Why Was Dropcam at ISC West 2014?

By Ethan Ace, Published Apr 03, 2014, 12:00am EDT

Dropcam has become the hottest startup in surveillance by going completely against the traditional channel model, selling direct off their website, on Amazon, Apples stores and now Target.

Because of that, it was quite a shock to see them at the industry's biggest channel focused event, ISC west, with a fairly big booth:

We talked with them about why they are at the show and what their plans are.

Dropcam emphasized 3 key points:

  • Creating an installer channel: First and foremost, Dropcam says they were there to talk to installers, exploring an installer channel. This is a direct change from how they have historically gone to market, via online sales (and now brick and mortar retail [link no longer available]). They have not determined how this channel may work, such as RMR sharing, product margins, etc. Gauging interest and further planning these details was part of their reason for attending.
  • Looking for new distributors: Dropcam was also looking to partner with traditional security distributors, such as ADI, Tri-Ed, etc., to support this potential installer channel.
  • No plans to integrate: Finally, we asked if Dropcam was looking to integrate their cameras with any VMS or NVR manufacturers. The answer to this was an emphatic "no."

Booth traffic was light for Dropcam all the way in the back, though it was steady, with a few people talking to staff when we passed.

Potential Impact

If they can develop this distributor/installer channel, Dropcam may be attractive to traditional alarm installers given their typical residential/small commercial target market. These installers, not typically regarded as IT-savvy, may find Dropcam's simple installation and ease of use more attractive than other home surveillance options requiring more complex setup.

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