How Tyco/Intellivid Will Impact Retail Video Surveillance

By John Honovich, Published Jul 16, 2008, 08:00pm EDT

Tyco's acquisition of Intellivid has the potential to be a great solution for retailers. While it certainly will take time and there are definitely questions to be answered, the fundamental fit is good. Over the next 3 years, this may have a substantial impact on customer's selections and the competitive dynamics within the retail video surveillance market.

[UPDATE 2012: This has not had a major impact on the market. Inded, Intellivid's offering have received minimal promotion or advancement in the intervening time frame. Our original analysis was too bullish.]

This report examines the impact of this acquisition. For background information on the purchase, see Intellivid's Acquisition Announcement. For an extensive review of Intellivid, read my report my June 2008 report on Intellivid [link no longer available].

Key Findings for the Tyco / Intellivid Acquisition

  • The fit between Tyco/American Dynamics and Intellivid is strong
  • How the integration works and how well it does are key questions
  • This solution has strong potential for medium sized and big box retailers
  • The solution is a major threat to March, Verint, Milestone and Genetec
  • The solution may be less strong for small box retailers
  • The solution should be less of a threat to Clickit and i3DVR [link no longer available]

Background of American Dynamics

American Dynamics, the division of Tyco, that manufacturers video management systems is one of the top selling DVR companies in the world. Their main line, the Intellex, has been a top seller for more than a decade. The product is widely regarded as one of the easiest to use DVRs. According to Tyco, more than half of the top 50 retailers use Intellex. This is consistent with my own experience as an integrator, where more than half of the stores in any given mall used Intellex.

American Dynamics is attempting to catch up to the trend of network video and video analytics. While they have had an IP Intellex [link no longer available] version for a few years, it is limited in functionality. Recently, Tyco purchased Trident Tek [link no longer available] to enhance their network video offering. Combining Trident Tek and Intellivid provides solid foundations for both of the key trends.

Background of Intellivid

From its founding, Intellivid has been focused on the retail market through the use of video analytics (see my Intellivid review [link no longer available] for details). Intellivid is widely regarded as one of the most sophisticated video analytics solution with an emphasis on providing an end to end workflow optimized for retail stores. Intellivid offers a full suite of loss prevention and business intelligence analytics. The most unique aspects of Intellivid's offerings are likely Computer Aided Tracking. Intellivid uses analytics to simplify operators tracking suspects from camera to camera - a very common use case for retailers.

Strong Fit

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The fit is strong because you have the market leader in retail video systems combining with the technology leader in retail video analytics. They complement each other very well. American Dynamics has a very strong customer base with a large installation footprint within retail. This gives Tyco an advantage on expansions, upgrades and new deployments. With Intellivid, this gives American Dynamics the most sophisticated video analytic solution for retail.

Just because the fit is strong does not ensure that it will have a significant impact or be the right choice. It clearly depends on the implementation and details. The remainder of the report examines what these issues and elements may be.

Questions on How it Will Work?

I see two key issues that will determine how significant an impact this acquisition has.

  • How seamlessly does this work with Intellex appliances?
  • How seamlessly does this work with the Intellex User Interface?

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