When it comes to technology, the way we use it is as important as what it does. People expect the technology they use to be easy and efficient to operate – arguably this stems from the age of the smartphone, but it extends to all the technology we use, including the most powerful and modern security systems.
Think of the smartphone in your pocket – it probably didn’t come with a full manual, yet you took it out of the box, turned it on and could use many of the functions straight anyway. We are not talking about a simple device here either, your smartphone or tablet can complete all your communications needs, run your online life and increasingly control the security and environmental controls in your home.
The point is that you had an expectation that the systems on the device matched your experiences on other systems and you would be able to use it right away. The User Interface is vital in getting to grips with any modern system, and the products the security industry offers need to be just the same.
Whilst traditionally consumers would expect to use proprietary systems for their security, it made introducing any diversity expensive and time consuming to achieve. The world has moved on and the security industry recognises that we need to produce systems that are easy to operate with one another – what is commonly termed ‘Open’ systems.
When TDSi first looked at developing our next generation security hardware and software platform (called GARDiS) two years ago, we conducted thorough research on the options to employ a fully Open system as the basis for it. The system it replaces relied upon proprietary protocols, which worked very well in practice, but we really wanted to offer even greater flexibility.
Choosing the right option
Much like the choice of mobile device operating system, we had an important decision to make in choosing the right Open platform for GARDiS. We investigated many options, but felt that some of them weren’t as flexible as we needed to fully interact with many of the options available on the market, as well as within our own products catalogue.
In the end the answer we were looking for turned out to be one that CCTV manufacturers had settled on and had proved to be very effective whilst secure – the internationally recognised ONVIF standards. It was already apparent that any online-enabled (IP) CCTV camera will work with virtually any Video Management System (VMS) software on the market, largely due to ONVIF compliance. This ensures there are no constraints on security operators with regards to what camera they choose – the perfect template for any Open security system!
Taking the plunge
In some ways being the first to move to an Open system can be a daunting choice – it would be natural to worry you will be the only one and your most popular products will just end up being used as a small part of a mixed network. However, as history has always shown, if you offer the right product at the right price and with flexibility, it will always be a market favourite. It also makes any proprietary-based competition seem like a dinosaur!
The launch of GARDiS this year, which is ONVIF A and C compliant, will see greater choice for customers than ever before. Should you wish to use our products with software from any PSIM provider (that is ONVIF compliant) it will be a simple task to integrate them, with no need to use any special Software Development Kits or separate licensing to do so.
With standard, published, Open drivers, the GARDiS range offers the flexibility to use whatever combination of systems best suits the business’ needs and resources. We believe this is a brave new era for security systems and customer choice in general – finally we have truly Open systems that puts the needs of the operator/user first.
If you would like to learn more about GARDiS and/or your open system options, contact our specialist UK Sales team today on 01202 723 535, or click here to submit a contact form.