There are some fascinating new initiatives in the CCTV world this year and in order to explain them we will need some context.

For the last fifteen years or so, we have had some kind of motion detection built into either cameras or the software used to view video footage. These have typically identified shadows and moving tree branches as movement. In secure environments such as prisons, much effort has been expended in eliminating rabbits and kangaroos from valid target lists, and trees have been eliminated in the creation of sterile zones. This has been an attempt to create an environment where any movement at all, constitutes a security risk.

For most, if not all of you then the creation of sterile zones is not an option. You want to welcome your customers in and present them with a comfortable and enjoyable retail experience.

So what is video motion detection? It has traditionally involved capturing a change in the pixels making up the image. This is then enhanced and manipulated in software to try to eliminate no risk events.

This is all about to change and instead of motion detection we will now have Activity detection.

This is now advanced enough to detect a human crossing between parked cars in a car park, in heavy rain at 100 metres range. The changes to the car park pavement due to rain patterns as well as the surrounding trees moving in the wind did not trigger an alarm.

This advance is coupled with another innovation that will be of significant benefit to all retail environments. What would you be prepared to pay for a map of your premises showing the movement of customers on a hourly, daily, weekly or monthly formats. This will show the customer traffic in a graphical way illuminating the way that they move through your premises. Do they go left or right, to the wider aisles or the brighter displays. And if that is not enough this generation of software also includes a people counter. Simply define your entry and exit points and get a reasonably accurate count of people in and out. Couple that with the customer traffic and you have a very efficient in house marketing tool.

During opening hours your cameras can show you the traffic, pedestrian movement through doors, or you can save it for later, then after you close up then they go into activity detection mode.

What a vision for the future, except that it is happening now in 2013, beta testing is complete and this will be available in June 2013. the good news is that we will be able to offer it to our clients  already built into the cameras. No additional software this is a revolutionary breakthrough in technology and requires no licensing or additional costs.

The video clips showing all of these features are now available and we will be a position to demonstrate a full working system in about six weeks. If you would like to see what the future holds then please contact me on

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