Milestone Mobile Version ExaminedBy: John Honovich, Published on Nov 14, 2011
Today, Milestone became the last major VMS vendor to launch their own mobile application, the simply named XProtect Mobile [link no longer available]. While they are very late, in true Milestone fashion, the company is being very aggressive in the pricing and availability of the offering. Inside this note, we dig into details of the operation, product support, pricing and competitive positioning of the new series.
Here are the key points for Milestone's mobile offering:
- Support for both Android and iOS (Apple) - Interesting because many VMS systems only support iOS currently while Android's market share is surging [link no longer available].
- Support across every Milestone VMS version, even the free VMS Go.
- The application is free, there is no cost at all for it. While a few VMS vendors offer mobile at no charge, this is uncommon.
- Requires installation of a server component that transcodes and can handle load of many requests. This is common in some but not all mobile VMS applications. While it typically increases performance, it does add another component to install/maintain.
- Availability: Milestone says the Android version should be available in December 2011 and the iOS version in Spring 2012.
This more than rectifies Milestone's long-standing deficiency and will likely turn mobile into a strength for Milestone. The combination of free mobile + free / super cheap VMS versions is likely to be very attractive for the low to mid end of the market.
At the same time, this is likely to hurt significantly the third party Milestone mobile app community including the Hawk-I app (removed from the app store recently), and the very expensive MobiDEOS [link no longer available] and LexTech Lab [link no longer available] applications.
While it is valuable to have third-party developers and applications, mobile is becoming so central to the Internet and to surveillance monitoring that Milestone clearly has to have it internally as part of its core offering.