A question for those who manage hundreds+ cameras. Are you satisfied ?
Do you use MV12 and analytics (person detection etc.) ?
Questions to Meraki Employees.
Do you plan to implement cloud storage (microsoft, google, amazon) ?
In some location I have to be 100% sure that footage won't disappear with camera(crash or theft).
I'm partly satisfied with the camera solution. The MV21 and 71 have been rock solid. The MV12's still have an unresolved audio recording bug that messes up recording and exports so I've had to disable audio for now. But the price point of the MV12's makes it more compelling for sites with larger deployments.
Here are the features I like the most.
1. Ability to grant access to managers, users. It is very granular where I can give them access to just a single camera if needed.
2. Mobile access via browser or app.
3. No need to run a server DVR etc...
I've played around with the analytics and heatmap stuff a little bit but we don't use it heavily. The biggest use case is in retail areas where we want to track hotspots. But they are pretty much where we'd predict.
Honestly the biggest con for my environment is that the camera footage is stored on the camera. That means that if someone were to take the camera, you lose that footage. Without a way to store the captured footage, I unfortunately cannot use them in my environment today (as much as I would like to).
What types of environments do you have cameras in where theft would be probable? The ones we have outside our building are pretty high and secured with the security screws. Not ironclad but would be pretty obvious and a pain to steal it. Would most assuredly be easier to just shoot it. And our indoor ones would be accessible but they are in very public areas.
EDIT: Now that I ask I'm sure I'll have one get stolen lol. But in all seriousness, we've never had a camera stolen with any other system. Vandalized for sure, but never stolen.
@Jack There are no Meraki markings on the outside of these cameras. The thief would have to be extremely savvy on camera makes and models to realize stealing the camera equals stealing the video.
I understand that it would be highly unlikely someone would steal the camera or even be savvy enough to know it is a Meraki camera, but the fact is that I have no way to back up the footage from that camera and if it does get shot out (something a bit more likely to happen in some environments), I lose that footage.
I'm of the belief that if we're going to market the product, let's tell people about both the pros and the cons. Let them make the decision with all the information, even if it is a possibility that is unlikely to happen .
@Jack, agreed there needs to be something. Since the feed is actually pulling from the camera itself, the ability to view the last 30 min of camera footage if you can't reach the camera would be beneficial.
I designed and am in the process of implementing one of the larger MV rollouts (perhaps the largest K-12 deployment today). We are planning to implement MV district wide which will cover over 25 sites.
Generally we are extremely pleased with the cameras. The setup is dead simple and the management overhead is very low. We use motion based retention on 100% of the cameras and find this gives us a great balance of retention (generally 3-4 weeks) while still allowing us to run the highest quality settings (including on the MV12 with 1080p @ high quality 3138kbps at 20fps).
If you are buying cameras today, there is zero reason to use the MV21 for indoor deployments. We have standardized on the MV12W but the MV12N is a good option for specific deployments.
We don't heavily utilize the analytics today as it's not very relevant in K-12 currently, but it's clear that this will be very powerful in the future. We're excited to see what comes from Meraki in terms of object detection with alerting (watching a door and alerting when opened/closed).
Where does the solution struggle at scale? Managing Dashboard access for large numbers of users across multiple networks is really tedious and results in significant duplicate work. We're hoping to see SAML integration soon or at least group based management to cut down on the amount of duplicate work when deploying new networks or updating someone's access. But @Adam is right - there is a lot of flexibility in the camera-only admin roles today.
The mobile app is also very frustrating to use when dealing with more than a handful of MV's. It's slow to access cameras, you can't sort the camera list well and generally provides a subpar experience for users who only need MV access. Verkada provides a significantly better mobile app experience today.
The cameras use HLS for streaming which means there is a 5ish second delay on all streams. In many implementations this is not an issue, but keep this in mind as it may be a problem in specific deployments like when you use an MV as a door monitor with a remote unlock feature.
Actually not quite. I wish the camera can be move.
Nowadays China's camera especially from Xiaomi can move the cable 360 degree and with sound.
I'm using MV21 and seems the only thing that benefit to me is cloud storage and managed only.
Plus these camera is not cheap though in Asia countries.
I also do agree with you that Meraki can allow customer to keep the video onto our own cloud storage eg. MS Azure Storage.
Pleased to announce that MV now supports cloud archive for critical cameras where video needs to be backed up to the cloud.
Taken from our recent launch blog post:
The edge-storage architecture of MV smart cameras was created thoughtfully and deliberately to serve Meraki customers’ needs. This meant building a product that would accommodate those customers who had real-world bandwidth constraints and limitations. Still, there are times when it’s necessary for particular cameras in a fleet to offload their storage or have a backup of the data, and that’s where the cloud archive tool for MV comes in.
Cloud archive comes in 90- and 180-day storage options and can be enabled on a per-camera basis, allowing for custom-tailored storage solutions for every organization. This means that only critical cameras will back up their video to the cloud and bandwidth limits can be adhered to. Cameras will continue to retain footage locally in addition to the cloud copy, providing redundancy and greater peace of mind.
Read the cloud archive datasheet to learn more.
More info can be found in this article.