HD analog is one of IHS's top 2017 trends, with IHS asserting:

Demand for HD CCTV cameras and recorders is forecast to continue growing rapidly in 2017... IHS Markit forecasts that in the professional market, shipments of HD CCTV cameras will grow to almost 29 million units globally in 2017. This is from fewer than 0.2 million units in 2012. Furthermore, in a number of countries in 2017, HD CCTV cameras are forecast to account for the majority of cameras shipped. [emphasis added]

And IPVM statistics has shown growing adoption of HD analog with 42% of integrators now using it.

'Education' Problem

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Nilsson's remarks in this interview were part of his book launch that Axis describes as a:

comprehensive reference for anyone involved in developing, implementing, and maintaining the latest surveillance systems.

Unfortunately, for those reading the book, it completely omits HD analog, AHD, CVI, TVI, etc., as if this simply did not exit.

In fairness, Axis' new book gives less than a half page to H.265, another technology Axis does not support.

Since Axis considers this to be more than just their own marketing material, they should hold themselves to the higher standards of educating rather than hiding things that they choose not to sell.

Strategic Problem

The bigger and more interesting point is that Axis repeated denials of HD analog shows how Axis has erred strategically, despite HD analog's rapid usage growth and continued increase in functionalities (e.g., to 4MP and soon to 8MP/4K).

Axis is not stupid and does not live in a bubble. They know HD analog usage is growing. They know it is improving. It might feel good temporarily to say 'everything is IP' but it results in poor strategy.

The low end will continue to be mostly lost with Axis' strategy. Sure, they hope that once SD analog was dead, everything would be IP, even the low end but that is just not the case.

And with HD analog getting better (Power over Coax is the next step) and dealers getting savvier about combining HD analog with VMSes like Milestone to cut costs, HD analog will be even a stronger competitor in the mid market.

That is not to say HD analog will 'beat' IP overall but HD analog is a clearly a significant factor that is here to stay for many years, something that Axis needs to better handle.

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Comments (50)

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I've said it before, and I'll say it again! HD Analog is a great option for upgrades. In fact, it is the ONLY way we can get a lot of people to update the systems they've had for decades. This has provided a lot of new opportunities for us and many other integrators. DMP has a cool HD TVI Encoder, you can plug up to 8 cameras in and send them to the Virtual Keypad for cloud storage and remote access. It's a great way for us to take over existing systems and provide our clients with video alarm verification and cloud storage. I think the uses of HD analog will grow a lot over the next couple of years. I don't see it going away anytime soon. In another 10 or 20 years if the coaxial cable is still good, upgrading the cameras and recording system again would be great.

Is that DMP TVI encoder another Hikvision rebrand?

I havent seen anything other than Hik re-brands. I thought Hikvision had the lock down on TVI chips?

I thought Hikvision had the lock down on TVI chips?

TVI chips are from Techpoint, which is an independent US company. I would certainly assume Hikvision is the main purchaser of TVI chips but others can and do purchase them as well. I do not know about specific DMP products but DMP does OEM some Hikvision products as shipping records show below:

It's from Hikvision. They put in their own certificates and program it to connect over VPN to their servers for storage. 256bit aes vpn and 2048 rsa certificate.

This is easily one of the most disappointing things I've heard so far this year.

DMP, an American company that prides itself on being American made, AND a company that is so heavily focused on security (encrypted panels, etc), has sold itself out.

Very frustrating, even if they are putting their "special sauce" on it. Many options for potential OEM's that AREN'T Hik. Major strategic error in my mind.

Do you sell a lot of DMP?

A fair amount. Have never sold any cameras, but I know the products well.

TVI Encoder ? Just curious, would a TVI DVR work the same? Thanks.

It's actually a DVR without a hard drive.

That's all we do for encoders when we need to support analog cameras with an NVR. $150 for an eight-channel encoder, vs. $150/channel with a "standard" encoder? That's a no-brainer.

Lets hope they continue down the same path and get GENETEC to follow on with them.

FAILING Genetec, SAD!

How do you figure? Just because they restricted Hikvision?

It was satire. His message looked like a tweet from a famous politician.

...Axis' new book gives less than a half page to H.265.

H.264 needs a whole page, H.265 needs half ;)

Axis = Pelco 2.0

I don't think it's at that point yet. They do certainly seem to be ignoring the elephant in the room though.

Axis today is more of the Bang and Olufsen of security video.

Axis today is more of the Bang and Olufsen of security video.

And has been for at least a couple of years ;)

Firstly this is not a post re what's best IP or Analog HD. We all know their pros and cons, its a horses for courses thing and IP is ultimately the way to go on new and larger installations.

BUT

We have been on the HD analog bandwagon for some time. But we have had resistance from wholesalers that push IP saying "Analog is dead everything is going IP" That is driven from their complete sales only perspective as they want (need) to sell IP NVRs and all new IP cameras as they see more profit in the long term. The reality is a lot of the existing small installed analog market (say up to 32 chs) do not want to throw out all that cabling infrastructure and replace a 8-32ch dvr and 8-32 cameras with an expensive NVR and IP cameras at the cost of huge $$$$$$. They are more than happy though to put in an HD Analog DVR and get the better features available with it (compared to their old analog box) and maybe not put any cameras in at all or just a few strategic ones to begin with. In most cases the 2 or 3 cameras we put in at the time of the DVR installation are increased to 60-100% within 6 months when they realise how much better they are.

I guarantee it would be much easier to have 5 existing analog sites converted to HD analog DVRs (with an ongoing growing number of cameras being installed later) than it would be to convert those 5 sites to full IP installations. Not only that but they are willing to tell others in the same market that they got a "financially flexible" system (ie they can change to more HD cameras in a more financially suitable time frame) for $X,000 after having been quoted $3-5X,000 for a conversion to a new IP system.

Lots of smaller easy to get jobs with the possible ongoing $$$ of extra camera sales and installations makes a lot of sense to me but granted for bigger organisations you may think differently.

With dropping prices do you put your had in the sand and pretend it's not happening or do you adapt your approach and get on with it.

#5, good points!

But we have had resistance from wholesalers that push IP saying "Analog is dead everything is going IP"

I have seen this as well even from Dahua and Hikvision regional people. I make a point of asking basic questions when I visit different places and each time IP gets pushed over HD analog and I have to ask / prompt about HD analog. This is somewhat counterintuitive since those 2 are the biggest HD analog suppliers in the world.

My hypothesis is that this is a combination of general 'IP is always superior' belief and resistance to selling something so inexpensive (e.g., HD analog kits are roughly sold for half the price of IP kits) given the sales people motivation to make more per camera / item. Related, I think HD analog would still very well at prices closer to IP, given its infrastructure advantages for so many applications that you note as well as its overall simplicity. But such is the race to the bottom H and D drives.

HD analog is just a long term band-aid until infrastructure catches up. I agree that it isn't dead as there's a lot out there yet, but I think it's just a trend and will eventually fade. It comes down to selling the value of using network cabling and IP cameras to customers.

I agree that IP would be my choice to install, but I wouldn't call HDA a band-aid. With the ability to support up to 4K soon (Dahua HDCVI 3.0), it competes pretty well with IP. For the less techy installers, it allows them to install simpler systems. Also, the build-out of IP networks from scratch can be much more expensive and time consuming that just direct PtP, camera to head-end links, which can also be much longer distances with copper cable.

My point is, HDA isn't a band-aid, it is a viable alternative. It isn't my first choice, but it certainly works well enough to use it where merited.

I agree As some one who takes care of a enterprise-size system/systems currently trying to roll a bunch of small -mid size systems into one large one. HD analog IS very attractive. most of what I have is old Pelco analog systems or other analog 16ch-32 channel systems. If could roll those into 1080p encoders that weren't made by the Chinese government I would have more work than I could handle for the next 3 years.

I would much rather have IP over analog anyday but when can install HD analog and tie it into a enterprise system for 5-6k and the same job for IP is 32K, HD analog Pays for itself at point of install.

Now if Hanwha can just get me at least a 4ch encoder that is ONVIF conformant I can start worlds greatest back order for Hanwha HD analog encoders you have ever seen.

I agree with John on this and strongly believe there is a BIG market for the HD Analog as there are millions of existing installations that are ripe and ready for new, bold and much improved images without the cost or hassle of 'rewiring' a Pizza shop for example.

Small local installations are not our strong point but we are considering a start-up division that is tasked with nothing but talking to existing business owners about a replacement system that will give them IP clarity for nickels and dimes. The market is absolutely ripe for HD analog.....

Unfortunately, for those reading the book, it completely omits HD analog, AHD, CVI, TVI...

As a practical matter though, it may not be a concern, as this type of shopping cart may not be very common:

this type of shopping cart may not be very common

That's funny!

With 4K HD analog cameras coming out (see the Dahua 4K CVI announcement), there will clearly be increasing high end HD analog deployments.

Just left a clients business, we put in an analog system about 6 years ago at their farm. We've got thousands of feet of coax and about 30 cameras on-site. I gave him a price to run cat5 and install IP or upgrade to AHD. When I did my demo to show him both systems he asked why pay more for IP? He told me he doesn't care about the additional features. He just wants better picture quality. So I closed the deal, the AHD upgrade was a fraction of the price. This is good for us since we don't have to tie up techs for weeks running new cable in what's a very complicated place to run cable (8 small buildings on one system). Our guys will be in and out in a day and it will be a very profitable job while getting the client exactly what he wants. AHD is here to stay, it's not a bandaid. Great solution. Let's make analog great again!

