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Cloud Technology! Good or Bad?
Local Security VS. Cloud Security!

All the slamming Cloud Services as "BAD", or the Hyping it as “The way to go" aside, the bottom line comes down to is it right for you in your specific situation and do you have realistic expectations on how its going to function from a end users point of view.

One, obvious advantage, to me anyway, is if your storing your video off site, in the Cloud, then even if the "bad guy" comes along and takes your cameras you still have the recorded video stored, offsite, out in the Cloud. So, from that point of view it’s a good idea. Right?

Another advantage that comes to mind is if you have a fire, hard drive crash, or other situation that would otherwise destroy your equipment or cause a loss of video, again, it’s stored offsite, in the Cloud, so you don’t loose all of your video.

The disadvantages to relying solely on Cloud based technology are that from an end user point of view, it can be a frustrating experance.  You’re trying to get a bunch of video to record and then later payback through the Internet.

Go open up 5 web browser tabs right now and set them all to play a different video on youtube. Even with all of them playing in the lowest resolution settings they will all start slowing down or lagging each time you add a new video.

So, now imagine what it would be like trying to watch 8 or 16 channels of video though the Internet. Multiply that lag by making the recording in megapixel resolutions and you will see it’s near impossible, bearable or what I would consider useful.

So, that’s the bad…

As I mentioned there are still good uses for Cloud technology where video surveillance is concerned if implemented properly with realistic expectations.

From my point of view the real and right use of Cloud Technology comes when you more or less do a combination of both local and Cloud systems. In other words, get good local technology to store your video locally, as its always been done. But now make sure your local technology has the ability to push x number of frames/pictures off to a remote server, “The Cloud” so you have a balance of high speed locally when you need it and off site slower speeds in the event you loose your local systems for what ever reason.

With that said, if thought through and implemented properly you can have the best of both worlds.

At this point in the data transfer over WAN (wide area network) I would say, I wouldn’t rely only on Cloud Based systems, but I would defiantly not rule out having the option to move some of the recorded video off to a remote location, “The Cloud” in regular intervals so I at least have something in the event my local system were to be compromised.

This is how I do it at my house and for several of my customers and yes; it has come in handy on several occasions.  

Depending on the Cloud service used, the resolution you’re pushing to the Cloud Service, and number of images per second you want to store, it’s possible to keep years of what I call, semi recorded video, “Semi” because you do loose a lot, but not all, using a Cloud Based option. But for your day-to-day, week-to-week or month-to-month, noting is going to replace local storage of your video.

So, I guess in the end, they are both useful, if used properly, with a realistic understanding and expectation or what your end results will be based on your specific budget and needs.

Hopefully that made sense to some degree. If you have input don’t hesitate to share you’re thoughts with me/us on this subject. Hopefully for the layman this gives you a better understanding.

Alright, So I get asked all the time is cloud technology good or bad?

Well, there are certainly good uses for it. One thing is for sure, when you see companies slamming it, or hyping it up, you know what they are trying to sell, or not trying to sell.

The ones saying it’s bad are trying to sell NVR and DVR systems. The ones that say it’s the only way to go are usually trying to sell disk space on their servers and to collect monthly fees for doing so. After all, in any business plan, if you can get the customer on the hook for a monthly fee, it’s a good plan, if you the one receiving the check every month. Right?
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