Open Platform Whitepaper

By John Honovich, Published Jul 06, 2009, 08:00pm EDT

Milestone's CTO has published an Open Platform Whitepaper [link no longer available]. The document examines their approach, the benefits they see and provides many examples of integrations. The paper reports 55 current 3rd party integrations.

Platforms are always viewed with interest by investors and analysts as platforms often become dominant forces in markets (think Microsoft or iPhone App Store).

Two important questions for surveillance: (1) How important is being a platform? and (2) What does it mean to be a platform?

I think a surveillance platform has some value but is not as important as other markets. While 3rd party integration is important for surveillance, the number of 3rd party applications needed is fairly small in surveillance (dozens or hundreds). 

Since almost every VMS vendor claims to be a platform, it begs the question of what a platform really is. I think the most important practical element is how many 3rd party applications are supported and what percentage of all possible uses are covered. In that respect, I am not sure how far Milestone is ahead. A lot of other VMS systems support at least a few dozen 3rd party systems. It will be interesting to see how this evolves over the next few years. If Milestone continues to grow their 3rd party support and builds a wide gap in total support, this could make a big difference at the mid to high end of the market.

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