Today’s most popular home alarm systems often come with features that make them more convenient and easier than ever to use. Upgrades in equipment and technology give homeowners and renters more control over their home alarm system, turning their regular alarm system into a smart alarm system.
If you are interested in getting the most out of your home alarm system, there are ways you can use your smartphone, or other web-connected device, to access, control and view the status easily and conveniently. Even a simple alarm system can be connected through an app downloaded on your smartphone or tablet.
If you want to turn your system into a smart alarm system, the first step is to find out if your home alarm service company offers an app to work alongside their equipment and services. The top home alarm system companies have their own applications that are available for a variety of personal devices, such as iPhones, Androids, and tablets, and have been programmed to connect directly to the equipment installed in your home. Many times these applications are free and easily downloaded from the app store that corresponds to your device like the iTunes App Store or Google Play Store.
If your home alarm company has not developed an app to use alongside their equipment or features, you may be able to use a version that is available for a variety of popular home alarm systems. These generic apps can still be utilized to give you increased control and access, but, whenever possible, use the app that has been developed and released by your home alarm company. This way, all upgrades and features will correspond directly to the equipment and services that you have.
After you have chosen your app, it is time to connect with your home alarm system. Once you set up your account information you will be able to add the features and services that are available from your alarm system service provider and start to connect with your system. There are many features of alarm systems that can be connected to your smartphone app and, depending on the services you have, there are a lot of ways to use your app that will add time and convenience to your life as well as safety.
Home Alarm System Smartphone App Features
The first feature to utilize is the automatic alert feature. Connecting your smartphone to your home alarm system allows you to receive automatic alerts about the status of your alarm system. These automatic alerts can be set up two different ways:
- An automatic alert can be sent whenever there is a change to your home alarm system or whenever an incident is triggered, or,
- An automatic alert can be timed to be sent everyday at the same time so you can verify the status of your alarm.
Automatic alerts that are sent whenever there is a change to your home alarm system can arrive via text message or email depending on your preference. These alerts help you identify when people are arming or disarming your system and when other incidents occur, like when someone uses their keyless entry code to access your front door. These automatic alerts are great for parents who want to know the minute their child gets home from school or for professionals who like to know when housekeepers, nannies or dog walkers are coming and going without having to be there or call to check in.
An automatic alert can also be sent to your smartphone whenever an incident occurs like a motion detection sensor catches movement in an area that should be vacant or your video surveillance system catches someone or something on your camera. No matter what features you have chosen to have as part of your smart alarm system, these automatic alerts make knowing what is going on around your home easy and straightforward.
A second way to set up alarm system automatic alerts is to be timed according to the schedule you keep at your house. Popular home alarm systems allow you to program your alerts according to your lifestyle. For example, you can set your smart alarm system to send you a status update every morning at 9:30 a.m. At this time, everyone in the family should be on their way to work or school, and the status update will let you know that all doors and windows are secure, the garage door is shut, and the home alarm is activated. Every morning you can be sure that your home alarm system is working the way you want from your home with this smartphone app feature.
Live Video Feed
Beyond automatic alerts, another popular alarm system feature is live video feeds or still captures from video cameras that are available through your alarm system app. A smart alarm system will show you what your video sees or has captured right on your phone, tablet, or other device. Many families use this feature to check if any deliveries have been made, see who came by the house, and double check who is at the door when parents are away. With live video feeds or still captures, you will always know who was caught on camera and when just by looking at your smart phone.
Home Automation Controls
The last smartphone app feature offered for smart alarm systems is home automation. Popular home automation controls include thermostat and lighting which both can be used to keep you comfortable and keep you in control of your utilities budgets.
Your smartphone can become the climate control device that you use even when you are away to control the temperature of your home. Combined with weather alerts, you can rest assured that your house will always be comfortable and your heater or air conditioner will never be overworked trying to keep up with changes in temperature or weather.
Your smartphone can also control your lights and small appliances if you have chosen to add those home automation features to your home alarm service. Turning on or off lights for safety and convenience with just the touch of a button is convenient and easy with a smart alarm system.
Some popular alarm system companies offer pre-programming that combines many of these individual alerts and controls into settings that can easily be implemented at your home. For instance, a pre-programmed setting may increase the temperature of your home, turn on your electric fireplace and dim the lights for a night in with the family on a cold day while another pre-programmed setting may secure outside entryways, and send alerts if anyone approaches your front door while your kids are home after school.
By using your system’s smartphone or tablet app you increase the convenience and ease of using your home alarm system as well as get more out of the features you have installed by being connected to them from anywhere and controlling them any time. Alarm systems with apps are becoming the norm so talk to your home alarm service provider about what technology they are using to make your home more convenient and accessible around the clock.