What is a Cellular Alarm System?By - 02/05/2015
With the advent of increasingly watchful and intelligent technology like the cellular alarm system, it may seem like the machines are rising but don’t panic. Cellular alarm systems were created to keep you safe and to combat burglars who have figured out ways around traditional alarm systems.
If you aren’t familiar with cellular alarm systems let’s back up for just a moment and explain. Cellular alarm systems are home security alarm systems that depend upon cellular phone services rather than landline or internet connections to connect with home security monitoring systems. The most dependable of cellular alarm systems are those that depend 100% on the cellular transmission of data.
If you aren’t familiar with cellular alarm systems let’s back up for just a moment and explain. Cellular alarm systems are home security alarm systems that depend upon cellular phone services rather than landline or internet connections to connect with home security monitoring systems.
How many movies have you seen where the [insert solitary character lacking common sense here] is trapped in the home and the home alarm system has been disabled because the [insert the vengeful baddie here] has cut the landline or disabled the Internet connection. We all know what happens next and while hopefully in real life this doesn’t happen, just in case it does, cellular alarm systems have you covered. If you don’t buy in to the ‘just in case’ scenarios (you know, if you’re not completely paranoid and delusional,) then we present a little more feasible scenario – the power in your neighborhood goes out and while you have a back up power supply for your alarm system, your internet modem can’t connect without power. Phone lines have their own set of problems – like the fact that someone can cut them with a $6 pair of scissors. What doesn’t require power, can’t be cut, and can be used by your home alarm system to contact authorities not only in the case of a break in but also in the case of natural disasters and other emergencies? Your cellular phone network.
Security Companies Are Moving to Cellular
This is yet another reason why more companies are moving towards the use of cellular phone alarm systems – they are simply more practical both in our increasingly cellular lifestyle and in terms of preparing for the ‘what if’s.’ Not everyone in the market for a home security system is convinced that a cellular alarm system is the way to go and that is an understandable concern, however it is one that stems mostly from a lack of information. For example, many people believe that a cellular alarm system will use their cell phone minutes. This is actually not true at all. Cellular alarm systems are actually standalone systems that have a cellular chip built in to the home alarm panel. This chip uses cellular data towers the same way that your cellular phone does but it’s not the same data that your cell phone uses. There are other rumors or misconceptions about cellular alarms besides this.
THE TRUTH ABOUT CELLULAR:
1. A cellular alarm system will not use your cell phone minutes.
2. You do not need a separate cellular line for a cellular alarm to work.
3. A cellular alarm system does not interfere in any way with your cell phone.
4. You do not need a strong cellular signal at your house for a cellular alarm to work.
But is it really cellular?
Most alarm companies that offer cellular alarms are talking about the ability for your control panel to communicate with the central monitoring station through a cellular connection. Other companies take this farther by also enabling your sensors to talk to your control panel using a cellular connection for even more security. When you understand how a cellular alarm works, you realize that you don’t have to worry about the connection between your phone and your alarm. The two are separate entities that are not connected. Any cost incurred by the cellular system built in to your cellular alarm will be included in your initial alarm system that you purchase and any monthly monitoring service that you purchase. There is no separate bill.
Pros and Cons of a Cellular Alarm
With cellular alarm systems being the “thing of the future” are there any drawbacks that homeowners should consider before making the switch from the more traditional home alarm systems? Sure but compared to other types of alarm monitoring methods the risks are minimal.
ONE: The most significant drawback at the moment is the fact that many companies are marketing their cellular alarm systems as such when they are not 100% cellular and this becomes confusing. It is important as a new consumer in the cellular alarm market to know exactly what you are looking for before you go out to make your purchase and in this case you want to make sure that you are purchasing a system that relies 100% on cellular monitoring of your home.
TWO: Just because a company offers cellular doesn’t mean they have included this service in their introductory price. Cellular monitoring is more expensive than landline monitoring but at least you don’t have to pay for a phone line every month and it is more secure.
THREE: Another drawback is that not all components can rely on a cellular signal. For example, if you add an IP camera to your alarm system there is a good chance that you will need to connect the camera via broadband even if you are a 100% cellular system.
FOUR: Our top two companies we recommend use cellular with battery backup. If you select a company on your own and go with cellular monitoring make sure that the control panel has built-in battery backup to protect you from power outages.
Overall the cellular alarm system is a great use of modern technology that is not only being used to protect against home invasion, but it is also being used to protect against natural disasters and various other home emergencies.
Some of the companies we recommend that use cellular monitoring include: