Is Axis IP camera dominance coming to an end?

By: John Honovich, Published on Oct 05, 2008

IP video is becoming mainstream but Axis' IP cameras may lose their dominance in the process. Six critical issues may undermine Axis position and in the process provide consumers with more options and lower prices.

The six issues are:

  • Lower cost, good enough, IP cameras from competitors are maturing.
  • Multi-megapixel cameras from competitors are maturing.
  • Axis' new features overshoot the needs of mainstream buyers.
  • Now, traditional CCTV vendors are committed to moving into IP.
  • Industry interoperability specifications are coming
  • The recession will force buyers to prioritze low cost.

Low Cost, Good Enough Cameras Maturing

Numerous manufacturers are now providing products that offer good enough alternatives to Axis main products.  Since I have made this point before, I suggest you read my Axis vs ACTi comparison report for details.  I will only add that I have received numerous unsolicited reports (even from rival camera manufacturers) about how well ACTi is doing.  As more mainstream security buyers go to IP and expect similar pricing to analog, the lure of low cost IP cameras will become even stronger.  I do believe the costs of IP cameras is a significant issue and in an informal conversations with IP surveillance integrators from around the world, all of them cited the higher costs of IP as a key sales barrier.  If you believe that the TCO of IP overcomes this issue, see my IP cameras problem report for a rebuttal of this vendor sponsored claim.

Multi-Megapixel Cameras Maturing

Multi-megapixel cameras are the hottest segment of the IP video industry right now yet Axis has a very limited lineup for this.  Expect strong competition from specialist vendors like Arecont Vision (H.264 cameras up to 5 MP) and IQinvision (with a broad range of housing and body options). As customers continue to specify more megapixel cameras, Axis will have challenges.  While I expect Axis to respond in this area (it's premium applications like this where Axis has historically focused), Arecont Vision and IQinvision with 5 to 10 years experience focusing on megapixel will be strong competitors.

Axis Overshoots the Mainstream

Axis new product development is focused on H.264 and video analytics.  H.264 will not be very appealing for standard definition cameras as the savings relative to MPEG-4 are not terribly significant (maybe $50 or $100 reduction in storage costs). The situation is different for megapixel cameras, however, Axis' offering is currently only for standard definition.  While Axis support for video analytics is generating good interest for vendors such as Agent Vi, all the market statistics make it clear that video analytics is a small niche.  Video analytics support will be a weak factor in overcoming the significant price premium for Axis cameras.

Traditional CCTV Vendors Moving In

For the last 5 years, Axis' growth has been enhanced by traditional CCTV vendors offering limited or no IP cameras. 2008 has demonstrated that all of the big vendors are now seriously motivated to fight for IP camera market share.  Ironically, because Axis kept prices so high (while generating huge profits), other vendors now have the opportunity to undercut Axis on price, grow revenue and still make a profit. The IP camera market is also big enough now that the revenues generated justifies the opportunity.

Industry Interoperability Specs are Coming

While we may not have standards for a long time, vendors are coming together to promote interoperability.  It is clear to me that members of the PSIA are extremely motivated to implement support for a common IP camera specification.  They correctly, in my mind, realize that this is important for them to clear a barrier to entry and to attack Axis.  I would not be surprised to see many camera and video management vendors implementing the PSIA specification next year. Such support will bolster competition and reduce Axis advantage.

Recession Prioritizes Low Cost

It's clear we are in for a significant, if not severe, recession. Such conditions forces most buyers to more carefully examine and compare pricing. In recessions, buyers are more keen to make sacrifices and it's reasonable to believe many will forgo Axis advance features for lower pricing of competitor's products.

2 reports cite this report:

Top 5 Disruptive Surveillance Companies 2012 on Dec 15, 2011
What companies are driving changes in the video surveillance industry? What companies are the toughest competitors? In this new report, we answer...
Axis Financial Results Points to Market Slowdown on Oct 17, 2008
Axis 3rd quarter results demonstrate signs of a market slowdown, most strongly in Europe but with leading indicators globally. Worldwide video...

Related Reports

AI Video Surveillance (Finally) Goes Mainstream In 2020 on Sep 03, 2019
While video surveillance analytics has been promoted, hyped and lamented for nearly 20 years, next year, 2020, will be the year that it finally...
Scylla AI Video Analytics Company Profile on Aug 29, 2019
Scylla, an AI analytics startup, says they are targeting 1 Billion dollar valuation in 5 years and it "is not rocket science" to detect weapons and...
Wyze Image Quality Tested vs Axis, Hikvision And Nest on Aug 27, 2019
With Wyze's new AI feature, it is strong at analytics, but how good is the camera's image quality? Is it just as good as incumbents like Axis,...
Anyvision Facial Recognition Tested on Aug 21, 2019
Anyvision is aiming for $1 billion in revenue by 2022, backed by $74 million in funding. But does their performance live up to the hype they have...
Verkada People And Face Analytics Tested on Aug 16, 2019
This week, Verkada released "People Analytics", including face analytics that they describe is a "game-changing feature" that "pushes the...
Dahua Analytics+ Tested on Aug 07, 2019
Dahua's analytics have performed poorly in past shootouts. But now, they claim their new Analytics+ "algorithms significantly improve accuracy and...
Honeywell Speaks On NDAA Ban, New Non-Banned Cameras and Cybersecurity on Aug 06, 2019
For years, Honeywell has depended on Dahua, a company with a poor cybersecurity track record and now banned by the US NDAA, for the development and...
Hikvision 4K Camera Shootout on Aug 02, 2019
With their latest Smart Series 5 cameras, Hikvision is claiming cameras "fully loaded" with "state-of-the-art technology for high performance and...
History of Video Surveillance on Jul 19, 2019
The video surveillance market has changed significantly since 2000, going from VCRs to ab emerging AI cloud era.  The goal of this history is to...
Wyze AI Analytics Tested - Beats Axis and Hikvision on Jul 17, 2019
$20 camera disruptor Wyze has released free person detection deep learning analytics to all of their users, claiming users will "Only get notified...

Most Recent Industry Reports

How Cobalt Robotics May Disrupt Security on Sep 13, 2019
While security robots have largely become a joke over the last few years, one organization, Cobalt Robotics, has raised $50+ million from top US...
Panasonic 4K Camera Tested (WV-S2570L) on Sep 13, 2019
Panasonic has released their latest generation 4K dome, the WV-S2570L, claiming "Extreme image quality allows evidence to be captured even under...
ASIS GSX 2019 Show Report Final on Sep 12, 2019
IPVM went to Chicago for ASIS GSX 2019, with many exhibitors disappointed about traffic and the exhibitor schedule changing next year. Inside we...
Installation Course - Last Chance - Register Now on Sep 12, 2019
Last Chance - Register Now - September 2019 Video Surveillance Install Course. Thursday, September 12th is your last chance to register for the...
Commend ID5 Intercom Tested on Sep 12, 2019
Commend touts the new ID5 intercom as 'timelessly elegant' and the slim body, glass front touchscreen indeed looks better than common, but ugly,...
US State Department: "Chinese Tech Giants" "Tools of the Chinese Communist Party" on Sep 12, 2019
The US State Department has called out "Chinese tech giants" for being "tools of the Chinese Communist Party" in a blunt new speech that makes...
Uniview OEM Directory on Sep 11, 2019
This directory lists 20+ companies that OEM products from Uniview, with a graphic and links to company websites below. It does not cover all...
Yi Home Camera 3 AI Analytics Tested on Sep 10, 2019
Yi Technology is claiming "new AI features" in its $50 Home Camera 3 "eliminates 'false positives' caused by flying insects, small pets, or light...
Hanwha Announces 32MP Camera + AI Line on Sep 10, 2019
In the first rise in maximum megapixel resolution in 5 years, Hanwha has announced a 32MP / 8K camera directly competing with Avigilon's H4 30MP /...
Fingerprints for Access Control Guide on Sep 09, 2019
Users can lose badges, but they never misplace a finger, right? The most common biometric used in access are fingerprints, and it has become one...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact