Startup iryx Launches, Led by Ex-Arecont and FLIR Executives

By: John Honovich, Published on Apr 04, 2019

Suddenly, the video surveillance industry is witnessing a new wave of startups.

Now launching is iryx, a startup led by veterans of 2 of the industry's first wave of megapixel camera companies, Ian Johnston [link no longer available], most recently VP of Engineering at FLIR, earlier CTO of IQinVision, and Raul Calderon [link no longer available], most recently President at Arecont Vision.

iryx exec

iryx describes their upcoming offerings as 'machine learning camera products that offer sensor fusion.' We spoke with the executives about the company's launch and analyze their outlook and positioning.

Offering Overview

Unlike most AI companies that have targeted cloud or add-on AI offerings, iryx is building hardware - cameras, or at least what they see as the next generation of cameras. Calderon described it as they:

utilize sensors looking at different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum such as visible, thermal and mmWave radar

The goal of multiple sensors, and in particular fusing them, is that they have different strengths. Visible imaging is ideal for humans but presents greater challenges for computer vision. Thermal imaging eliminates key problems in shadows and lighting common in visible imaging. Finally, radar provides richer information in terms of objects positioning and tracking that is hard to do with visible or thermal imaging.

Radar is currently atypical for commercial security applications but its use is expanding, driven by self-driving cars, where the price, performance, and compactness are improving. Embedding radar in cameras will become more common in the 2020s.

With those fused sensors, iryx plans to do analytics inside the device, as they describe, using a:

Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News
Get Notified of Video Surveillance Breaking News

computer vision (CV) engine with convolutional neural network (CNN) for superior recognition, classification and identification with low power consumption at the edge.

iryx products can then send data to VMS and other management systems for response, display, action, etc.

Target Markets

The company is targeting the high end of the market - commercial, industrial, government applications where the need for more accurate security and outdoor analytics stand out.

They noted they are not trying to compete in low cost or budget applications, which would infeasible given the multiple sensors, etc. being used.

ODM / OEM and Channel Sales

The company is looking to partner with ODM and OEM partners who would incorporate this under their own brand as well as to channel (i.e., integrator) sales under the company's own brand.

Given the time and effort it takes to develop a company's own channel from scratch, ODM / OEM provides a shorter path to larger scale deployment and revenue.

iryx they will not be selling through distribution, given the higher end of the market they are targeting.

Start Shipping First Units In A Year

The company says they plan to start shipping first units in a year. We would think volume sales would be minimally early 2022, as it takes time for testing, refinement, etc. However, the company is already working on the product and has an experienced team which will cut down some of the time needed.

Not Made In China

While the company has not finalized where the product will be manufactured, they noted that it would not be made in China, given security concerns of their target market.

Johnston CEO of iryx and CTO of Cognize

One atypical aspect of iryx is that company CEO Johnston is simultaneously CTO of Cognize. Cognize is led by ex-Arcules CEO who left Arcules last summer. Johnston clarified his roles at both companies:

iryx is focused on multi-spectral sensors, combined with machine intelligence edge compute engines. It is essentially a continuation of the vision of ISD to bring innovation to the edge. ISD was primarily focused on edge storage, and recording visible light sensors. iryx expands our sensor mastery across the entire electromagnetic spectrum. All that is packaged with powerful compute engines to handle all the modern AI frameworks that our customers want to run.

Cognize is a Cognitive Awareness software solution that processes data from the world around it, giving our customers actionable intelligence, and knowledge of what is happening in their worlds. We have yet to go public with what we have in mind, but it is truly exciting.

The net result is a lot of work, but the two are highly complementary, and therefore more easy to manage.

Strengths For iryx

We see points in iryx's favor:

  • Experienced executives reduce the time for both product and business development.
  • Shortage of new camera manufacturers makes it easier to stand out.
  • Tapping into rising trends including both radar and computer vision.

Challenges For iryx

On the other hand, there are concerns:

  • How expensive will it ultimately be? The company says it will be significantly less expensive than existing multi-spectral approaches, which we believe, but it may be much more expensive than regular 'cameras'.
  • How much better will their analytics / intelligence be than 'regular' cameras or generic AI on conventional video? Will their conventional rivals be 'good enough' for many applications?
  • How big of a market place will there be? This relates to how much better. Will this eventually be a niche for the very high end or can it be a more broadly used product?


