Urbanization is progressing rapidly throughout the world, and it is predicted that the world’s total urban population will increase from 50% of the current global population to around 70% by 2050. Meanwhile, threats to human life and the security of businesses, such as increasing urban crime, armed terrorism against the backdrop of globalization, and cyberattacks accompanying advances in information technology, are diversifying. As the movement of people and goods increases, a review of the maintenance and management of urban spaces, and the development of new infrastructure that protects personal safety and security are needed in order to respond to these growing risks, secure the safety of cities, and create living spaces where everyone can continue to live sustainably.
Japan will be hosting large-scale sports events such as Rugby World Cup 2019™, Japan and the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020, and along with urban redevelopment in each region, the number of travelers from overseas is expected to increase substantially. Maintaining public safety and securing the stability and security of infrastructure are important issues for the success of these events.
Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
Combining cameras and IT, network cameras are part of the new infrastructure to ensure the safety and security of cities, enabling remote monitoring of public spaces and a more rapid response to threats to public safety. Meanwhile, demand for network cameras has grown and global markets are expanding at an annual average of more than 10%. Network cameras have a variety of practical applications. They can, for example, contribute to the improvement of quality and productivity at a production site, analyze the flow of customers from video feeds and thus lead to improvements in product sales, or monitor the daily activities of the elderly.
Canon has positioned network cameras as one of the new business pillars in Phase V of its Excellent Global Corporation Plan. We have launched solutions that utilize optical and image-processing technologies cultivated in our camera business along with network control technologies cultivated through the development of our office multifunctional devices, and made it available worldwide for disaster prevention, crime prevention, and surveillance.
In addition, we recently welcomed Axis of Sweden, a leader in the network camera industry, and Milestone Systems, one of the world’s largest video management software companies, into the Canon Group, and their expertise is now helping us open up possibilities in a wide range of fields, including medical care, nursing care, education, transportation, and urban planning. For example, in Yokohama, which has a population of 3.7 million people, Canon and Axis network cameras are contributing to secure and safe urban planning, such as through incident and accident prevention at large events, and other safety measures that include rapid real-time assessment capability in the case of an urban disaster.
In addition to safety and security, the ability of network cameras to provide added-value images presents a number of potential applications in such fields as customer service and market research. Canon has launched Moving Object Mask software that displays individuals within a selected area as silhouettes so they cannot be identified, thereby enabling both privacy and safety. Because captured images contain a great deal of information which can be used to identify specific subjects, this product has potential for use in a variety of scenarios—for example, users can confirm such information as congestion status or queue lengths at train stations, bus stops or taxi ranks while the privacy of those viewed by the cameras is protected by the silhouette effect. This enables users to select effective detour routes and consider transport usage periods, thus contributing to better customer service as well as helping to avert danger by avoiding congestion. In this way, Canon will continue striving to deliver new kinds of video recording and analysis solutions.