ONVIF began in 2008 as a small group of manufacturers collaborating to create a global standard for the interface of video system components and aid the industry in adopting IP-based technology. With a goal in mind to provide greater freedom of choice for installers and end users alike, the founders, Axis, Sony and Bosch, also hoped that standardizing how products communicated with one another would ease the product development process for manufacturers, allowing developers to spend more time on innovation.
This initial common goal exploded into what is now known as ONVIF. By providing de facto standards to the security industry and vertical markets alike, ONVIF has eliminated the need for single-manufacturer commitments, and in turn has opened the realm of possibilities. Do you like one manufacturer’s video management software but prefer a camera with a feature set more applicable to your application? ONVIF conformance means there are thousands of products — and six different Profiles — from which to choose to build your ONVIF conformant IP video surveillance or access control system.
What started as an organization with only 13 members now has over 450 today, and stretches across six continents, with nearly 10,000 conformant products available. Not too bad for 10 years.
So what’s next? More and more devices are becoming IP-enabled, producing massive amounts of data, whether from cameras used for surveillance or measuring occupancy levels or traffic congestion. In the future, we see ONVIF playing an influential role in applications as Safe Cities, IoT applications, intelligent building automation and smart homes, taking advantage of the interoperability the ONVIF interface provides from the sensor level to the management platform. Such interoperability is needed for a wide range of sensors in smart cities, smart buildings and smart homes to meet the expectations of users at many levels for convenience, intelligence and usability of their systems.
To help meet this exploding demand for interoperability, we’re proud to say that we have more Full and Contributing member companies actively involved in specification development and maintenance and other activities of ONVIF than ever before in our 10 year history. It is at these member levels where companies have the opportunity to participate in ONVIF committees and working groups. We’re grateful to our volunteer leaders, teams of engineers and supporting member companies who have all worked to further the work of ONVIF over the past decade.
Through the work of our member companies and the input of the industry at large, we are looking forward to the role ONVIF will play as the next generation of our interconnected and ever expanding industry unfolds.