It is certainly too early to tell how well they will do but it is good for users to have more options and different approaches to choose from. 

2 reports cite this report:

Directory of 70 Video Surveillance Startups on Sep 18, 2019
This directory provides a list of video surveillance startups to help you see and research what companies are new or not yet broadly known. 2019...
Spring 2019 50+ New Products Directory on Apr 08, 2019
We are compiling a list of new products for Spring 2019 and have over 50 already. Contrast to Fall 2018 New Products Directory and Spring 2018...
Comments (3) : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

90+ Companies Profile Directory on Nov 05, 2019
While IPVM covers the largest companies in the industry regularly (like Axis, Dahua, Hikvision, etc.), IPVM strives to do a profile post on each...
Hikvision USA Fights LTS on Nov 04, 2019
Hikvision's USA subsidiary is fighting with LTS, having recently quietly dropped LTS as an authorized distributor amidst ongoing face-offs between...
Axis Cracks Down On Illicit Channel Sales on Nov 01, 2019
Axis has stepped up efforts to crack down on illicit channel sales according to various industry sources, though, Axis denies this. Online sales...
Struggling Arcules Changes Chief Revenue Officer on Oct 29, 2019
Canon / Milestone spinout Arcules has struggled, now changing their Chief Revenue Officer, just a year after he came on board. The issue is not...
nFlux AI Startup Profile on Oct 28, 2019
nFlux, an Amazon, Google, and Microsoft funded AI startup told IPVM their mission is to build the most intelligent video analytics platform in the...
Network Optix NxWitness 4.0 Tested on Oct 10, 2019
Network Optix released Nx Witness 4.0, proclaiming new features like a deep learning analytics metadata SDK, increased H.265 support, and UX...
Knightscope Sells Just 1 Net New Robot In 6 Months on Oct 04, 2019
For the first half of 2019, US government records show that Knightscope has sold just 1 net new robots ('machines-in-network'), inching up from 52...
'Bunker Busting' Wireless Access Startup: Sure-Fi Profile on Oct 03, 2019
An access startup is claiming its 'bunker busting' wireless Wiegand radios can punch through 'any obstruction'. We examine their offering,...
Critiquing Carnegie's AI Surveillance Paper on Sep 25, 2019
The Carnegie Endowment has issued an ambitious paper on the Global Expansion of AI Surveillance. While its aim is applaudable, the paper has...
RealNetworks SAFR Facial Recognition Profile on Sep 25, 2019
RealNetworks entered the surveillance market by giving away their analytics to schools for free, and is now targeting large commercial users with...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Wireless / WiFi Access Lock Guide on Nov 12, 2019
For some access openings, running wires can add thousands in cost, and wireless alternatives that avoid it becomes appealing. But using wireless...
Open vs End-to-End Systems: Integrator Statistics 2019 on Nov 11, 2019
Preference for open systems is on the decline, according to new IPVM statistics. We asked integrators: For video surveillance systems, do you...
Biggest Low Light Problems 2019 on Nov 08, 2019
Over 150 integrators responded to our survey question: "What are the biggest problems you face getting good low-light images?" Inside, we share...
US Issues Criminal Charges For Fraudulently Selling Hikvision And Other China Products on Nov 07, 2019
The US government has made an unprecedented move on the video surveillance supply chain, charging a US company, Aventura for "having conspired with...
The Access Control Codes Guide: IBC, NFPA 72, 80 & 101 on Nov 07, 2019
For access, there is one basic maxim: Life safety above all else. But how do you know if all applicable codes are being followed? While the...
Rhombus Cameras, VMS and Analytics Tested on Nov 06, 2019
Rhombus boasts they have created "the new standard in Enterprise, cloud-managed video security" and told IPVM in January 2019 they offer twice the...
"Stress in the Residential Market" - Major Lender Exits on Nov 06, 2019
The residential security / 'alarm' market is getting worse, at least for traditional players. Now, one of the biggest lenders in the industry has...
Aiphone Video Intercom Tested (IX Series 2) on Nov 05, 2019
Aiphone was one of integrator's favorite intercom manufacturers but how well do their products work? The company's newest offering, the IX Series 2...
90+ Companies Profile Directory on Nov 05, 2019
While IPVM covers the largest companies in the industry regularly (like Axis, Dahua, Hikvision, etc.), IPVM strives to do a profile post on each...