Choosing The Best CCTV System To Protect Your Family And Home

9 Tips To Help You Choose The Best CCTV System To Protect Your Family And Home

If you’ve ever browsed through CCTV surveillance camera brochures with their dozens of options, product shots, specifications and varying prices, you may have been tempted to slap it shut and leave upgrading your security system for another day. Hampton Tel of Monmouth County realizes the vast array of CCTV surveillance cameras and recorders on the market can be daunting, but this list of 9 points helps its customers make the best investment in a security camera.

The vast array of CCTV surveillance cameras and recorders on the market can be daunting, making it difficult to decide which system would be best suited to your home or business environment. To cut through the information overload, check out this list of nine points to help you make the best investment in a security camera system for your needs.

Going cheap can cost you more

It’s always wiser to invest in a good quality, small, entry-level system that allows you to add more cameras later on. Reputable security companies will offer a range of camera and recorder options from good brand names including Hikivision, Axis, Sunell, Secequip, Visionline, Dahua, Samsung, and Honeywell. Another benefit of reputable brands is the confidence in their warranty offerings compared to small retailers’ unbranded cameras, which may only offer the required six-month product guarantee at best, and will rarely include the service of professional installation and an extended no-nonsense warranty period of up to 3 years.

Decide what you need to catch on camera

If you consider what you can see with your own eyes, it is tricky to find a camera that will be able to mimic it. Advances in technology mean today’s cameras offer a range of angles, some even provide 360-degree vision and function under a range of lighting conditions.

Think about what you need to see on camera. That will help you decide what type of camera and what different camera functions you need. Do you want the camera to be able to see a vehicle outside the front driveway gate or a pedestrian ringing the bell?

Lens length and width explained

It can seem confusing to understand the technicalities of choosing lens size and wide-angle degree when selecting CCTV cameras.

For each millimeter of lens size, the rule of thumb is that this is how far away in meters the camera will be able to view its subject (focal length). The degree of a wide angle lens will determine the field of vision and shorten the focal length as the angle gets wider.

For example, a basic 60-degree wide angle, 4 mm lens will effectively identify a human target at up to 4 meters, but it will not have enough range to view the neighbour’s property to the left or right.

Storage and data

CCTV cameras can be attached to your home or business network through internet protocol (IP) to sound the alarm of a security breach and transmit data such as images to a security provider’s control centre via a broadband connection, such as wireless, GSM or ADSL.

The HD cameras will require more bandwidth and better internet connections and can be data hungry when accessing the feed on mobile devices, as well as require higher levels of memory storage to keep the better quality high res film which will mean bigger file sizes.

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7 Tips When Choosing a Business VoIP Service for Your SMB

7 Tips When Choosing a Business VoIP Service for Your SMB

Small businesses can save a boatload on communications costs by moving to a cloud-based voice-over-IP (VoIP) service, but you need to make a careful buying decision.

Where we’re going, we don’t need landlines. If your business is looking for ways to streamline efficiencies and open up more dynamic channels of digital communication, it may be time to evolve from the days of hardwired phones to a business voice-over-IP (VoIP) service to give your small to midsize business (SMB) integrated voice, chat, video, and mobile softphone capabilities in a unified cloud communications platform.

So you’ve decided to upgrade to a VoIP service but you’re wondering where to start. There are a bunch of amazing business VoIP systems out there, but each one has a different set of features and a different pricing structure, so choosing can be difficult. Fonality is our Editors’ Choice for business users, but that doesn’t mean you should automatically run to their website to buy it. In fact, systems such as RingCentral$24.99 at RingCentral offer voicemail transcription which Fonality only offers at the highest price tier (you can add transcription services at the other price tiers for an extra fee).

So you’ve got to do your homework to make sure the VoIP service you choose is the right one for your particular business. With that in mind, we’ve compiled this list of six things you need to consider before choosing a business VoIP system for your SMB.

