Axis Communications Uses APIs and Low-Light Tech to Differentiate

One constant in business has been the ecosystem can be more important than the product. As an example, if a person is considering attending a conference, they typically look at the speakers and exhibitors to see if there is a fit before booking their trip. In other cases they will look to see who else is attending before they decide to pull the trigger. Over the last few decades a number of tech companies did their best to attract developers to their platforms to build their ecosystems. The original IBM PC and Mac come to mind but certainly every computer maker understood the more applications they had on their platform, the more incentive there was for customers to invest in it.

Earlier this year I spoke with Vince Ricco at Axis Communications about the company’s open API-powered ecosystem of partners powering their IP cameras. In the video above you can see about a third of the way in he talks about the company’s partners such as Aruba Networks, HP, Lenovo, Brocade, DELL, Intel, NETGEAR and more.

More recently the company’s Steve Surfaro told TMC’s Erik Linask about the company’s growth in the cloud space thanks to service providers and resellers helping customers with their compliance needs – in data centers and other areas. Moreover he explains how Axis Communications handles endpoint security – dealing with cyber-vulnerabilities and the like. He goes on to discuss ease-of-use thanks to the pre-provisioned nature of the cameras.

In a follow-up conversation with Alaine Behler and Domenic Locapo at the company’s Massachusetts headquarters last week I aimed to learn more about what is next for the company that invented the IP camera in 1996. Axis now employs 1,500 people worldwide; they are growing quickly and tell me that the market is still 65% analog meaning there seems to be lots of potential growth on the horizon.


One of the innovations that came out of my meeting was the invention of the SD card-based camera. We also had a chance to catch up on the markets which seem to most eagerly have embraced IP cameras – such as education and transportation.

Back in 1997 when I decided to launch Internet Telephony Magazine the telecom and datacom divisions within a company didn’t speak often. But IP communications eventually turned voice into an application on the network which the IT department managed. Similarly Axis Communications is witnessing more purchases being made by the data axis-ph_m1031w_front.jpgguys and they want to be sure they maintain their status as a leading security camera vendor as these worlds continue to converge.

Their competitors include companies like Cisco and Sony – you might also recall that in the late nineties Cisco purchased IP-PBX company Selsius Systems and started to compete very effectively in the voice space against Avaya, Nortel and others.

Obviously every company has seen what happened to Nortel and Axis is doing its best to differentiate itself with its ecosystem as well as low-light camera tech which shows true colors. I had a chance to see side-by-side nighttime demonstrations of Axis cameras with Lightfinder technology and a handheld digital camera, the Nikon Coolpix AW100. The difference was incredible. See for yourself below.

Moreover, the company’s open-camera platform means an application like behavioral recognition analytics can take place on the camera itself without devouring network bandwidth. Other interesting happenings are the total number of partners the company has, which is a surprising 55,000+ including over 800 software partners. What does the future hold? Axis Communications hopes to continue innovating and is looking forward to the future analysts predict where all cameras are based on IP.

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