Honeywell adds another notch

Silent Witness is the latest to join, rounds out its CCTV offering
Thursday, January 1, 2004

Although sales of analog components are predicted to continue for several more years, most in the industry believe the conversion to digital security systems will continue at a fairly rapid pace.

“Market analysts still predict sales of analog recorders beyond 2007,” pointed out Bill Durno, product manager-digital storage for Silent Witness. “But they also show double-digit declines in sales for analog products,” he said, while digital ones will grow by 20 percent or more.

“Ten years from now there will still be analog keyboards, monitors and cameras, but fewer and fewer of them,” said Brett Beranek, product manager at Genetec.

Instead, he said, “we see the industry moving quicker and quicker to end-to-end digital.” The reason the security sector hasn’t already made this move is probably due to its conservative nature, he said, along with the more critical nature of the application itself.

“In the telecom industry, if the system is down for 30 minutes, it’s annoying,” Beranek said. “But if a security system goes down for that long, it will be devastating.”

Beranek said most within the industry have already become comfortable with DVRS, so it’s logical that acceptance of other digital components will follow, such as the conversion to network cameras from analog, CAT5 from coax cable and virtual switchers via software from traditional matrix switchers.

The reduction in cost is also speeding up the process, said Geof Barker, chairman and chief executive officer of Vigilos. “The hardware necessary to support digital is getting cheaper,” he said. And the investment paybacks are improving as well.

Yvonne Cager, worldwide DSP video solutions marketing manager for Texas Instruments, said there is an ongoing debate about how long it will take for digital to take hold. Among the large OEMs, the prediction is within five years, she said, while the rest of the industry will take a few years more.

The early adopters are usually the big security companies and customers, she said, “while the second tier tends to follow the leaders.”