PennyAlerts is Pretty Interesting

By John Honovich, Published on Jun 25, 2015

We have criticized Intransa / Viakoo pretty harshly. And they deserved it.

Quietly going out of business, dropping all warranties, the Intransa leaders then starting Viakoo, launching a false marketing campaign and pricing their service unreasonably.

Now, the company has done a 180, offering a radically lower cost service that we think has potential. In this note, we examine it.

The ***** ***

****** ******* *** **** a ***** ***** ************ health ********** ******* ** $60 *** **** *** camera. ****'* * **** sell *********** (*) **** were *** ***** ** fix ******** *** ****, just ******, (*) **** video ************ ***** *** hard ******* ** ***** more *** ****** ********** and (*) ****** *** pricing ****** **** **** most ********** *** ******** packages.

The ****** *** - '***********'

***, ****** *** ***** a ****** ************ ******* [link ** ****** *********] - ****** '***********' [**** no ****** *********] - that **** * ***** a ***, ** **** $3.65 *** ****. **** is **% ***** **** than ***** ******** *******.

*********** ******** ****** - **** as **** ************* ** phone, ****-**** ******, ******** cause, '***'. ****** *** higher ***, **** **** call '****** ************', ** lacks **** ****, ************* reports, ***** ********* **********, video ********* **********, ***.

Positioned ** ***********

****** **** **** *** aiming **** ** ***********:

"********** *** ******** ** a **** **** ***** integrator ****** **** ** their ********.  ** ***** you ** **** ******* find *** *** ********, and **** *** ****** your ******** **** *********** (and **********). ** ** clear, ********** ** *** meant ** * ******* for ****** **** ** ********** ** ** ***** to ** **** ** integrators."

***** ********* *****:

*********

** $** *** ****** per ****, **** ** likely * ****, ** not ********** ****, ** most *****.

** $*.** *** ****** per ****, ** ** inexpensive ****** ** ********.

** ** * ***** move ******* *** ****** as ** ***** ** the ****** *** **** and **** ***** ***** at * ********** *** cost. ** **** ***** value, **** *** ****** some ***** ** ****** tiers.

*** ********* **** ** Viakoo ****** *****. ** $3.65 *** ****** *** year, **** **** **** to *** * *** of ******* ** ***** their *****. **** ** generate $* ******* ** annual *******, **** ******* 273,000 ******* - ** small ****.

Comments (10)

the company has done a 360

360 means you are back where you started. Same as "done a 0."

They have done a 180.

Sorry, crawling back into my hole now...

It's not a 360 until we see:

Not necessarily, Jim!

Much of this capability can/should eventually be supported by the VMS systems themselves. For example, Milestone's Customer Dashboard. This will create competitive pressure that will make numbers like 273,000 cameras all the more difficult.

If Viakoo can deliver meaningful data across a wide range of VMS this may be more worthwhile than platform specific alerting. Not every integrator sells just one VMS. I cannot emphasize the word meaningful enough. Filtering of "noise" is critical to preventing the notifications from being ignored.

The Milestone Dashboard is essentially free with the functionality being an incentive to keep SUPs current. The Milestone Dashboard does not function with Corporate or Expert installations which is where the high camera counts / high value sites for Viakoo come into play. In my experience, the noise is very high in the dashboard with three differing alerts being received when one camera drops video fo even a second: image failure, camera failed to provide an image, and cannot retrieve serial number. Meaningful filtering would prevent that.

I believe a test is in order to validate how useful Viakoo really is.

Poor marketing.

  1. Name choice locks them into inflexible pricing structure.
  2. Integrators are going to pay? No pass-thru to end-users? In an industry built on RMR?

I don't get it.

Regarding point 2 this allows the integrator flexibility to name what they will charge the customer for the service.

I am not a fan on the name choice either. 'Penny' signifies cheap products so gives the wrong connotation. That said, they could change the price structure - penny per hour, etc.

As for passing through to users, presumably the integrator can charge whatever they want / can bear for this.

why do they state........ "PennyAlert is not meant as a product for resale from an integrator – it is meant to be used by integrators."

Seems limiting.....Let the Integrator use the solution in a manner that works with their business model.

Agree with that question / comment. Seems unnecessary and not like they can / will block an integrator who charges an end user.

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