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The next technology for innovating business

The video surveillance industry is expanding rapidly, due to rising security needs combined with a spate of technological innovations, including the migration to digital, fully networked systems. Mirasys is currently implementing its intelligent management software with the latest megapixel cameras to transform the effectiveness of video surveillance, and believes that its technology will quickly be used more widely.

Mirasys was the first company to launch a software solution for storing and compressing megapixel frame-based video for use on standard, off-theself hardware running Microsoft software in 2008. Encouraged by the success of this development and its other work, Mirasys believes that the use of video recording will quickly go beyond the security domain.

The opportunity for hassle-free video-recording of coaching and debriefing systems, for example, is likely to become everyday reality in corporate and educational life in the near future, making learning more pleasurable as it becomes more time- and location-independent. Video technology also has a lot to offer retailers in helping them analyse the optimal placement of products in their stores and measure how appealing product packaging is.

Mirasys solutions are already helping organisations distribute alarms and video clips intelligently to selected workstations and mobile devices, promoting greater security awareness and providing more piece of mind to employees. The use of intelligent video analysis, fine-grained data access control mechanisms, and user-tracking functionality ensures that video playback is limited solely to authorised personnel and conforms with all relevant legislation and regulations.

Mirasys is now third in its core markets in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa as a provider of open platform digital CCTV and video surveillance solutions according to recent market research; and fifth worldwide.

Higher bandwidths

Mirasys’ belief in putting people first, together with its conviction that any tool can only be as good as the people using it, has resulted in an emphasis on user-friendly interfaces in its systems – one that is very much in line with general Nordic excellence in designing world-class man-machine interaction.

The success of this approach was recently highlighted when Mirasys was awarded a worldwide contract by a Swedish clothing retail chain because the users in the project’s pilot implementation were able to catch in-store thieves much more effectively than their colleagues elsewhere testing alternative technology.

With software controlling over 300,000 video surveillance cameras around the world, Mirasys is involved in a wide range of projects, ranging from protecting prime real estate to ensuring the security of nuclear power stations. Mirasys is a particular specialist in handling logistically challenging projects, such as deploying systems across all of a customer’s sites or retail outlets, even when they run into the thousands, as was the case with a European service station chain recently.

The company is also focusing on growing sectors such as education and retail, where large contracts are awarded on the basis of public tender and tough price negotiations, which should give Mirasys a strong edge in situations where there is a need to give increasing priority to cutting costs.

High-resolution innovation

Mirasys was the first software vendor to offer advanced motion detection as part of its offering to meet the diverse weather conditions found in the Nordic countries.
Click here to enlarge picture

Surveillance technology has advanced in leaps and bounds over the 10 years that Mirasys has been in the business, moving from completely analogue technology to digital DVR and NVR technology, and from analogue cameras to IP units and megapixelclass surveillance. The pace of development has been very fast, and shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Mirasys expects developments to accelerate even further, as a result of two major factors: integration and video intelligence.

As recording technology becomes more IPbased, it will be easier to integrate data with other technological infrastructure. Systems that trigger a door to open when they recognise a specific license plate, or cameras that react to a specific key card used in a lock, already exist, but they are only a taste of what tomorrow’s technologies will be able to offer.

Video analysis applications and routines have become progressively more sophisticated as both cameras and recorders have become more powerful. Cameras can already carry out motion detection analysis, and video analysis software can be used to spot erratic behaviour and analyse where objects are placed and when they are moved. System-wide object tracking, object interaction analysis, and movement tracking are likely to become routine technologies in the near future – not only for security purposes, but for tasks ranging from marketing to traffic analysis and consumer statistics.

Investments are also likely to move increasingly towards cameras and software and away from the present focus on dedicated hardware. Many large organisations are already purchasing hardware and software separately and promoting the local procurement of hardware and services, and Mirasys expects this trend to gain momentum. As a pure software vendor, this should work in Mirasys’ favour and will enable it to focus all its energy on its core competencies and move further ahead in global markets.

> Jukka Riivari
(Published in HighTech Finland 2009)