Cisco's approach to video surveillance management is uncommon. Before one can appreciate how it is better or worse, it is important to understand what it is and how it differs. In this report, we examine both of Cisco's VMS offerings - the Cisco Video Surveillance Manager and the Cisco Stream Manager as well as Cisco's physical security appliances.
Unlike most providers offering tiered VMS versions (e.g., basic and pro), Cisco's 2 VMS are positioned at different markets with varying combination of feature sets. While the Stream Manager is targeted towards casinos, the Video Surveillance Manager is targeted to the general professional market. Additionally, Cisco has an SMB surveillance / VMS offering called Cisco Small Business Video Monitoring System.
Much more so than most VMS providers, Cisco focuses on an end to end offering. In addition to the appliances, readers should review our reports on Cisco's IPICS (communication interoperability) offering and Cisco's MediaNet (video optimization) solution to understand the components in a full Cisco security/surveillance offering.
UPDATE March 2011: Cisco Stream Manager will be discontinued.