Open vs End-to-End Solutions: Integrator Statistics 2016

By IPVM Team, Published May 12, 2016, 08:20am EDT

This is the first and only statistics that show preference levels for open vs end-to-end solutions.

150+ integrators told IPVM what they preferred, answering:

"For video surveillance systems, do you prefer open architecture or end-to-end (i.e., cameras and recorders/VMS from different manufacturers or a single manufacturer for both)? Why? Who?"

This is a key question, as end-to-end solutions have become increasingly hot, with manufacturer consolidation being a sign that open systems are on the decline. On the other hand, for years, the benefits of open architecture has been touted.

But which side has more support across integrators? Is open 'dead' or is end-to-end overhyped?

Integrator results show a clear winner - by a 3:1 ratio.

*******

*********** ****** ********* **** systems, ******** **** ** * 3:1 ***** **** ***-**-***.

*** *** ****** ***** were:

  • **** *** ********* ********* for ****** *** '**** possible ********', ******** ****-**, and ****** **** ** ****** vendor *** ** **** at *** *****.
  • ***-**-*** *** ****** ****** preferred *** **** ** support/install, *** ******** ********** or usability.
  • ******** *** *** ***** top ****** ** *** "***-**-***" category
  • ********* *** *** **** preferred **** ******, ******* and ***** *** **** showings, ** ***** *** had ******* ********
  • **** *** *** **** preferred ****** ***** *** open *******, **** ********* 2nd
  • **** *********** *** **** for *** **** ** customer, *** ***-**-*** *** another, ****** * ***** answer 

Best ******** ******** - ****

********** *** **** ********* often ******** ****** ******* to ***** ********* *** best ******** ********:

  • "****- *** ** ******* the ****** **** *** best ********* *** ***** requirements."
  • "** ****** ************ *** cover *** *** ********** you ********* ** *** field ** **'* ********* to ** **** ** combine ********* ************ ******** into *** ******** ****** that ********* *** ********* needs."
  • "* ****** ****. * find **** *** ************ never *** *** **** solution ** *** ********, particularly ** ******* ** cameras."
  • "**** ************. ** *** add * ****** **** to ** ******** *** I *** *** *** best ******* *** *** application. ** **** ******* that * ** *******/ servicing ** *** **** of ** *******."
  • "* ****** **** ************. Client ***** *** **** from **** ** ****."
  • "** **** ***********, ** use ********** **** ******* manufacturers ** ******* *** best ********** ********* ** fit *** ********* *****."
  • '**** ************ ***** * wider ******* ** ********* for *** ********'* ************."
  • "**** ************ - ** typically **** * ******* of ****** ***** **** we **** ** ******* a ******* *** ******* no *** ************ ***** all *** ******* ** need. ** ********, ** don't **** *** ********* (or *********) ** ** one *** ** *******."
  • "**** ******. **** ****** for *** ****** ** use *** "**** ** breed" ********** ** **** their *** **********; ******* that ********* ** **** savings, *** ** ******** technology, ** ** ****** align **** *********** ** infrastructure *** ************ *********** goals." 

Avoid ****-** - ****

******** ***** ****** ****-** and *********** **** **** common *** ***** **** preferred **** *******:

  • "****** ****. ** ** view **** ******* ***** a *** ****** ******* solution *** ***'* **** clients **** * ****** vendors ******."
  • "**** ******. ** ***** vendor **** **, **** en **** ****** ** components. ** ****** ******** best *** ******** *** every ********* ** * need ** ** **** to *** *** ***** products ******** ** *** an ******* ********"
  • "****. ********* ***'* **** being ****** ** ** a ******* **** *****'* progress **** ********** ** offer ***** *******."
  • "**** ************ - *** locked **** *** *********** pricing, ******* *** ** philosophy. "
  • ** ****** **** ************. We ***'* **** ****** having *** ******* ** "limit" ** ** *** way *** ***-**-*** **** shown ** ****** *** and *** ******* ******* in ******* **********."

Manufacturers ****** ** **** ** **** - ****

*********** **** **** **** manufacturers ****** ** **** at ******* *** *** simultaneously:

  • "****! **** *** ** go,no *** ************ **** it ****"
  • "** *** ** **** a ***-**-*** ******** *** are ******** *** * mediocre ****** ******* ****** does ********** *******."
  • "* ********** **** *** Genetec/Axis ****** ****** *************. It ** ********* ** be ****** ** *** things, ** **** *** have *** ********** ********* that **** *** ******** in ***** ***** **** together ** ***********, *** outcome ** **** ********** for *** ********* *** very ********* *** *** integrator."
  • "****** ************* ***'* ** a **** ** *** trades *** ***** ************* differentiate **** ***** ******** that *** *** **** to **** **. *.*. Arecont ****'* *** ******** to ********'* ** *** opinion *** *********'* ****** are *** ***** ** go **** ** * series ******** **** * far ****** ********** *** in *** **** ********** or ***** **** *** with ****** ******."
  • "**** ************. * ******* you ****** *** *** Software ******* **** ******** and *** ******** ******* make ********. ** * have ****** ****, *** should ** ** ****** in **** *** **, not * **** ** all ******."
  • "**** ************ ******* ********* vms ********* *** **** cameras, ********* ***** ******** or ***** ******* *** feature **** ** **********. its ****** *** ** the *****."
  • "**** ************. *** ** end ********* *** ****** best ** ***** ** all *****."

Guaranteed ** **** - ***-**-***

***-**-*** ******* **** **** commonly ******** *** "********** to ****" *******, **** some *********** **** ******* they ****** ***-**-*** **** for ***** *** ******* (ease ** *******, **** of *******) **** ****** customer ******* **** ******** or *********.

  • "***-**-*** **** *** **** manufacturer ******* **** **** work **** ******** *********.  In *** ********** ** open ** **** ***** are **** ******* ****** which **** **** ** resolve"
  • "** ****** *** ** End ** ***** ************* issues. ** ** ***** a *******."
  • "* ****** * ****** manufacturer ******* ** *********** issues."
  • "** ** ********** ***-**-*** is ****** ** *******, service,manage *** ***."
  • "*** ** *** ****** works ***** **** *** me ** ****** * blame **** ******* ************* and ******* *** ** demand ****** ******* * always *** ** *** Bosch ****** **********"
  • "***-**-*** ******** *********** ********. Less ************ ********* *** support ** * ****** number ** ****."
  • "***-**-***. *'** *** **** problems *** ** **** architecture ******* **** ******* manufacturers; *************** *** ******** upgrades *** *** ** be * ******."
  • "*** ** *** **** Avigilon. ***** ** * significant ******* ** ************ labor **** ** *** Avigilon. *** ******* *** easy ** *******, *** user ********* ** ****** to ********** *** **** tech *** **********, *** all *** ******* *** updated *************."
  • "** ****** ***-**-***, ** is ****** *** ************ since ***** ** **** one ** *****"
  • "****** ****** *** *** from ****** ************. ** have ***** *** ** it ** ****** *** technicians ** ***** *** potential ***** ****** **** there ** *** ***** of ******* *** *** problem."

More ******** ******** - ***-**-***

**** ********* **** ***** that ******-****** ********* **** to **** ****** ******* for ******** ******** ******** work ** ********:

  • "** ******* ** ****** an *** ** **** solution ***** ** ****** enables ** ********* *********** features ** *** ****** such ** ****** ** board ***** *********, ******* it ****** ******* ** keep ***** ***** *********** possible ******* **** ********* such *****."
  • "********* ** ****** ** use *** ************. ***** in **********. ** ****** us ** *** *** extra ******** ***** **** the ******."
  • "********* *** ***'* **** any ****** **** ****** source ************* *** **** cameras **** **** ***** full ******* ********* ** the ***."

Mixed ** "****" *******

******* *********** ******** **** they ****** ***** ******** to *** ***** ** the **** ** ********** of *** ******. ***-**-*** solutions **** ******** ***** as ***** ***** *** smaller ** **** ********* installations, ****** **** *********** felt *** ***** ********.

  • "*** ***** ******* (********* 16 **** ** ****), end-to-end ********* *** **. However, ******** ****** * 'simple' ******** ** *** an **** ***. *******, hospitals, *********."
  • "**** ************* ******* ****** Open ************ ** **** advantage ** *** **** new ************ *********** ***** introduced *** *** **** platforms. *** *********** ***** and ******** ** **********. The ***** **** ************* clients **** *** ** end ********* **********, ***** they *** *** ******* for ** ******* * variety ** *******."
  • "** *** **** ********* on *** *********: ***-**-*** with ********* ** ***** jobs (***** ** *******) because *** ******* *** readily *********, **'* **** to ***-** *** *** clients ** *** **** to ** ******** ***** than ****** *** *** odd ******** *** **** live *******. **** ************ is **** **** ***** are **** **** ** cameras *** *** ******* wants ** **** **** features ** *********** **** their ******** ***/** ****** control."
  • "*** ****** ** ****** systems, * **** **** ended *** **** ******* to *** *** **** fit *** *** ********. Salient,Exacq, ********* ****,*******/******, *** small ******* * **** end ** *** ** keep ** **** *** simple. *********,*******/******, **********"
  • "*** ******* ******* ************* open *** ********* ******* of *** *********** *** price *****. ** ****** commercial ************* *** ***-**-*** is ********* ******* ** the ********* ******* *** warranty ********."
  • "****** ******* ** *** customer/integrator - *** ** end ** *** **** answer *** *** *** more ***** ********/********** **** architecture ** *** *** to **."
  • "*** **** *** ***** Avigilon *** ** ***. Mid ***** ********* *** + ******** ***. *** end ********* ********* + Hikvision ***. ********* ***'* seam ****** ********** ** value, ******* ********* *** still *** ****** ******. Therefore *** ********."

Most ******* ************ ********

*** **** *****, ********* was *** **** ********** mentioned, **** ******* *** Exacq ******* ****** *******.  Other ***'* *** *** have ********** *******.

*** ****** ****** **** preferred ** **** *******, Axis *** *** ************ winner, *** ********* *** a ******* ******. 

Beware ***-**-*** ******** ****

***** ******* *** ******** to *** ******** ***** of *************, ***** *** led **** ** ******* that ***-**-*** ********* *** overall *********. **** *** not.

****** ******** ** *** most ***** ******* ** end-to-end ******** *******, **** are ** *******. ***, Avigilon's ******* *************** ** extraordinary. ** *** ******* and ********** *******, ** other ***-**-*** ******** ***** ******** close ** ********'* ******* product ********, ** **** focused ********* ******** *********** ****************** *****. ******, ** **** survey's *******, ******* ********, end-to-end ********* ***** ****** **** any *******. ***, ******* important, ********'* ******* ****** share *** ******* ** execute *** **** ******** limits ** ***** ************ ********* ********* ******* show.

** *** ***** ****, there ** **** ********* rationale *** ************* ****** to ***-**-*** *********. ***** the ******** *** ****** always ***** ** **** ****** the *****, ** ** generally ****** ** **** more **** ******** * manufacturer '****' **** *** more *** ******** *** only * **** ** the **** / *******, especially ** *** ******* is *** *** **** on *** ********** ****. To **** ***, *** number ** ***-**-*** ************* may ******** ** ****, but ** ****** ****** all ** **** ** struggle **** ******* *************** and ****, ** ****, mediocre ********* *******.

** ***** **** *** integrators ** **** ****** that *** **** ******* solution **** ************* **** ***** ******** manufacturer's ******** ** ** open ******. ***, ******* what *** **** ** recently, **** ** *** changing.

Comments (8)

These results run contrary to the industry trend of consolidation, which has led many to believe that end-to-end solutions are overall preferred. They are not.

I know some serious M&A talks are going on in the industry based on this believe... maybe those participating should take a deep breath and look at the possible ways to improve their own technology instead

Aren't a lot of integrators selling Hik or Dahua kits (cameras/nvr)?

Would those be considered an end-to-end solution?

Those kits are definitely end-to-end, though (1) evidently it is not what integrators prefer and (2) what's driving that is clearly the super low price. A Vicon or Verint or March or whomever end-to-end solution is probably better but at 5x the price, that's the difference maker.

Indeed, in this survey's results, without Avigilon, end-to-end solutions would hardly have any support.

Yet since, IMHO, such kits seem to be selling quite well, (i.e., do you think more Hik kits were sold than Milestone systems in the last year?), are we to conclude that what integrators are preferring is not strongly correlated to what they are actually purchasing?

Among IPVM integrators, who are generally focused on selling to commercial/ industrial / government, I think more Milestone systems were sold than Hik kits. And, as you pointed out, Hik is now a Milestone super / elite partner and, as our results pointed out, Hikvision is frequently used as an open component with third party VMSes.

Kits are real player in the overall video surveillance market, but they are clearly primarily for residential and SMB and they win because the price is much less. The lesson remains, for manufacturers who want end-to-end commercial solutions, unless they can sell it for $500 for 8 Full HD camera system, open is preferred.

[Kits] win because the price is much less...

Yes, I agree. So, even if a given integrator did primarily sell them, they may not prefer them. Take the well known J.D.; sells a lot of Dahua recorders, but prefers Digital Watchdog.

Some of this "preferring" but not necessarily "purchasing" might explain part of the Axis landslide victory here. Based on a admittedly subjective impression based on general sentiment expressed on the forum, I would say it's unlikely that Axis is selling ~2x the cameras that Hik is to IPVM integrators.

So, (if you agree that integrators on this forum buy at least as much Hik as Axis), then Hik's non-correlated results above might best be explained by them being purchased but not preferred to Axis (in the Open) or Avigilon (in the e-to-e).

Having worked for a number of integrators down the years I think that the open vs end to end question will always be answered by the sales imperative. Having run design teams with the best intentions of delivering as open a solution as possible when designing systems for bids there was always an overriding economic driver when it came to the final decision on what would be offered.

When working on a large bid it is difficult to argue points of principle with a business development team who are getting prices from every manufacturer on the planet in an attempt to increase margin through manufacturer discount. This often results in integrators who provide bids around an end to end solution being more competitive and winning projects.

It is a fact of commercial life and although the intentions might be there to deliver systems that do not lock end users in it is usually economics that wins the day.

often results in integrators who provide bids around an end to end solution being more competitive and winning projects.

Warren, that's a good point. I think that ties into the sales advantage that end-to-end providers. It's a lot easier to give steeper discounts if you are selling the servers, the VMS, the cameras and the analytics than if you are just selling one of those four.

I do wonder what percentage of bids go end-to-end. We've never studied a large set of bids but reviewing a fair number of them (at least in the US) indicates that mixed manufacturer combinations typically win.

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