1. Plans and Pricing
We might as well start with the most important characteristic: cost. What good is choosing a business VoIP service with all of the bells and whistles if you can’t afford it? Fonality starts at $24.99 per user per month for 1-4 users to access its barebones system. This gives you access to unlimited calling, basic queueing services for incoming calls, and an auto attendant. If you want to add more advanced services, you have to bump up to the $29.99 service for 5-10 users (which includes video conferencing) or another one of its higher tiers for enterprise scale and functionality. Again, Fonality is the cream of the crop when it comes to business VoIP, so this is the highest price you should pay if you’re not looking for any specific customizations or add-ons. RingCentral offers similar (though not exact) basic and intermediate pricing starting at $19.99, but it also offers a $44.99 per user per month plan that includes HD videoconferencing for up to 50 users at a time.

2. Custom Mobile Apps
Your staffers are probably on the go at least some of the time, so you’re going to want a VoIP service that can travel with them. Unfortunately, not all VoIP providers offer mobile apps that deliver the same value and services as the desktop apps. All of the systems we reviewed offer solid mobile apps, but be careful as this isn’t an industry standard. Most VoIP services will offer call forwarding, which is a handy way to get calls delivered to your workers when they’re on the road. Those systems without a dedicated app won’t be able to create a log for these calls nor create voicemail transcripts if the call isn’t answered.

3. Call Routing and Management
Fonality offers extended services similar to what you’d find at a call center for a big box retailer. These options let you do things such as route calls from one rep to another after a few rings, provide a touch or voice menu, or hold calls within a queue until they are answered. Obviously, your videoconferencing-focused VoIP systems won’t deliver this kind of value. If that’s what you’re looking for, you should definitely choose a traditional desktop, phone-based VoIP solution.

4. Third-Party Productivity Integrations
If you want your sales and service reps to be productive while on calls, you’re going to want a VoIP service that integrates with third-party apps. RingCentral, for example, offers a healthy dose of extensions, including, Dropbox, and Google DriveFree at Google.

5. Support
As with any product, the level of service you’ll receive is crucial to how well your service functions. Fonality offers 24/7 phone support, live chat support, and email ticket support for customers who experience issues. RingCentral offers 24/7 phone support for customers with plans for two or more users. If you’re a single user, you’ll only be able to get someone on the horn during 13-hour blocks Monday through Friday. RingCentral also offers 24/7 live chat support. If you run a global business with round-the-clock needs, you’re going to want to find a service provider that can guarantee your queries will be answered immediately (or at least in a timely fashion). If they can’t offer that, you might want to look elsewhere, especially if your phone system is the main method of communicating with clients.

6. Security
Security is a must for every cloud-based service that’s plugged into your business, and the attack vectors evolve every day. For an internet-connect application like a VoIP app that’s serving as the hub of your business communications, inside-out security measures are even more imperative. Do your due diligence on vendors to know where the responsibility lies for data stored in a cloud-based service, and if possible negotiate security terms into your contract. Look for services that offer end-to-end encryption and authentication, private VLANs, and behind-the-firewall protection. Check out this list of do’s and dont’s to securing your VoIP communications for more details.

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How Listening To Music At Work Can Increase Productivity

How Listening To Music At Work Can Increase Productivity

Ever wonder why catchy holiday jingles make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside?  Hampton Tel of Monmouth County wants it’s customers to know how listening to music at the office can increase productivity, cooperation, and overall improve individual work ethic.  Hopefully, your employer will allow you to jingle-all-the-way this season!

Now, a new study shows that workers might benefit from continuing to listen to music when they get to the office. Researchers from Cornell University have found that happy, upbeat music can lead employees to be more productive, cooperative, and work harder for the good of the company or team.

“Music is a pervasive part of much of our daily lives, whether we consciously notice or not. . . Music might melt into the background in places like supermarkets or gyms and other times it’s very prominent like places of worship or presidential nominating conventions. Our results show that people seem more likely to get into sync with each other if they’re listening to music that has a steady beat to it,” said lead author Kevin Kniffin.

Encouraging cooperation

The researchers conducted two studies to see what effect upbeat music had on groups of workers. The songs that the researchers selected included hits like “Brown Eyed Girl,” “Yellow Submarine,” and “Walking on Sunshine.”

In one scenario, researchers analyzed the different effects that happy songs had on workers compared to “unpleasant” songs – such as heavy metal songs from bands that aren’t well-known. The findings showed that group contributions were approximately one-third higher when upbeat music was playing compared to when the heavy metal songs were playing.

To make sure the downfall of working conditions wasn’t completely due to heavy metal music, researchers conducted a second study where participants listened to either upbeat music or no music at all. Much like the first study, the findings showed that workplace contributions were higher for groups when they were able to listen to music.

Multiple benefits

The researchers believe that their findings could potentially help mold a new type of working environment that benefits both employees and employers. While one group is able to enjoy a more supportive workplace, the other may be able to save money and increase productivity.

“What’s great about these findings, other than having a scientific reason to blast tunes at work, is that happy music has the power to make the workplace more cooperative and supportive overall,” said researcher Brian Wansink.

“Lots of employers spend significant sums of time and money on off-site teambuilding exercises to build cooperation among employees. Our research points to the office sound system as a channel that has been underappreciated as a way to inspire cooperation among co-workers,” added Kniffin.

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GAO Study

What the GAO Study Found

The General Services Administration’s (GSA’s) transition guidance to agencies addressed roughly half of its previously identified lessons learned. GSA identified 35 lessons learned from previous telecommunications contract transitions that identify actions that agencies should take. In transition guidance released to agencies, GSA fully addressed 17 of the 35 lessons. Two lessons from previous transitions were not appropriate for the current transition. GSA partially addressed an additional nine lessons. Seven lessons were not addressed at all (see figure). For example, GSA’s guidance did not address the previous lesson that agencies should not assume that a transition to a new contract with the same vendor will be easier than a change in vendors. By not including all lessons learned in its plans and guidance to agencies, GSA limits agencies’ ability to plan for actions that will need to be taken later in the transition. As a result, agencies face an increased risk that they could repeat prior mistakes, including those that could result in schedule delays or unnecessary costs.

Selected agencies—the Departments of Agriculture (USDA), Labor (DOL), and Transportation (DOT); the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Social Security Administration (SSA)—have yet to fully apply most of the five planning practices previously identified by GAO as key to a successful telecommunications transition. The practices encompass: (1) developing inventories, incorporating strategic needs into transition planning, (2) incorporating strategic needs into transition planning, (3) developing a structured transition-management approach, (4) identifying resources necessary for the transition, and (5) establishing transition processes and measures of success. SEC fully implemented one practice, partially implemented three practices, and did not implement another. The other four agencies partially implemented each of the five practices. Agencies provided various reasons for not following planning practices, including uncertainty due to delays in GSA awarding the new contracts, plans to implement practices later as part of established agency procedures for managing IT projects, and a lack of direction and contractor assistance from GSA. If agencies do not fully implement the practices in the next transition, they will be more likely to experience the kinds of delays and increased costs that occurred in previous transitions.

Why GAO Did This Study

GSA is responsible for contracts providing telecommunications services for federal agencies. Transitions involving previous contracts faced significant delays resulting in increased costs. Because GSA’s current telecommunications program, Networx, expires in May 2020, planning for the next transition has begun.

GAO was asked to review preparations for the transition. This report addresses the extent to which (1) GSA’s plans and guidance to agencies incorporate lessons learned from prior transitions, and (2) agencies are following established planning practices in their transitions. In performing this work, GAO analyzed GSA lessons learned and transition guidance. GAO also selected five agencies—USDA, DOL, DOT, SEC, and SSA—based on size, structure, and Networx spending. GAO then reviewed the agencies’ documentation to determine how they followed five planning practices identified in previous GAO reports.

What GAO Recommends

GAO recommends that GSA disseminate guidance that includes all agency-directed lessons learned. In addition, GAO recommends that USDA, DOL, DOT, SEC, and SSA complete adoption of the planning practices to avoid schedule delays and unnecessary costs. Five agencies agreed with all of our recommendations. SSA agreed with two recommendations, partially disagreed with one, disagreed with two, and provided updated information. GAO stands by the recommendations, as discussed in the report, and revised the report based on SSA’s new information.


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Be Ready For The Newest Technology That Is Able To Recognize Who’s Home

Be Ready For The Newest Technology That Is Able To Recognize Who’s Home

Hamptontel Of Monmouth County Explain The Next Step With High Resolution Security Cameras

If you are apart of the high-tech group of individuals, it’s likely you’ve heard of the latest trends regarding at home security cameras. HamptonTel of Monmouth County gives insight to technology’s next turn, and it’s taking high resolution security cameras to an whole new level.

Nest Labs is adding Google’s facial recognition technology to a high-resolution home-security camera, offering a glimpse of a future in which increasingly intelligent, internet-connected computers can see and understand what’s going on in people’s homes.

The Nest Cam IQ, unveiled Wednesday, will be Nest’s first device to draw upon the same human-like skills that Google has been programming into its computers — for instance, to identify people in images via its widely used photo app. Facebook deploys similar technology to automatically recognize and recommend tags of people in photos posted on its social network.

Nest can tap into Google’s expertise in artificial intelligence because both companies are owned by the same parent company, Alphabet Inc.

With the new feature, you could program the camera to recognize a child, friend or neighbor, after which it will send you notifications about that person being in the home.

Nest isn’t saying much about other potential uses down the road, though one can imagine the camera recognizing when grandparents are visiting and notifying Nest’s internet-connected thermostat to adjust the temperature to what they prefer. Or it might be trained to keep a close eye on the kids when they are home after school to monitor their activities and send alerts when they’re doing something besides a list of approved activities.


The new camera will begin shipping in late June for almost $300. You’ll also have to pay $10 a month for a plan that includes facial recognition technology. The same plan will also include other features, such as alerts generated by particular sounds — barking dogs, say — that occur out of the camera’s visual range.

The camera will only identify people you select through Nest’s app for iPhones and Android devices. It won’t try to recognize anyone that an owner hasn’t tagged. Even if a Nest Cam IQ video spies a burglar in a home, law enforcement officials will have to identify the suspect through their own investigation and analysis, according to Nest.


Facial recognition is becoming more common on home-security cameras. Netatmo , for instance, introduced a security camera touting a similar facial recognition system in 2015. That camera sells for about $200, or $100 less than the Nest Cam IQ.

The way that the Nest and Netatmo cameras are being used doesn’t raise serious privacy concerns because they are only verifying familiar faces, not those of complete strangers, said Jennifer Lynch, who specializes in biometrics as a senior staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital advocacy group.

But Lynch believes privacy issues are bound to crop up as the resolution and zoom capabilities of home security cameras improve, and as engineers develop more sophisticated ways of identifying people even when an image is moving or only a part of a face is visible. Storing home-security videos in remote data centers also raises security concerns about the imagery being stolen by computer hackers. “It definitely could become a slippery slope,” Lynch said.

The privacy issues already are thorny enough that Nest decided against offering the facial recognition technology in Illinois, where state law forbids the collection and retention of an individual’s biometric information without prior notification and written permission.


Nest’s $10-a-month subscription includes video storage for 10 days. Video can be stored up to 30 days with an upgrade to a subscription plan costing $30 per month

The high-end camera supplements lower-resolution indoor and outdoor cameras that Nest will continue to sell for almost $200. Neither of the lower-end cameras is equipped for facial recognition.

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LAN vs. WAN – Which One Better Fits Your Needs?

LAN vs. WAN – Which One Better Fits Your Needs?

Hampton Tel of Monmouth County describes differences between LAN and WAN

The difference between security in a LAN and WAN might be unfamiliar jargon, but knowing the primary difference between a Local Area Network (LAN) and a Wide Area Network (WAN) can be helpful. Besides the technology used for each system generally you have control of all the resources for a LAN, but not for a WAN. Generally, for a single company, LAN, independent of another LAN or to the Internet, that company can provide physical security for the entire LAN and all the connected computers. Once the LAN is connected to another LAN or the Internet and becomes a WAN.

The primary difference between a Local Area Network (LAN) and a Wide Area Network (WAN), besides the technology used, is that generally you have control of all the resources for a LAN, but not for a WAN.

For example, for a single company LAN (not connected to another LAN or to the Internet), that company can provide physical security for the entire LAN and all the connected computers. They can provide background checks for all the people that have access to all of the equipment. They can establish security policies and procedures that can be enforced on all the equipment. All of the threats to the system come from within (assuming adequate physical security).

As soon as the LAN is connected to another LAN or the Internet and becomes a WAN, all of that changes. The company does not know what physical protections have been made to the rest of the WAN, only its small portion. In the case of an Internet connection, they have no idea who might try to access their LAN. The entire threat model changes. Not that any of the threats from the LAN-only environment have gone away, but many more have been added. One can think of the threat profile for a LAN as being a subset of the threat profile for a WAN.

This threat profile is what helps to decide what security measures are appropriate. In terms of network management, within a self contained LAN, there probably is no need to have network management protocols encrypted, or special authentication done for those protocols (unless you are worried that insiders may attempt to “manage” your network for you). On the other hand, you probably do not want your network management protocols to traverse the Internet without protection. Nor do you want your computers on a remote segment to respond to network management requests that are not authenticated.

So, as with any computer system or network, the first steps are to identify what the threats to your system or network are and what needs to be protected. Then you can go about devising ways to provide the required protection.

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Unified Communications: What You Need to Know

Unified Communications: What You Need to Know

Functioning as the premier Telecommunications Specialists throughout Monmouth County and New Jersey, our number one goal with each and every customer is their total satisfaction. Our experts are fully trained and will work with you to ensure that your new system meets your functional and operational requirements now and in the future. To expand on our passion for IT and Telecommunications systems we have provided the article below for your enjoyment. 

Unified Communications

A business term describing the integration of enterprise communication services such as instant messaging (chat), presence information, voice (including IP telephony), mobility features (including extension mobility and single number reach), audio, web & video conferencing, fixed-mobile convergence (FMC), desktop sharing, data sharing (including web connected electronic interactive whiteboards), call control and speech recognition with non-real-time communication services such as unified messaging (integrated voicemail, e-mail, SMS and fax).

UC is not necessarily a single product, but a set of products that provides a consistent
unified user interface and user experience across multiple devices and media types.

In its broadest sense, UC can encompass all forms of communications that are exchanged via a network to include other forms of communications such as Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) and digital signage Communications as they become an integrated part of the network communications deployment and may be directed as one-to-one communications or broadcast communications from one to many.

UC allows an individual to send a message on one medium and receive the same communication on another medium. For example, one can receive a voicemail message and choose to access it through e-mail or a cell phone. If the sender is online according to the presence information and currently accepts calls, the response can be sent immediately through text chat or a video call. Otherwise, it may be sent as a non-real-time message that can be accessed through a variety of media.


knowing where intended recipients are, and if they are available, in real time—is a key component of unified communications. Unified communications integrates all systems a user might already use, and helps those systems work together in real time. For example, unified communications technology could allow a user to seamlessly collaborate with another person on a project, even if the two users are in separate locations. The user could quickly locate the necessary person by accessing an interactive directory, engage in a text messaging session, and then escalate the session to a voice call, or even a video call.

In another example, an employee receives a call from a customer who wants answers. Unified communications enables that employee to call an expert colleague from a real-time list. This way, the employee can answer the customer faster by eliminating rounds of back-and-forth e-mails and phone-tag.

The examples in the previous paragraph primarily describe “personal productivity” enhancements that tend to benefit the individual user. While such benefits can be important, enterprises are finding that they can achieve even greater impact by using unified communications capabilities to transform business processes. This is achieved by integrating UC functionality directly into the business applications using development tools provided by many of the suppliers. Instead of the individual user invoking the UC functionality to, say, find an appropriate resource, the workflow or process application automatically identifies the resource at the point in the business activity where one is needed.

When used in this manner, the concept of presence often changes. Most people associate presence with instant messaging (IM “buddy lists”) the status of individuals is identified. But, in many business process applications, what is important is finding someone with a certain skill. In these environments, presence identifies available skills or capabilities.

This “business process” approach to integrating UC functionality can result in bottom line benefits that are an order of magnitude greater than those achievable by personal productivity methods alone.

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Checking Out the Latest Surveillance Technologies

Checking Out the Latest Surveillance Technologies

Demand for video surveillance is poised to intensify with cloud services, Ultra HD, edge devices, wider dynamic ranges and superior compression.

Video surveillance has quickly risen to the top of a preferred list of security technologies available. Overt cameras act to deter would-be criminals while detecting the presence of people and forensically documenting what they do.

Let’s take a look at some of great innovations currently in play, as well as those yet to come. We’ll discuss the new 4K and 8K Ultra HD standards and look at advances in imaging technology that are creating discernible image resolutions in low to zero lighting. In addition, we’ll cover the placement of intelligence and data storage at the network’s edge and look at some of the incentives for using “cloud” storage and its long-term implications.

Functioning as the premier Telecommunications Specialists throughout Monmouth County and New Jersey, our number one goal with each and every customer is their total satisfaction. Our experts are fully trained and will work with you to ensure that your new system meets your functional and operational requirements now and in the future. To expand on our passion for IT and Telecommunications systems we have provided the article below for your enjoyment. 

Clearing Up Cloud Conceptions

Of all the advancements in IP video to discuss, probably the most exciting is the cloud, yet it’s still one of the biggest mysteries to most professionals in the security industry.

For the video surveillance client, it allows access to stored images offsite anywhere in the world through the Internet. It also reduces the upfront costs associated with the procurement of DVRs, NVRs, NAS (network-attached storage) devices and other means of data storage.

“Cloud video management is a natural progression for CCTV,” says Mike Davis, president of eLine Technology of Westminster, Colo. “Advancements in technology have made smaller and faster processors; pair this with edge storage devices and you have created a system that is powerful and easy to manage. Build the system to fit your needs. View and manage video through the web. These are the advantages that cloud surveillance offers our customers.”

Today, the consensus among savvy security professionals, like Davis, is that IP video, combined with cloud-based data retention, is where it’s at. The term “cloud” came into use many years ago as a means of identifying an “unknown.” It usually, if not always, pointed to a third-party infrastructure of some kind, the details of which were largely unknown to security professionals. An intimate knowledge of this third-party offering wasn’t always needed. In blueprints and schematic diagrams, a “cloud” is drawn wherever third-party responsibility begins and that of the contractor ends ― usually at the point of demarcation.

There are several types of cloud-based services available and it’s important to understand them. It will assure that the right cloud-based service is selected, thus assuring the best results while minimizing monthly fees.

According to CDW’s 2013 reference guide on cloud computing: “A cloud can be public, whereby many different organizations share computing resources. A cloud can also be private, in which cloud resources are dedicated to a single organization and run either in its datacenter or that of a service provider. A final option is a hybrid cloud, which is a combination of shared and dedicated cloud resources. Increasingly, organizations are exploring hybrid cloud options to enjoy the best of both worlds.”

Progression of Image Compression

Video compression and the standards that go with them are important to campus security professionals for several reasons. First, the development of video compression standards assures interoperability where video data is recorded and later displayed on dissimilar systems. Secondly, an effective, tighter compression algorithm, such as H.264, including the recently-developed H.265, reduces redundant data, thus assuring uniform and rapid transmission over a network connection. And thirdly, better compression ensures that more video data can be stored on hard drives and storage discs than has previously been available.

Since 2003, the industry has experienced great success with the H.264 (MPEG-4 AVC) compression algorithm and as the new H.265 looms largely in our future the older H.264 continues to see widespread use among video surveillance equipment manufacturers.

“A very mature technology, AVC [H.264] has been saving bandwidth and storage through the valued integration with software solution providers and their provided video management systems,” says Steve Surfaro, Axis Communications industry liaison. He adds that H.265, also referred to as HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding), “offers variable blocks that can handle up to 64 x 64 pixels, changing the size according to texture, while the previous generation H.264 standard relied on a macro-block size of a maximum of 16 x 16 pixels. This larger block size allows HEVC to achieve higher compression or higher resolution and improve parallel processing efficiency compared to H.264.”

H.265, which was instituted by the Video Coding Experts Group (VCEG – ITU-T SG16 Q.6), offers a 30-40% reduction in bit rate at the same image resolution as H.264. And yet, as previously mentioned, H.264 continues to receive widespread use.

“The new H.265 is a stronger encoding algorithm that produces less bandwidth for the same video images using H.264. At the same time there are good reasons why H.265 has been slow to take off,” says Erick Ceresato, product marketing manager with Genetec.

The concern is that camera and VMS vendors have not completely adopted H.265 throughout their product lines, so there will be limitations. While the use of H.265 will reduce bandwidth utilization, it also leads to more complex decoding requiring greater CPU/GPU power, which can cause additional expense to update computing hardware, Ceresato says.

“Since most H.264 compression and decompression routines use hardware chips in order to keep up with the high resolutions, it’s very expensive to jump to a new technology,” says Digital Watchdog CTO Ian Johnston. “The expression that comes to mind is, ‘Where there’s a wallet there’s a way.’ Right now there’s just no [financial] incentive for the consumer industry to make the jump to H.265. Cable modems and Internet service providers can keep up using H.264, especially with the content providers literally using trucks to get the mammoth amount of data to the edge.”

As is true in most cases for the video market, advancements often come on the heels of major innovations at the consumer electronics level, such as bigger, faster PCs. The use of H.265 is a given, but the camera industry is probably a year or two away from full implementation.

Taking Surveillance to the Edge

Living on the edge takes on a new meaning in terms of network technology. In traditional camera systems, video processing, storage, display and distribution are handled from a central point, commonly called the head-end. In a video surveillance system, using modern network technology, that is not always the case. In today’s video surveillance systems, those that make use of IP technology now commonly place camera intelligence, data storage, display and other capabilities at the edges of the network, not always at the head-end.

Moving intelligence to the edge allows the system to better determine priorities based on need while moving video data and event information when and where needed in a more cost-effective manner, as from a bandwidth point of view. A good example is the need to move specific images and data after an event has taken place.

“Popular targets or destinations would be a conventional PC server, Oracle NoSQL database, NAS box, Amazon EC3 cloud storage, etc. Fundamentally, it doesn’t matter what or where it is, but what does matter is how big is the data you’re trying to move around, and to make smart choices about bandwidth management,” says Johnston. “The key is that it shouldn’t be constrained to a single repository or a single function and all the devices need to work together to ensure that everything is taken care of, and no single entity fails or is a point of failure.”

The network administrator can program the system to move important images/data to the head-end or specific workstations later in the day when demand for bandwidth is at a minimum. These video images and event data also can be stored and maintained at the network’s edge for review at a later time while enabling the download of important video data to the cloud for long-term storage and on-demand utilization. Such a download can occur at off-peak times when the network is largely idle.

Placing devices at the edge also produces greater operating reliability and redundancy because it uses a distributed architecture. Using this format, the failure of a single device will not affect the entire video surveillance system. The failure of the hard drive or flash media contained in an edge camera, for example, only affects one camera, not all of the cameras in the system. Compare that to a network-connected DVR or NAS where such a failure would likely affect storage across the entire system.

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Ten IT Trends through 2017 and how to Prepare

Ten IT Trends through 2017 and how to Prepare

Functioning as the premier Telecommunications Specialists throughout Monmouth County and New Jersey, our number one goal with each and every customer is their total satisfaction. Our experts are fully trained and will work with you to ensure that your new system meets your functional and operational requirements now and in the future. To expand on our passion for IT and communication systems we have provided the article below for your enjoyment. 

The only thing constant is change, and these 10 IT trends coming to data centers through 2017, including open standards, require preparation.

People on the business side expect the company’s internal data center infrastructure to have the same scalability and cost of Amazon Web Services’ cloud, according to an attendee at the Gartner Infrastructure Operations & Management Summit 2014 here this week.

That intersection of leading-edge IT and enterprise expectations underscores the theme of these 10 trends expected to hit data centers, as curated by Milind Govekar, managing VP at Gartner.

1. Open philosophies

Open development breaks the data center down into its lowest-level components, which fit together by open standards. Still, with less than 2% of enterprise applications designed for horizontal scaling, enterprise IT should avoid lifting legacy apps onto open infrastructure.Instead, put new workloads on building-block infrastructure, and renegotiate your hardware contracts to get ready for more open-standard hardware and software.

2. Automation

This trend is nothing new, but the next five years will be transformative for IT automation, from opportunistic to systemic implementation.

The problem, however, is IT administrators love scripts. They love creating the best scripts, fiddling with scripts that come from colleagues, and leaving little documentation when they move on to another job. IT automation must evolve from scripting to deterministic (defined workloads for tasks) then to heuristic design (automation based on data fed in operations). There are banks today that use heuristic automation because they have all the hardware that you could want, Govekar said. But they lack the ability to automatically place workloads that best at any given moment.

Start down the heuristic path by appointing an automation leader in IT, automating script discovery and rewarding administrators for building resilient, structured scripts.

3. Software-defined everything

Software-defined means the control plane is abstracted from the hardware, and it’s going on with every piece of equipment a data center can buy. Software-defined servers are established, software-defined networking is maturing and software-defined storage won’t have much impact until at least 2017, Govekar said.

Don’t approach software-defined everything as a cost saving venture, because the real point is agility. Avoid vendor lock-in in this turbulent vendor space, and look for interoperable application programming interfaces that enable data-center-wide abstraction. Also, keep in mind that the legacy data center won’t die without a fight.

4. Big data

Big data analysis is used in a number of ways to solve problems today. For example, police departments reduce crime without blanketing the city with patrol cars, by pinpointing likely crime hot spots at a given point in time based on real-time and historical data.

Build new data architectures to handle unstructured data and real-time input, which are disruptive changes today. The biggest inhibitor to enterprise IT adoption of big data analytics, however, isn’t the data architecture; it’s a lack of big data skills.

5. Internet of Everything 

Is IT in charge of the coffee pot? If it has an IP address and connects to the network, it might be.

Internet-connected device proliferation combined with big data analytics means that businesses can automate and refine their operations. It also means security takes on a whole new range of end points. In data center capacity management, Internet of Everything means demand shaping and customer priority tiering, rather than simply buying more hardware.

Build a data center that can change, don’t build to last, Govekar said.

6. Webscale IT

For better or worse, business leaders want to know why you can’t do what Google, Facebook and Amazon do.

Conventional hardware and software are not built for webscale IT, which means this trend relies on software-defined everything and open philosophies like the Open Compute Project. It also relies on a major attitude adjustment in IT where experimentation and failure are allowed.

7. Mobility

Your workforce is mobile. Your company’s customers are mobile. Bring your own device has morphed into bring your own toys. The IT service desk can’t fall behind this trend and risk giving IT a reputation of being out of touch.

Bring data segregation — personal and business data and applications isolated from each other on the same device — onto your technology roadmap now.

8. Bimodal IT

No one’s congratulating IT on keeping the lights on and the servers humming, no matter how difficult it can be. Bimodal IT means maintaining traditional IT practices while simultaneously introducing innovative new processes — safely.

Take the pace layering concept from application development and apply it to IT’s roadmap, and find ways to get close to customers. Bimodal IT will make your team more diverse.

9. Business value dashboards

By 2017, the majority of infrastructure and operations teams will use dashboards to communicate with the outside world. Govekar made the analogy of the business-value dashboard vs. IT metrics to cruise ship reviews vs. cruise ship boiler calibration reports. They serve different purposes.

Evaluate business-value dashboards and complement them with IT staffers that speak the same language as your business stakeholders.

10. Organizational disruption

All the trends above feed shadow IT, where the business units steer around IT to gain agility.

Some IT teams are trying a new approach; rather than quash all shadow IT operations they find, these companies allow business users to set up shadow IT for projects and track the performance like a proof-of-concept trial. If the deployment succeeds, IT formally folds shadow IT into the organization.

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Preparing for the Future

Preparing for the Future

Utilize new approaches, materials, and technologies to ensure our infrastructure is more resilient – to more quickly recover from significant weather and other hazard events – and sustainable – improving the “triple bottom line” with clear economic, social, and environmental benefits.

1. Develop active community resilience programs for severe weather and seismic events to establish communications systems and recovery plans to reduce impacts on the local economy, quality of life, and environment.

2. Consider emerging technologies and shifting social and economic trends – such as autonomous vehicles, distributed power generation and storage, and larger ships – when building new infrastructure, to assure long-term utility.

3. Improve land use planning at the local level to consider the function of existing and new infrastructure, the balance between the built and natural environments, and population trends in communities of all sizes, now and into the future.

4. Support research and development into innovative new materials, technologies, and processes to modernize and extend the life of infrastructure, expedite repairs or replacement, and promote cost savings.

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