Tech Talk: Monitoring Major Changes in Central Station Communications

Technology and customer desires are conspiring to create a wealth of sales prospects for those offering central station monitoring solutions. The question is: Are you up for the challenges that cashing in entails? Learn about the hot trends and the view from the top.

Up to Us to Keep DIY in Its Place

One more trend I want to touch on, and like many such new wrinkles it can be viewed as either a threat or an opportunity. I am talking about the growing do-it-yourself (DIY) segment of the market.

Popular late-night news shows have been glamorizing incidents in which homeowners have configured their own video monitoring and verification. An inexpensive camera equipped with Wi-Fi connectivity to a home network and the Internet, motion sensing software, and possibly even pan, tilt, zoom (p/t/z), is installed. A video alarm event is automatical
ly sent to the homeowner’s PC at work and/or their smartphone. A home intrusion is observed, the homeowner calls the authorities, and arrests are in order.

Rebroadcasting of these videos on the news is, of course, a great endorsement for others to follow the same. However, I call on the security industry — in particular organizations such as CSAA — to provide studies and statistics reinforcing the reliability of dedicated central station monitoring. The public needs to know. Security salespeople need the stats. Such efforts will ensure when the DIY dust settles it will be more of an opportunity than a threat.         

Bob Dolph has served in various technical management and advisory positions in the security industry for 30+ years. To share tips and installation questions, E-mail Bob at mailto:[email protected]. Check out his Tech Shack blog.

<p>The L5100-WiFi communications module is intended to provide compatible Honeywell LYNX Touch control panels with a Wi-Fi connection. The module connects directly to the control panel and is powered via the control panel’s connection. <em>Photo courtesy Honeywell</em></p>Tech Talk Tool Tip

I want to thank Honeywell for fulfilling my Wi-Fi wish from earlier this year. Today’s installation of central station communications should be easy and the L5100 WiFi communications module for the wireless LYNX Touch 5100 self-contained control panel/keypad completes this task.

The product is ideal for use in tandem with the GSMLVP5-4G for two layers of reliable communication. Other features include:

  • Wi-Fi 802.11 B/G/N compatibility
  • Secure wireless connection to the Internet for alarm reporting, content and remote services
  • Eliminates the need to run and connect an Ethernet cable for Internet access

About the Author


Bob is currently a Security Sales & Integration "Tech Talk" columnist and a contributing technical writer. Bob installed his first DIY home intercom system at the age of 13, and formally started his technology career as a Navy communication electronics technician during the Vietnam War. He then attended the Milwaukee School of Engineering and went on to complete a Security Management program at Milwaukee Area Technical College. Since 1976, Bob has served in a variety of technical, training and project management positions with organizations such ADT, Rollins, National Guardian, Lockheed Martin, American Alarm Supply, Sonitrol and Ingersoll Rand. Early in his career, Bob started and operated his own alarm dealership. He has also served as treasurer of the Wisconsin Burglar and Fire Alarm Association and on Security Industry Association (SIA) standards committees. Bob also provides media and training consulting to the security industry.

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