Ultrapixels Beat Megapixels? A Surveillance Lesson

Author: John Honovich, Published on Feb 23, 2013

A Taiwanese manufacturer, far behind market leaders, captured mass media attention recently with a cunning marketing campaign against megapixels. HTC's new smartphone, the One X+ led with the promise of "ultrapixels", claiming major improvements over the highest pixel smart phones. They were rewarded with extensive tech coverage in Wired, Mashable, Engadget, etc. This fascinating case draws important lessons for surveillance camera positioning.

What is Ultrapixels?

HTC made up a term (ultrapixels) to convey that their pixels are superior to standard megapixels. The technical claims supporting this include:

  • Larger pixels (less pixels on the same imager size as higher pixel count cameras - they have 4MP on a 1/3" imager vs others having 8MP or 13MP)
  • Lower F stop than rivals (at f/2.0)
  • 2 axis optical image stabilizer
  • Better WDR (which they call real time video HDR

These specific features match up well with our megapixel limitations critique in the Ban Resolution report - you can often optimize low and harsh light performance by staying away from the bleading edge of maximum pixels.

The Key Takeaway

Whether or not HTC's new camera is better, it has already achieved an impressive goal - impacting the conversation and mindset that more megapixels is always better. We believe this is due to the choice of the word 'ultrapixel' which, even to the uninformed, conveys superiority (i.e., ultra 'sounds' better than 'mega'). This is especially impressive considering HTC does not demand nor receive coverage as easily as their far larger rivals Apple and Samsung.

Application in Surveillance?

This is a good template for a surveillance industry marketing campaign. Pick an easy to understand prefix (like 'ultra', 'super', 'uber', etc.), attach it to 'pixel' and pitch how your technology is better than 'more megapixels'. The term itself will make it easier for the uninformed (including trade magazine editors and market analysts) to comprehend.

Obviously, this approach has its own risks. Marketers can misrepresent the other way. However, a marketing battle over the value of pixels would likely have a net positive impact as it would force consumers to be more critical and careful about setting expectations on the value of pixels.

Comments (2) : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports on Marketing

Verkada Salesman: IPVM "Stuck In A The Stone Age" on Apr 25, 2019
Verkada is 'tackling dinosaurs' and battling those, like IPVM, who are 'stuck in a the stone age'. Verkada's recent sales recruiting promotion...
Amazon Marketing Pro Installs of Amazon Security Systems on Apr 25, 2019
Is Amazon a threat to conventional providers like ADT, Vivint and Brinks Home Security? Many say no. Now, Amazon is advertising free in-home...
Ex-Integrator Now Growth Strategist Interviewed on Apr 24, 2019
For more than a decade, Scot MacTaggart was a security integrator (at PA-based PSX). In late 2018, he left the industry. He is now a Growth...
The Embarrassing Story of ISC West's Best New IP Camera on Apr 24, 2019
A sad but simple situation: Only 2 companies paid SIA the thousands of dollars required to compete for the best new 'cameras IP' The judges...
19 Facial Recognition Providers Profiled on Apr 23, 2019
IPVM interviewed 19 facial recognition providers at ISC West to understand their claimed accuracy, success and positioning. 9 from China, where...
Speco Ultra Intensifier Tested on Apr 22, 2019
While ISC West 2019 named Speco's Ultra Intensifier the best new "Video Surveillance Cameras IP", IPVM testing shows the camera suffers from...
Securadyne CEO: IPVM 'Entertaining For An Ignorant Few' on Apr 16, 2019
Securadyne's CEO Carey Boethel is unhappy with IPVM's report - Failed Integrator Rollup, Securadyne Sells to Guard Giant Allied. Indeed, he...
Alarm.com Favorability Results 2019 on Apr 15, 2019
The once dot com startup has evolved to become a core provider for home security and is now expanding into commercial. In their first entry in...
ISC West 2019 Report on Apr 12, 2019
The IPVM team has finished at the Sands looking at what companies are offering and how they are changing their positioning. See below for 50+...
UK Installer CCTV Aware - Flat Pricing, No Salespeople on Apr 10, 2019
This is a different kind of company. They do flat pricing, they do not have any salespeople and 50% of their sales are sold and booked...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Verkada Salesman: IPVM "Stuck In A The Stone Age" on Apr 25, 2019
Verkada is 'tackling dinosaurs' and battling those, like IPVM, who are 'stuck in a the stone age'. Verkada's recent sales recruiting promotion...
The HIVIDEO $31 Face Detection DVR Tested on Apr 25, 2019
Face detection in a $31 DVR? That is what "HIVIDEO" (not to be confused with Hikvision, even if the company intends to do that) was promoting at...
Amazon Marketing Pro Installs of Amazon Security Systems on Apr 25, 2019
Is Amazon a threat to conventional providers like ADT, Vivint and Brinks Home Security? Many say no. Now, Amazon is advertising free in-home...
Ex-Integrator Now Growth Strategist Interviewed on Apr 24, 2019
For more than a decade, Scot MacTaggart was a security integrator (at PA-based PSX). In late 2018, he left the industry. He is now a Growth...
19 Facial Recognition Providers Profiled on Apr 23, 2019
IPVM interviewed 19 facial recognition providers at ISC West to understand their claimed accuracy, success and positioning. 9 from China, where...
Locking Down Network Connections Guide on Apr 23, 2019
Accidents and inside attacks are risks when network connections are not locked down. Security and video surveillance systems should be protected...
Hikvision Admits USA Sales Falling on Apr 22, 2019
Hikvision, in a new Chinese financial filing, has admitted that its USA sales are now falling. Less than a year after the US government passed a...
Speco Ultra Intensifier Tested on Apr 22, 2019
While ISC West 2019 named Speco's Ultra Intensifier the best new "Video Surveillance Cameras IP", IPVM testing shows the camera suffers from...
Arecont Favorability Results 2019 on Apr 22, 2019
Arecont's net negativity remained the same in IPVM's 2019 integrator study, though integrator's feeling became relatively more neutral compared to...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact