A lint filter alert beeps at you from your dryer. Dinner is served with help from a smart sous vide machine. A mattress that adjusts its temperature for an optimal night’s sleep. Smart home devices are poised to skyrocket in popularity. With smart home automation becoming more and more common, a plethora of data will yield creativity and innovation that enhances its users’ security and quality of life immensely.
Short for “Connected Home over IP,” this standard unites devices made by Amazon, Google, Apple, and aims to make smart home technology more accessible to consumers. Silicon Labs, the company that certifies Z-Wave devices like AAA Smart Home’s, will contribute to the project. The Z-Wave Alliance, which manages the Z-Wave system AAA Smart Home runs on, will open its standard so that companies other than Silicon Labs can create Z-Wave radios as well, letting other companies make products smart home consumers can integrate with their AAA Smart Home systems seamlessly.
In a blog post, Google says it hopes to “Make it easier for developers to create reliable, safe, secure, private, interoperable, and Internet-enhanced but Internet-optional devices.” The idea is to make it easier and more secure for homeowners to connect devices by different providers, and worry less about compatibility and even cybersecurity. By using the IP address as the platform across which smart home devices connect, Google claims CHIPS minimizes entry points for hackers. “IP is an ideal way to deliver end-to-end security and privacy in communication between a device and another device, app, or service,” they say on the project’s website. While a draft of the new CHIP standard won’t be ready until late 2020, it may change the way that the internet of things captures, shares and analyzes information to make homes as smart as possible.
Video analytics is a term that gets thrown around frequently — but what does it actually mean? In the context of home security, video analytics monitors your home security system’s video streams to discern whether an event is important or not. For instance, if the mailman arrives and quickly deposits an envelope, you might not get an alert. However, if a human stops and lingers out in front for too long, you probably will receive one.
Artificial intelligence comes into play too. Advanced recognition technology in our motion sensors can tell our system whether it’s detecting a human or a pet, differentiating between intruders and normal activity. Threat detection and alerts can become increasingly personalized based on your behaviors. This reduces the amount of alerts that are sent to you, while keeping your peace of mind intact.
Alarm.com, our partner who created AAA Smart Home’s mobile app, has let its users arm and disarm its system via Alexa voice commands since 2016. It’s been integrated with Google Home Assistant since 2017. Now, you can do the same with Siri.
With consumers expecting more from their individual devices, companies will add more and more discrete functions to the same pieces of hardware.
For example, the Qolsys control panel listens for glass breaking and sends an alert if it goes offline (called “Crash and Smash” alerts). The same panel lets out an 85 decibel wail (about as loud as a lawn mower) which can be reinforced with a separate, deafening 105 decibel siren.
A smart thermostat should automatically shut down your HVAC system when smoke or carbon monoxide are detected — like ours does — leveraging the power of an integrated system for comprehensive environmental security and peace of mind.
Can a single product really crack down on porch piracy, vehicle break-ins and vehicle theft? One reason to opt for professional installation is an outdoor camera that not only records package theft and can help you record vehicle break-ins.
Ordering products online is popular all year round, but particularly during the holidays, and 2019 saw a spike in porch piracy right around the Black Friday and Cyber Monday delivery window. A video doorbell and smart lock can help you circumvent this issue, telling the delivery person to hide your package in the garden, or if you prefer, opening the door for them so they can leave your goodies inside.
Depending on where you live and what kind of car you drive, car break-ins may be a common occurrence, and can happen repeatedly. Connecting smart outdoor lighting to a motion sensor can shine a light on anyone getting too close to your car in the driveway. An outdoor security camera pointed toward your driveway can also help you catch these thieves on camera, capturing their likeness, car, or other identifying factors that can help the police track them down.
Most modern home security systems have an app that lets you monitor your home from your phone — in other words, anywhere with a cellular connection or WiFi signal. This lets you check and see if anyone is home, set an alarm when the home is vacant, and ensure that alerts will notify law enforcement when something unexpected happens. Make sure you ask your provider if remote arming and disarming is included with your package — and do a price comparison to help you decide what is right for you.
As of 2016, over 80% of law enforcement agencies surveyed by The Urban Institute used social media to notify the public of safety concerns. For example, the Marin County Sheriff tweeted tips for preventing porch piracy in November of 2019. Law enforcement also uses platforms like Nixle to send SMS updates to residents. Residents can sign up to receive alerts, advisories, traffic conditions, and wildfire updates. Community members can also now submit tips and photos related to crimes anonymously via text, smartphone apps or an online form.
To wrap things up, you can look forward to the internet of things getting a bit of a makeover, with home security being used for more and more purposes — potentially with less and less hardware involved. Artificial intelligence can do more for you, so your quality of life can improve at home and while you’re out and about. In short, in 2020 you can expect more from your home security system.