Are you a CCTV dealer or retailer? If so, you must have noticed that the demand for IP cameras is growing exponentially. Many industries have already adopted IP video as a standard, some of which include universities, K-12 schools, health care, transportation and government. The retail market hasn’t fully adopted IP, but will soon begin to, considering marketing purposes such as counting people coming and going from a store, checking the gender and age of customers, and monitoring peak times for business. Below, you will see 4 points that can help you prepare to offer your customers IP video solutions.
1) Should dealers install coax for current and future analog projects?
The simple answer, no. You can install Cat-5e or Cat-6 cable and future-proof the cabling at your customer’s location. You will need to use video baluns for this cable to work with analog cameras. When you begin the switch to IP cameras, you will simply replace the video baluns with an RJ45 connector (if not already on the cable), so that it can connect to the IP camera, switch, etc.
2) Are all dealers that don’t offer IP the same?
Yes! The most common fear from dealers is the networking component. The best way to overcome this is to invest in your staff and offer them basic network training. This will help when discussing what you are trying to do with your customers IT department. Getting a “green light” from the IT department of your (potential) customer will make the purchase much easier and offer far fewer headaches.
3) HD cameras vs. Megapixel cameras
All HD cameras are megapixel cameras. A 720p camera is 0.9 megapixels and a 1080p camera is 2.1 megapixels. The main difference between an HD and megapixel camera is that HD cameras use a widescreen format (16 x 9). As an example, a 3 megapixel camera will only provide a 4 x 3 format, but it will have a higher resolution than a 1080p camera. One advantage of the HD cameras, is that most end users understand “720p” and “1080p” terminology, when dealing with the type of TV they buy for their home.
4) Which IP cameras should dealers offer?
The two biggest variables for choosing a distributor or manufacturer of IP cameras are great support and training. Another big variable is to determine what the application is. A large scale university will need a completely different solution than a person who wants a couple of megapixel cameras for their home.
The reality is, IP camera solutions are here to stay. If you are already offering IP camera options to your customers, then you are ahead of the bandwagon. Analog solutions still have a strong place in the market, but it is best to offer both types, especially as IP gains more acceptance.