Axis Cuts Prices 2015

By John Honovich, Published Mar 09, 2015, 12:00am EDT

Axis has cut prices on a number of their most popular markets. 

In this note, we look at feedback from Axis, comparing how this impacts their Western rivals and how much it closes the gap on Hikvision and Dahua.

Price Cuts 

Axis explained that: 

"Axis is doing price adjustments once or twice a year, typically in the middle of Q1 which just happened on March 1st. The adjustments are driven by changes to our product portfolio such as new products, age of products, and End of Life of some products. We also take the overall market into consideration of course."

Notable cuts include:

"The following popular products had price drops this year:
* M30 series with around 10-20% price drops (M3004, 3005, 3006, 3007)
* M and P line encoders with around 20-25% price drops (M7014, M7016, P7014, P7016). M7014 dropped from $399 to $299 MSRP, so 25%."

In particular the lower resolution M30 models are being cut in the 20% range, with the 720p model down 18% and the 1080p model down 21%.

Beyond that, a handful of other products are getting cuts, as shown in this flier.

Fixed Domes Key

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The sharp price drops on the 720p and 1080p fixed domes are important because they serve as a benchmark for entry level, basic cameras (given dome camera popularity). For example, the M3004 previously had an MSRP of $279, now is down to $229. This should move street / online pricing at ~$200. (Note: since the cuts only went into effect last week, it may take a little more time to reflect across online stores.)

Western Rival Impact

Many, if not most, Western (and Japanese) surveillance manufacturers carefully track Axis pricing and aim to be close or less than Axis. On the other hand, Axis has been relatively slow to lower their price overall, making the M30 models increasingly overpiced. For instance, compare the Axis M3004 to this Bosch Advantage line model, the Axis was ~$100 more than the Bosch, even though that Bosch has the same, if not better, specs. With the Axis price cut, this is significantly reduced, but still higher. However, some big manufacturers, including Panasonic and Sony, whose current fixed minidome pricing would be more in demand of a cut in response.

Hikvision / Dahua Gap

For the low end of the market (especially fixed minidomes and encoders) the biggest threat / riser over the past year has been Hikvision (see: Top Manufacturers Gaining and Losing Ground). Dahua has offered similar products and sometimes even lower pricing but with more constrained distribution.

For both of these manufacturers, fix domes in the ~$100s have become commonplace. For example, here are 5 Hikvision fixed minidomes under $175 that are 1.3MP+, have integrated IR and are IP66 rated.

On the positive side for Axis, they are cutting the price gap by 1/3rd or more between their lowest cost fixed minidomes and their Chinese competitors. However, those Axis models still lack IR and are indoor only (the inclusion of which would roughly double the price for Axis options to be truly comparable to the Hikvision ones).

Overall

Axis management continuously talks about the importance of excelling at the low end of the market. Unfortunately, their competitors have moved much more aggressively, hurting Axis here (and slowing Axis overall growth).

These price cuts should help some, especially among larger customers and those more nervous about using Chinese products (especially in light of Hikvision's repeated hacking incidents). However, for those looking for substantial savings and more features (like IR and IP66), the Chinese manufacturers retain a sizeable price advantage.

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