Advancements in Surveillance Cameras
Guest Post By: Aaron Smith
Security cameras are essential for any business owner today, and the technology that powers them has become inexpensive and accessible enough that many homeowners enjoy them as well. Whether you want to enhance security in your property, monitor your kids and pets when you’re away from home, or remotely view live or recorded footage from anywhere on any device, video surveillance has come a long way.
In the digital age, security cameras protect more than just homes and businesses. You’ll find them in public facilities, schools, farms, vehicles, neighborhoods, parks, and other places. One of the reasons why security cameras have become so popular across so many applications is the advances in surveillance technology, functionality, and ease of use.
Both in terms of locational security and digital security, industry advancements have been happening at an impressively fast rate. Here, we’ll highlight some of the advancements in surveillance cameras driving the industry.
Intelligent Video Analytics
As the world shifts towards intelligent technology solutions, the security industry is embracing smart features like intelligent video analytics to improve performance and functionality. That’s why more cameras now come with in-built video analytics – the brains of a smart surveillance system. Today, intelligent video analytics have many applications.
Advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning have helped make these features more accessible:
- Detect motion and track movement
- Track and count people at events
- Recognize license plates automatically
- Recognize faces of people
- Identify specific objects in an image
- Recognize long lines at checkout and send alerts
Using intelligent video analytics software, it’s possible to review countless hours of video footage and set up specific parameters that help you get what you’re looking for with ease. You can set up real-time notifications and alerts, and even detect events based on specific search criteria.
Improved Camera Lenses and Image Sensors
Security camera sensors play a huge role in capturing high-quality surveillance video. The newest image sensors help ensure that your surveillance video stays clear even when objects are moving and at the highest resolutions. For security cameras, the sensors must be designed to:
- Accommodate low-light sensitivity
- High signal to noise ratio
- High-temperature performance
- Perform well even at night
- Withstand the harsh outdoor environments
- Optimize power and performance
Over the last few years, CMOS sensors have become the technology of choice for security cameras. These sensors are a great option for surveillance with great performance in low-light conditions and total darkness. They also feature a wide dynamic range. CCD sensors are also a great option and produce higher quality images at higher resolutions.
Remote Accessibility and Notifications
Another significant advancement in surveillance cameras is remote viewing and accessibility. Remote monitoring gives users on-the-go, real-time access to live security camera footage from anywhere, anytime, via mobile phones, tablets, or computers. This feature makes it easy to monitor employees, kids, pets, your office, or business when you’re away, day or night.
All you need to do is download the provided PC monitoring software or mobile app, follow simple instructions to set up remote viewing, access live video footage, and even playback recorded surveillance video. This feature works perfectly when combined with motion sensors, so whenever there’s motion or sound on your property, you get alerts and notifications. Some cameras come with pan-tilt-zoom features so that you can remotely control the motion of your camera as well.
Cloud-Based Storage and Platform Collaboration
Cloud technology is transforming data storage across the board. In the security industry, cloud-based storage has become the go-to option for storing surveillance footage without being restricted by the limitations of using on-premises video recorders. It’s a perfect solution for homeowners and businesses who want scalable storage.
With cloud storage, users can enjoy:
- Easy remote access – Homeowners, business owners, or authorized users can easily access video footage stored on the cloud on any smart device through a secure browser. Because storage is centralized online, users get to enjoy streamlined visibility from anywhere, at any time.
- Flexible surveillance video storage – With cloud-based storage, you can scale up your data storage capacity to meet the growing demands of your business, or property. This means you can easily accommodate your video needs without interrupting your surveillance monitoring process.
- Easy maintenance – Cloud storage has virtually no physical maintenance. By offering a simple security camera setup and eliminating the need for supporting equipment and hardware, cloud storage for security cameras ensures dependable surveillance system operability.
Video Compression Technology
Video compression technology is valuable when your surveillance camera system has bandwidth and storage limitations. For instance, if you have 1080p or 4K ultra-HD security cameras recording 24/7, the video footage can be extremely large. This is where video compression technology comes in to compress videos to save storage space without compromising image quality.
H. 265 video compression technology is the most efficient and newest option available for security cameras. It makes it easier for your surveillance system to transmit video footage over your network without slowing it down or delays, which is vital when viewing footage on a smartphone or tablet. The compressed video takes up less space on your video recorder’s hard drives and allows you to store even more video for longer periods.
Drone-Based Video Surveillance
Security and surveillance have become the biggest growth areas in the UAV sector. More industries, especially in the agricultural sector, are using drones to provide aerial assessments of the health of crops and tracking activities happening on the ground.
Drone-based video surveillance is one of the technologies transforming viticulture and other industries across the globe. Drones can cover large areas over great distances and have become largely efficient to run. They can be mounted with cameras and other monitoring and sensing equipment to help farms collect real-time data and maximize crop yields.
Advancements in drone-based video surveillances have played a critical role in wider applications today, including:
- Providing real-time situational awareness
- Comprehensive monitoring of large facilities
- Video footage of harsh environments
- Deterrence of unwanted activity or persons
- Tracking and following animals in farms and parks
Most of the drones adapted for video surveillance offer live HD video feeds, AI-driven response and alerts, automated and scheduled patrols, remote deployment and management, and other features.
