Residential security systems
Boon Edam Inc., a globally renowned provider in security entrances and architectural revolving doors, has announced a new BoonTV event, ‘The Key to Closing the Biggest Gap in Physical Security: Unauthorised Entry’. BoonTV event - webinar In this event, JC Powell, Vice President of Sales at Boon Edam, reveals the assumptions and misconceptions around entrance security in physical security planning and how to effectively bring reliable entrance control to a facility to avoid costly r...
Interface Security Systems, a managed service provider delivering business security, managed network, UCaaS (Unified Communications as a Service) and business intelligence solutions to distributed enterprises, announces a new offering that enables its restaurant, retail and hospitality customers to communicate with their patrons via SMS and MMS text messages. Using their regular published business telephone number, businesses can have real-time two-way text conversations with their guests, info...
Already established as a renowned provider of high-quality door closers, UNION has further strengthened its range with the launch of three dynamic new solutions. Innovative and properly certified, the three new door closers all bring incredible value to the market, by solving a number of critical challenges faced by installers to meet the needs of their customers. With the launch of the CE26V, SC-CE3F and CE4F-E, UNION now meets almost every door closer requirement - whether for light or heavy...
Overhead Door Brand, a globally renowned manufacturer of residential and commercial door solutions, has launched the next generation of the OHD Anywhere app. The new version of OHD Anywhere includes enhanced features based on user feedback that improve everyday life and allow homeowners to monitor and operate their garage doors remotely from their smart device. Personalized garage door access “In this modern, digital age that is overflowing with advanced technology, a garage door opener...
Nowadays, everything seems easier in the matter of surveillance. Sophisticated technology safeguards our valuables for us without asking for anything in return. But what if it’s not true? What if it comes with a price? Video surveillance systems are a popular way to keep the property under constant control. It’s not rare that the technological sophistication of these systems puts us in awe. They make us feel, and be, safe. Yet, there are doubts when it comes to ensuring privacy. And...
In the UK, one burglary occurs every 106 seconds. This means by the time you've finished reading this article, at least three will have taken place. Selecting robust physical security options to protect property boundaries and homes is essential to limit crime rates and deter opportunistic intruders. With 58% of burglaries said to take place while the homeowner is in, it seems that even the second wave of lockdowns, and an increased number of people confined to their homes, won't do much to eli...
Aiphone, the renowned international manufacturer of video and audio intercom, and security communication products, has announced the addition of the IX-EA IP video door station intercom to its robust IX Series portfolio. IX-EA IP video door station intercom The IX-EA from Aiphone is a surface mount, weather-resistant IP video door station, which comes equipped with a 1.23 megapixel fixed color camera that can be programmed to call up to 20 different stations, with three different call level selections. Additionally, video from the IX-EA IP video door station intercom can be streamed to third-party devices using ONVIF Profile S or RTSP. Additional features of the IX-EA IP video door station include: SIP 2.0 compliant White LED for low light illumination 3af PoE compliant 600Ω audio output for paging or communication For additional customization, sound files can be uploaded for custom messages to be played during certain scenarios. This feature allows users to choose their own sounds for door release, call placed, communication starts and error messages. The IX-EA IP video door station features audible and visual indications for calling, communication and door release. Power of an enterprise platform The IX Series features the power of an enterprise platform with the simplicity of a single system - offering scalable enterprise security. IX Series solutions are ideal for commercial sites, industrial facilities, schools, campuses, parking garages, retail, emergency calling, and correctional applications. Throughout 2020, Aiphone will be celebrating its 50th Anniversary in North America, by thanking and showing their gratitude to customers, dealers, integrators, and employees for providing the opportunity to develop and improve better security and communication solutions.
Dahua Technology, a renowned video-centric smart IoT solution and service provider, will hold its online Dahua Technology Partner Day 2020 on 1st of December. The event will be a perfect occasion to get a taste of the Dahua ECO system in the EMEA region. 26 technology partners will bring solutions in the field of security and IoT. Smarter Together is the central theme of the Dahua Technology Partner Day 2020. A total of 26 distinguished Dahua partners will gather to share their knowledge and expertise on the development of security and IoT applications for a variety of vertical markets. This online event will serve as a technological and commercial hub for end-users and system integrators from different markets, ranging from Logistics, Traffic and Infrastructures to Healthcare, Retail and Residential. Attendees can Register free of charge and tune in to all the partner keynotes. Explore business opportunities In the partner hub, participants can chat with technology partners, explore business opportunities or technical challenges and get the latest product information. The event will kick off with an opening speech by Mr. Jason Zhao, Dahua VP & General Manager of Overseas Business to introduce how Dahua Technology and its technology partners become smarter together. 26 Partners will showcase their solutions in a main auditorium and six different break out rooms, including Axxonsoft, Qognify, Ivideon, TechnoAware, Vaelsys, A.I. Tech, Optex, Eagle Eye Networks who joined in the 2019 offline partner day and gained much exposure and business opportunities last year. Global security industry We are moving the Partner day to an online event in order to sustain the opportunity of getting together" Integrated solutions developed by both Dahua Technology and its partners will be displayed during the event, which will surely raise spectators’ interest as they meet different needs of system integrators and end users with greater versatility.“The 2019 Partner Day held on September 26th at Estadio Wanda Metropolitano, Madrid was a success with many of our partners’ participation. However, 2020 is challenging because of COVID-19." "We are moving the Partner day to an online event in order to sustain the opportunity of getting together. During the event, leading representative companies in global security industry and IoT industry will have the chance to present their insights into the latest Security Application and also reflect on current challenges in the industry”, says Mr. Jiaqi Gao, Overseas Marketing Director at Dahua Technology. Smart integrated security solutions “The attendees will have the chance to meet security players in the market and create new and diverse business opportunities.” Committed to its mission of “Enabling a Safer Society and Smarter Living,” Dahua Technology will continue to adhere the core value of “customer-centered” and provide the market with smart integrated security solutions, systems, and services to create value for city operations, corporate management, and consumers.
Intuitive tool provides step-by-step key system design. ASSA ABLOY, the pioneer in access solutions, announced the release of an improved and streamlined version of their Key System Design Studio. Introduced in 2017 by Medeco, an ASSA ABLOY Group brand, the Key System Design Studio is a user-friendly online portal that walks the master key customer through each phase of designing a new master key system. The new and improved version includes features to make master key design even easier, such as drag and drop keying tree, and the ability to upload door schedules for increased system design accuracy. In addition, the Key System Design Studio has expanded its support for master key design to ASSA ABLOY Group brands Corbin Russwin, SARGENT and Yale. “When the Key System Design Studio was first developed, our goal was to make the ordering and management of Medeco master key systems easier and more convenient for customers,” said Bill Grambo, President, Access and Egress Hardware Group, ASSA ABLOY. “Expanding this support to include Corbin Russwin, SARGENT and Yale key systems means that even more customers can take advantage of these efficiencies. The new features in this updated version will streamline the overall design and ordering process, resulting in reduced master key order processing times.” Key System Design Studio Key System Design Studio guides the user through a series of easy to understand and intuitive steps Master key system design is a complex process that typically requires in-depth knowledge about the fundamentals of master keying and system structure. ASSA ABLOY’s unique Key System Design Studio removes this complexity by guiding the user through a series of easy to understand and intuitive steps to build their ideal master key system. More experienced users can upload their own door schedules or keying plans, and then progress to placing accurate orders with ease. Key System Design Studio features and benefits User-friendly interface for capturing information, ensures no delays due to missing details Drag and drop keying tree feature makes system design even easier Dynamic upload and download feature allow users to upload their own door schedules for automatic population, and download finalized systems for their records/use Submit a product order along with the new system request, eliminating an extra step
OPTEX has launched its new Intelligent Visual Monitoring solution in the UK and Ireland, powered by CHeKT - a hardware and software solution that takes separate intruder and CCTV technologies installed on the same site, but acting independently, and ‘bridges’ them to create one, seamless, integrated visual monitoring solution. Monitored intruder alarms can now be visually verified within seconds, without impacting the integrity of the technology installed, or its Grade. When an alarm occurs, a signal is instantly sent to the Alarm Receiving Center (ARC) whose operator can view images pre and post the alarm event as well as the live view via a dedicated portal to determine whether the alarm is genuine. Intrusion sensors OPTEX Bridge is the hardware device that physically connects the intrusion sensors and IP cameras Camera locations can be overlaid with a map of detection zones, thus helping the ARC operator to quickly and easily ‘see’ where the incident has occurred and take the appropriate action. Images can also be sent directly to the customer’s handheld device for further verification if, for example, the alarm is genuine, but the ‘intruder’ is known to the customer or has a legitimate reason for being on site. The OPTEX Bridge is the hardware device (gateway) that is physically connecting the intrusion sensors or the panic buttons and IP cameras on site. It provides a complete audit trail of activity and can detect when a camera is not working (i.e. when it has dropped out of the network), and report the fault, thus ensuring security is not compromised. Intruder alarm technology It can also communicate via a gated Cloud portal with the ARC in the appropriate ‘language’, regardless of the make or manufacture of the monitoring technology installed, or the protocols with which it operates. It will, in effect, work with virtually any intruder alarm technology and any ONVIF camera to deliver one seamless visual verification solution. The ARC software needs to be compatible, and many of the major ARC software platforms are already integrated. Whereas the monitoring of intruder alarms through an Alarm Receiving Center (ARC) is generally accepted best practice, CCTV monitoring remains slow to take hold. Part of the problem has come down to money; larger sites such as major depots and warehouses with constant activity 24/7 can clearly benefit from a fully functioning CCTV system monitored through a dedicated Remote Video Response Center (RVRC). Visually verified alarms Cloud-hosted platform also allows a stronger collaboration between the ARCs and the home/business owners Smaller sites, while they would benefit from visually verified alarms, would struggle to justify the investment of a full-scale RVRC solution. ARCs now have the ability to provide a visual verification service to residential and commercial sites without a substantial investment in time or money; the Bridge can be installed and working within the hour. The Cloud-hosted platform also allows a stronger collaboration between the ARCs and the home/business owners by having the ability to share video clips to confirm the alarms while respecting any privacy guidelines through its bespoke privacy feature that only end-users can release. Early warning solution Masaya Kida, Managing Director of OPTEX EMEA says by installing the OPTEX Bridge, sensors and cameras combine to deliver a secure, reliable and effective early warning solution, detecting and reacting to an intrusion before a potentially damaging and costly event has occurred. “It is also invaluable to those who need police response and may have lost their URN (Unique Reference Number); a visually verified alarm will put them back on police response. For the installer, meanwhile, it provides them with the opportunity to re-engage and adds further value to the customer with the ability to seamlessly integrate with existing systems and technology across single or multiple sites.”
Security specialist Mul-T-Lock has launched MTL™300, a high-security yet affordable locking solution for both residential and small-to-medium business customers. The new cylinder platform is based on field-proven technology that enables it to be patented from day one, all the way through to 2033. As MTL™300 is based on existing technology, it also saves locksmiths expenses traditionally associated with launching new-patented platforms. Ideal for residential and small-to-medium business customers, MTL™300 is an entry-level locking solution that goes beyond the standard, offering advanced, patented technology and protection that complies with international standards. A restricted key copy system enables locksmiths to access exclusive keying profiles using six different special cut types while guaranteeing protection against unauthorized key duplication. Patented locking system MTL™300’s Master Key Systems (MKS) are supported by "Masterpiece" software, so locksmiths can plan and assemble their own MKS and continue to use the same key cutting machines and pinning kits as with Integrator. The combined use of the patented key and key blank, together with the Mul-T-Lock key cutting control system, provides locksmiths with advanced key copy protection, promoting security and trust. Roy Zadikov, Director of Product Management for Mul-T-Lock says: “Like Integrator, MTL™300 aims to satisfy the needs of consumers and small-to-medium businesses, providing convenience and efficiency, while integrating new and more innovative products and capabilities. Many of our locksmith customers have been crying out for a high-security, patented locking system developed by a worldwide leader, marketed at an affordable price, and this is what we’re offering with MTL™300.”
SALTO Systems, a manufacturer of electronic access control solutions, has acquired Gantner Electronic Austria Holding GmbH. SALTO is a manufacturer in electronic access control solutions with trusted customers in Education (Princeton University, University of Oxford), Hospitality (Hilton, Meliá Hotels and Resorts), Healthcare (Cleveland Clinic), Commercial (Assemblée Nationale, T-Mobile), Working Spaces (IWG Group, The Executive Center), Retail (BBVA, Migros), Coliving & Purpose Based Student Accommodation (The Student Hotel, Sonder) and Residential (Greystar). Portfolios in access control Having one of the broadest product portfolios in access control worldwide, SALTO can fulfill virtually every technical and functional requirement. Thus, access control solutions by SALTO can encompass almost every access point in a building and its perimeter. SALTO’s access control management software provides an intuitive user-centered software interface that makes it simple and secure to incorporate access control for any type of building size or user need. In addition to Gantner, SALTO has added Clay (NL) and Danalock (DK) to its portfolio in recent years, thereby strengthening its position in cloud, mobile access, and customer-centric solutions such as ticketing systems and cashless payment. Access systems Gantner is an Austrian company specialized in access systems, electronic locking and locker systems Gantner is an Austrian company specialized in access systems, electronic locking and locker systems, cashless payment, cash register and billing systems, staff time recording systems as well as ticketing and management software for leisure facilities. A customer-centric and service-minded culture positions Gantner as a preferred partner to a variety of customers ranging from small and mid-cap enterprises to Fortune 500 companies. The transaction was financed by a combination of capital increase, bank financing and cash. The capital increase amounts to €125 million and has been subscribed by both existing shareholders such as ALANTRA (SP) and new investors such as SOFINA (BE), PENINSULA CAPITAL (LUX), and FLORAC (FR). Financial investors will hold a combined 30% stake in SALTO, with the remainder retained by SALTO’s founding members and managers (60%) and private investors (10%). Electronic access control solutions Part of what attracted SALTO to Gantner was their strong commitment to research and development. “The addition of Gantner to the SALTO portfolio offers a very bright future for our ability to continue to deliver the absolute best in electronic access control solutions,” said Javier Roquero, the Co-founder and CEO of SALTO. “The Gantner product suite offers a variety of innovative locking solutions as well as cashless payment and ticketing systems that enrich and diversify our product offering and will enhance the end-user experience. We are thrilled to welcome Gantner to the SALTO family.” “Thanks to the new partnership with SALTO, we can expand our product portfolio, take advantage of important synergies, better target our markets and address customer segments with precision. This puts us in an optimal position to continue our dynamic growth,” said Elmar Hartmann, CEO Gantner Group. Accomplish new growth projects together SALTO and Gantner are ready and willing to accomplish new growth projects together With a combined workforce of 1,200 employees in 40 countries, including more than 230 dedicated to R&D, a turnover of €260 million and over a million access points delivered each year, the combined group consolidates its position as a global provider in electronic access control. SALTO and Gantner are ready and willing to accomplish new growth projects together. The combined group will enable SALTO’s customers to offer their guests and employees a hassle-free end-to-end journey (e.g. access to parking lot, main entrance, elevators, ticketing, cashless payment, lockers, office doors, canteen and leisure facilities, all with the same credentials). Contactless solutions “If there is one thing the global COVID pandemic has taught us, it’s that the ability to deliver more contactless solutions managed by end-users is very much needed and is here to stay,” said SALTO Systems CEO Javier Roquero. “Gantner has developed a variety of solutions that allow end users more autonomy in gaining access, paying for merchandise, and purchasing tickets and gaining entry to special events. This adds incredible value to our existing efforts to offer our customers more contactless solutions.”
