VMS software firm Milestone Systems gets into hardware business

At its "MIPS" partner and media event held last week in San Antonio, Texas (see earlier report from SIW), Milestone Systems released early details of a move that takes the firm into the hardware business. At MIPS, Milestone announced the XProtect Essential NVR, an NVR solution offering 8 or 16 channels of IP video recording.

According to Christian Bohn, Milestone's vice president for marketing and product management, the new NVR "is designed to be a plug-and-play solution" which "allows installers to use this solution with very little IP knowledge." The NVR comes pre-installed with XProtect Essential and includes the licenses for the cameras/devices that would be connected. Projected pricing puts the 8-port NVR with 1 TB of storage at an MSRP of around $3,000, and the 16-port version with 2 TB of storage at an MSRP of approximately $4,000.

Milestone plans to release the devices in the European market first, during the second quarter of 2011, and then will bring them to the U.S. market. Hewlett-Packard is the OEM provider for the hardware of the NVR, but the form factor has not been announced.

Prior to the announcement of the new NVR which runs XProtect Essential, Milestone Systems purely offered its video management solutions as software that could be run on commercial-off-the-shelf PC/server hardware. The company's software products handle video surveillance recording, recognition/communication with IP video devices (including cameras and encoders), playback, video analytics and support for integration with other systems. Five versions of the company's XProtect software are offered today (ordered by capacity/feature sets, largest to smallest): Corporate, Enterprise, Professional, Essential, and Go (a free version).

In years past, the company had jointly released its VMS software ("XProtect") on hardware from JVC as a pre-configured NVR, but this XProtect Essential NVR is the first to come directly from Milestone Systems.

In addition to the two NVR models, Milestone Systems announced three other new offerings during the MIPS event:

  • A new software development kit (SDK) for building integrations with Milestone's XProtect softwares
  • The XProtect software manager, a program that allows management of software installations, and which facilitates upgrades within XProtect product families
  • The XProtect Screen Recorder – an add-on to XProtect which allows the direct capture of activity on a PC monitor, as if that monitor was a live camera feed

Company executives said that more information about these offerings would be available at the ISC West tradeshow being held in Las Vegas next month.