Security dealers who participated in SDM’s 2016 Forecast Study believe their stiffest competition in 2016 will come from do-it-yourself security providers. DIY is an unfamiliar concept for most traditional dealers who specialize in professionally installed and monitored security systems. However, a new solution created by familiar industry names — RSI Video Technologies (maker of Videofied) and USA Central Station Alarm Corp. — aims to take away that unfamiliarity with DIY.

Their solution, DragonFly Security, is self-installed but professionally monitored — either in a traditional manner or as dispatch-on-demand. Video-verified alarms, generated by an indoor or outdoor battery-powered camera, qualify for priority police response. Users can see what is happening in real time and take action through an app on their smartphone. After viewing the video clip, the user can select dispatch-on-demand (dispatch can be canceled if necessary), dismiss the alarm, or disarm the system from the DragonFly app. The app also allows the user to capture a still image or video through a look-in feature.

DragonFly is an uncharacteristic business model for security dealers. Participating dealers need to focus only on branding and marketing DragonFly Security. They don’t sell/ship the products, install, or monitor them. The e-commerce aspect of this program is unique. Dealers are given websites with redirects to the DragonFly platform. Consumers purchase the system through the website. Orders are fulfilled by RSI Video Technologies and shipped for free directly to the consumer.

No working capital is required of the dealer. USA Central provides the dealer’s DragonFly website; the consumer pays for the hardware online and installs it themselves; USA Central also provides the DragonFly smartphone app and the professional DragonFly monitoring. Dealers promote sales and collect the RMR.

There are two monitoring plans: basic and premium. Basic monitoring is priced at $10 and every video alert (indoor and outdoor) is reviewed by the user.  In the event of a real threat, the user clicks dispatch to send the alarm to the central station for professional dispatch and priority response. Premium monitoring, priced at $30, adds the ability to automatically send indoor alarms to the central station for review/dispatch in the event the user is busy or unavailable. With each of these business models, the dealer retains the lion’s share of the RMR.

The hardware is priced at $199, $299 and $399 (indoor system, outdoor system, indoor and outdoor system, respectively). The Indoor DragonFly Kit, for example, comes with a Hub communicator with power supply and cables, the wireless Indoor MotionViewer camera with batteries, and the serial number needed to link the user’s smartphone. The Ethernet connection can be upgraded to cellular and/or Wi-Fi.

DragonFly users can create a virtual neighborhood of protection by adding family, friends and trusted neighbors to the system as either users or followers though a three-level hierarchy.

“DragonFly is not trying to be a self-install traditional alarm system,” said Bart Didden, president of USA Central Station Alarm Corp., Port Chester, N.Y. “It’s targeting an incremental customer base. We’re going after the people who would be a Nest, Canary, Piper customer. It’s really a different target audience.”

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