VMS Market Getting Tougher

By John Honovich, Published Nov 19, 2015, 12:00am EST

A new member asked us:

"What are your thoughts on the future of VMS now that the new camera makers seem to be bundling it with their cameras (Tyco/exacq, DW/network optix, panasonic/VI etc.) or waging price war against each other (Milestone vs onSSI). Wouldn't it be harder for an independent VMS system to survive without a camera maker alliance/marriage?"

We are seeing the market become harder for all VMSes, despite the fact that VMS software, unlike hardware is not facing direct commoditization. In this note, we examine what we are seeing, what manufacturer execs have told us and where this leaves the market.

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Comments (7)

I hear a whisper that Hikvision are planning to bring out Nvrs with built in VMS (Ivms4200 or 5200) software too. Basically a Linux Nvr with a Windows board running Vms all in one... Another interesting and maybe scary proposition for VMS companies.

The 4200 and 5200 client software currently connects to the DVR/NVRS as they act as servers now. I am not sure what you are saying. Can you explain?

Hi Michael,

What I've heard is that the NVR will act as a server like you mentioned as well as have a local IVMS client software embedded in them too.

Not too sure of the exact set up but I believe that there will be 2 mainboards in the NVR (one video server, and one "local" IVMS client to allow grouping of cameras, cross line detection, foreign object detection and other basic VMS functionality directly from the NVR main interface.

For medium sized installations, an integrator and client might find this alternative quite advantageous, especially if the client just wants to do his main viewing, clip copies and investigations from the one machine rather than from a third party paid VMS software running on another VMS client computer.

Not a bad idea, two computers in one?

Maybe even keep the TCP/IP traffic on the backplane instead of PHY's?

Might be a bit clunky going from recorder mode to client mode, but there's definitely a few advantages in have more than one autonomous CPU running.

But Windows SOC has to be a bit pricey compared to normal embedded processors.

I head about this. Basicly if you have multible NVRs and/or DVRs you can have one be the master and you can view the other units from the master.

My biggest problem is finding reliability in the hikvision NVRs. They work yes, but are cumbersome when trying to playback video and ends up crushing my profit on small installs. I try to manage customer expectations when quoting them and explain the differences, but it doesn't seem to matter.

My new "tactic" is trying to find a reliable VMS solution close to the cost of an embedded NVR. Basically building a machine that can handle exacq start, but at a similar price point; it's been difficult, but I just purchased some components to try out. Would be easier if I had more in depth knowledge of Linux for mounting drives, but Windows will work for now.

Anyone trying something similar or have any other VMS ideas?

Every industry reaches a point of maturation and saturation, HVAC, TELECOM, IT SUPPORT, and the businesses focused on long term customer service, seem to be the ones that survive the cut. Trying to find the least expensive technology and winning business on think margins is a recipe for disaster.

Selling and Supporting a Home-Brew solution, regardless of features, etc, places you in a very difficult position to compete beyond customers that simply trust you as a person.

If anything, you need to sell your services and support, as if the equipment was free, and the customer pays you for any and all time and support.

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