But even with great claims for scale improvements, pipeline improvements, turn-key installations and even the establishment of what the company calls an "affordable" price point, venture capitalists won't invest if they don't think security directors, dealers and system integrators are going to "bite" on the company's technology.
Russell explains that the investment from In-Q-Tel, which was announced in late 2005, in some ways can serve as a stamp of approval for new technology like his company's products. And he adds that 3VR wasn't in a rush to get out of the gate. Instead, he says the company focused on creating a project that wasn't "labware", one that could be as easily deployed to the commercial sector as the government marketplace.
"We think the industry has made a problem for itself by focusing too much on getting technology out the door and getting it to the government," says Russell. "We made a conscious decision early on to focus on creating a viable commercial product."
Getting ROI on Video Analytics
SIW asked Russell to explain how he understands the return-on-investment (ROI) model behind video and search analytics. His summary is a great page for your PowerPoint, whether you're a security systems integrator explaining video analytics ROI to a security director or a security director explaining the ROI of the equipment to your bosses at the company's C level.
ROI #1: Real-time monitoring. "One person can monitor about 10 video feeds for only about 45 minutes before losing concentration," says Russell. Beyond that, they need a break. If they're dealing with more than 10 feeds at a time, the likelihood is that they could be missing something. To deal with a multi-camera installation where you're viewing video from dozens of cameras, you start to face issues of staffing and the costs of hiring alert persons to watch cameras. With today's systems like the one their company is monitoring, the goal is that you can cut that back to one person, using alarm type operations (crossing an imaginary line, an object moving, etc.)
ROI #2: Savings on investigations. Being able to archive and search through volumes of video cuts down on investigations time.
ROI #3: Stopping crime before it happens. By using video analytics to free up security personnel and by receiving immediate reports for non-normal activity, your staff can stop the crimes before the perpetrator is successful. By stopping crimes on time and immediately, you're showing the best kind of ROI there is - protecting people and property before something happens.