Why Cisco Video Surveillance has Struggled

Author: John Honovich, Published on Feb 28, 2009
Despite the great hype for Cisco's entrance into video surveillance, Cisco has not demonstrated significant success in the market. They have won only a limited number of projects and many, if not most, of those are tied to larger Cisco deployments.
Cisco Will Not Exhibit At ISC West
Every significant video surveillance manufacturer will be exhibiting at ISC West in April. Cisco, who made $8 Billion in profits last year, will not be exhibiting at ISC West because of "limited marketing dollars." Ironically, 2 years ago Cisco was the keynote speaker at this conference championing the power of convergence and disruptive technology for video surveillance. [I spoke with Cisco. While they are not exhibiting they noted that they will be speaking and presenting in other activities at ISC West.]
What's Happening with Cisco?
Cisco is losing momentum because it lacks a compelling video surveillance offering. In 2006 and 2007, Cisco was marketing heavy and lots of people were anxious, hopeful or fearful about Cisco in video surveillance. Many of us pointed out that Cisco didn't really have much substance in video surveillance. The answer was always "give them time, they will improve."
In the last 3 years, Cisco's offering has become apparent. They have 2 cameras, a DVR/NVR plug-in for their routers that has very limited appeal, an antiquated and overly complex VMS and high-quality encoders. It has left even optimists for Cisco, like Steve Hunt, hoping that "Cisco is buckling down and coming up with some excellent innovations for us and will unveil them later this year." You can hope but only for so long.
Why This is Important
Understanding why this is happening is critical because (1) this demonstrates key factors in winning in video surveillance and because (2) Cisco's struggles show the problems that IT in general has with overtaking the physical security market.
My research indicates that Cisco is changing its strategy and market focus in video surveillance. Indeed, Cisco is likely to become a much smaller force in video surveillance but more focused on segments where it has strength.
******* *** ***** **** *** *****'* ******** **** ***** ************, Cisco *** *** ************ *********** ******* ** *** ******. **** have *** **** * ******* ****** ** ******** *** ****, if *** ****, ** ***** *** **** ** ****** ***** deployments.
Cisco **** *** ******* ** *** ****
***** *********** ***** ************ ************ **** ** ********** ***** ****** *****. *****, *** **** $* ******* ** ******* **** year, **** *** ** ********** ** *** **** ******* ** "******* ********* *******." **********, * ***** *** ***** *** *** ******* ******* at **** ********** *********** *** ***** ** *********** *** ********** technology *** ***** ************. [* ***** **** *****. ***** **** are *** ********** **** ***** **** **** **** ** ******** and ********** ** ***** ********** ** *** ****.]
What's ********* **** *****?
***** ** ****** ******** ******* ** ***** * ********** ***** surveillance ********. ** **** *** ****, ***** *** ********* ***** and **** ** ****** **** *******, ******* ** ******* ***** Cisco ** ***** ************. **** ** ** ******* *** **** Cisco ****'* ****** **** **** ********* ** ***** ************. *** answer *** ****** "**** **** ****, **** **** *******."
** *** **** * *****, *****'* ******** *** ****** ********. They **** * *******, ****/*** ****-** *** ***** *********** *** **** ******* ******, ** ********** *** ****** ******* VMS *** ****-******* ********. ** *** **** **** ********* *** Cisco, **** ***** ****, ****** **** "***** ** ******** **** *** ****** ** **** **** ********* innovations *** ** *** **** ****** **** ***** **** ****." *** *** **** *** **** *** ** ****.
Why **** ** *********
************* *** **** ** ********* ** ******** ******* (*) **** demonstrates *** ******* ** ******* ** ***** ************ *** ******* (2) *****'* ********* **** *** ******** **** ** ** ******* has **** ********** *** ******** ******** ******.
** ******** ********* **** ***** ** ******** *** ******** *** market ***** ** ***** ************. ******, ***** ** ****** ** become * **** ******* ***** ** ***** ************ *** **** focused ** ******** ***** ** *** ********.

[***************]

Not ********** ** * ****** ******** *****

*** ****** ** *** ********** ** *** **** ** ***********:

  • **** ******** *********** *****'* **********
  • ******** ** ********* (********* *** *****) ****** *** ******* ***** why ***** ** *** **********
  • ******/******** ** ** *********** **** ** ** *** **** (*** the ******* *** **** ***** **** *** ***** ************ **********). Those ** *********** **** ***** **** **** **** *****'* ***********.
  • *********** **** ****** **** ** ***** *** ***** *** ***********, hammering **** *****'* **** ** **********.

******** ***** ****** ***** ** ******* ** **** ******, **'* just *** ***** *** ******* ** *** ******* ******** ***** to *** *******.

******* ***** ** ****** ** ****** ******* **** *********** ***** surveillance *********** *** *** *****, **** *** **** ***** ** unjustifiable. **** ** ******** ***, ** ****, ***** ** * hugely ******** ********* ***** ***** ******* ** *** ** ***** surveillance.

**** ******* **** ***** ** ***** **** ******* **** **** to ***** ** ***** **** ****** ** ****/** ***********. ******* this ** ****. ** ** **, **** ******** **** ********** ******* ******* **** *********. ** ** ***, *** ****** reason ** ****** **** ** ***** - ***** **** ******* will **** ** **** **** ** **********.

Faulty *********** **** ** ** *********

***** ****** *** *********** ******** *********** **** ** ** ********* coming **** ***** ************. ************:

  • **** **/******** *********** ** ********* **** *******
  • **** *** ***** ***** ** ******* ** ***** **** **** money *** ***** ************ **** ** *********
  • **** ***** ************ ******** ***** ** ****** *******

**** ** ********* * ****** ** ******* **** *********** ***** be **** **** ** ********** *** ** *** ****** *** to ** **** **** ***********. *** ********, ** **** *****'* emerging ********** *** ******* **** ** ****,** ******* ***** ** **% ** *** ******. ** ******* **** ** ***** ** ** **% ** the ****** ** *** *** ** **** ****. *** **** economic ******** ** ******* **** *********** **** ****.

*** ****** **** ** ***** **** ** *** **** *** traditional ******** ********* ** ************ *****. *** **** ********** ** companies ** *** ******** (**** ****) **** ***** **** **** a ****** ** **** ********** **** ** *** ** ***** they *** *****. ** *** ** ******* (***, **, ***, etc.) *** **** **** ** ***** ***** ************.

******* ** **** ******* ** *** ****** ********** **** *** users ***** *** *** **** *** ***** ************ ********* ** big ** ********* ******* ****. **** *** ****** ** * general ********. ***** ***** ********* *** * ******* ** ***** like ****, ** *** *** **** ******** ** *** ******** or ********* ** ******** *** ***** ** *** **** ********.

****** ** ***** ************ *** ****** ***** ** ******** ******* the ****** ** ***** ********** **** ***** ************ ** *******. And ** *** ****** *** *** ******* *** ***** ** video ************ **** ****** ** ********** **** ********, ****** ** hard ****** ** ******** ** *********, *********** ***** ************ ********* already ** **** ****** **** - ******* ****** *********** ********* for ********* ** *********.

*******, ** * ******** ******, ** ********* **** **** ******* about *** ****** ** ******** ******** ***** ******. * *** amused * *** ***** *** **** * ******* ** *****'* webinar ********* ******** ***** *** * ***** ************ ******* **** years ** *** ********. **** ** ****** ** ******** ********. It ***** *********** *** ******* **** *** ****** *** ******** a *** **** ********** *** ****** ***** *******.

Cisco's ******* *******

****** ************ *****'* ******* *******. **'* ** ********** *** ****** ******* architecture **** *** *** ********** * *** ******* ****** ***** bought **. *** ******* ******** **** **** *** '*** *** they ****** **** *******?" *** **** *****'* ******** ** ***** surveillance ** ***********, **** *** **** **** * **** ******* that's *** **********.

****, ** ******, ***** **** **** ************* ********* ** **** would **** ****** *******, ********* ** **** ***** ******** - companies **** *** ********* ********* *** *** **** ****** ** professional ***** ************ *****.

How *****'* ***** ************ ******** ** ********

**** *** **** *** ******, *** ******** ****** ***** ***** surveillance *** ******* **** ***** ********* ** ******** **** ******** *** ******** *** ****** (*****). ** ***** ****, *** **** ******** ** * *********************** ******* ********* ** *****. ****, ***** ***** ***** **** *** ******** *******.

*** **** ** ***** ** ** ******** ******** ********** *** large-scale, ******* ******** ***** **** **** ** ******* *** ********** respond ** ******* ** ***** * ******* ** ********** *******. To ** ****, ***** **** ********* *** *** ** *** own ***** ************, ****** *******, ************** ****** (*****), ** ********* *** ********** ********* **** **** ***** ***** offerings.

*** ***** *********** **** ** **** **** * ******* **** Cisco's ******* *** ********* ************** *** **** *** **** * complicated *******. ******* ***** *** ** **** ** ***** ******** products **********, ** *** ****** ******* **************** *** ************.

* ***** ***** ** ***** ** ** ****** ** **** market *******. ** ***** **** ** ***** ******* ********* *** their ******* ** *********. ****, ********* ** **** ******* **** the ***** *** *********** ** ***** *** ******. *** **** strange ***** ** *** *** ** *** **** '**** ********' which ** ********* *********. ** **** ****, *** *** ***** of ****** ***** ***** ************ ** *** ******* **'* *** best ****** ** *** ****** *** ******* ***** *** ********* the ******** *********** ******* ***** ***** ************ *** ***** ****** control, ***** ************* *******, ***** ********** ********, ***.

Where ** ****** ***** ** ****** ***** ************

*** ************ **** **** ***** *** *****-***** ******** ****** **** be **** ********* ** **** ********. **** **** *** ********* municipalities, ********, ******** *** ************. *** **** ***** ** *****, retailers, *********, **** ************ *** ***. **** ******** ****** ***** at *** *** *% ** **% ** *** ******. ** you *** ** *** **** ** * ********** ** **** space, ***** ** ******* ***** ********** *** ********.

*****'* ****** ** ***** ************ **** ** ** * ***** player - **** * ***********. ****** ***** **** ********** ********* ** ***** ************, ****** Cisco ** **** ** **** ********.

** **** ** ***** ******* **** **** ********, * ***** it **** ** ********** *** ***** *** ******* *** *** video ************ ********. ** *** **** * *****, ** **** tried ** ****** *** ***** ***** ** *** ******, ***** has **** ********** (** * ******** ***) *** *** ******** (themselves ********). ** ******** ** *** ***** ********, **** ** likely ** ** * *********** ***********.

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