Questions and Answers From the Top: Luis Orbegoso

Lenel Systems International, part of the UTC Fire & Security Unit of United Technologies, has a long list of enterprise-scale applications—a who's who of top companies and institutions worldwide—that all depend on the company to integrate their security management functions. The latest addition is SkyPoint, a highly intuitive user interface for video surveillance system management that simplifies how users handle video and boosts the productivity of security personnel.

We spoke with Luis Orbegoso, president of Lenel, about how SkyPoint fits into the product portfolio and what lies ahead for the company.

Q. What makes your new video management solution noteworthy?

A. Video has been a core offering at Lenel going back more than a decade. We were among the first to grasp the importance of integrating video with access control and other aspects of a comprehensive security system. We also were early proponents of network-based video when many others were still thinking analog, and we've been actively promoting open systems since early on.

What SkyPoint does is build on that foundation to boost the functionality, accessibility and value of video on the network to a new level. It puts enterprise video control and system management at your fingertips. SkyPoint is built around the same open-architecture principles that are core to our beliefs, and it provides powerful tools to improve how users interact with video while changing the way video is managed.

Q. How does SkyPoint fit with the other parts of Lenel's business?

A. SkyPoint's ability to integrate with other systems provides mission- critical interoperability. Our focus at Lenel has always been providing innovative, open and comprehensive management solutions. We pride ourselves on being able to integrate synergistic, best-of-breed solutions from other companies to provide greater value for our customers. We partnered with On-Net Surveillance Systems because of its superior interface technology and ability to seamlessly integrate with OnGuard and Lenel's core video products. Customers, our value-added resellers and consultants all tell us how important it is to have a powerful and usable video management system.

Q. What makes SkyPoint different from other video management software solutions?

A. Three big attributes set it apart: ease of use, scalability and the ability to integrate with systems from various manufacturers. SkyPoint's ease of use results from a highly intuitive interface that is simple to use. An optional touchscreen provides an instinctive way of performing actions to control video, such as tapping, clicking or dragging locations on the screen.

SkyPoint doesn't employ control panels or elaborate menus so the operator simply uses the functions that are relevant to the current situation and nothing more. Users don't have to remember codes or locations for cameras or camera groups. It's all drag-anddrop operation.

Although it is easy to use, Sky- Point's functionality is rich and sophisticated. Scalability allows users to expand their system from a few cameras to thousands of cameras as their needs dictate. It also is ideal for applications with multiple remote facilities and clients because it can centralize surveillance under one roof, while allowing remote facilities to monitor and control their sites independently.

An example might be transportation infrastructure such as a subway system or a government facility. Open architecture also enables integrators to incorporate SkyPoint into virtually any existing video surveillance system or as part of a larger enterprise level security system. It provides system designers with the versatility to tailor SkyPoint to meet very specific system requirements, including support of popular models from nearly every manufacturer.

Q. How does SkyPoint fit with Lenel's existing customer base?

A. SkyPoint is a great addition to any existing video surveillance system that employs a large number of cameras. As video surveillance systems' capabilities expand to capture and record thousands of cameras, they have surpassed operators' abilities to monitor all these sources in real time. It would require hundreds of operators to attentively view thousands of cameras, which is just not feasible. SkyPoint offers an intelligent solution by incorporating video analytics and alarm interfaces to trigger real-time video and notify security personnel. The user gets immediate access to unlimited cameras, only has to look at what he or she needs and can push video to any monitor or video wall in the network. This allows security staff to access the critical video they need and drive a strong response and investigation.

For investigations after an incident, there are easy-to-use tools to review extended segments of video in a single step or to generate thumbnails of time intervals and detected motion. The functionality is truly amazing, and even those who aren't necessarily computer savvy can be comfortable operating the system after very little training.

SkyPoint's extreme functionality and intelligence also reduces the number of operators typically required to monitor and control large-scale video surveillance systems, which contributes to reducing total cost of ownership.

Q. How will SkyPoint affect Lenel's future?

A. Given Lenel's continued support of open-architecture solutions, SkyPoint will be highly integrated with Lenel and other UTC solutions. Our initial release of SkyPoint as a stand-alone video system provides command and control of virtually any manufacturers' video cameras and recorders. Future releases will expand capabilities to enable control of Lenel video solutions as well. Ultimately, SkyPoint will be integrated into future versions of Lenel's OnGuard security management platform.

The integration of access control and video surveillance systems is the first critical step in achieving enterpriselevel operation on a single control platform. When we deliver on SkyPoint's seamless integration with OnGuard, customers small and large will have a compelling new way to see security.

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