Today we have launched Amped Replay, our enhanced video player for modern policing.
You can find all the usual details in the press release and more info on the product webpages. What I want to add here, though, is some background information about the why and how of this new product.
I believe Amped Replay may be the most important product launch since the initial Amped FIVE release in 2008. Maybe even more than that, since it widens our scope as a company.
With Amped FIVE and our other products, we focused all our efforts in the forensic video analysis (FVA) community, to create the most complete and widely used software for any need related to forensics and investigations. As of today, Amped FIVE has more than 110 filters: you would probably use a few dozen of them on a daily basis, others more rarely, and there are a few that if you are lucky (or unlucky, depending on the point of view) you will use a handful of times in your career. Our users needed them in a case, so they were developed, and now they are in the software available for other users, too.
Amped FIVE (and our other products Authenticate and DVRConv) are used in about 90 countries and are used daily to help the justice systems worldwide. In the past 11 years we have been shipping our product packages to countries I never even knew existed. And it’s been super exciting so far.
But, and there is a “but”.
Our software was always targeted for the experts – for those people who are able to dedicate their time to digital multimedia evidence.
While the Amped FIVE workflow (especially with the Assistant) is quite easy, it is still a product which offers you unlimited possibilities and power. And with great power comes great responsibility. What is the right filter to choose? In which order to place the chosen filters? In which format to convert the video?
Meanwhile, the material and variety of sources have grown and keep growing: video surveillance, mobile, drones, body worn cameras, dash cameras… and even toys containing some photo capturing device.
We have a quite large user base, but we realized we had just hit the tip of the iceberg. We could not expect the average investigator or frontline officer to fully dedicate their efforts and exploit Amped FIVE at its best, simply because video is not a central part of their job. It’s just one of the countless activities, technical or otherwise, they have to do.
Field officers cannot always send video to the forensic unit or to the video lab, to just convert a video, extract a few stills, or do basic enhancements to prepare an image for release to the press.
How many times have we seen videos captured with a mobile phone filming the player screen? Interlaced snapshots of a face published in a request for identification? Or the result of a print screen pasted in a Word document with some goofy post processing attempt without keeping the original file?
These are the problems Amped Replay is solving.
Amped Replay is a universal player and converter for proprietary and standard video files, with basic enhancement, annotation and redaction functions. It shares some of the same algorithms and engine used by Amped FIVE, but it presents a simplified user interface which could be easily exploited at its best by users of any technical level. The guided workflow and available options are designed in a way to reduce at a minimum the possibilities of human error.Some typical uses cases for Amped Replay:
- Convert a video in a proprietary CCTV/DVR format, demultiplexing different cameras and then exporting a small piece of interest
- Extract the image of a suspect, apply redaction of other subjects and then place the organization logo to share the image with the press
- Quickly create a report with all the frames of interest in a video to evaluate the timeline of events
- Apply basic enhancements on a video to be passed on to other investigators for identification
Amped Replay represents a shift in our company. Amped Software still focuses 100% on image and videos for investigative and forensic applications. But we no longer just focus on experts. With our product ecosystem, we want to empower an entire organization to work with images and videos in the best way possible. We want to empower officers at all levels, from first responders to analysts, to work in the best possible way and to guarantee justice through science, all over the world.
I look forward to hearing what you think!