Software-Defined vs. Hardware-Defined Architecture: How Freedom Access Control Can Help You Future-Proof

By Scott Sieracki

Identiv’s Freedom Access Control delivers a unique opportunity to future-proof your physical access control system (PACS) deployment. 

Freedom was developed from a design initiative favored by today’s enterprise software and hardware application vendors. 

It is a software-defined architecture decoupling physical components, management tools, and decision engines so that physical transactions can influence and be influenced by events occurring across the enterprise IT systems, regardless of location and physical connections.

In short, Freedom heavily leverages a software-defined architecture and strives to minimize dependencies on hardware-defined technology. 

Freedom has been designed to limit downstream hardware requirements and instead uses simple Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices, like the Freedom Bridge, to convert conventional security device signals (i.e., card readers and alarm inputs) to an IP packet. It then transmits those IP packets to distributable instances of the Freedom software for all access control and event decision making. 

Freedom uses its own REST-based API, enabling exponentially faster and more efficient software feature development and third-party systems integration. The Freedom API is cloud-native, pre-indexed for quick integration to other enterprise business applications and supports a frictionless access feature that eliminates the requirement for a traditional card reader at the door.

These advantages are not easily leveraged, if available at all, in traditional hardware-defined PACS.  

Why Choose Freedom Access Control?

  • Freedom aligns with migration from a hardware-driven to a software-driven architecture embraced by the office of the CIO and IT departments 
  • Freedom facilitates convergence and interoperability across security systems and tools — physical, logical, and network — resulting in a holistic view of an organization’s security environment
  • Freedom reduces upfront capital costs because of the significant reduction in field hardware, cabling, and labor, and ensures lowest total cost of ownership by enabling software enhancements independent of downstream hardware

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