Imagine a home surveillance camera monitoring an elderly parent and anticipating potential concerns while respecting their privacy. Imagine another camera predicting a home burglary based on suspicious behaviors, allowing time to notify the homeowner who can in turn notify the police before the event occurs—or an entire network of cameras working together to keep an eye on neighborhood safety. Artificial Intelligence vision chips A new gen of AI vision chips are pushing advanced capabilities such as behavior analysis and higher-level security There's a new generation of artificial intelligence (AI) vision chips that are pushing advanced capabilities such as behavior analysis and higher-level security to the edge (directly on devices) for a customizable user experience—one that rivals the abilities of the consumer electronics devices we use every day. Once considered nothing more than “the eyes” of a security system, home monitoring cameras of 2020 will leverage AI-vision processors for high-performance computer vision at low power consumption and affordable cost—at the edge—for greater privacy and ease of use as well as to enable behavior analysis for predictive and preemptive monitoring. Advanced home monitoring cameras With this shift, camera makers and home monitoring service providers alike will be able to develop new edge-based use cases for home monitoring and enable consumers to customize devices to meet their individual needs. The result will be increased user engagement with home monitoring devices—mirroring that of cellphones and smart watches and creating an overlap between the home monitoring and consumer electronics markets. A quick step back reminds us that accomplishing these goals would have been cost prohibitive just a couple of years ago. Face recognition, behavior analysis, intelligent analytics, and decision-making at this level were extremely expensive to perform in the cloud. Additionally, the lag time associated with sending data to faraway servers for decoding and then processing made it impossible to achieve real-time results. Cloud-based home security devices The constraints of cloud processing certainly have not held the industry back, however. Home monitoring, a market just seven years young, has become a ubiquitous category of home security and home monitoring devices. Consumers can choose to install a single camera or doorbell that sends alerts to their phone, a family of devices and a monthly manufacturer’s plan, or a high-end professional monitoring solution. While the majority of these devices do indeed rely on the cloud for processing, camera makers have been pushing for edge-based processing since around 2016. For them, the benefit has always been clear: the opportunity to perform intelligent analytics processing in real-time on the device. But until now, the balance between computer vision performance and power consumption was lacking and camera companies weren’t able to make the leap. So instead, they have focused on improving designs and the cloud-centric model has prevailed. Hybrid security systems Even with improvements, false alerts result in unnecessary notifications and video recording Even with improvements, false alerts (like tree branches swaying in the wind or cats walking past a front door) result in unnecessary notifications and video recording— cameras remain active which, in the case of battery powered cameras, means using up valuable battery life. Hybrid models do exist. Typically, they provide rudimentary motion detection on the camera itself and then send video to the cloud for decoding and analysis to suppress false alerts. Hybrids provide higher-level results for things like people and cars, but their approach comes at a cost for both the consumer and the manufacturer. Advanced cloud analytics Advanced cloud analytics are more expensive than newly possible edge-based alternatives, and consumers have to pay for subscriptions. In addition, because of processing delays and other issues, things like rain or lighting changes (or even bugs on the camera) can still trigger unnecessary alerts. And the more alerts a user receives, the more they tend to ignore them—there are simply too many. In fact, it is estimated that users only pay attention to 5% of their notifications. This means that when a package is stolen or a car is burglarized, users often miss the real-time notification—only to find out about the incident after the fact. All of this will soon change with AI-based behavior analysis, predictive security, and real-time meaningful alerts. Predictive monitoring while safeguarding user privacy These days, consumers are putting more emphasis on privacy and have legitimate concerns about being recorded while in their homes. Soon, with AI advancements at the chip level, families will be able to select user apps that provide monitoring without the need to stream video to a company server, or they’ll have access to apps that record activity but obscure faces. Devices will have the ability to only send alerts according to specific criteria. If, for example, an elderly parent being monitored seems particularly unsteady one day or seems especially inactive, an application could alert the responsible family member and suggest that they check in. By analyzing the elderly parent’s behavior, the application could also predict a potential fall and trigger an audio alert for the person and also the family. AI-based behavior analysis Ability to analyze massive amounts of data locally and identify trends is a key advantage of AI at the edge The ability to analyze massive amounts of data locally and identify trends or perform searches is a key advantage of AI at the edge, for both individuals and neighborhoods. For example, an individual might be curious as to what animal is wreaking havoc in their backyard every night. In this case, they could download a “small animal detector” app to their camera which would trigger an alert when a critter enters their yard. The animal could be scared off via an alarm and—armed with video proof—animal control would have useful data for setting a trap. Edge cameras A newly emerging category of “neighborhood watch” applications is already connecting neighbors for significantly improved monitoring and safety. As edge cameras become more commonplace, this category will become increasingly effective. The idea is that if, for example, one neighbor captures a package thief, and then the entire network of neighbors will receive a notification and a synopsis video showing the theft. Or if, say, there is a rash of car break-ins and one neighbor captures video of a red sedan casing their home around the time of a recent incident, an AI vision-based camera could be queried for helpful information: Residential monitoring and security The camera could be asked for a summary of the dates and times that it has recorded that particular red car. A case could be made if incident times match those of the vehicle’s recent appearances in the neighborhood. Even better, if that particular red car was to reappear and seems (by AI behavior analysis) to be suspicious, alerts could be sent proactively to networked residents and police could be notified immediately. Home monitoring in 2020 will bring positive change for users when it comes to monitoring and security, but it will also bring some fun. Consumers will, for example, be able to download apps that do things like monitor pet activity. They might query their device for a summary of their pet’s “unusual activity” and then use those clips to create cute, shareable videos. Who doesn’t love a video of a dog dragging a toilet paper roll around the house? AI at the Edge for home access control Home access control via biometrics is one of many new edge-based use cases that will bring convenience to home monitoring Home access control via biometrics is one of many new edge-based use cases that will bring convenience to home monitoring, and it’s an application that is expected to take off soon. With smart biometrics, cameras will be able to recognize residents and then unlock their smart front door locks automatically if desired, eliminating the need for keys. And if, for example, an unauthorized person tries to trick the system by presenting a photograph of a registered family member’s face, the camera could use “3D liveness detection” to spot the fake and deny access. With these and other advances, professional monitoring service providers will have the opportunity to bring a new generation of access control panels to market. Leveraging computer vision and deep neural networks Ultimately, what camera makers strive for is customer engagement and customer loyalty. These new use cases—thanks to AI at the edge—will make home monitoring devices more useful and more engaging to consumers. Leveraging computer vision and deep neural networks, new cameras will be able to filter out and block false alerts, predict incidents, and send real-time notifications only when there is something that the consumer is truly interested in seeing. AI and computer vision at the edge will enable a new generation of cameras that provide not only a higher level of security but that will fundamentally change the way consumers rely on and interact with their home monitoring devices.
