Open Solutions Lead the Way

If you’re not already investing in open solutions, there’s no time like the present to start. Open platform IP video management specialist Milestone Systems, partnered with Arecont Vision and Pivot3 , took their Complete IP Solution Show on the road, most recently making a pit stop at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Chicago. Attendees got a first-hand look at how Milestone’s Video Management System (VMS), Pivot3’s storage solutions and Arecont Vision’s megapixel cameras are integrated on one platform to provide a solution that covers all three aspects on a video surveillance system.

“Our idea behind this was to take three companies that had leading technology in the IP field and really show how you can build a solution together along with answering some commonly asked questions about IP,” explained Fredrik Wallberg, marketing manager, Milestone Systems, Beaverton, Ore. Slated for six major cities across the country, Milestone started their roadshow after the Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS) earlier this year. “Thus far, the events have been a success according to attendees and headcount,” continued Wallberg.

It is evident that integrated open platform solutions are going to continue to develop for the future of security and these three providers are exemplary of that. Surveillance is a challenging environment, thus being able to discuss and be aware of such issues as HD versus megapixel, industry standards, virtualization and what video management systems are available and how they work with other providers, is a necessity when it comes down to choosing the right video surveillance solution.

Tim Palmquist of Milestone Systems

Above: Milestone Systems' Tim Palmquist, director of Sales, discussed their VMS platform and the growing need for tighter integration among products in today's industry.

“We’re trying to encourage a rich ecosystem of products,” explained Tim Palmquist, director of Sales for Milestone Systems. “What we’re trying to do is deploy a solution that starts small and can grow and accommodate the end-users requirements over time.” As far as what the state of video management systems available on the market today is, Palmquist stated that “there is that request for tighter integration with third party products and interfaces are becoming tighter together. It’s not just about the ability to get to evidence quickly anymore but also about the review of investigation.”

Surveillance is also a very challenging environment for storage, particularly for disc drives, as Lee Caswell, founder and chief marketing officer, Pivot3, Palo Alto, Calif., stated in his presentation, “because they are always writing, 100 percent of the time. The reality is that drives will fail and users have to be prepared for that.

Pivot3's Lee Caswell

Above: Pivot3's Lee Caswell, founder and chief marketing officer, discussed the growth for storage and need for virtualization in today's security environment.


Our focus on video surveillance is because of the amount of storage being used. The market for storage is exploding right now and this is why you want to pay attention to storage,” he continued.

Virtualization is so beneficial because it offers an immediate impact of elimination and consolidation hardware on a smaller basis, which is so impactful, according to Caswell. “The whole idea of virtualization is about running multiple applications on the same server,” he explained. “Now, we’re getting rid of the hardware. We’re providing application hardware for server apps which is running inside server environments.” As companies want to keep data for longer periods, it’s essential to make sure that the system stays up and running even if another component of the system fails.

And with companies adding more high resolution cameras to one unified video surveillance solution, knowing your options and the differentiations between megapixel and High Definition (HD) is also key.

“We are constantly revamping our product offering to decrease size, increase performance and reduce cost,” explained Wayne Ridinger, midwest region sales manager, Arecont Vision, Glendale, Calif. “Now, what the user wants is something of forensic value after an event has occurred and that is something we’ve never been able to do before. One of the hurdles manufacturers have been challenged with is that HD does not scale beyond 1080p. We’re seeing more camera manufacturers providing megapixel cameras not in HD format and there are still challenges for H.264 beyond HD. As we move more into the megapixel world, we have cameras that have more functionality. Thus, the integration of open platforms becomes very important,” he continued.

The ‘integration’ message is clear and as manufacturers move to adopting ONVIF, PSIA and other standards, video surveillance and other security solutions is only going to go deeper into the integration of products, according to Palmquist.

In today’s market, every single manufacturer does H.264 implementation differently,” he explained. “As security products adapt more to standards, there will be more of a balance in the industry.”

The Complete IP Solution Roadshow continues with its next stop on May 19th in Atlanta and final stop on June 9th in New York, N.Y. For more information, visit

Natalia Kosk
Assistant Editor, Security Dealer & Integrator