Smart Intel-powered ALPR camera unveiled at IACP


At last week’s International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) annual conference in Chicago, Canadian developer of cloud-based unified security, public safety, traffic operations and business intelligence software systems Genetec Inc unveiled its next-generation mobile ALPR (automatic license plate recognition) system.

Powered by Intel’s Movidius Myriad X VPU (vision processing unit) chipset, the new Genetec AutoVu SharpZ3 camera unit is among the first specialized in-vehicle ALPR systems in the world to use Intel’s computer vision technology. The capabilities in the AutoVu SharpZ3 system enable advanced levels of innovation for in-vehicle analytics, situational awareness, and accuracy. Expected to become available by early 2020, the AutoVu SharpZ3 system also features three optical sensors in the camera to provide additional analytics such as the precise positioning of detected objects, and a modular chassis to allow users to easily add new functionalities in the field without the complication and costs of hardware replacement.

Through its use of Intel’s artificial intelligence (AI) and machine vision technologies, the AutoVu SharpZ3 system will not only be able to improve the accuracy of license plate reads in difficult environments, such as bad weather, heavy traffic, and fast speeds, but will also be able to instantly recognize additional analytics such as, vehicle type, colour, and other attributes. With future releases, the AutoVu Sharp§Z3 camera unit will enable cities to use their ALPR-equipped vehicles to address other operational issues such as detecting unpermitted road construction, discovering abandoned e-scooters or bikes in unauthorized zones, and more.

Founded in 1997, and headquartered in Montréal, Genetec is an innovative technology company with a broad portfolio of systems that encompasses security, intelligence, and operations. The company’s flagship product, Security Centre, is an open-architecture platform that unifies IP-based video surveillance, access control, ALPR units, communications, and analytics. Genetec also develops cloud-based solutions and services designed to improve security, and contribute new levels of operational intelligence for governments, enterprises, transport, and communities in over 80 countries worldwide.

“With the AutoVu SharpZ3, vehicle-based ALPR technology is about to enter a new phase in its evolution, made possible by Intel’s high-performance, low-power, deep learning VPU,” said Stephan Kaiser, general manager of AutoVu products at Genetec. “By bringing powerful deep learning processing into the device itself, we are no longer limited by the constraints of traditional computer vision techniques or server post processing. The new AutoVu SharpZ3 system will enable cities and law enforcement organizations to go far beyond simple license plate character recognition.”

Jonathan Ballon, Intel vice president and general manager of the company’s Internet of Things group, added, “AI is driving a powerful digital transformation in cities around the world, enabling them to be more efficient, liveable and secure for their citizens. By pushing AI-powered devices and solutions to the edge, forward-thinking companies like Genetec are fulfilling the true promise of IoT in smart cities.”

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Adam joined the company in 1994, and has been News Editor of TTT since 2009. In his other role as Circulation Manager, he helped create the original Traffic Technology International distribution list 23 years ago, and has been working on it ever since. Outside of work, he is a keen fisherman, runs a drumming band, and plays an ancient version of cricket.