I read recently that an alarm dealer, when faced with the report that AT&T was going to stop supporting 2G technology, said that he wasn’t sure he believed it and that he would keep installing 2G until he couldn’t buy the product. The point here is that we, as an industry, don’t take well to being told we must change something we have been doing for years. Change is not in our DNA. Well, change is coming down the road like an out-of-control bulldozer and we have to learn to intelligently adopt it and use it for our long term benefit. The acceptance and adoption of change, especially technological change, requires professional management of our companies. In the case of the 2G sunset, we have to move on to 3G or 4G and we have to plan how we are going to upgrade our customers before the sunset date. Not a small task for those who have a large volume of those accounts.
Traversing that bumpy road will be easier if we join our local associations and share with the members the questions and alternatives before you. We will have direct access to the manufacturers and distributors who will be enormously helpful in helping us chart a course of action.
A current hot topic of discussion is video surveillance and video verification. These are both part of the emerging technology of video. Video surveillance (or look-in) is the use of on-site cameras to communicate video to a DVR, Smartphone, Tablet, or offsite storage facility. Video surveillance, especially with video analytics, permits one to see what is taking place at a given site and allows for the analysis of what, why, where, and how of a situation.
Video verification is the reporting of activity through video detection to a central station or other monitoring facility in the form of a short video clip or video snapshot. An individual at the monitoring center will then follow the client instructions as to response for this video activity including the possible transmission of the video activity to the police or other authorities.
Care must be taken when adding new technologies to properly inform your customers and employees of the added value to your services. Legacy systems which the dealer or other dealers have in the field should not be positioned as ineffective or suspect during the sales process. Doing so will damage and confuse the dealer’s (and other dealer’s) customers and may create overall customer dissatisfaction. Video verification is primarily designed to affect quicker police response and catch bad guys. While, on the other hand, video surveillance and digital alarms are designed to deter the bad guy from attempting the intrusion. Both are valid security measures that complement each other. Over time, video in one form or the other will become part of most alarm systems. How that eventually happens will require a longer ride down that bumpy road.