I would start with Security Cameras. What better way is there to keep an eye on your business while social distancing.
There is a ton of security camera systems available. The basic ones can be purchased at Costco, here is the link, but these systems can be annoying and unreliable.
I would go with either a full cloud solution, like Eagle Eye, or a Hybrid Cloud Solution like Verkada or Open Eye.
Cloud Video Surveillance is becoming popular, and every manufacturer is trying to move in this direction. Some are doing better at marketing than they are at innovating, so be careful.
I don’t recommend full cloud video for every business, but it’s an excellent choice for smaller camera counts. I cannot imagine an automated restaurant requiring more than 7-12 cameras, making this a perfect scenario for cloud video.
Eagle Eye has been the leader, providing full cloud video surveillance solutions before the term was invented. Verkada, although a newer manufacturer, has a solid hybrid solution, and is even great for businesses that want to install it themselves. OpenEye is also a hybrid cloud solution but offers a more price competitive solution.
Eagle Eye Cloud Video Surveillance
Eagle Eye is an open platform, which means you can add whatever Security Camera brand you like. A 2MP or 3MP would be more than enough. With real estate being tight, you won’t need to worry about a big DVR or NVR. Eagle Eye has a selection of compact bridges, that can be mounted anywhere. The purpose of the bridge is to buffer video locally, and then send it up to the cloud for storage. Their Cloud Video Management System is slick and very easy-to-use.
Verkada Hybrid Cloud Camera Systems
Verkada, on the other hand, is a proprietary solution. This means that you need to use Verkada Cameras and Software. There is a bit of a risk being tied into one vendor, but it is not a deal breaker. The benefit is, you have one manufacturer to deal with if something goes wrong. The main difference with Verkada is that the video is stored locally on the camera and doesn’t get pushed to the cloud. The cameras come with solid state hard drives, which are very stable, and users login to Verkada’s Cloud Application, Command, to manage their security camera system. There is very little hardware required to setup a Verkada security camera system, all you need is the cameras. The result is an easy to install solution, that can even be done by the IT department.
OpenEye Cloud Managed Video Surveillance
OpenEye is like what most customers are used to, where you need to purchase a DVR or NVR. The biggest difference between OpenEye and the cheap recorders is that they have a great cloud interface to manage your cameras. Anyone that has used a no name or cheap DVR/NVR, can tell you how annoying those systems are to use. The software is clunky, and the recorders are unreliable. On the other hand, OpenEye has done an excellent job at providing a cost-effective video recorder, with easy-to-use cloud software. Further to this, OpenEye is an open platform, meaning that existing cameras can also record on their system.
Why Cloud Video?
Easy Access to your Cameras
You do not have to worry about port forwarding, changing IP addresses, or software downloads. With a cloud connected video surveillance system, you login to your cameras online, and it is always there.
Easily Create Users to View Video
To add users to your security camera system, simply enter the persons email, and press send. They will receive the credentials and be logged into the cameras in minutes. No need to call support and ask for the link to download software. No need to waste time trying to setup a user in a software that looks like it’s from the 90’s.
With a full cloud solution, all your video is backed up offsite. No need to worry about data loss or missing video. With hybrid cloud, you can save clips in the cloud for backup.
Upgrades and Add-ons
With a cloud solution, you will not have to worry about upgrades to the software. It’s always up to date and ready when you login. That feeling of having to upgrade a system is annoying, especially when you are ready to add cameras and locations down the road.