Distributors focus on IP video at ISC West

No matter which security distribution firm you speak with on the show floor at ISC West this year, they all have one overarching strategy in common and that is providing dealers and integrators will the tools they need to make the transition from analog to IP video installations.

Pat Comunale, president and chief operating officer of Tri-Ed/Northern Video Distribution said that his company trains close to 3,000 dealers annually with their IP video road shows and other network video centric events that they host throughout the year.

"Our goal is to get them through that initial hesitancy," said Tri-Ed/Northern Video Director of Network Solutions Jeffrey Stout. "We're going to walk them through the job from soup to nuts."

Stout said that they offer classes that range from providing a very basic understanding of the differences between analog and IP video to ones that go into great detail regarding camera resolutions and network architecture.

Mike Guenther, director of marketing for security solutions at Anixter, said that one of the goals of the company's booth this year was to define an IP migration strategy for their dealer and integrator partners.

"There is confusion on migration to some degree," he said. "But moving forward, integrators will figure it out."

Tony Sorrentino, president of ScanSource Security, said that his firm will also be out in force this year training their customers on IP video, as well as on the nuances of high-definition and megapixel cameras.

"HD and megapixel are taking a much bigger role, as well as IP," Sorrentino explained. "More is happening on the camera than ever before. We're going to be all over the country this year training dealers on how they can get into IP."

Though IP video technology has been around for some time, Sorrentino said that some dealers and integrators have been slow to make the transition simply because there is still so much existing analog infrastructure.

"A lot is driven by the fact that there is a lot of analog business out there," he said. "That slowed down the need for resellers to adopt IP."

Like every other technology, however, Sorrentino said that IP video solutions have become less expensive and better over the years, which is why it's critical for installers to make this move now.

Among some of the other trends in the distribution market that Comunale said he's seeing is an uptick in the intrusion market for "lifestyle enhancement" features, such as lighting and HVAC control, as well as consolidation by security equipment manufacturers in who they go to market with.

Both Guenther and Sorrentino say there has been strong growth in the adoption of security technologies in several key vertical markets including education, municipal surveillance, retail and some critical infrastructure sites.