There’s no question that the popularity of Do-It-Yourself (DIY) security and home automation products is on the rise. The reasons for the growth in DIY sales are numerous, including increased awareness of home automation products, fast set-up, limited (if any) installation costs, and interoperability with other smart security products. In fact, with the parallel rise of smart home hubs like Alexa and Google Home, many people are opting to attempt the set-up of smart home devices without any professional assistance. According to a 2018 Residential Security Market Report prepared by Parks Associates and Security Sales & Integration magazine, “More than 60% of installing dealers now report that DIY systems are biting into demand for their services.” But the rise in DIY is not entirely bad news for security and home automation installers and dealers. There are a number of ways to view this glass as half-full. Let’s look at a few of them. Increase In Revenue For Dealers With their lower cost and perceived ease of installation, DIY products have broken down barriers for additional purchaseThere are reasons for dealers and installers to be cheerful about the rise of DIY. For one thing, according to that same Residential Security Market Report from Parks Associates, residential security dealers are doing quite well. The report states, “In 2017, revenues were up an average 7.72% for security dealers.” What about installations? The report goes on to say, “For 2017, the average number of installs per dealer was 22 per month, compared to 17 per month in 2016.” So, revenues are up for security dealers, and at least part of the reason can be attributed to the fact that DIY products can raise overall awareness of and spur interest in other home automation and security products. With their lower cost and perceived ease of installation, DIY products have actually broken down barriers for the additional purchase, and installation, of complete, professionally installed systems. Wireless, Connected Smart Locks For example, the sale of wireless, connected smart locks (viewed by some consumers as DIY) can lead to opportunities for further home automation product sales and professional installations. Connected smart locks can actually act as an extension of a smart hub or controller. They can be used to wirelessly communicate with and control all the devices that make up a home automation system, including lighting, entertainment, thermostats, air, alarms, shades and more. With their lower cost and perceived ease of installation, DIY products have actually broken down barriers for new security installations And they can do all this from a prime, convenient location – the front door, as well as other points of entry like the side or back doors. Plus, smart lock conversion kits like Kwikset Convert let homeowners easily bring home automation capabilities to their door without altering the aesthetics of the entry. Connected smart locks can allow homeowners to set up their home with custom scenarios, right before they step inside. For example, residents can program their lock so that every time they unlock the door, a foyer light goes on, temperatures begin to rise to a set level – even connected coffee makers can begin to make a cup. Portfolio Of Home Automation Products One of the best ways to mitigate the ‘threat’ of DIY sales is for dealers and installers to become more versatileSmart locks are just one example of the potential of DIY products to spark a homeowner’s interest in a wide range of other home automation devices, many of which would benefit from professional installation. One of the best ways to mitigate the ‘threat’ of DIY sales is for dealers and installers to become more versatile and offer a complete portfolio of home automation products. The larger the home automation offering, the more devices there are to sell and install, the larger the installation required, the greater the need for professional installation. Many homeowners who feel like they have a certain level of handiness will start by trying to do it themselves with a DIY product. But things don’t always go as planned, especially if they are attempting to set up a robust home automation system. First off, just because a product is DIY doesn’t mean that the old products that are being replaced are going to easily make way for the new. A DIY thermostat or smart lock might require that the old equipment (and possibly wires) get tugged out of the wall. Messy holes might need to be filled. Advantages Of Professional Installation Even after the old system has been removed, homeowners planning on setting up a connected system may soon realize they don’t have the electrical skills or technological know-how to install and connect all devices, get a system programmed correctly, and get everything up and running smoothly. Professional installers have learned from experience; there’s very little that they haven’t seen before. With their years of experience, installers know the best way to automate a home and how to create a custom smart home experience Do-it-yourselfers might be able to solve problems by searching the internet and finding videos. But, then again, they might not. After going the DIY route once, many full-home automation system enthusiasts are beginning to realize that the best way to get things done right the first time is to leave the installation and set-up to a professional. Professional installers can and should bring an extra level of experience and guidance to the process. Their services should go beyond tech installation and also include interface design. With their years of experience, installers know the best way to automate a home – how to create a custom smart home experience that doesn’t make the user feel less than smart. Selling Additional Home Automation Products If a problem arises due to installation error, the DIYer does not have any recourse to correct these mistakesResidential security dealers who offer professional installation should be willing to embrace the DIYer who has attempted to do a self-install but has not been able to complete the process successfully. With an open mind to this scenario, they can save the day for the DIYer, as well as create an opportunity to sell additional home automation equipment that the DIYer may not have known to be available. The disparity between DIY and professional installation also brings to light the fact that there are no ‘satisfaction guarantees’ and no ‘installation/labor warranty’ available when a home automation system is installed by a DIYer. If a problem arises with either the equipment connectivity due to installation error, or if a piece of equipment is installed incorrectly, the DIYer does not have any recourse to correct these mistakes. This may not be as critical if a DIYer installs a minor piece of equipment, but with something as critical as securing and protecting their home with a home automation and security system, most people want full peace of mind that everything has been installed correctly. Reduces Connection Instability According to a 2017 study by the analyst firm, IHS Markit, “The quality of the equipment is usually higher in professionally installed systems, and professional configuration and setup greatly reduces the potential for connection instability…” This is an issue that DIYers may come to realize over time. On the other hand, one issue DIYers may recognize right away, especially if they are attempting to connect multiple devices, is that the connectivity may be inconsistent. Professionally installed devices operating on a wireless protocol might deliver better, consistent, longer-range connectivity IHS Markit explains that, “DIY systems rely on open protocols and Wi-Fi connectivity that can sometimes be unreliable, creating connection issues. Some of the sensors can become unrecognizable to the system, requiring intervention from the user. In contrast, professional wireless systems rely on UL- or EN-certified equipment to operate on the basis of proprietary frequency, enabling them to work with the control panel much more seamlessly.” In other words, professionally installed devices operating on a wireless protocol, even an open-source protocol like Z-Wave, might deliver better, consistent, longer-range connectivity, and fewer headaches. Not Everyone Is A DIY Customer There are customers who want someone to install the devices correctly and help them learn how to use and maintain themThere’s no doubt that there’s a segment of the security and home automation market that loves to spend their free time doing their own home improvement. They are watching videos, reading how-to books and manuals, and enjoying every minute. There’s also a segment of the market whose top goal is to save money up front. For these customers, there’s no getting around the joy of saving money with the lower cost of many DIY products. But there are also a great number of prospective customers out there for whom DIY is of absolutely no interest. These consumers do not want to be their own IT department. They want expert help: they want someone to install the devices correctly and help them learn how to use and maintain them. The IHS Markit study points out what many home automation dealers already know: that the elder and aging-in-place markets are an ideal destination for the security and convenience of home automation products. The study says, “Many senior citizens are not tech savvy enough to install a DIY system by themselves, so they tend to rely on professionally installed systems that are usually maintained by a family member.” Along with the senior citizens market, there are many other market segments out there that still desire worry-free professional installation. Installers should offer a range of products that includes some DIY products, and some leave-it-to-a-pro products Producing Complete And Custom Solutions Perhaps the best way for dealers and installers to stave off that feeling of doom that they might have about DIY is to tackle the problem head on and be creative. Offer a range of products that includes some DIY products, and some leave-it-to-a-pro products – consider the DIY product a great entry point for a more comprehensive system. Play up the peace of mind that comes with professional installations and support that pitch with flexible monitoring contracts and service plans. Share what you do and why; relay your passion for producing complete and custom solutions and communicate how you add value to any and every sale. No one, not even the most tech-savvy consumer, wants to install their own products if the end result is that the product doesn’t work the way it should. That’s where the pros can, should and will always come into play.