I would never use AHD in a new install.

John, what AHD cameras do you usually sell, hopefully that isn't Hik? :)

I have sold some Hikvision, but much more Dahua.

I seem to recall you're a DW fan -- do you sell DW's AHD solutions?

No we do not right now. We use Hikvision for our AHD equipment. As everything at our company this is subject to change. I wouldn't say I'm a DW fan. I'm a Spectrum fan. I have been meaning to talk to DW about their solution but we've been to busy to really look at it.

I would never use AHD in a new install.

Why not?

AHD run over CAT5 /w baluns is still cheaper than IP, no?

We use spectrum so it's almost the same price once you add in baluns, power supplies and encoders.

We use spectrum...

Even when you do a retro with Hik TVI?

So you buy a TVI DVR but just use it for encoding?

DW's slick I admit, but in smaller jobs couldn't you save by just leaving it with the DVR?

For me it's all about limiting the burden on our in-house tech support (and subsequently giving our clients a better experience). A TVI DVR would save us money on the install, but having tech support on the phone with a client because they can't figure something out is expensive. Spectrum is easy to use and has dramatically reduced the time our tech support team spend on the phone. We also provide a lot of remote services for our clients so having DVRs out there makes this more difficult to do. I like to keep things simple so it's easy to keep our clients happy and providing us with referrals. Having a standard way of doing things helps us to delivers. We found DVRs and NVRs didn't allow us to provide this experience.

John:

I could not agree more. These jobs always leave the customer happy, immediate success when they see the new images. 1 day job, good profit.

Since HD analog encoders have come up a number of times and Axis has been a popular SD analog encoder manufacturer for many years, worth adding a poll question: Should Axis make HD analog encoders?

Started a relation discussion on it: Should Axis Make HD Analog Encoders?

IPVM is right on. HD Over Coax is alive and growing. In addition to retrofits of the countless analog coax camera systems, there appears to be a trend toward HD Coax on new installations because it circumvents the issue of connecting to a customer's network or installing a separate one for IP cameras.

So, it's coax all the way?

No transmission media change somewhere to IP perhaps? Only DVR Recording and displaying on "HD analogue monitors"?

If the feed will be changed over to IP somewhere, why not go for IP all the way?

...there appears to be a trend toward HD Coax on new installations because it circumvents the issue of connecting to a customer's network or installing a separate one for IP cameras.

I'm not sure I follow this logic - what are you "circumventing" exactly? If you're putting in your own new infrastructure, with a new home-run wire going to every camera, what's the benefit of coax/AHD vs UTP/IP? You're essentially installing a "separate network" either way. There's no "requirement" for an IP system to interface at all with the customer's network; however, there is that ABILITY, which can give you extra flexibility or ways to address problems that crop up.

Running UTP has the added benefit of being useful for all sorts of things besides cameras - my job this morning is a perfect example of this: we used extra Cat5e runs we pulled during the building of this site, to expand the customer's WiFi - I just plugged a cable into the appropriate jack in our patch panel, then to their Meraki switch. Try that with a coax install (I guess you can always use EoCs....)

We stopped using coax even for analog when Cat5e became cheaper... forget the need for separate power wire, or the extra weight, size, and stiffness of the RG59 that made it a PITA to work with. This whole site was cabled Cat5e - analog cameras are using baluns with RJ45 jacks, and a combination balun/power unit at the other end. Swapping three analog cameras to IP this morning was literally as easy as unplugging one and plugging in the other, and moving the patch cable at the other end from the balun to the switch.

So assuming I was actually "circumventing" anything using coax and AHD instead... why would I even want to?

[Note: Poster is from Veracity]

Some might say this is an encoder replacement... Coming to a distributor near you soon

Veracity Highwire Powerstar Base 4

Similar to?

No like this....

Whats the price comparison between this setup vs pulling new STP/UTP (or fibre if the length is above 100 Meter) between the cams and switch?

It all depends on the site, but it could well exceed the cost of some EoC adapters. The Everfocus Paluns are about $100 per set and have worked well for us. We have had a few DOAs, but the ones that work out of the box seem to hold up well.

For me personally, it looks like a "workaround" for "only" keeping the old coax as transmission media, when everything else has been upgraded to IP...

I doubt that I would do this..

Not all end users will pay to replace their entire cable plant that they spent thousands on just a few years ago.

No like this....

Ah, I see you have the power connection coming out of the back of the unit, instead of the front.

Are there any other innovations that I'm overlooking?

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