Axis Launches ~$100 HD Camera

By John Honovich, Published Apr 11, 2018, 07:18am EDT

Chinese manufacturers, led by Hikvision, have come to dominate the low end of the Western market, driven by ~$100 cameras.

While Axis has continued to be strong at the mid to high end of the market, surpassing $1 billion in revenue in 2017, they have lagged their Chinese rivals in the low-end. And their 2016 first attempt did not go to well.

Now, Axis is back with a ~$100 HD camera, the Companion Eye Mini, by far their lowest ever camera price, claiming major feature upgrades as well. Can Axis now compete in the low end? In this note, we examine the new offering, its key features and strength/weaknesses vs Hikvision.

Key ******** - ********** **, ********* **** *** *.***

******** ** **** ******** attempt, **** *** ******** in * *** *****:

  • ******** ********** ** ** 15 ******: **********, **** required ****** * $***+ camera *** ********** **, putting ** ** * steep ***** ************ *** what *************** ****** * ******* **** *************' *****.
  • *** ****** ** ********* size, **** ******* **** its *********** *** *** of *** ******** ***** ** the ****** (**** ** dongle ** ******** ********* needed). **** ****** ******* its ********* ****** *** ***** who **** **** *****, obtrusive ************.
  • ****** **** **** *******, these ******* ******* *.***. H.265 ** ******** ************ commonplace *** **** ****** cameras.

Other ******* ********

***** ******* ******** ** the **** ~$*** ** camera:

  • ** **-***** *******, ** NAS *********: ***** **** is *** ********* **** for ***-*** ************, **** was ******* ************ **** for ***-**** **** *******.
  • */*" ******, ** **** is ***** * '******' size ******.
  • **** *** *******.

Key *********** - ***** ** ****, ******, ** *****

*******, ******** ** ******* products, **** ***** *** 3 *** *********** ****:

  • ** *** **********. ** 1080p, **** **** ** half *** ***** ***** of ****** ******* ********* that *** $*** ** less.
  • *** ~$*** **** ******* is ****** ****, **** another ~$** *** *** outdoor *******. ** ********, low-cost ******* ****** *** typically ******* ****.
  • **** **** **** *** support ***** / ***** / ***** *******. ** contrast, ***-**** ******* ****** almost ****** **** ***** support (******** ** ***), ****** **** ****** buyers *** ** *** from *** ****** ********.

Axis ********* *** ********

*** ********* *** **** must ** **** ********' ********* ***, ****** ***** ********* series ******* (*** *** ****) ***** ******* **** storage (** *** ***). This *** ****** ** ~$*** for * **** *******, 1TB *** ******** ** ~$25-30 *** ****** *** a **** ** ****, or ~$*** *****.

*********** **** ******* *** find **** ********. *******, most *** ****/***** ****** count ******* ** *** use **** *******.

Bear **** ******* ****

*** **** **** ******* Axis ** ******: **** will ***** ***** *********'* pricing *** ** ** a ****'* **** ** try. ** **** ***** $100 *******, ********* **** sell **** *** $**. If **** ***** $** cameras, ********* **** **** them ****. ** **** sells $** ** *******, Hikvision **** *** ****** to **** ***** *******, etc., ***.

**** **** **** *** Axis ******, **** **** still ** ****** ******** of ******* **** *** small ******* **. *********, et **.

Bull **** *** ****

*** **** **** *** Axis ** **** *******: Axis ** ******** *** absolute ****** ***** *** and *** ***** **** gap ** (*.*., ****** it *** $***+ *** camera, *** **'* **** than $**), *** ****** it ** ** ******* on ***** ********** **** as (*) ****** ******** quality, (*) ****** ******, (3) *****, (*) *** being ******* **** / not ********** ** ******* government.

Vote / ****

 

Comments (18)

"...not being Chinese made"

Where are they made?

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Axis response:

Not China. We produce them at the same product site(s) as the other Axis products.

