Brazilian Department Store Makes VIVOTEK Cameras Part of Its Renewal
C&A is a department store in the popular Iguatemi shopping center in São Paulo, the oldest Brazilian mall in operation. As part of a store renovation, it decided to replace its aging analog CCTV surveillance system as well.
C&A's new surveillance sytem is based on 62 VIVOTEK cameras, 40 FD8134 and 12 SD8111. According to distributor Alphadigi, which worked with local systems integrator AD Sistemas on the project, one reason for the choice of these cameras was actually their physical design: "Their looks fit in well with the store's new decor, which might sound at first like a ridiculous reason for choosing a camera, but is actually pretty important for a retailer." Naturally, capabilities like support for network bandwidth-saving H.264 compression that preserves exceptional picture quality were also key factors in C&A's choice.
C&A's renovation was comprehensive, encompassing not just physical layout and decor of the store, but also electrical and communications infrastructure. To minimize the time needed to get a new surveillance system up and running, Alphadigi recommended using VIVOTEK IP cameras with Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) support so a single cable could be used both to supply power and transmit data.
According to product manager Marco Holl at Alphadigi, he recommended the compact fixed-dome FD8134 as the camera with the best feature set, which includes built-in PoE, for most of the locations at C&A. "Even though it has a very small form factor that saves space and doesn't look too conspicuous in the store, it gives the store HD resolution video. The H.264 compression is also good because it saves network bandwidth, which can be a bottleneck when you have so many cameras with live video feeds on pretty small-scale network like C&A has," Marco Holl observes.
The ceiling-mounted SD8111 cameras play a special role, one for which they are extremely well suited to. Marco Holl explains, "What C&A wanted was a camera with strong zoom capabilities and the ability to perform a patrol without a system operator present." The SD8111 not only provides 12x optical zoom, sufficient for the 12 units in use to provide clearly detailed video of the entire store area, but its ability to accept programmed PTZ presets mean that it can perform a thorough automated patrol of the space at night or other times when no surveillance personnel are present. One feature, however, was missing: PoE. Fortunately, this was easily remedied by use of a kit that allows the SD8111 cameras to use a single UTP cable for power and data.
The results of C&A's new surveillance system have thus far been terrific, with the store reporting that unlike its older analog system, it can identify individual customers or provide authorities with clear enough images to positively identify shoplifters or off-hours intruders, reducing theft.