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Beware of Hidden Fees

The Leading CCTV System Has Hidden Fees That Never End

The leading integrated alarm, access control and CCTV system has hidden fees that make it the most expensive system on the market. Is it no wonder that when they bid against other systems they are sometimes low bidder? They can afford to be because they make it up many times over in just a few years. This is especially relevant to you, the customer, if the initial purchase is made with capital project dollars but the annual recurring costs are taken from your operating budget each year.

What are these fees? What should you ask about when comparing systems? Many companies charge you for hardware and software. They claim to be open source but if you use hardware from a manufacturer they don’t have “a relationship” with, then they charge a premium as part of the purchase price. Some even charge you a fee if you supply your own computers! And then there are fees associated with the software.

First, you pay for the software itself. Wouldn’t you think that this would include everything you need to use it? Not so. For every IP address on the system they charge an annual recurring licensing fee for the software. If you add a camera, this adds an IP address. You get a bill for unlocking the IP address in their software. The cost per IP address is generally $150 per year. So if you have 64 cameras, this is a hidden cost per year of $9,600.

Then they charge for “seats”. Each operator terminal and server is a “seat”. So if you have a server and a terminal in your security control room and one on the Director of Security’s desk, you have three seats. But what they don’t tell you is that if you want all of your cameras to be displayed on monitors simultaneously as all museums do, you will need more seat licenses to make this happen. So add another $5,500 per year for the life of the system. And if you want the Director, Facility Manager, Event Manager and others to be able to view cameras in their areas, add $500 per seat for these.

With the Acuity-vct, software licensing works just the opposite. You pay only for what you need and you pay only once. The base price includes the basic software license. If, and only if, you need the object protection feature do you pay for it and you have two choices. You can pay a price per camera equipped with the special features or you can pay one price for an unlimited number of cameras. But once you buy the software you never pay a fee again. Of course, if you buy a license for just the cameras that need these features, you can add more licenses at any time. But you never pay twice for a feature.

Want more?

Read how you use the Acuity-vct to protect a period room or historic house.

Read about the Library and Archive Reading Room Surveillance System.

Pros and cons of Digital Video Recorders vs. Server Based Systems

Read how the Acuity-vct system can be a back up to your alarm system.

Beware of Hidden Fees Charged by Many Manufacturers