Facial recognition has been making its way into consumer technology like social media platforms and smartphones for years. The next frontier is real-time identification for surveillance, and it’s already available in business security cameras and some home cameras. When combined with video management software, advances in security camera facial recognition technology can help identify individuals of interest and track their movement automatically.
Applications include hospitals, airports, stadiums, campuses, and other public places were security personnel monitor spaces or large groups actively. When it comes to home security, facial recognition can help create a database of people who visit a residential property regularly. This way, the cameras can detect anyone who’s supposed to be on the property or not.
You’ll mostly find facial recognition features in doorbell cameras that can even be programmed to provide access automatically. Advancements in this sector are expected to optimize safety and provide convenience for users. As more of these tech features come into play, the need for secure access and management is also growing.
Infrared Night Vision Technology
More property owners are turning to security cameras with infrared technology for high-definition night vision. This night-time surveillance technology uses infrared illuminators to shine infrared light in their field of view, and an image sensor capable of detecting it. The result is clear video footage, even in total darkness.
Properties equipped with infrared night vision cameras are every bit as secure at night as they are in broad daylight in terms of the quality of their surveillance footage. They also do not need to keep the lights on for the sake of the cameras, which can significantly reduce energy costs.
Benefits of infrared technology include:
- Long-range night-vision
- Better clarity in dim light conditions
- HD or Ultra HD resolution video at night
- Buildings are able to securely turn off lights at night
Improved Field of Vision
Advances in camera field of view have made it possible for homeowners and business owners to get the best viewing angle for complete video footage. Depending on the type of landscape being monitored, the type of security camera and the angle of viewing make all the difference. What the camera can see or capture matters.
Thanks to advances in the field of view (FOV) technology for security cameras, users can now choose the perfect surveillance option to suit their needs. Whether they want to capture the overall big picture of an area, see small details in great detail, or enjoy long-range viewing, there are different options available to choose from today.
- Wide-angle – Captures more objects but fewer details
- Narrow-angle – Captures fewer objects but in greater detail
- Telephoto – Captures objects in the distance
- Pan-tilt-zoom – Captures 360 degrees of a space
Two-way audio is a convenient feature that enables you to see and “talk through the camera” to anyone on the other side. This is most often used in video doorbells to answer the door without opening it, using your phone, and whether you are home or not. But the same technology can be used for nearly any camera throughout your network.
- Two-way communication through the camera
- All the same benefits of recorded video footage
- Communicate with your loved ones, kids, and pets while away
- Monitor and communicate with employees to facilitate working remotely
Advanced Motion Detection
Motion detection has been a reliable feature of security systems for years, and it gets even better when integrated with the latest technology. Rather than immediately tripping an alarm when your camera detects motion, modern systems can send a push notification to your smartphone that indicates activity was detected. It can show which camera the activity came from, and instantly present the video of the event for your review.
More advanced systems can even use artificial intelligence to identify specific objects like cars, people, and even pets to avoid false alarms. Advanced motion detection with passive infrared sensors can quickly detect moving heat signatures, enhancing accuracy.
With this smart technology, you can enjoy more precise motion detection and minimal unwanted motion alerts caused by animals or random inanimate objects in the field of view. You can easily customize motion detection settings through the video recorder or the surveillance app for wireless cameras. You can set up specific motion zones, heighten or lower motion sensitivity, and specify the threshold for triggering alerts or notifications.
4K Ultra HD Video Quality
The movement beyond 1080p full HD resolution for security cameras is here to stay. Terms like 2K and 4K have become the norm when people talk of smartphones, television, and computer monitor resolutions. 4K Ultra HD is also here for security cameras, and more homeowners and businesses are buying security cameras with 4K resolution.
With four times the resolution of a 1080p security camera, 4K Ultra HD cameras offer crisp images, sharp details, amazing digital zoom when reviewing footage, crystal clear videos, and even color night vision. They come with larger image sensors that capture more light, which improves color and contrast in low-light conditions. 4K resolution is the future of surveillance.
The Capabilities of Surveillance Technology are Evolving Fast
The days of grainy CCTV footage are long gone. Advancements in surveillance technology have completely transformed the security industry. From growing customer expectations to evolving security needs in properties, we can expect to see more features in security cameras.
Over the next few years, new security cameras and systems will have more cloud storage solutions, feature more advanced security apps, state-of-the-art motion detectors, audio sensors, and offer predictive analysis driven by machine learning and artificial intelligence. More technological features mean better security, along with access and surveillance monitoring for homeowners and business owners.
The advancements in surveillance cameras for the digital age have been nothing but positive. They’ve made security camera systems more affordable, accessible, and easier to use for business owners and homeowners than ever before. Technology is helping us to make a safer world, and at the rate things are progressing, those benefits will only continue to improve.
Bio: Aaron Smith is an LA-based content strategist and consultant in support of STEM firms and medical practices. He covers industry developments and helps companies connect with clients. In his free time, Aaron enjoys swimming, swing dancing, and sci-fi novels.