What Makes a Solution Different Than a Tool

by John Gallagher | Apr 1, 2015 10:14:27 PM

In the world of physical security there has been a lot of dialogue around how the lines are blurred between physical security and IT. As a company firmly planted at the intersection of physical security and IT, Viakoo believes that “blurry lines” are counter-productive to achieving security goals. At the heart of what our company does is a keen focus on clarity in understanding and resolving problems, communicating crisply between multiples teams inside an organization, and resolving security issues as quickly as possible. In that spirit, I’d like to clarify what makes the Viakoo solution different from IT infrastructure or software applications – by being a SaaS provider we gain some critical advantages compared to those types of products.

The closest analogy would be building a house – the raw materials (infrastructure) are combined together using tools (software programs). But without the domain-specific and deep knowledge of an architect, as delivered in the form of blueprints, I will not have a house (a solution). In looking at Viakoo it’s an important concept to realize we are a solution and not infrastructure or a program. Without that, users would be rightfully concerned that they would have to take on that role, and would be only able to apply their own understanding to solve the problem.

A good way to see how Viakoo is a solution is to compare it to alternatives. Almost every customer we have uses us in conjunction with VMS tools and IT tools like SolarWinds, which begs the question of what are they getting above-and-beyond those environments. In the case of VMS tools, the issue fundamentally is scope of visibility – they can’t see across or into the entire chain of devices that make up a security video network. Likewise, IT tools do not have the unique understanding of security video networks to allow them to easily diagnose specific video stream issues, nor the ability to bring together in a single pane of glass for cross-probing the events related to video stream performance. To illustrate the point we’ve put together a chart of how Viakoo fills in the gap between VMS and IT tools to prevent and solve security video network issues (click here for the chart).

Being a cloud-based SaaS solution allows Viakoo to build in expertise and intelligence from a large number (and variety) of physical security deployments, and leverage that through automation to prevent our users from having to develop that themselves. Because it is cloud-based, all users benefit from immediate availability of new capabilities, unlike traditional on-premise software which has to be updated and managed for new releases and bug fixes.

Especially now, as physical security teams have to adapt to these changes while keeping spending low, the need is for solutions and not “tools”. If you or others at your organization have struggled with the transition from analog to IP-based physical security, you need to step back and ask yourself whether the struggle is because you only have tools when you need a solution. If that’s the case, Viakoo most definitely can help you.

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