News Release

New IP Media Device API Specification Targets Physical Security Product Interoperability

CUPERTINO, Calif., September 9, 2008 - The Physical Security
Sep 09, 2008

CUPERTINO, Calif., September 9, 2008 - The Physical Security Interoperability Alliance (PSIA) today released an IP Media Device Application Programming Interface (API) specification to improve the interoperability of physical security products using standards-based IP networks. This specification, recognized by 19 industry leaders, is the first standard recommended by the PSIA, an open-membership organization created to promote the interoperability of IP-enabled security devices.

The scope of this initial API specification is centered on IP-enabled video surveillance devices, such as IP cameras, encoders, and digital video recorders. It enables physical security and video management systems to recognize and change the configurations of various IP media devices and control their behaviors. It also eliminates the need for device driver customization in order to achieve interoperability among products from different manufacturers.

"The IP Media Device API specification addresses important issues, such as device discovery, configuration, and command and control, and it represents one of the first steps toward true interoperability and industry-wide convergence," said Pete Jankowski, PSIA Video Expert Group chairman and chief technology officer of Cisco's Physical Security business unit. "The specification describes a uniform set of methods for communicating with standard IP networks and offers manufacturers, system integrators, and application developers an opportunity to improve interoperability and add substantial customer value."

The following 19 industry leaders have recognized the importance of collaborating on open industry standards and endorse this initial specification: Adesta LLC, ADT Security Services, Cisco, CSC, DVTel, GE Security, Honeywell, IBM, IQinVision, Johnson Controls, March Networks, ObjectVideo, Orsus, Panasonic, Pelco, Santa Clara Consulting Group, Texas Instruments, Verint and Vidyo.

The PSIA will continue to expand the specification to incorporate interoperability of electronic access control, intrusion detection and other multi-vendor physical security systems and devices that exchange information with the network.

"The benefits of this standardization will impact organizations directly by simplifying the implementation process and reducing ongoing operational costs," said John Fenske, Director, Global Product Programs & Support, Johnson Controls. "It leaves customers free to deploy the IP security devices that best meet their requirements without concern for interoperability barriers."

Mike Davis, Vice President of Research and Development at March Networks, added, "New interoperability standards, such as this IP Media Device API specification, will enable organizations to rapidly deploy, integrate and manage best-of-breed physical security applications, devices and systems from multiple vendors over a converged IP network. Equally important, it will allow them to evolve their solutions by leveraging additional technology advancements while protecting existing investments."

The IP Media Device API specification was created by the alliance's IP Video Expert Group, which includes leading physical security and IT system manufacturers and integrators. It is currently available on the PSIA website at An accompanying use case, which details how the specification can be applied in IP video deployments, is also available at