Sony and A4S Security Join Forces to Provide Robust Digital Video Surveillance Solution

The system can record up to broadcast-quality video from up to 16 cameras attached to a single recording device


SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Sony Electronics and A4S Security, Inc. have teamed together to develop a powerful mobile video surveillance solution that addresses demanding security requirements for transportation, law enforcement and high security stationary surveillance markets.

The solution centers on ShiftWatch(R), a state-of-the-art audio and video surveillance system manufactured by A4S Security. ShiftWatch recording systems use industrial components designed to withstand harsh operating environments often found in security applications.

The system can record up to broadcast-quality video from up to 16 cameras attached to a single recording device. In addition to traditional video, the system also records audio and GPS information to authenticate the exact time, date and location of events, providing the ultimate solution for surveillance applications. Video is recorded to standards-based video formats that can be played back on any standard PC, which provides flexibility and interoperability when managing or reconstructing incidents.

While virtually all solutions currently available in the mobile digital video surveillance market are disk-based, A4S Security uses both hard disk and removable digital tape storage to provide critical backup support and an economic advantage. The company has developed a patent-pending method of archiving large video files to removable digital tape that are consistent with broadcast quality MPEG-2 DVD.

A4S Security has chosen Sony's innovative Advanced Intelligent Tape(TM) (AIT) platform as the removable digital tape storage technology used within ShiftWatch solutions because it provides ease of use and flexibility, minimal downtime and multi-partitioning. AIT technology is also an economical solution with a low cost-per-gigabyte, while delivering superior performance, density and reliability.

"Sony AIT drives provide the small form-factor, high capacity and reliability attributes needed for demanding security applications at a reasonable cost. A4S Security is leveraging these features to enhance value and efficiency within their ShiftWatch line," said Alan Sund, general manager for tape storage solutions in Sony Electronics' Component and Business Solutions Division. "AIT drives have been tested and tightly integrated to work with the modular ShiftWatch hardware and software package for easy installation and maintenance."

"A4S Security is pleased to be utilizing Sony's AIT tape technology in our ShiftWatch solution. For the first time, customers can now buy a full motion, high-resolution video surveillance system with a highly reliable, removable storage solution to manage their mission-critical needs," said Tom Marinelli, CEO of A4S Security. "We believe the need for advanced surveillance systems is a national concern and vendors must step up to meet the challenge."

Sony AIT drives are based on a number of Sony technology advancements, including helical-scan recording, the highly durable Advanced Metal Evaporated (AME) media formulation and the performance enhancing Memory-In-Cassette chip. The AIT product line features a range of capacities and performance solutions up to 200GB native storage capacity and sustained native transfer rates of up to 24MB/second.

"Video surveillance and security are spurring demand for increased data storage capacities," said Robert Amatruda, research manager at IDC. "Sony's AIT tape drives, having a small form-factor and high capacities, are well suited for video archival and capture."

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