Avatar photo


Author Bio ▼

Adam Bannister is a contributor to IFSEC Global, having been in the role of Editor from 2014 through to November 2019. Adam also had stints as a journalist at cybersecurity publication, The Daily Swig, and as Managing Editor at Dynamis Online Media Group.
September 25, 2014

Sign up to free email newsletters


Whitepaper: Multi-residential access management – The move to digital

Atul Rajput on the New Access Control Solution from AXIS

atulIFSEC Global: So how are things going for Axis right now?

Atul Rajput: Looking at northern Europe the region I am responsible for, we are experiencing very strong demand in the enterprise sector, with key project wins in three UK major airports, a host of Tier 1 retail rollouts including the Co-operative group and global fashion brands such as Paul Smith and Superdry, as well as critical infrastructure projects in the utilities sector.

Axis has always been synonymous with producing high quality, feature-rich and reliable IP video surveillance products; attributes which are highly valued in these sectors.

IG: What is the most interesting or exciting thing in the industry right now in your view?


What is exciting for the security industry is how we are mirroring wider consumer technology trends. For example, emergence of 4K cameras in professional security is really raising the bar in terms of image quality and the capacity for forensic interrogation.

Smartphones, smarthomes and IoT, it’s all about smarter devices and functionality. Apply that same train of thought to the exciting development in network camera technology and intelligence at the edge and you’ll see a drive to smarter network cameras.

I recall a few years ago people said you couldn’t run LPR at the edge, nowadays, it’s possible.

There are now UK Home Office i-LIDS-approved intrusion detection analytics running solely on a camera with the same performance as if it were running on a server – offering reliability, simplicity and affordability, key drivers to accelerate uptake of video analytics and engineer a move to more mass market consumption.

A phone used to be a phone, now it’s a ‘smart’ phone where, in some respects, the actual phone part is of secondary importance and it primary function is a business and productivity tool.

What if we could use an IP camera for a secondary purpose – for more than just security? Clearly this is something that people want as proved by the 2013 CCTV in Retail survey conducted by the Centre for Retail Research, which showed that the main reason retailers would migrate to IP video is because of its integration with business intelligence applications.

There is a whole host of applications that can be integrated with a camera to transform the device into a business optimisation tool, such as measuring footfall and heatmap’s to gain an insight into shopper behaviour and engagement with visual merchandising.

In effect, you’re utilising actual video but transforming the information into data sets which can be used as a platform to make real-time business decisions.

This is significantly going to impact on how vendors and integrators adopt solution strategy proposals, including the stakeholders they engage with across an organisation.

For example, in a retail context, should they move beyond the loss prevention teams and target marketing and operations teams by focusing on business optimisation benefits?

This approach presents both challenges and opportunities, but a fresh perspective on how video surveillance is deployed and sold presents an exciting opportunity for everyone in the coming years.

IG: Please tell us a little about your R&D process…

AR: For Axis, innovation is in our DNA. 16% of sales revenue was invested in R&D and we remain committed to continuing to bring innovative products to the market that set the benchmark for the industry and reinforce our commitment to quality and innovation– the cornerstones of our business since 1996.

Our recently launched Q series range of cameras offers a seamless transition from a new market-leading wide dynamic range to low light technology, all in the same camera. So if the environment changes during the day, from light to dark, the camera seamlessly adapts to ensure  usable video images 24/7.

There are also technologies like electronic image stabilisation and shock detection in some of these cameras. At both our press briefing at IFSEC and at the consultants’ lunch we hosted, we demonstrated our electric image stabilisation technology and the audience was genuinely astounded by how much the image remained static given the significant vibration to the camera.

This level of vibration simulated the type of movement experienced when a camera is mounted on a pole or is overlooking roads with fast moving traffic, especially in windy environments. This is just one great example of how Axis continues to raise the bar in terms of image quality and usability and there are more examples on our YouTube channel that help to visualise the impact of these smart features.

IG: So you’re about to make a foray into the access control market for the first time. Isn’t it quite unusual for a company to straddle both the surveillance and access control markets?

AR: That’s a good point. If you look at the big players in the access control market they are not always surveillance manufacturers.

