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Standards bodies push forward towards interoperability

ONVIF and PSIA, the two standards bodies trying to create a framework for physical security technology, recommitted themselves to the cause at the ASIS 2010 conference held earlier this month in Dallas, Tex.

October 19, 2010  By Neil Sutton

The move towards IP as a communications protocol for video surveillance is helping the industry in its quest to establish standards and interoperability, said Steve Surfaro, strategic channel manager and industry liaison for Axis Communications, one of the three founding members of the Open Network Video Interface Forum.

“It’s going to help all of us. It’s going to help ONVIF. The best way to distribute video is on IP platforms,” Surfaro told a group of press and analysts at the ASIS conference. “Our dream is to have a global interface standard.”

ONVIF was founded in 2008 by Axis, Sony and Bosch Security Systems. It has since grown to 220 members (14 full members and 22 contributing). There are currently 307 products conforming to the standard. ONVIF is aiming for 600 products in short order, said Surfaro.

Surfaro said the group is actively looking for more members, including research companies that might be able to contribute to the ONVIF body of knowledge.


“ONVIF is now a reality in the global security industry,” said Jonas Andersson, also of Axis Communications, and Chairman of ONVIF’s Steering Committee. “End users, integrators and manufacturers are clearly seeing the benefits of this technology, and it is becoming more common for users to request ONVIF conformant products in their system specifications.”

ONVIF announced recently that it has created working groups to develop a standard of interoperability between network video products and access control systems. Prior to the ASIS show, ONVIF hosted a public forum at the Essen Security conference in Germany to demonstrate interoperable products.

PSIA, the Physical Security Interoperability Alliance, is also throwing its weight behind IP, saying at the ASIS show that it is ramping up development of IP-based specifications “to achieve system-wide interoperability of IP security devices.”

“Until IP technologies are just as easy to design, sell and install as traditional analogue CCTV systems, IP will not deliver on its true value,” said Scott Harkins, president and GM of Honeywell Systems.

PSIA was also founded in 2008. Its members include: Honeywell, Cisco, Tyco, March Networks, Assa Abloy and IBM.

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