Johnson Controls recently unveiled the findings of its 2018 Energy Efficiency Indicator (EEI) survey that examined the current and planned investments and key drivers to improve energy efficiency and building systems integration in facilities. Systems integration was identified as one of the top technologies expected to have the biggest impact on the implementation in smart buildings over the next five years, with respondents planning to invest in security, fire and life-safety integrations more so than any other systems integration in the next year. As advanced, connected technologies drive the evolution of smart buildings, security and safety technologies are at the center of more intelligent strategies as they attribute to overall building operations and efficiencies. SecurityInformed.com spoke with Johnson Controls, Building Solutions, North America, VP of Marketing, Hank Monaco, and Senior National Director of Municipal Infrastructure and Smart Cities, Lisa Brown, about the results of the study, smart technology investments and the benefits of a holistic building strategy that integrates security and fire and life-safety systems with core building systems. Q: What is the most striking result from the survey, and what does it mean in the context of a building’s safety and security systems? The results show an increased understanding about the value of integrating safety and security systems with other building systems Hank Monaco: Investment in building system integration increased 23 percent in 2019 compared to 2018, the largest increase of any measure in the survey. When respondents were asked more specifically what systems they we planning to invest in over the next year, fire and life safety integration (61%) and security system integration (58%) were the top two priorities for organizations. The results show an increased understanding about the value of integrating safety and security systems with other building systems to improve overall operations and bolster capabilities beyond the intended function of an individual system. Q: The survey covers integration of fire, life safety and security systems as part of "smart building" systems. How do smarter buildings increase the effectiveness of security and life safety systems? Hank Monaco: A true “smart building” integrates all building systems – security, fire and life-safety, HVAC, lighting etc. – to create a connected, digital infrastructure that enables individual technologies to be more intelligent and perform more advanced functions beyond what they can do on their own. For example, when sensors and video surveillance are integrated with lighting systems, if abnormal activity is detected on the building premise, key stakeholders can be automatically alerted to increase emergency response time. With integrated video surveillance, they also gain the ability to access surveillance footage remotely to assess the situation. When sensors and video surveillance are integrated with lighting systems abnormal activity on the premise can automatically be detected Q: How can integrated security and life safety systems contribute to greater energy efficiency in a smart building environment? Hank Monaco: Security, fire and life-safety systems can help to inform other building systems about how a facility is used, high-trafficked areas and the flow of occupants within a building. Integrated building solutions produce a myriad of data that can be leveraged to increase operational efficiencies. From an energy efficiency standpoint, actionable insights are particularly useful for areas that are not frequently occupied or off-peak hours as you wouldn’t want to heat or cool an entire building for just one person coming in on the weekend. When video surveillance is integrated with HVAC and lighting systems, it can monitor occupancy in a room or hallway. The video analytics can then control the dimming of lights and the temperature depending on occupant levels in a specific vicinity. Similarly, when access control systems are integrated with these same systems, once a card is presented to the reader, it can signal the lights or HVAC system to turn on. In this example, systems integration can ultimately help enable energy savings in the long run. Security and life safety systems contribute to help enable greater energy efficiency and energy savings in the long run Q: What other benefits of integration are there (beyond the core security and life safety functions)? Hank Monaco: Beyond increased security, fire and life-safety functions, the benefits of systems integration include: Increased data and analytics to garner a holistic, streamlined understanding of how systems function and how to improve productivity Ability to track usage to increase efficiency and reduce operational costs Enhanced occupant experience and comfort Increased productivity and workflow to support business objectives Smart-ready, connected environment that can support future technology advancements Q: What lesson or action point should a building owner/operator take from the survey? How can the owner of an existing building leverage the benefits of the smart building environment incrementally and absent a complete overhaul? Lisa Brown: Johnson Controls Energy Efficiency Indicator found that 77% of organizations plan to make investments in energy efficiency and smarter building technology this year. This percentage demonstrates an increased understanding of the benefits of smart buildings and highlights the proactive efforts building owners are taking to adopt advanced technologies. There is an increased understanding that buildings operate more effectively when different building systems are connected As smart buildings continue to evolve, more facilities are beginning to explore opportunities to advance their own spaces. A complete overhaul of legacy systems is not necessary as small investments today can help position a facility to more easily adopt technologies at scale in the future. As a first step, it’s important for building owners to conduct an assessment and establish a strategy that defines a comprehensive set of requirements and prioritizes use-cases and implementations. From there, incremental investments and updates can be made over a realistic timeline. Q: What is the ROI of smart buildings? Lisa Brown: As demonstrated by our survey, there is an increased understanding that buildings operate more effectively when different building systems are connected. The advanced analytics and more streamlined data that is gathered through systems integration can provide the building-performance metrics to help better understand the return on investment (ROI) of the building systems. This data is used to better understand the environment and make assessments and improvements overtime to increase efficiencies. Moreover, analytics and data provide valuable insights into where action is needed and what type of return can be expected from key investments.
Across the security industry, power supplies are too often an afterthought and the first item in an access control system to be value-engineered. However, when the power supply fails on a high-end access control device, the system becomes a very expensive paperweight. Fortunately, there are now power supply units available that can enhance system reliability by providing remote diagnostics and real-time reporting and analytics. There is also a mistaken perception that all power supplies are the same, says David Corbin, Director of ASSA ABLOY’S Power Management Strategic Business Unit. Access control and security applications Power supplies today are more important than ever for access control and security applications The fact is, a properly designed unit for today’s market must have a wide input range, a myriad of features, interface to network, have adequate transient protection, good surge capability and a demonstrated quality level for mission critical reliability, he says. “Power supplies today are more important than ever for access control and security applications,” says Corbin. “From heavy snowstorms in the Midwest and East Coast to the two million Californians that experienced unprecedented power outages, extreme weather conditions have created chaos for millions over the past few months. These events have resulted in students being locked out of schools, hospitals darkening and electronic keypads or card readers shutting down. With events like these on the rise, and an increased reliance on the technology we use to get in and out of the spaces we occupy, power supplies are critical for keeping systems up and running and people safe and secure.” ASSA ABLOY's LifeSafety Power’s FPO Intelligent Power Supplies and Helix Redundant Power Systems Installing right power supplies ASSA ABLOY has a range of products within the power supplies category, including LifeSafety Power’s FPO Intelligent Power Supplies and Helix Redundant Power Systems. ASSA ABLOY’s acquisition of LifeSafety Power in September expanded the company’s offering of smart integrated access control power solutions for OEMs, integrators and end-users. Other ASSA ABLOY power supply products include Securitron AQ Series Switching Power Supplies, and eco-friendly, linear, plug-in and solar power supplies, as well as Power over Ethernet (PoE). Access control is crucial to security and life safety, says Corbin. And without power, any protective system is useless. When the right power supplies are installed correctly, the system will have built-in backup power that will be triggered during an outage. Dependable power supplies, with regularly replaced and appropriately sized backup batteries, are critical to keeping occupants safe in an emergency event. Other ASSA ABLOY power supply products include Securitron AQ Series Switching Power Supplies Periodic testing of the battery When it comes to extreme weather conditions, the result of a power outage can lead to hazardous situations for employees, patients, residents and students, he says. Buildings that require power to gain access can leave people stranded outside or locked inside. “When access controls are disabled, intruders can easily enter buildings without notice, affording the opportunity for interruptions to power distribution, water supplies and other necessary public utilities,” says Corbin. Preparation for the next big power outage should include the sizing of power supplies to the system requirement with a reasonable safety factor for foreseeable system expansion and a battery set that is sized for operating the system for a period of time greater than the planned requirement, he says. Using a ‘smart’ power supply provides early warning of an impending failure; and consistent, periodic testing of the battery set keeps the system in peak operating condition. Predictive maintenance of access control Predictive analytics and data harvesting can help with predictive maintenance of access control Redundancy ensures that power remains available in the event of a failure, regardless of whether it is a blackout situation or a failure of the power supply itself, says Corbin. “In critical power installations where redundancy is vital, the system must have a properly sized and maintained backup battery,” says Corbin. “Additionally, further redundancy can be achieved via products like our Helix systems that provide for seamless switching between two different power supplies in the event of an electrical failure of one of the power supplies.” Corbin also notes there is a growing want and need for more data and analytics in the access control field. End users increasingly expect access control systems to be able to integrate with building information systems. Predictive analytics and data harvesting can help with predictive maintenance of access control and building systems. For example, intelligent power supplies can identify problems before they happen – such as performing periodic, automated battery tests and then notifying a central monitoring location and/or a facility manager of a battery that needs replacement. Lock operation can also be monitored on a real-time basis for failure or impending failure of a secured door opening, he says.
