Milestone Drums Up the Power of Open Community
The Milestone Integration Platform Symposium (MIPS 2016) held in Arizona in February welcomed 520 attendees and 60 exhibiting companies in the Community Technology Expo, who explored the latest ideas and solutions for enhancing safety and optimizing business. The first day roused everyone to action, drumming along with the Arizona Rhythm Connection band, before CEO Lars Thinggaard and CSMO Kenneth Petersen spoke about using the Milestone Open Platform Community to magnify the power of partnership for faster innovation and true customer focus.
Ahead of us now, it’s a different game. In the future economy, companies will deliver the most value through collaboration. The products of the future are solutions, and to get the solution they want, customers will combine products from different vendors. This requires technology that makes combined solutions very easy to use and brings more innovation. Together with our open platform community, we are stepping into this future, setting the agenda and changing the rules. – Lars Thinggaard, President & CEO of Milestone Systems.
Enthusiastic responses were voiced by the Milestone distributors, systems integrators, end users, software solution partners, camera manufacturers and storage providers over the next few days. And people were thrilled with all the community interaction going on during the event:
“We see these Milestone events as really important for networking. We already got connected with several new projects on the first night!” said AJ Frazer from video analytics provider Agent Vi video analytics.
“We love this show because it’s pre-qualified for us. Even at the first night’s informal buffet we met a lot of people. The networking is really valuable,” concurred Maureen Carlo from Videotek.
Roger Meier of EET Security came all the way from Switzerland and had this to say: “The Milestone events provide access to people who already are knowledgeable about XProtect software, for which we have several plug-in solutions ready to use.”
Topics addressed by speakers, industry panelists and interactive breakout sessions highlighted how new initiatives from Milestone mark a move from products to solutions, with the intention to incite continual interaction through the global open platform community of partners and customers.
Milestone Diamond Partner Brent Edmonds of Stone Security spoke about ‘Betting Your Business on the Community’, illustrating his company’s 50% growth from success with the open platform by showing a video of their annual university conference where higher education customers network to share knowledge about their technology experiences.
A lively industry panel discussed the impact on business of commoditization from lower-priced Asian vendors. Camera manufacturers Axis, Arecont Vision, Samsung and Sony touted the higher value success criteria of good tech support, integration APIs, more innovation and the importance of partnering. Product reliability is greater with testing, certification and rugged durability – especially for the more critical security installations. The ‘anthill’ of low-end competitors coming up in the market was noted, with the internet ‘becoming its own animal’ for sales that include no warranties or service such as those provided by the tier 1 vendors.
A Milestone Solutions Partner panel had an interesting mix of perspectives from all sides of the security industry to look at future trends, sharing their opinions on what’s next in the industry: thoughts on 4K expectations, recording at the edge, cloud technology progress and its potential impact, big data storage and gleaning intelligence with analytics.
Dave Taylor, Executive Architect at IBM, said: “The cloud will enable installers to provide a service model but how do we mine all the data? There’s a need for standardization for managing so many sensors, and the rapid pace of change requires an open platform approach. Change is going to happen so be ready for it or you will have pain to make the changes. I see the open platform as a palette to create.”
Rob Lydic, Global VP Sales at ISONAS, said: “No man is an island; the old monoliths are disappearing. Partners need to engage with each other for a valuable feedback cycle that empowers better solutions for the customers. They want options. They don’t want to be trapped.”
Lee Mehler VP Global Security Solutions for Anixter said: “The open protocols have expanded the conversation to global scope: it’s the road map to the future.”
An amusing little anecdote came thanks to Laura Stepanek, the Editor of SDM magazine, who looked out the window of the hotel one late afternoon during the conference to see a mermaid swimming in the pool! How coincidental – considering that the host of the hotel’s guests that week was our Copenhagen-headquartered company – to see a live version of The Little Mermaid by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen.
See the MIPS 2016 event video on YouTube!
by Courtney Dillon Pedersen, Communications Manager, Milestone Systems