Tech Data Boosts Video Surveillance Offerings for VARs

The distributor adds IP video solutions and videoconferencing products to its solutions center used by VARs and customers to test out promising new technologies.

October 24, 2008

Al Senia

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Distributor Tech Data Corp. (NASDAQ:TECD) is stepping more forcefully into the video surveillance market by including IP video solutions in its 5,500 sq.ft. solutions center used by channel partners and resellers. The centers now will include an IP video surveillance control station to showcase cameras and software from leading physical security vendors, as well as a video conferencing suite with new solutions from Polycom


Company officials said the move underscores the channel's growing involvement in providing business customers with video surveillance and video conference solutions.


 "Interest in physical security and video conferencing has been growing steadily this year," said, Chuck Bartlett, Tech Data's vice president, network product marketing. "At events like Tech Data's Technology Solutions Tour and TechSelect Partner Conferences, resellers are expressing interest in learning more about these technologies and the vendors that manufacture them."


The distributor's solution centers now will allow channel partners and their customers to experiment with video surveillance and video conferencing solutions, he added.


In May, Tech Data expanded its video surveillance product offerings to include network test solutions in recognition of the fact that physical security was emerging as an opportunity for VARs. At that time, an official estimated at least 1,000 channel partners has purchased security products from the distributor since it established a specialty business unit in physical security in 2006. Such units provide channel partners with dedicated sales and technical resources in particular product areas.


In general, the IP-based video surveillance market offers channel partners margin-rich opportunities to provide solutions into vertical markets that include federal and local government, law enforcement, education and commercial business. A recent report from MultiMedia Intelligence pegged the market for IP networked video cameras alone at $500 million worldwide last year, up 50 percent from the previous year.

The even larger video surveillance product market includes such items as CCTV cameras, digital video recorders, network video recorders and IP encoders/streamers.
In Tech Data's case, the enhanced video surveillance station for use by channel partners and their customers replicates a security console from which guards or other personnel can monitor footage from multiple IP cameras. It comprises all the hardware and software products necessary to create a comprehensive video surveillance installation, including cameras, enclosures, workstation, software, network video recorders, storage solutions, displays, mounts and other networking gear.

More than 20 IP cameras demonstrating different capabilities and resolutions are attached to the video surveillance station from Tech Data vendors that include Axis Communications, D-Link, Linksys, Sony and Toshiba. Software from Axis, D-Link, Milestone, Toshiba and OnSSI is being used to demonstrate advanced analytics, recording and management capabilities.

In a prepared statement, Keith Karlsen, executive vice president of D-Link Systems, called the  video surveillance station "a great sales tool" that VARs should utilize. "There are many advantages for businesses, government agencies and schools to upgrade their legacy security systems to a network-based solutions," he added.

Tech Data also has partnered with Polycom to update the solution center's visual communication suite with new high-definition video conferencing solutions. The center now includes the vendor's HDX 9004 solution with Polycom's People On Content, which enables presenters to place themselves over video, slides and other content while standing in front of a green screen. The Polycom HDX 8002 XL and HDX 4000 videoconferencing solutions, targeted at the small and medium businesses markets, also are available for hands-on demonstrations.

(Al Senia is managing editor of ITChannelPlanet.com.)


TAGS: video conferencing,video surveillance,distributor,Tech Data,Storage

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