The success of smart homes began with professional security providers offering bundled packages, focused mostly on security monitoring. However, due to the cost of professional contracts, consumers began to embrace the do-it-yourself (DIY) approach. Despite the challenges and opportunities that come with professional and DIY approaches, the momentum of smart home growth depends on these two approaches working symbiotically. Smart home systems In 2017, there were about 122 million smart home devices shipped globally, according to IHS Markit. The retail channel represented about 62 percent of all device shipments in 2017 and will represent about 70 percent in 2021. Despite the increased demand for professional installation, the “do-it-for-me” approach, most the volume remains with ad-hoc purchases. This includes a consumer video camera or a smart thermostat purchase from a retailer. Data capture form to appear here! When a consumer wants to add devices to an existing professionally installed system, they often will buy products from retail. Flexible service offerings and pricing are already taking shape across smart home offerings. DIY installed smart home systems such as Scout Alarm already offer no contract monitoring. Professional monitoring companies are already offering no contract pricing, and providers such as Comcast are looking to pilot programs for just video monitoring, bundled with Internet for a low monthly fee. Home automation system Connected smart locks can actually act as an extension of a smart hub or controller Options for financing are also going to become commonplace. Smart home equipment is expensive, even when attempting to outfit a modest size home (2,500 square feet). Immediate access to services is becoming more critical. This means consumers should be able to access on-demand service options directly from a mobile device to activate or deactivate professional monitoring. Lastly, pricing still needs to come down for many smart home devices, but there is a threshold. For example, the sale of wireless, connected smart locks (viewed by some consumers as DIY) can lead to opportunities for further home automation product sales and professional installations. Connected smart locks can actually act as an extension of a smart hub or controller. They can be used to communicate wirelessly with and control all the devices that make up a home automation system, including lighting, entertainment, thermostats, air, alarms, shades and more. Residential security According to a 2018 Residential Security Market Report prepared by Parks Associates, “More than 60% of installing dealers now report that DIY systems are biting into demand for their services.” But the rise in DIY is not entirely bad news for security and home automation installers and dealers. There are a number of ways to view this glass as half-full. For example, with their lower cost and perceived ease of installation, DIY products have broken down barriers for additional purchases. There are reasons for dealers and installers to be cheerful about the rise of DIY. For one thing, according to that same Residential Security Market Report from Parks Associates, residential security dealers are doing quite well. The report states, “In 2017, revenues were up an average 7.72% for security dealers.” Full-time monitoring DIY products have broken down barriers for additional purchase and installation of professionally installed systems What about installations? The report goes on to say, “For 2017, the average number of installs per dealer was 22 per month, compared to 17 per month in 2016.” So, revenues are up for security dealers, and at least part of the reason can be attributed to the fact that DIY products can raise overall awareness of and spur interest in other home automation and security products. With their lower cost and perceived ease of installation, DIY products have actually broken down barriers for the additional purchase, and installation, of complete, professionally installed systems. Instead of paying for monthly monitoring, homeowners can install a web cam, access from a smartphone or tablet and essentially do their own security monitoring. The downside of this approach is readily apparent. Without full-time monitoring, homeowners can easily miss the break-in or the aged parent who falls and can’t get up. Near-field communication Until they log on and take a look, there’s no central station to send medical aid or call the police. Connecting door locks and other devices to the Internet can also open a door to hackers, if the infrastructure isn’t properly protected. The areas of consumer electronics and security are closely intertwined. For example, Apple recently expanded near-field communication (NFC) support to include the NDEF (NFC Data Exchange Format), which will likely accelerate the adoption of smartphones for access control credentialing. In another recent development, Amazon acquired Blink, a home security camera startup that offers wireless home security systems. The acquisition aligns with Amazon’s effort to offer more home devices. A common theme among professional monitoring providers is that a homeowner who is aware of events happening in the home does not necessarily have a secure and protected household Traditional security features For example, a Nest camera, a DIY product, notifies a consumer via smartphone about events in the home when it detects motion, but only when the notification is opened and identified will a consumer be able to act on the related event. Self-installable smart home devices may resonate with a segment of the market that want security but are unwilling to adopt professional monitoring; however, providers can leverage these devices to enhance traditional security features and communicate the value of professional monitoring. Missed part one of our smart home mini series? Read it here.
The boundaries between the smart home market and security market at large are narrowing. Amidst a wave of expansion, suddenly everything is becoming digital. Home automation has been around for close to 30 years but hasn’t really hit it big because integration hasn’t been that simple. Now that the Internet of Things has stepped into the market, home automation is really taking off. As technology in the smart home market advances, the gap between the residential and professional security markets is growing smaller. Additional revenue for security industry There will continue to be more opportunity for interoperability, and home automation will continue to grow and eventually become a norm. Growth in the residential security market and its position as the channel for smart home solutions, have attracted numerous new entrants. Telecoms, cable operators, and CE (consumer electronics) manufacturers are joining traditional security players as they compete to fulfill consumer demand for safety and security. Connected products also provide a layer of competition as consumers must decide whether having category devices such as doorbell video cameras, networked cameras and other products suffice for their security. Smart home services can provide additional revenue streams for the security industry. In Parks Associates’ 2017 survey of U.S. security dealers, 58% report that smart home service capabilities enable extra monthly revenue. Almost half of dealers also note they have to offer smart home devices and services in order to keep up with their competition. Data capture form to appear here! Residential security solutions Growth is going to be slow and steady. Everyone needs to be realistic about that" The trend has no doubt accelerated in the last couple of years. New collaborations are being made between audio-video (AV) suppliers and security solution providers. The clientele of high-end AV products is becoming increasingly concerned with home security and property protection. So, in recent months, the requirement for residential security solutions has been increasing as technical solutions can go hand in hand with AV installers’ capabilities and client base. “One of the big mistakes many make is that they assume – based on some of the hype and big market investments – that the smart home market is set to explode,” says Michael Philpott, Senior Practice Leader, Consumer Services at Ovum. "This is not the case – growth is going to be slow and steady. Everyone needs to be realistic about that, rather than expecting some rapid ramp up simply because some big names have entered the market.” Pressure to upgrade security standards Surprisingly for what has historically been something of a grudge purchase, in the context of home automation, security is seen as a solution some consumers are looking for. Another security aspect of home automation is cybersecurity, in particular how it applies to various IoT devices in the home. Now as connected devices gather personal information from realms long considered private and protected – the bedroom, the kitchen counter, the nursery – the risks are higher than ever. All of the data that various devices and sites have collected can be combined, shifted and then exploited by marketers or even stolen by hackers. Both manufacturers of smart home products and the companies that install them are feeling pressure to upgrade security standards. They are moving to set policies that will regulate who has access to data and how it is used. Ease of installation Advances in the home market are increasing customers’ expectations as well as adoption of newer technologies A recent revelation that some “smart TVs” might be listening to conversations and transmitting them to "third parties" caused an uproar. These sets have voice activated features that enable users to change channel, turn on a DVD or browse the internet by speaking to the screen or remote. The fine print in privacy policies contains warnings that general conversations are also being heard, and one company even told owners to turn off this function if they were concerned. Another impact of smart homes on the security marketplace is to raise expectations about the capabilities of commercial systems. Products made today for residential applications are very high quality, easy to install (do-it-yourself, or DIY), and have very rich feature sets. End users expect their commercial solutions to have a similar ease of use and ease of installation. Geofencing in commercial applications The quality of video that people are seeing at home is motivating some legacy commercial customers to finally move to IP video from lower resolution analog cameras. A higher percentage of commercial customers use cellphone applications to view integrated video and access control data. People’s experience with smart thermostats has them asking for geofencing in some commercial applications. In short, advances in the home market are increasing customers’ expectations as well as adoption of newer technologies. Read part two of our smart home mini series here.
