Open CCTV management software the best way forward for CCTV systems

February 11, 2010

It is plain to see that the CCTV market will embrace IP as the dominant technology for CCTV systems very soon. The next thing to examine is how the industry is able to quickly integrate IP into today’s new and existing installations.

One of the most attractive things about the IP-based open management platform is the ability to help migrate existing systems to IP without replacing existing infrastructure or the cost of upgrading relatively new components in order to get an attractive new feature. This is why one of Controlware’s fundamental approaches when working alongside partners is to make system design as modular as possible so that components can be integrated as and when required to meet operational requirements, phased project management or simply budgetary needs. By utilising an open management platform over the life of the project (be this one month, one year, 10 years) it allows us to work with partners to meet these requirements in a flexible and logical way.

It would be very difficult to achieve a project successfully if you were tied to a proprietary system because you would need to be able to ensure that you could get all the interoperable components over the lifetime of the system (How many times have we been involved with projects where a key component has gone end of life and the replacement isn’t similar at all?). The use of a proprietary solution could also force you to use inferior parts of that vendor’s overall system that don’t meet your requirements. Other vendors’ products would probably fit your needs much better but you can’t use them because you are held hostage by the very nature of selecting a proprietary system!

By taking the open management platform route the future is far easier. You can mix and match non-compatible edge devices from different manufacturers, you are free to choose which storage and recording hardware vendor you want to work with and also how storage is deployed in relation network topology to help with redundancy or resilience continuity planning. Also you can integrate other technology options including analytics or access control and actively manage migration of legacy systems to meet operational / budgetary requirements.  This is an example of how  Controlware works with its partners – We ensure that the operational requirement of the end user is met rather than just sell you tin.  In order to meet the needs of our customers and partners we work closely to ensure you don’t buy a square peg to fit a round hole – and have to live with the consequences.

If you would like to challenge Controlware to prove that open management can be just as cost effective as proprietary systems, provide a better service than analogue or allow you to enable an upgrade to IP without replacing your entire system then please contact Controlware or have a look at the Cware open management platform.


CCTV images need to be good quality

January 11, 2010

Controlware Country Manager Mark Harraway comments on the news that the UK Government has announced the creation of a CCTV Oversight body and interim CCTV regulator.

The last article on budget v OR has sparked a number of comments in the discussion forums. We’ve had input from a number of consultants who are trying to steer their customers to building systems that meet a fit for purpose OR, and also a number of CCTV vendors saying they are confused and frustrated that the market in general seems happy to accept low resolution / highly compressed images on the one hand as it meets their budget, but then complains when they are not of a good enough quality to meet a legal purpose.

Please click here to read the complete article. To find out more about the new Government Oversight Body or if you would like to discuss the OR / Functionality / Budget triangle – visit the Linkedin CCTV discussion forum or email me at video@controlware.co.uk.


The importance of the CCTV Operational Requirement

December 3, 2009

Mark Harraway, Country Manager at Controlware explores the importance of the Operational Requirement.

However, one of the biggest issues facing consultants is managing customer expectations and creating the CCTV Operational Requirement (OR). It’s the historical trend for manufacturer’s functionality to drive the OR but this is the wrong way round, OR should drive product selection. Another common issue is when poorly-educated specifiers base a solution on budget. Without proper regard for what is actually needed, a solution is created that does not meet the OR required today, or in the longer-term by not being reliable, or providing poor quality video footage that cannot be used for evidential purposes. This leaves consultants stuck in the middle. At Controlware we have a different approach. Every expert design we undertake begins with an OR. The OR determines the functionality specification, which in turn drives budget requirement. This enables our partners, customers and the consultants who work with us, to make informed and realistic choices for the right system to meet the end-user’s needs i.e. the budget may determine the selection of a cheap PTZ or a high quality static camera but it should be the OR that dictates the final choice.

The article “A little knowledge is a dangerous thing” can be read in full here