A Glimpse into the Past and Present of Video Surveillance


May 5, 2023


Video surveillance has become an integral part of modern security systems, playing a vital role in safeguarding our homes, businesses, and public spaces. The journey of video surveillance has seen remarkable advancements, leading to the development of sophisticated solutions like Avigilon and Avigilon Alta. In this blog post, we'll delve into the history of video surveillance and explore the current state of the industry, focusing on the offerings of Avigilon and Avigilon Alta.

The Early Days of Video Surveillance

The inception of video surveillance can be traced back to the 1940s when the first Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) systems were developed. These early CCTV systems were primarily used for military purposes, such as monitoring rocket launches and observing nuclear tests. In 1965, the first commercial CCTV system was installed in New York City to monitor crowds during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

CCTV systems from the 1960s to the 1980s were analog, utilizing large cameras connected to monitors via coaxial cables. These early systems were expensive and required continuous monitoring by security personnel, as they lacked the capabilities to record and store footage efficiently. Furthermore, image quality was often poor, limiting the effectiveness of these early surveillance systems.

The Digital Revolution

The 1990s marked the beginning of the digital revolution in video surveillance. Digital video recorders (DVRs) replaced VCRs for recording and storing footage, allowing for longer recording times and improved image quality. The introduction of IP (Internet Protocol) cameras in the late 1990s enabled the transmission of digital video over computer networks, paving the way for more advanced and versatile video surveillance systems.

The advent of the internet also allowed for remote monitoring and management of surveillance systems, enabling security personnel to access footage from any location with internet access. This period also saw the development of video analytics, which used algorithms to detect and analyze specific events or behaviors within surveillance footage, greatly enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of video surveillance systems.

The Current State: Avigilon & Avigilon Alta

Today, video surveillance systems like Avigilon and Avigilon Alta represent the cutting edge of the industry. Both solutions offer high-definition video, advanced analytics, and seamless integration with other security systems.

Avigilon, a subsidiary of Motorola Solutions, is their on-premise solution that provides a comprehensive range of video surveillance solutions, including high-definition cameras, video management software, and access control systems. Avigilon's video analytics technology, Avigilon Appearance Search™, enables users to search through vast amounts of footage quickly and efficiently by filtering based on an individual's physical characteristics, such as clothing color or facial features. Additionally, Avigilon's self-learning video analytics can detect and analyze unusual activities, alerting security personnel to potential threats.

Avigilon Alta, on the other hand, is their cloud based solution that focuses on providing intelligent video surveillance solutions powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. Avigilon Alta’s cameras are equipped with advanced sensors and AI-driven analytics, enabling them to detect and analyze unusual activity, recognize faces, and classify objects. Avigilon Alta Aware, is their cloud-based video management system, allows for real-time monitoring, analytics, and alerts, providing users with a comprehensive view of their security environment. Avigilon Alta’s solutions also prioritize data privacy and security, employing end-to-end encryption and secure communication protocols to protect sensitive information.


The history of video surveillance has seen remarkable advancements, evolving from the earliest CCTV systems to the highly sophisticated solutions offered by Avigilon. As technology continues to progress, we can expect further innovations in video surveillance, ensuring that businesses, public spaces and more remain protected and secure.

Related posts

Have any questions? Let's chat and find solutions!

Ian Lee


Send me a message and I'll get back to you within 24 hours

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Book a Free Consultation