Hicking Building RTM Company Ltd has teamed up with Videx Security and Joes UK Limited to solve a major door entry issue for a large residential complex. The Hicking Building Ltd. is a Nottingham-based development comprising 329 self-contained flats, managed by property agents Walton and Allen. Many residents were struggling with a call issue because the existing intercom system developed a fault which meant residents weren’t receiving calls from the system panels. Because of this, tenants were missing visitors and deliveries with people thinking they weren’t home. Videx GSM 4812 intercom system Installer Joes UK Ltd. was tasked with finding a suitable intercom system Installer Joes UK Ltd. was tasked with finding a suitable intercom system that would also work in conjunction with the existing access control system, where the fob entry element of this was working normally. Joe, who owns and manages Joes UK Ltd., said “The system installed is a very old system and we were struggling to source the repair parts needed to fix the calling issue tenants were experiencing. To fix the problem and reduce the risk of the issue happening again, I recommended the installation of a digital audio GSM 4812 intercom system by Videx that could work concurrently with the fob entry function of the existing solution.” He adds, “With the Videx GSM 4812, when someone calls a specific apartment the call is automatically directed to a registered phone number of the tenant’s, which is usually their smartphone. They now will never miss that important visitor or delivery and are made aware of who has visited even when they are not there and can authorize entry if they wish, while away from their home.” Parallel operations with software-based fob entry solution The Videx system works alongside the existing software-based fob entry solution that residents have used for many years. Mobile phones are now the handset of choice for the majority of people and as they are enabled with Wi-Fi calling, there’s no need to worry about poor mobile signal. If the existing fob system also developed a fault and stopped working, the Videx GSM system includes a preinstalled fob reader so it would be easy to switch this over to the GSM solution. Mark Gibbon, Sales Manager at Videx Security, said “The GSM system is the ultimate entry system of convenience that also provides maximum security too. There’s no infrastructure or wiring involved; it’s very easy to set up and use.” The GSM system is the ultimate entry system of convenience that also provides maximum security Mark adds, “It’s a win-win situation for both the resident and management company because it means residents won’t have to stay home waiting for a delivery, or miss a visitor, as they can answer the call to their apartment from anywhere in the world. For management companies, our GSM solution offers a fixed cost and minimizes the risk of call outs because there’s no handset maintenance involved.” Remote event log with online access A really useful feature of the GSM system is that it also carries a new remote event log that can be accessed online, allowing events to be viewed in real time, on the move via a phone, tablet/laptop. It’s a great security feature because it’s where a record is kept of calls, gate/door openings and much more. What’s also useful is that alerts can be programmed where an email will be sent should that alert be triggered. For example, if the gate or door is opened out of normal hours or if the registered number for a flat or property is changed too frequently - any unusual activity is flagged.
Allot Communications Ltd., a global provider of innovative network intelligence and security-as-a-service (SECaaS) solutions for communication service providers (CSPs) and enterprises, has announced that a Tier-1 telecom operator in APAC has selected Allot HomeSecure to provide consumers with zero touch clientless cyber security and parental control services, to protect the CPEs/routers and devices in their homes. HomeSecure solution The HomeSecure solution will be deployed in CPEs provided to consumers by the operator, and in the operator’s cloud-native environment. The services are expected to be made available to millions of the operator’s fixed broadband customers. The operator has ordered an enterprise-wide perpetual license from Allot. According to the Microsoft Security endpoint threat report 2019, the malware encounter rate in APAC was 1.6 times higher than the global average. In light of these conditions, Allot HomeSecure gives telecom providers in APAC a unique opportunity to deliver zero-touch, fully automated services that protect their customers while generating supplemental revenues. Security for home IoT and smart home devices Allot HomeSecure provides security for home IoT devices and smart appliances Allot HomeSecure provides security for home IoT, smart appliances, and the devices connected to the home network. It integrates into the existing home router with the addition of a thin software client that provides home network visibility, cyber security and parental controls without the need for any configuration by the consumer. Allot HomeSecure uses AI to identify and profile connected home devices and to detect and act upon anomalous device behavior. HomeSecure has the option to be managed from an easy-to-use app for every household that gives consumers control over their network security and parental controls. “Our customer in APAC sees anti-malware protection for all home-connected devices and parental controls as basic requirements for any offering they provide to their millions of fixed broadband customers. HomeSecure gives them a single zero-touch clientless solution that satisfies both of these demands,” said Ran Fridman, EVP Global Sales at Allot.
Slovakian integrator, RYS, has recently deployed a system that provides a textbook example of how RFID access control can concretely improve people’s lives every day. Before automatic access control was introduced there, a Bratislava apartment building, known as ‘The Pentagon’, had suffered a reputation as a place to avoid. RFID access control system Drug dealers, vandals, and a similar criminal element were a chronic presence, leaving residents constantly feeling unsafe in their own homes. Idesco customer RYS was contracted to design and deploy an RFID access control system to better guarantee safety and enhance the residents’ quality of life. With over 30 years specialized experience in residential building access control, RYS designed a solution and chose Idesco to supply the over 100 RFID readers to be deployed. Currently, those readers control both ground floor access and section/hallway entrances on each floor. Elevator readers restrict residents’ access to their own floors. Access to only RFID tag-holding residents The system even restricts access to the building’s waste bins, ensuring their use only by its RFID tag-holding residents. Simultaneously, the entire system collects real time data about access events, including unclosed doors or unauthorized access attempts, to help strengthen prevention and control. Due to the building’s history of vandalism, RYS recognized the importance of choosing readers capable of withstanding malicious impacts, moisture and dust. Idesco optical tamper Idesco’s optical tamper proved better than many other readers whose manufacturers rely on mechanical tampers" Marcela Benuskova, RYS Assistant Project Manager, commented “Idesco’s optical tamper proved better than many other readers whose manufacturers rely on mechanical tampers. Whereas alarms should be sent whenever a reader is intentionally mishandled, mechanical tampers trigger false alarms more often than those cued optically.” Marcela continues, “The technical solutions Idesco and RYS implemented, combined with the efforts of an excellent crisis management team, triggered almost unbelievable changes inside that apartment building. Our access control not only strengthened crime prevention immediately, but also empowered law enforcement in discouraging unwanted or illegal activity.” Enhanced building security He adds, “As that building’s security increased, the market value of individual flats began trending upward. Today, the building’s residents feel safer and they have actually started thinking positively about their community’s future.” Marcela Benuskova with RYS closed by stating, “Idesco’s team is so nice to work with; they always respond fast, with a friendly, professional and positive attitude. Any technical question or problem gets looked at, given proper thought and action. They have always been open to, and repeatedly implemented, product changes we asked for.”
