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VMS industry in 2021: Video Technology at the Frontline of Demand and Opportunity

Milestone Systems Sandesh Kaup

By: Mr. Sandesh Kaup, Country Manager, Milestone Systems, India & SAARC

The 2020 pandemic is one of the biggest watershed moments in modern history. In the last year, we have seen the world come to a halt. However, thanks to technology, we were able to find new ways to carry on, to connect, and work remotely.

The video management system (VMS) industry, too, is guided by the responsibilities to invent, innovate, and leverage technology progress to enable the world to thrive in the new next.
In the coming months and years, we can expect to see more innovative and emerging technologies coming together and forming new trends. Here are the four megatrends that we see will influence and impact the industry in the coming times.

Formative AI

Formative AI is a megatrend, an umbrella term shaped by emerging technologies of preceding years – Aggregation, Automation, and Augmentation, that can dynamically change in response to situational variances. It demonstrates how fast-emerging technologies are forming new trends.
As per Gartner, formative AI will be used to streamline mathematical and machine learning models and will be fine-tuned over time.

It will impact technologies such as AI-augmented design, AI-augmented development, ontologies and graphs, small data, composite AI, adaptive machine learning (ML), self-supervised learning, generative AI, and generative adversarial networks.

Formative AI enables application developers and UX designers to create solutions using AI-enabled tools with real-time interactive feedback to improve the usability of software and intelligent products. The most advanced can generate novel models to solve specific problems.

Gartner predicts that future machine learning models will be based on Formative AI, which will impact technologies such as AI-augmented design, AI-augmented development, ontologies and graphs, small data, composite AI, adaptive machine learning (ML), self-supervised learning, generative AI, and generative adversarial networks.

Distributed Cloud

Distributed clouds are cloud services that are distributed to different physical locations, where the operation, governance, updates, and evolution of the services are taken care of by the public cloud provider.

Distributed cloud is also termed as the next generation of computing, as it retains the advantages of cloud computing while extending the range and use cases for the cloud. Distributed cloud is the first model that incorporates the physical location of cloud-delivered services as part of its definition. In earlier models, the location was never factored into the service, which inspired the term ‘cloud computing. Specifically, the proposition of enabling low latency compute with the distributed cloud is essential to the VMS industry, where moving a significant amount of data from physical on-premise sites is simply not an option.

In the distributed cloud, computing can also happen at the edge, if required. With the distributed cloud, evolving models of cloud computing can be leveraged for every business opportunity.

Composite Architecture

According to Gartner, a future ‘composable enterprise’ is designed to respond to rapidly changing and decentralized business needs with packaged business capabilities built on a flexible data fabric.

Composable enterprise embraces the API (Application Programming Interface) approach delivering business outcomes through the assembly and combination of packaged business capabilities. Composite architectures enable integrated enterprises to work seamlessly and change with the requirements without having to rebuild or reinstall the entire solution. It enables an open data fabric to serve a variety of core and add-on solutions.

Digital Ethics

With changing intricate technology that deals with users’ data, the ethical use of technology plays a very important part. Until now, ethics was mostly centered on compliance and risk. In the upcoming times, digital innovation governance will not just be a compliance metric but the basis of business operations.

Ethics must be a key offering in the business, with digital ethics linked to concrete business key performance indicators. One of the trends within digital ethics is Responsible AI which focuses on ensuring ethical, transparent, and accountable use of AI technologies in a manner consistent with user expectations, organizational values, and societal laws and norms. Responsible AI can guard against the use of biased data or algorithms, ensuring that automated decisions are justified and explainable.

Organizations can initiate their active role in promoting the responsible use of technology by signing End User License Agreement (EULA) with their partners, which is a legally binding agreement between partners, solution providers, or even associated software and hardware components, media, printed materials, online or electronic documentation, and any updates or corrections.

Organizations can also sign the Copenhagen Letter, a technology declaration that Milestone co-authored to aspire to open and honest public conversation about the power of technology and how technology should enhance the quality of life and adopt a corresponding Copenhagen Clause into their own agreements.

These four new megatrends and the acceleration of emerging technology adoption in the last year have placed video technology at the frontline of new creative demand and opportunity in the VMS industry and adjacent markets like retail, transportation, and smart cities.

The underlying technology of physical security systems that have been used for security, loss prevention, and access control is now taking on new types of use cases such as heat mapping in public spaces, crowd counting, improving the retail experience, etc. For instance, video analytics analyses the behavior of the objects captured and reports if any unusual movements or abnormality is detected in the footage. Thermal cameras and crowd counting solutions, likewise, can be integrated with an open video management system to help alert authorities in real-time if a spot gets too crowded and where social distancing norms are flouted. Again, in retail stores, video analytics are helping store managers manage footfalls and help customers avoid close contact inside the store by designing single flow routes and store exit points, where people can avoid meeting one another. Also, in addition to assisting in complying with COVID-19 guidelines, these technologies are being employed to protect employees’ and customer’s health when we ultimately re-open for business.

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