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Add Security to Your Offerings

AV industry observers agree that for today's AV pro to continue growing his business, he should add to his stable of product and services offerings. According to several new studies, surveillance applications may offer a growing source of income.

AV industry observers agree that for today's AV pro to continue growing his business, he should add to his stable of product and services offerings. According to several new studies, surveillance applications may offer a growing source of income.

At press time, NSCA was putting the finishing touches on its Q4 Market Intelligence Briefing on security, life safety, and fire alarm applications. Nearly two-thirds of those surveyed said they were involved with security applications, including CCTV surveillance.

While respondents told NSCA they expected more revenue from security across the board, CCTV surveillance appeared to offer the greatest opportunity. In 2007, integrators said surveillance accounted for 15.7 percent of their revenue, on average. That share is expected to rise to 18.3 percent this year, and more than 62 percent of integrators expect demand to increase over the next three years.

Where are these CCTV surveillance systems being deployed? According to the NSCA study, corporations (21.6 percent), K-12 schools (21.6 percent), and government facilities (14.8 percent) are the top three end-users.

New Markets

Few NSCA respondents cited transportation (2.3 percent) and retail (3.4 percent) as popular markets for their CCTV systems. But New York-based ABI Research expects that to change. In a new report, ABI Research projected that global spending on video surveillance for transportation markets will jump from about $630 million in 2006 to $2 billion in 2013, while retail will go from about $1 billion in 2006 to almost $4 billion in 2013. The reason? Video surveillance is branching out beyond traditional security apps.

"Video surveillance technologies enable market research, so funding for such systems will be available from sales and marketing budgets," says ABI Research vice president Stan Schatt. New systems can analyze customer traffic, the firm says, and even track what products people pick up and put down. In transportation systems, surveillance can go beyond security to include documenting accidents or other events.

A CCTV surveillance system itself includes everything from cameras to storage devices. When beginning to design a system, integrators should ask several questions:

  • How many cameras are required?
  • What are the key fields of view?
  • What are the client's recording requirements?
  • What are the lighting conditions at each location?
  • Where does the client need live video monitoring?
  • Will monitoring be done locally or remotely?
  • How long does the client need to keep the video file?

Asked how they hope security products will evolve in the coming years, NSCA respondents overwhelmingly asked for more and better IP integration. Of course, not all AV integrators will go the security route. But those who do can tap into a growing need for systems that put a new spin on surveillance.

–Brad Grimes



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