VSaaS Startup Pivots to Camera API Provider Evercam

Author: John Honovich, Published on Jul 24, 2014

This is a fascinating case study of how a VSaaS startup recognized the flaws in that market and are using their experience to build a hosted API camera API service called Evercam.

In this note, we examine what they learned providing VSaaS and what they are trying to do now with their API service.

In 2010, the company started Camba.tv, a European based VSaaS provider, that worked with 3rd party cameras and sold monthly hosted recording services.

In 2013, they launched Evercam with the promise of "We make it easier to write software for cameras."

A Camera API

Evercam acts as an adapter between various IP cameras, mobile phones, DVRs, etc. and software applications (e.g., Ruby, Python, .NET, etc.). Evercam supports retrieving / requesting snapshots images from those devices but not video. The company has developed integrations with a variety of devices for logging in and getting snapshots.

Its two main upsides versus ONVIF are:

  • Evercam actively works to develop integrations even with devices that have no interest adding ONVIF, especially older devices or phones that likely will never add ONVIF.
  • Evercam provides a typical REST API that developers can use quickly. One could develop their own using the ONVIF standard but there is no readily available web application module that does this.

However, ONVIF has more advanced support including streaming video, camera control and configuration, etc.

Dealing With Firewalls / Routers

One major challenge with their API is that cameras are frequently behind firewalls and cannot be immediately accessed from the public Internet including Evercam's service. This can be solved by port forwarding, opening holes in firewalls but this typically requires skilled technical support to accomplish. As such, Evercam's service will be limited to those cameras that do not have this issue or those that can be resolved.

Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox
Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox

Applications for Evercam API

Evercam is targeting two areas:

  • Custom Applications
  • Ready Made Apps

With custom applications, existing businesses can add images from cameras by integrating the Evercam API. For example, when a certain event happens (like an alarm or an object goes on scale), an image can be taken. Alternatively, at specific times (like when a store opens or during lunctime at a restaurant), an image can be taken. Evercam mentioned one healthcare client that uses Evercam to get images from their user's homes to verify patient's health / status. In this application, the healthcare company can ensure that the cameras have access / ability to connect to the cloud.

Custom application users pay Evercam based on number of total requests to Evercam's API.

Additionally, Evercam is building apps that use their API. The most interesting one for professional users is a timelapse app (astimegoes.by) that uses the Evercam API to request and build a recorded video. Here is an example output timelapse video. Like the Apple app store, Evercam aims to foster a marketplace where apps are sold and they take a cut of the proceeds.

Lessons Learned from Their VSaaS Offering

Evercam says they are shutting down their VSaaS, Camba.tv, by the end of 2014. Key problems they found were (1) high support costs and (2) competitive lower cost traditional options of getting cameras online.

They expressed admiration for Dropcam's approach, specifically developing and providing their own cameras, which lowers support costs and makes integration easier. On the other hand, they mentioned the significant resources needed to do that (i.e., Dropcam raised ~$50 million).

Now, Evercam is looking for a niche that no one has targeted yet. The main question is whether they can find sufficient applications that can utilize their camera API.

Addendum - Evercam Pitches TechCrunch

For those who want to see their marketing pitch - very high level since its for TechCrunch:

1 report cite this report:

Chinese Manufacturer Kickstarter Campaign Huge Success (EverCam) on Apr 23, 2018
In a week, a Chinese manufacturer's expertly done Kickstarter campaign has received $1.4 million in pledges, an incredible amount for a video...
Comments (4) : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Video Analytics Integration Guide on Aug 16, 2018
Video analytics is hot again (at least conceptually) but integrating video analytics with VMSes can be challenging. This is especially significant...
Cut Milestone Licensing Costs 80% By Using Hikvision and Dahua NVRs (Tested) on Aug 13, 2018
Enterprise VMS licensing can be quite expensive, with $200 or more per channel common, meaning a 100 camera system can cost $20,000 in VMS...
Bluebox Video UK Startup Profile on Aug 06, 2018
One UK startup, Bluebox Video has designed, developed and is manufacturing their own streaming video wall appliances. To the right is a picture of...
Milestone / Canon Spinout Arcules Cloud Launch on Jul 30, 2018
Canon and Milestone's VSaaS Startup spinoff Arcules launched their platform at Google Cloud Next. IPVM spoke with CEO Andreas Pettersson about the...
Eagle Eye Networks Cloud VMS Tested on Jul 26, 2018
Eagle Eye has become one of the most significant players in the industry in the past few years: Eagle Eye's Owner Acquired Brivo Eagle Eye...
AI Startup Anyvision Raises $28 Million Led By Bosch on Jul 20, 2018
Anyvision is the most ambitious heavy-spending video surveillance startup in many years. And, now, the startup has raised $28 million led by...
Directory of Video Surveillance Startups on Jul 18, 2018
This directory provides a list of video surveillance startups to help you see and research what companies are new or not yet broadly known entity...
UK VSaaS Startup Ocucon on Jul 03, 2018
Decreasing exposure to fraudulent slip-and-fall insurance claims and lawsuits is one of the oldest selling points of video surveillance for retail....
Camio Wins 24,000 Camera AI VSaaS Customer on Jun 29, 2018
Silicon Valley Artificial Intelligent VSaaS startup Camio has announced it has won a 24,000 camera deal, a sizeable system for a small...
Replacing / Switching Access Control Systems Guide on Jun 28, 2018
Ripping out and replacing access control systems is hard for important reasons. Because users typically hold on to access control systems for as...

Most Recent Industry Reports

2Gig Gun Lock / Motion Detector Tested on Aug 17, 2018
Safer guns for families and an opportunity for security dealers to sell more services? That is the aim of Nortek's 2GIG 'Gun Motion Detector'...
Video Analytics Integration Guide on Aug 16, 2018
Video analytics is hot again (at least conceptually) but integrating video analytics with VMSes can be challenging. This is especially significant...
Hikvision IP Camera Critical Vulnerability 2018 Disclosed on Aug 16, 2018
The same day that the US government passed a prohibition on Hikvision cameras, Hikvision disclosed a critical vulnerability for its IP...
ISS VMS / Video Analytics Company Profile on Aug 16, 2018
Who is ISS? In the past few months, they had one of the craziest ISC West promo items in years. Then, they hired industry veteran and ex-Dahua...
Chinese OEM Avycon Gets ADI Push on Aug 15, 2018
Who is Avycon? An American company? A Korean company? A couple of guys relabelling Chinese products? The latter is the best explanation. While...
Backboxes for Video Surveillance Tutorial on Aug 15, 2018
Backboxes are a necessity in surveillance, whether for managing cable whips, recessing cameras, adding wireless radios. But it can be confusing to...
Genetec Stratocast / Comcast 'Motion Insights' Examined on Aug 15, 2018
Comcast recently announced "SmartOffice Motion Insights", an extension to their Genetec OEMed cloud video service (covered by IPVM here). This...
SimpliSafe Violating California, Florida, and Texas Licensing Laws on Aug 14, 2018
IPVM has verified that DIY security system provider SimpliSafe, founded in 2006 and acquired in June of 2018 at a billion dollar valuation, is...
Ban of Dahua and Hikvision Is Now US Gov Law on Aug 13, 2018
The US President has signed the 2019 NDAA into law, banning the use of Dahua and Hikvision (and their OEMs) for the US government, for US...
Cut Milestone Licensing Costs 80% By Using Hikvision and Dahua NVRs (Tested) on Aug 13, 2018
Enterprise VMS licensing can be quite expensive, with $200 or more per channel common, meaning a 100 camera system can cost $20,000 in VMS...

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