Related post from last year - Axis: Minimal Made In China Products, Ending In 2017 (Except For China Domestic Sales)

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Axis has added a 30 second marketing video for this line, not a lot there but adding for reference:

One interesting note is they do the golf ball size comparison, like Avigilon's from years ago. However, Axis says that, unlike the Avigilon one, they do not require a dongle that Avigilon did.

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If it was ONVIF compliant, I know that I would have a lot of interest in this model. But, it's hard to pick it if it doesn't work with standard VMS systems.

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Same, felt super excited when I saw the title, but then let down when I see I HAVE to use their NVR/VMS.

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Axis is basically playing catch up, they are not surpassing their rivals.  What reason would a HIK dealer have to switch to Axis?  HIK 1080p IP camera is $100, built-in IR, can be used indoor or outdoor and is compatible with every VMS.  Axis $100 camera indoor only and Axis VMS only, no so apps and PC-only.  Axis should at minimum meet HIK's feature set if they want to compete.  

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I'm not sure it's Axis' goal to get dealers to switch from Hik to Axis. They can't (won't) compete feature for feature with Hik on price, but there are probably plenty of resellers who would prefer to put Axis in but can't get the customer to spend the extra money.

Axis are now making it more attractive to go with higher quality software and, depending on who you ask, a more reputable brand. 

I'd like to see these cameras ditch the requirement to use the Axis NVR, but otherwise I think this is a good (not great, just good) move for Axis.

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I'd take a major issue with saying Axis is higher quality software than other VMS that supports multiple manufacturers.  Switching to Axis software means losing support for 90% of brands (all non-Axis IP cameras), losing Mac support, losing web support, losing app support.  

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I agree with you on many points, but there are Axis Companion mobile apps for iOS and Android. There is no web portal, nor a Mac client, though.

I would tend to agree with #3 that this move is more favorable to Axis resellers who would rather sell Axis even on the low end than to those selling other brands, though.

I'm also curious if they'll follow up with an open version of the Mini cameras. When they released the original Companion line, the M30s came out around the same time at a ~$50 premium or so. I think the willingness to price this low is new, and we'll see where it goes. 

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I'd take a major issue with saying Axis is higher quality software than other VMS that supports multiple manufacturers.

No disagreement here. I should clarify that I meant the firmware on the cameras. It's subjective in some respects, but I prefer the web interface on Axis cameras over Hik and in general it's probably more secure meaning less risk of having to go out and do emergency firmware upgrades.

I haven't used their VMS/NVR but I'd wager there is little if any competitive advantage over other similar tier software.

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I got scared for a minute, and then I saw that it only works with their Companion NVR, so it's not a threat to us the way the Hanwha Wisenet Q series cameras are. 

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Axis, if you're reading this, please bump to 3mp and make outdoor version w/ onvif and I'll happily promote / sell for you. Thank you!

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Seems to me that anyone who jumped on the low cost Axis camera train would be doing so, at least in part, because they have more trust in Axis than Hik. This could be an attempt to exploit the fact Hik has been getting such a bad wrap lately. I doubt Axis would have put in the effort if they didn't spot weakness.

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In order for us to compete with some jobs that come across we use the Axis Companion system. Works very well for what it is. One interesting note is you have to put away your  My theory is that sometime down the road you will be able to purchase a firmware upgrade key to turn on VAPIX or onvif. Just my opinion though.

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IMO, this is another failed product release.

Indoor Only
No Onvif
2MP only

This will neither appeal to Hik buyers or Axis buyers. 

Would it have really been that much more to make the darn thing Onvif. 

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Would it have really been that much more to make the darn thing Onvif.

Probably cost to take it out of the firmware ;)

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Installation video released:

Camera itself is not yet released but we plan to test when available.

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Hardly vandal resistant with that easy to move turret design. Why not have a locking mechanism under the trim ring to at least make it difficult to move?

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