Video Analytics – Not Just for Security

Moti Shabtai, President, Qognify // October 24, 2013
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Until recently,video content analytics (VCA) applications had primarily been considered a security technology. That though is changing. Advancements in VCA and system integration are creating opportunities for business insight that in turn can yield greater ROI for the entire organization.

According to a recent study by the Loss Prevention Research Council, of the retailers who leverageIP video for retail applications outside of security, 93 percent report a positive impact on operations. The report also noted that these days, retailers use intelligent video in many insightful ways: to conduct dwell time analysis,  produce heat maps that reveal hot and cold merchandizing zones, count queues, and  detect point-of-sale (POS) fraud, to name a few.

By integrating video with POS technology and people counting analytics, retailers can even determine the percentage of people entering a store who also made a purchase. They can map out shopper density in different areas of a store at different times of day. That same data can be measured and analyzed relative to what is on display in a particular area and to the granularity of the time of day, week, month or year. It would be impossible and/or cost prohibitive to manually gather this kind of data on customer behavior – but with it, businesses can make decisions that yield a real bottom-line impact.

Examples of this type of technology crossover are becoming increasingly commonplace. A major cellular retailer in South America is now using VCA technology to measure customer conversion rates and the effect of campaigns on customer buying behavior.

Similarly, airports, which use video analytics for a variety of security purposes, now use them to enhance operations as well. One example is the usage of heat maps to determine commercial hot spots where people tend to congregate. In this way airports can demonstrate to occupants or potential tenants where the prime locations are and charge premium lease rates accordingly.
These are just a few examples of how traditional security technology has successfully crossed over into new applications on the operational side. The list continues to grow, as do the types of industries and organizations that are benefiting from this trend.

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