Slovakian integrator RYS, recently deployed a system that provides a textbook example of how RFID access control can concretely improve people’s lives every day. Before automatic access control was introduced there, a Bratislava apartment building, known as ‘The Pentagon’, had suffered a reputation as a place to avoid. Drug dealers, vandals, and a similar criminal element were a chronic presence, leaving residents constantly feeling unsafe in their own homes. Idesco customer RYS was contracted to design and deploy an RFID access control system to better guarantee safety and enhance the residents quality of life. Access control readers The system even restricts access to the building’s waste bins, ensuring their use only by its RFID tag-holding residents With over 30 years specialized experience in residential building access control, Rys designed a solution and chose Idesco to supply the over 100 readers to be deployed. Today, those 7 C 2.0 and 8 CD 2.0 readers control both first floor access and section/hallway entrances on each floor. Elevator readers restrict residents’ access to their own floors. The system even restricts access to the building’s waste bins, ensuring their used only by its RFID tag-holding residents. Simultaneously, the entire system collects real time data about access events, including unclosed doors or unauthorized access attempts, to help strengthen prevention and control. Due to the building’s history of vandalism, Rys recognized the importance of choosing readers capable of withstanding malicious impacts, not merely high IP67 protection from moisture, dust and dirt, but Idesco’s high, IK-09/10 impact durability (10-20 joules). Better tampering protection Marcela Benuskova, RYS assistant project manager, comments that Idesco’s optical tamper proved better than many other readers whose manufacturers rely on mechanical tampers. Whereas alarms should be sent whenever a reader is intentionally mishandled, mechanical tampers trigger false alarms more often than those cued optically. Marcela continues, “Idesco’s team is so nice to work with; they always respond fast, with a friendly, professional and positive attitude. Any technical question or problem gets looked at, given proper thought and action. They have always been open to, and repeatedly implemented, product changes we asked for. For example, they provided a special 8 CD 2.0 Compact reader module for our door phone, and customized orange lenses for our Basic readers. Product deliveries have always been timely and in proper condition. In short, Idesco has been a very reliable supplier for us, with great customer support. Additionally, their high quality, modern readers offer unique features such as RS232 connections, optical tampers, great security, all in addition to their high IK and IP ratings”, maintains Rys’ Marcela Benuskova. Engineering for future needs “They not only use the most modern technology but engineer for future needs. This lets us design new features in our access control systems. Despite their readers’ durability and reliability, they still look fresh and modern while still having the latest security features. This is exactly what we want from readers upon which we will build our systems. Even better, their stable pricing policy and frame order option greatly supports our own planning and product marketing cycles”, Marcela explains. She closes, “The technical solutions Idesco and Rys implemented, combined with the efforts of an excellent crisis management team, triggered almost unbelievable changes inside that apartment building. Our access control not only strengthened crime prevention immediately, but also empowered law enforcement in discouraging unwanted or illegal activity. As that building’s security increased, the market value of individual flats began trending upward. Today, the building’s residents feel more safe; they have actually started thinking positively about their community’s future.”
Union Wharf is a community of 249 apartments to rent, based on the banks of Deptford Creek in Greenwich. Completed in September 2019, it comprises two towers. The first is a 23-story tower designed for a varied community of renters. The second is a smaller 12-story tower that’s intended specifically for families. Across both buildings all residents benefit from free access to a variety of shared spaces as well as services such as a 24-hour on-site residents’ team. Essential Living was also keen to ensure the development encouraged a sustainable lifestyle, with features including bicycle storage facilities, gym, green areas and a roof terrace. Working with Comelit from initial specification, for each stylish apartment on site, a combination bespoke door entry and energy monitoring system was created, using its Icona Manager IP solution for each apartment. Reducing carbon footprint We have worked with Comelit on a number of developments and know them to be capable of fulfilling our mission" Says Juey Thanyakittikul, Senior Project Manager of Essential Living: “From the outset, sustainability, reducing carbon footprint and stylish living has been the foundation of our vision for Union Wharf. And with a focus on the rented community, we wanted to continue these key features right into the finishing details for all our residents to benefit. We have worked with Comelit on a number of developments and know them to be capable of fulfilling our mission when it comes to customized door entry." "The advantage of presenting smart credentials, including resident’s ability to answer video calls from a cellphone or tablet, only adds to the premium lifestyle on offer.” Fire and security system Richard Slee, Managing Director at Security Systems Design Limited, which completed the installation as part of the overall fire and security system works for Gloster MEP Limited added: “The integration of energy monitoring and door entry in Comelit’s stylish one Icona Manager IP receiver, presents as one multifunctional solution that sits on the building’s CAT6 structured wiring and LAN system, removing the need for separate cabling." "The slim line white Icona Manager finish adds to the aesthetics of each apartment, and reduces the number of control devices for residents, all without compromising on the smart technology enabled. For residents, it ultimately means door entry can be answered from the external systems, with video in their own home, or even via a cellphone or tablet from wherever they are.” Combined energy monitoring This trend is only likely to rise as we become more dependent on our homes for work and personal requirements" Comelit’s ViP system includes Comelit’s color Icona Manager Monitors fitted in each apartment, presenting the opportunity for video and audio communication with visitors at ground level, as well as two-way audio communication with the on-site residents’ team. The combined energy monitoring provides instant information and feedback for residents, to encourage more sustainable living. Dan Wood, Southern Sales Manager at Comelit UK concludes: “While the Code for Sustainable Homes is no longer mandatory, demand for more sustainable living is growing among consumers. This trend is only likely to rise as we become more dependent on our homes for work and personal requirements. Working closely with Essential Living right from the initial design phase of Union Wharf, enabled us to create a bespoke tailored solution using our stylish Icona Manager Monitors." Targeted renters market "The flexible nature of the systems presents ideally for the targeted renters market, which continues to put in a strong performance despite challenges in other parts of the property market. Developments such as this, only goes to support how the perception of the Build to Rent sector is changing for the better. We are already working on the next scheme for Essential Living due for installation in 2021.”
Marassi harbors, known as upcoming gateway to Egypt, is a community with a picturesque surrounding overlooking the turquoise Mediterranean Sea along the Alamein coastline. At this community one will find lavish residences that includes chalets, apartments, townhouses, villas, large marinas and signature hotels creating a lifestyle of sheer pleasure and luxury vacation destination. Secured access points to such an extravagant, lavish community is fundamental as the community is occupied by highly influential people, including high-ranking Egypt government officials. Streamlined access Until recently, manual security checks of vehicles and people were carried out at the community access to comply with the security requirements. As manual security checks were not only time consuming, but also resulted in queuing, the need for a secure and convenient access experience arose. Deluxe communities, like Marassi, strive for an automated frictionless, streamlined vehicle and people access process. Identifying tenant vehicles To automate vehicle access at the gates, Nedap’s UHF RFID uPass Reach readers, with a read range up to 5 meters, are implemented. Combined with Nedap’s UHF windshield-mounted tags, these readers are used for automatic vehicle access. The UHF tags are issued to registered tenant vehicles and when the vehicle comes within the read-range, the tag is identified and granted access. The UHF windshield tag is battery-free and maintenance-free, making it the most effective solution provide secure and seamless vehicle access. E-gate entry to residents Marassi residents manage their digital access card through the community app developed by EMAAR. Digital access cards are used as identifiers and are stored in user’s smartphones. Nedap’s multi-technology reader makes use of smartphones to identify people utilizing Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and NearField Communication (NFC) technologies. The solution has provided Marassi tenants with easy and secure access to the community and beach. Residents manage visitor access Visitor access to the community and beach is further simplified by enabling the residents to generate guest requests through the app. Besides supporting BLE and NFC technology, Nedap’s multi-technology reader includes a QR reader that enables scanning QR-codes displayed on a smartphone. Residents can share the QR code with guests. The guest presents the QR-code to the reader and access to the property is granted frictionless. Implementation of such an integrated solution has provided a high level of convenience to all users at Marassi. The reliable solution has also reduced the congestion at the entry gate, securing the flow of vehicles and reducing the waiting period for guests.
Round table discussion
Delivering on customer expectations is a basic tenet of success in the physical security market. However, meeting expectations may be an elusive goal, whether because customer needs are not communicated effectively or because equipment doesn’t perform as promised. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: what if a customer expects more than a security system can deliver?
Driven by technology developments such as voice recognition, smart devices and the Internet of Things, our homes are getting “smarter” all the time. Increasingly, we expect our residential environments to be responsive to our voice commands, whether we are adjusting a thermostat, turning on a light, or lowering the window shade. Smarter home integration yields new opportunities and challenges for home security, too, which contributes an element of safety and protection to the convenience aspects of smart homes. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How are new smart home systems impacting security?
Our Expert Panel is an opinionated group on a wide variety of topics, and we are dedicated to providing a useful and flexible forum to share those opinions. This week, our panelists address a range of opinions about several self-selected topics, culled from the large number of Expert Panelist responses we have collected in the last year. In this Expert Panel Roundtable article, we will share these varied and insightful responses to ensure they are not lost to posterity!