ABI Research believes that the video surveillance market is poised for explosive growth, which the firm forecasts to expand from revenue of about $13.5 billion in 2006 to a remarkable $46 billion in 2013.
Those figures include cameras, computers and storage, professional services, and hardware infrastructure: everything that goes into an end-to-end security system.
ABI Research vice president and research director Stan Schatt, said, "We're at a key inflection point in the diverse video surveillance market, because we're moving from an analog-based industry to a digital one. A rising tide lifts all boats: the result is a multitude of opportunities for vendors."
The research found that "security" is the word on everyone's lips these days, but there is more to this dramatic market growth than that. Video surveillance finds uses in a variety of vertical markets such as retail, education, banking, transportation and corporate business. And it's not always about security: new facial recognition software can analyze shoppers' behavior within stores, for example, tracking eyeball movements as shoppers view product displays.
According to the study, European video surveillance markets are more mature than those in North America (some say the UK, with its 4.1 million surveillance cameras, is the most monitored society on earth), but massive deployments are also now taking place in North America and, in connection with the upcoming Olympics, in China.
The diversity of products and services required by the video surveillance market present challenges for individual vendors, which they are addressing through partnerships.
ABI stated that while digital technology offers advantages - higher resolution, easier searching and retrieval, and more efficient storage - many of the traditional security resellers of analog equipment are not yet comfortable with digital, and a massive retraining effort is going to be required.
"This is a modern version of the California gold rush," Schatt said. "Except that people are bringing cameras instead of pickaxes and shovels."
The research, "Video Surveillance Systems," provides global sizing and forecasting for the key components of this market: digital and analog cameras, storage devices, software, infrastructure equipment, video surveillance chips, and professional services. It also sizes and forecasts the key vertical markets spurring growth: government, retail, education, transportation, and banks.
ABI Research is a market research firm focused on the impact of emerging technologies on global consumer and business markets.