Giacalone Sees Wireless Technology, Service Shaping Security Industry in 2015

Giacalone Associates’ Peter Giacalone shares his thoughts on where he thinks the electronic security industry is headed in 2015.

The January edition of SSI includes our annual industry forecast as a cornerstone of our special 2015 Industry Forecast Issue. For the piece, I interviewed more than 20 of the industry’s most knowledgeable market analysts, business experts, security dealers, systems integrators, supplier representatives and trade association directors. Some of their perspectives can be found in the magazine article, with the balance of their assessments appearing in separate blog posts.

Featured in this installment: Peter Giacalone, Principal of Giacalone Associates

What are some of the major security technology developments you see for 2015?

Peter Giacalone: Wireless technologies related to system control as Z-Wave will need to expand with the introduction of new devices and benefits. Although Z-Wave seems to have taken a lead, it seems other technologies as ZigBee are not giving up. With this growing segment a lot of room still exists for growth and a true leader has not been established. Remote video and analytics must bring more benefits in an efficient manner in order to expand the market channel. This area continues to grow, yet the surface has yet to be scratched. Some players are entering the market with the offerings in a more simplistic and economical fashion. I believe that this will be of great assistance in growing this market and expanding into the residential market.

RELATED: Davis Sees Consolidation Craze in 2015 Amid Big Security Industry Growth

What issues do you see most affecting suppliers’ businesses and operations during 2015?

Giacalone: Manufacturers and distributors are going to need to stay on top of the curve if they expect growth. Manufacturers especially the traditional leaders will need to be more nimble than they have been in the past. The industry is changing and changing for the good. If the big leaders want to stay big leaders then they will need to prove it with innovative products and systems that are priced competitively.

I believe that the leaders will have to seriously understand the innovators like 2Gig and Qolsys if they expect to stay on top. In a similar manner, the suppliers also need to realign. Distributors need to drive home and prove the value added that they profess. The world is getting flatter by the day.

For a distributor to earn their margins, they need to deliver on the convenience and other value-added support they can bring. I think this will be a very interesting race. With the giants like ADI as the incumbent leader, partially because of the Honeywell exclusivity, it should be interesting. Tri-Ed has more than earned their stripes over the past few years, and now with the recent merger with Anixter with Pat Comunale at the helm really makes them a force to be reckoned with. When you add some of the innovative new product lines they now carry, I believe you will see them take great leaps.

Same question concerning dealers, integrators and monitoring providers.

Giacalone: Stay on track, offer what consumers need. Dealers need to be nimble and keep their ear to ground. With all we have experienced over the past 10 years, some dealers are still doing it the old way. For most, this could be their demise. Understanding the adjusted expectations of consumers is of paramount importance. The dealers that understand it and stay proactive on this track will persevere. The others, unfortunately, will evaporate over time.

RELATED: TRG Associates’ Brady Sees Security Dealers Fending Off Telco and Cable Firms in 2015

Structure, technology and communications are essential for monitoring providers to survive and grow their enterprises. This is one area of the electronic security industry that is and will continue to experience extreme change. Over the decades it was all about the service and the technology just needed to work. Although it is still about the service, now the technology and structure is equally important. Unfortunately, most of the technology and structure that makes this difference doesn’t scale down for smaller operators.

As this trend continues, it will make it harder for smaller central stations to compete with the larger nationals, both on all-around delivery of service and price. It is important that all monitoring providers get sensitive to the needs required by the DIY and self-monitor markets. Although many consumers are connected to their systems directly, a central station will always be necessary. The monitoring companies need to adjust their approach to service these markets both in structure and price. This market, especially the consumer segment of this market, could very well be the fastest growing segment of the industry in years to come.

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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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