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Cisco Acquires Modcam To Boost Meraki‘s Machine-Learning Game

Cisco bought Swedish video analytics specialist Modcam and is working the firm‘s technology into its Meraki smart camera line to help end users gain more value from the data they collect.

Cisco Systems is about to inject more intelligence into its Meraki smart camera portfolio.

The tech giant on Friday announced that it has acquired Swedish video analytics provider Modcam for an undisclosed sum. The deal, which already closed, will make Cisco‘s MV smart security camera line “even smarter,” said Chris Stori, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco’s Meraki business, in a blog post.

“Less than 1 percent of the video our MV smart cameras capture is actually watched. One of the questions we ask ourselves is, how do we extract value from the 99% that no one ever sees? In acquiring Modcam, Cisco is investing in a team of highly talented engineers who bring a wealth of expertise in machine learning, computer vision and cloud-managed cameras,” Stori said on the deal.

[Related: The 10 Biggest Cisco News Stories Of 2020 (So Far)]

Specifically, privately held Modcam‘s technology can be used for precision locationing and journey pathing that can give users insights to better plan out their physical spaces. Cisco Meraki MV smart camera’s capabilities, on the other hand, include motion detection and machine learning-based object detection, all of which run at the edge, in-camera, Cisco said. However, those analytics are constrained to the single view of the camera.

Together, Modcam‘s technology inside the Meraki smart camera line will bring together more information and machine-learning across multiple cameras, the companies said. The analytics will empower new use cases that will be especially useful as businesses bounce back from COVID-19, including giving retailers insight into products of interest or check out wait times, or allowing facilities managers to measure and monitor occupancy and room usage, Cisco said.

“With Modcam’s technology, this micro-level information can be stitched together, enabling multiple cameras to provide a macro-level view of the real world,” Stori said.

Todd Nightingale, Cisco‘s former Meraki General Manager and current senior vice president and general manager of Cisco’s enterprise networking and cloud division, told CRN in 2019 that the MV camera line was the most successful Meraki launch to date.

Cisco channel partners have access to sell the MV smart camera portfolio today.

Modcam‘s employees have joined the Cisco Meraki team, Cisco said.

Modcam, founded in 2013, has raised $7.6 million in funding, according to Crunchbase. Cisco bought networking startup Meraki in 2012 for $1.2 billion to go after the midmarket, the firm told CRN at the time.

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