New Challenges for Security Industry in the Era of the Internet of Things
The 17th China Public Security Expo held in Shenzhen in 2019 was still as big as the previous years. But I came out of the exhibition halls faster than I did before.
There are more and more homogenized products exhibited at the Expo, and fewer and fewer foreign manufacturers taking part; far less this year. According to a report, only 5%. For China, this is an achievement, because international products have been wiped out and replaced by the locally made products. This trend also means China is capable of producing the same products, as good as its foreign counterparts, and even more economical at that.
But this boasted achievement has quickly become a hidden worry in China.
Outsiders can't get in; eventually, insiders can't go out too.
Because we can almost foresee the outcome, in which foreign products have difficulty to enter China, and Chinese products will be harder to export as well in the future. (I will discuss this in the last chapter)
From the product is king, to the application is king.
The era of “Product is King” has come to an end, “Application is King” is taking the reign.
Now, the products are standalone dotted points, and the applications connect them all, and the connectivity makes the golden age of pure products obsolete. The 4G era of connecting people has completed its mission. The future 5G emerges to connect people and things, things and things. With the rise of IoT or Internet of Things, Internet of Everything, AIoT or Artificial Intelligence of Things, the factories that produce purely standalone objects are getting bitter.
Cheap labour drives the China’s economy. The security industry was initially hardware-driven. Surveillance cameras, access control barriers, clocking readers, and door locks, they all started with hardware. Later, during the era of computerization in the last century, these products were linked to computers. Usually, the front-end of the surveillance camera, access control, etc. is responsible for collecting data. Then the data is transferred into the computer system through some interfaces such as RS232, RS485, TCP/IP for further processing to output the results. From the standalone to the local area network, the manufacturing of products and the programming of software is a division of labour, and the combination of use is also divided. This model is beneficial to China. We witnessed how Hikvision and Dahua have rapidly emerged as international market leaders that dominate the surveillance industry.
The road to moving forward
Only by maintaining an open-minded attitude towards new ideas, willingness to cooperate with new partners, walking the talk, only then security industry players can create new values in the new cross-industry and cross-sector security industry.