Approximately 100 security professionals examined emerging technologies at a daylong program sponsored by American Response Center.

Photo courtesy of ARC

The threats and opportunities security dealers face with changes in communications technology were examined in detail at American Response Center’s daylong program last December in Cleveland, “Dealing Effectively with ‘The Coming Storm.’”

The event brought together 100 security professionals from Maryland, Minnesota, Illinois, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Indiana to get an advance look at emerging technologies that will impact them and their operations. The theme of this meeting was inspired by the article “A Gathering Storm” (SDM, August 2004, p. 56).

Part of the program dealt with how communicating and interfacing with security dealers’ subscribers in regard to technology, monitoring and sales will become more critical. New aspects and applications of communications in e-mail and the Internet, from cameras to verification to event alerts, were covered.

John Graven of Telephony Concepts led off with information on voice over Internet protocol (VoIP), voice over high voltage (VoHV), DSL, wireless, Wi-Max and other emerging technologies. He covered how these technologies will impact subscribers, dealers and monitoring.

“VoIP is going to sweep the country; it’s coming faster than you think, and the POTS lines that have been the standard are going to go away,” Graven warned dealers. “Telephone companies are and will be converting to VoIP because of economy. So will consumers. You must be aware of the impact on alarm communications, and alarm industry manufacturers must be part of the solution.”

GPRS monitoring was explained in detail by John Tedesco, president of Guardian Mobile Monitoring. He maintains it is a cost-effective method for tracking anything from truck fleets to service personnel to zoned protection of assets, and is emerging as a new stream for significant recurring revenue.

Tedesco’s company is a supplier for ARC TrackNet mobile monitoring, a BETA system which has been launched through selected dealers.

George Brown of DSC told dealers about OzVision and Internet modules, and David Scheer spoke on new elements and features of the Dedicated Micros line. Chuck Strejnowski from Charles and Associates, Strongsville, Ohio, explained some aspects of CCTV.

Customer relations, communication and outsourcing then took center stage. Scott MacDougal of Cornerstone Secure Billing Services showed attendees how to use software, billing and communication services to interface with subscribers.

Don Calderwood of Hawkeye Services described how to communicate effectively with customers and prospects when launching a new product or service from a security company.