ALMARVI is a collaborative European research project funded by Artemis involving 16 industrial as well as academic partners across 4 countries, working together to address various computational challenges in image and video processing in 3 application domains: healthcare, surveillance and mobile. This paper is an editorial for a special issue discussing the integrated system created by the partners to serve as a cross-domain solution for the project. The paper also introduces the partner articles published in this special issue to discuss the various technological developments achieved within ALMARVI spanning all system layers, from hardware to applications. We illustrate the challenges faced within the project based on use cases from the three targeted application domains, and how these can address the 4 main project objectives addressing 4 challenges faced by high performance image and video processing systems: massive data rate, low power consumption, composability and robustness. We present a system stack composed of algorithms, design frameworks and platforms as a solution to these challenges. Finally, the use cases from the three different application domains are mapped on the system stack solution and are evaluated based on their performance for each of the 4 ALMARVI objectives.