However, given our market-leading position in network cameras and video encoders (according to IHS Research), and the instrumental role we play in driving convergence to network-based (IP) products within video surveillance, a step into the access control market represents more of an ‘evolution’ rather than a ‘revolution’.

IG: Why do you think it’s more conservative than the surveillance market?

AR:  Historically, the video surveillance industry has been more agile in terms of IP adoption.  The risk associated with a non-functioning door controller not letting someone in or out of a room or building is greater than that of a camera not recording, so perhaps the technological change takes longer to get buy-in and instil confidence in the market.

Axis has played an instrumental role in driving convergence to IP video surveillance over for many years now and we believe that this approach and our vast experience gives us a solid foundation for moving into the access control market.

The Axis approach, as with IP video, will be to use an open and standardised API, to enable system integrators to deliver non-proprietary solutions for physical access control that are easier to integrate with other security systems. 

IG: If I’m an installer, why should I be interested in your new access control product?

AR: According to the 2011 BSRIA World Security report, 58% of enterprise access control systems are integrated with video surveillance and 80% of customers want integration.

Also, a recent IHS research note highlighted how IP devices are seeing more uptake and are being pushed closer to the edge, allowing for more remote management and making installation quicker, simpler and more cost-effective.

Axis has many partners across the globe who are selling its cameras and have a strong track record in access control and this, along with the market demanding more integration and research pointing to a market trend of more IP devices, means our new access control offering should fulfil market demand.

IG: And if I’m a facilities manager or other end user, what should I know about this product?

AR:I believe an offering based on true open standards will create a lot of interest and demand within end users.

The IHS research note highlighted that open standards will begin to really develop in the access control market in 2014, although widespread adoption will take a few years yet.

Additionally, IT departments will become more actively involved in managing and dictating access control installations, and solutions supporting standard IT equipment and POE, will also be consistent with IT department requirements.

Due to the open API, the freedom to select a best of breed integrated security system will be a big benefit.

Increased end user interest in ONVIF-compliant products in video surveillance demonstrates that end users are increasingly considering open architectures when making decisions on investing in security technology.

IG: It would be great to hear a bit more about the technical spec…

AR: The AXIS A1001 door controller is, so far, the only access control device that conforms to ONVIF Profile C. The door controller can run in a hosted cloud system at the click of a button, or, at the other end of the scale, seamlessly integrate into a large enterprise system and discover the unit in a very complex network infrastructure, potentially easing the burden on the IT department.

Even if the A1001 door controller is not initially deployed in the cloud, the capability is there to meet future requirements. We are experiencing heightened demand for cloud-based video systems and this trend is already impacting on the access control market, so it builds in an element of future proofing.

Again, it’s a very open system- we support most readers on the market that use standard protocols and the standout, without a doubt, is the API, which is well documented and available for everyone to use, deploy and build a system around.

IG: Is the product innovative in any other ways?

AR: The product was first launched in North America and the general feedback was that it was perceived as a game changer – the first true open door controller in the market.

Conventional, proprietary systems have limited options: you need a central server or a control unit with complex and expensive cabling that restricts possibilities for integration.  From a flexibility perspective, our product sits across two camps.

First of all, it can be used for solutions with fewer than 10 doors – a large proportion of the market.  With no central server required, it’s completely standalone and with an embedded web interface to communicate with the door controller, installation time will be significantly reduced and it will be more affordable to deploy from an IT perspective.

Beyond that entry-level proposition, the AXIS A1001 door controller can also be the foundation for building an enterprise access control system. Because of its open API, it can be integrated within more complex and demanding applications.

Any third-party VMS for network video integration or access-control software platform can integrate with the A1001 door controller.

This means easier integration between disparate elements of an organisation’s security and building management infrastructure, such as HVAC and HR systems which really is the beauty of a true open platform IP network door controller like the AXIS A1001.

Free Download: The Video Surveillance Report 2023

Discover the latest developments in the rapidly-evolving video surveillance sector by downloading the 2023 Video Surveillance Report. Over 500 responses to our survey, which come from integrators to consultants and heads of security, inform our analysis of the latest trends including AI, the state of the video surveillance market, uptake of the cloud, and the wider economic and geopolitical events impacting the sector!

Download for FREE to discover top industry insight around the latest innovations in video surveillance systems.


Related Topics

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments