4G LTE Unlocks Variety of Benefits for Protecting Valuable Company Assets
While the use of cameras for security purposes is not new, the introduction of wireless IP cameras has significantly expanded security possibilities in a wide range of industries.
Companies that are considering upgrading to wireless IP cameras need to consider several key elements before deciding on a solution.
What are the wireless options for IP cameras?
When we reference wireless IP cameras, we are talking about several main setups:
- A camera with built-in WiFi that is connected to a Cradlepoint router via WiFi and using 4G LTE as the WAN source
- A camera with Ethernet/PoE connected to a Cradlepoint router and using 4G LTE as the WAN source
- A camera featuring built-in 4G LTE
- A camera with built-in WiFi
What industries are a good match for this technology?
Wireless IP cameras are essential for any industry or company that needs its physical assets monitored. Examples include water towers, power sources, parks and recreation areas, airports, shipyards — even jewelry stores. Wireless IP body cameras are used in the law enforcement, military, and transportation fields, where constant monitoring is required.
If your company, organization, or industry requires regular, reliable monitoring, you may want to consider wireless IP cameras as part of your technology and security plans.
What are the benefits of wireless IP cameras?
Here are some of the most notable benefits of wireless IP cameras:
Wireless IP cameras offer a level of concealment that is unmatched. They can be hidden in locations — poles, for example — where they can’t be vandalized before criminal acts. Because a wireless camera’s presence can be concealed, intruders often will be unaware that all of their moves are being recorded.
Wireless IP cameras are easy to install. For many security cameras, you have to drill holes in the wall and get a mounting kit of some sort. While it may not be the most difficult task, constructing something to hold a camera can be time-consuming. With a wireless camera, installation is extremely easy, and you can angle the camera in whatever direction you choose.
Wireless IP cameras remove physical barriers and increase flexibility. Wireless cameras eliminate the limitation of network ports, the challenges of running cable to remote locations, the burdensome nature of managing a camera manually, and the inability to place a camera in an undetectable location.
In many cases, it’s not feasible to run long cables over large areas, such as a shipyard. Even if cables can be run, the lines themselves can break down over time or be cut —intentionally or unintentionally. If a wireless camera has a failover solution as well, the risk and worry of data loss or cameras going offline is virtually eliminated.
In essence, wireless IP cameras allow users to focus on the data they provide instead of the management they require.
What challenges do they present?
The biggest challenge with wireless IP cameras present is the need to have a power source. Fortunately, there are multiple solutions to choose from, depending on what works best for your location, company, and function. Solar batteries can provide an excellent option, as can rechargeable batteries.
How many cameras are needed?
If the area that needs monitoring is large and multiple perspectives are required, it’s important to think about the number of cameras you’ll need to to create a complete picture. Similarly, if you have a smaller area, such as a bus, your company must determine which perspectives are most important. For example, is a camera in the front of the bus sufficient, or is a rear camera needed, too?
How important is video quality?
If you plan on potentially using your wireless IP camera footage in court, you’ll need to ensure the pictures and data you collect are high resolution. Similarly, if your company is using the cameras to trigger movement alerts, the images must attain a certain quality level. It’s important for your team to determine how many frames per second and what level of video compression, or video codec, are necessary.
How much bandwidth is required — and available?
Online bandwidth calculators, which are easily accessible online, can be quite useful in helping IT staff determine how much bandwidth is needed for different components of a wireless IP camera system.
When IP cameras are installed along with cellular routers, Cradlepoint’s NetCloud Manager can be used to remotely monitor and manage cellular data usage and more, which can save organizations a lot of money.
How will the cameras be housed and protected?
The best scenario is to place your wireless IP cameras inside an enclosure or other concealed area, which will protect against potentially harmful sunlight, rain, water, and even graffiti and related vandalism.
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