Weighing the wow factor at ISC West, Day 1

March 22, 2010, Las Vegas -- After 23 years of attending ISC West events I guess one can become a bit jaded when it comes to evaluating the technology wow factor on display by these hundreds of security vendors. So please excuse me if I am underwhelmed at times; I am just a hard man to impress after all these years.

That being said, there were enough bright spots on day one at ISC West to keep a pep in my step for Thursday. Yes there were plenty of non-technology highlights on opening day as well, including seeing Deion Sanders, a former fan favorite in Atlanta when he played for both the Falcons and the Braves. The former star athlete-turned-preacher dished out autographs and captivated with his million dollar smile. And just as flashy was the technology street market featuring the latest in Korean and Taiwanese start-ups and the best of Chinese knockoffs and rip-offs.

But I digress. There were some impressive efforts that captured my attention. Here are a few:

I spent some quality time with several former Cisco, Loronix and Axis engineers and executives who have launched a new company called Next Level Security Systems. Next Level's flagship product, the groundbreaking NLSS Gateway, integrates traditionally separate subsystems into a completely unified networked solution from the ground up. The company's IP-based technologies are built on open standards, including PSIA and ONVIF, offer a robust set of capabilities and are designed to be easy-to-configure but offered at a significantly lower cost than comparable solutions.

"Next Level Security Systems is focused on developing enterprise-class, networked security systems in a compact, easy-to-deploy and affordable solution," said Peter Jankowski, chairman and CEO, Next Level Security Systems (Jankowski previously served as CTO of Cisco's Physical Security Business Unit). "The company is driven by the belief that the integration of traditionally separate subsystems into a single appliance can bring significant value to the entire market."

The fact this company built a full-blown VMS and access control platform that is completely browser-based from the ground up in less than a year has to be applauded. However, there may be some questions whether integrators will buy into this total solution hook, line, sinker, hardware and software. But the fact remains this could be a game-changer for integrators looking to even the playing field for entry level IP technology solutions. I like it.

I spoke also with Jumbi Edulbehram, vice president of business development for Next Level Security Systems, and he is excited about helping the integrator service their end user customers with a plug-and-play solution that works.

"Everybody in the IP security world talks about best of breed this and best of breed that, but the fact is there are still many integrators out there who not capable of pulling all the pieces together in a cost-effective manner to make an IP solution feasible," he said. "There is a dire need in this industry for a simple, yet technically adept plug-and-play appliance that has all the capabilities already built in. I like to call this the 'Back to the Future' solution."
Other things that caught my eye and made an impression:

  • Brivo Systems' upgrade of its existing Onsite SE/XE appliance-based system they are calling OnSite Aparato. This new platform's licensing model will allow users maximum flexibility to build and grow their system. It has a capacity of 1,000 readers and 500,000 active card holders. Aparato also is fully secure using a Trusted Platform Model (TPM) that is ISO Standard 11889 compliant.
  • IQinVision has launched an eStore concept that is designed to reach IT, security and AV resellers not currently doing business with IQinVision distributors. Basically the new e-commerce site will allow smaller dealers to buy lesser quantities on the web.
  • Western Digital has introduced an array of video surveillance hard drives and RAID storage configurations that are both energy efficient and high capacity. I'll be the first one to admit I never really appreciated how big a role hard drive technology plays in this digital space, but it seems this company has its bases covered. Nice job.

Stay tuned for more from day two. Remember to hydrate and treat your puppies with care as you pound out the miles on the carpeted halls of ISC West 2010.