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The latest research from Alarm.com also shows the growing power of apps, reporting that today more than 75 percent of remote access events for Alarm.com interactive service accounts are through a mobile app. See “The Fastest Trend in Residential Security” on page 51 for more results of the Alarm.com research.
This shift is supported by the continued growth of smartphones. A key stat from Morgan Stanley Research estimates sales of smartphones will exceed those of PCs in 2012.
“End users want to be able to control their burglar alarm systems using the latest technology. They want to be able to operate the system from an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch using an app for these devices,” says Tom Mechler, product marketing manager for Bosch Security Systems Inc., Fairport, N.Y.
National players are driving interest with their connected home products, which will benefit local players, says Vince Raia, president, EMC Security, Suwanee, Ga. “Smartphones and their apps are everywhere. Customers love the mobile monitoring solutions, and this will continue to expand. Everyone wants control and connectivity. We will continue to develop and offer solutions that link people with their home or business,” he promises.
The products are there to offer home automation — in addition to security — and pick up additional recurring monthly revenue (RMR). Craig Foster, senior analyst, Home Automation Systems, ABI Research, Irthlingborough, England, says, “Providers such as Alarm.com, iControl and Honeywell have developed fully extensible software platforms that not only offer traditional home security, but also, affordable home automation, giving security companies the opportunity to benefit from increased recurring monthly revenue (RMR) in the upcoming year. For example, a company offering home automation on top of home security might benefit from a $10 to 15 increase in RMR per subscriber.”
In addition to adding RMR, the services are also proven to generate “stickier” customers, and more research is proving this and dealers are experiencing it.
“The connected service has been the best thing for creating stickier customers. It is a real tangible product that the customers can see and use daily, reminding them of the value of the service they are paying for each month,” says Mike Morton, sales manager at EMC Security.
It is important to note the demand for interactivity and remote access isn’t just a residential trend. Companies see it growing commercially in 2012, as well.
One reason is that it carries over from the home.
“We are starting to see some pick up on the commercial side in the intrusion and interactive service. That is because knowledge of the service carries over from the chief security officer or chief information officer saying, ‘We use it at home, why can’t we have it here,’” says Kevin Corl, director of sales and marketing, EC&M Integrated Solutions, Mechanicsville, Va. While Corl expects mostly flat growth overall in the alarm side of the business, he does anticipate new growth through the company’s new UL 2050 certification.
Judith Jones, vice president of Marketing, NAPCO Security Technologies Inc., Amityville, N.Y., says the company is seeing commercial growth thanks to a new product line, a new niche and interactive services available for business.