IP cameras are not boring. Not boring at all

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Flash, bang, wallop – what a picture, what a photograph!

Why should the channel possibly be interested in an IP camera?

After all doesn’t the world have enough cameras without needing more, simply connected to the internet? Well, the answer, as it turns out, is a resounding no.

In the new age of the ‘internet of things’ where every day mundane devices get connected, the camera is going to be king. According to reports there were eight million IP cameras sold in 2011 and there will be 11 million sold this year but that number is about to explode. Why?

Right now consumers are exceedingly comfortable taking and uploading photos from their phones. As if proof was needed, witness the $1 billion acquisition by Facebook for Instagram. So the concept of a connected camera is well established – if it’s in your hand.

But if you want to have a connected camera watching your home, elderly parents, kids, etc then until now they have been fiddly to set up and worse still horrible to use because you either have to record and playback, watch (surveillance) or even more fiddly set up motion detection. Ugh.

Now a new generation of IP cameras that has no wires (WiFi), are tiny (the size of your thumb) that can be mounted anywhere (fisheye lenses) and which are intelligent, threaten to change the market completely.

Did I mention intelligent? Yes. As in the camera will be able to tell the difference between your mum being in a room and an intruder. Between your dog running across your lawn and a guy in a ski mask. Companies such as gotocamera.com are pioneering this kind of intelligent camera interface and starting to get a lot of attention.

It seems likely to me that these IP cameras will become a commodity, small, cheap and traded in large volumes.

Their simple connectivity and intelligent ability to differentiate between what they see, may mean that we stay as connected visually with the places that we care about as we are vocally with the people we care about. Interesting indeed.