Central Monitoring

heffneil

Active Member
Who is everyone using for centralized monitoring these days?  I would like to use the internet for notification since I don't have a POTS line but I think thats pretty standard.  
 
I have a Elk M1 Gold.
 
Thanks!
 
Neil
 
 

ano

Senior Member
heffneil said:
Who is everyone using for centralized monitoring these days?  I would like to use the internet for notification since I don't have a POTS line but I think thats pretty standard.  
 
I have a Elk M1 Gold.
 
Thanks!
 
Neil
SafeHomeCentral and AlarmRelay are the only two I have seen lately. 
 

pete_c

Guru
I migrated here from years of NextAlarm (multiple sites) to recently Alarm Relay.  I have had no issues to date so far.  This is with my OmniPro 2 system.
 
If you want to go low budget wireless try the Ring Alarm system now owned by Amazon.  IE: purchased a package on sale from Amazon last year or the year before last.
 
I am currently managing house #2  with HA / MQTT and not the cellular app which I dislike cuz I never keep my cell phones on.  It is cheap if you pay by the year for it and the wireless trinkets are doing well and it has a built in cellular back up function.
 
Here what I did was connect the Ring Hub via POE and it is on a wall up high.  It is cloud connected.  I have seen it fail over when XFinity goes down and it works just fine via cellular.
 
BTW local monitoring OP2 and remote monitoring Ring system on one HA / HS4 configuration via MQTT.
 

JimS

Active Member
I am thinking of moving from POTS monitoring to cell (and dropping POTS line).  I have 5G ATT coverage and 4G Verizon at this location, at least according to their coverage maps.  Thinking of going to ATT cell router for internet so wondering if I should choose Verizon for my alarm.  If I go with ATT for both and have internet backup for the alarm it seems like that creates a point of failure if ATT cell goes down. 
 

pete_c

Guru
Here not sure what cellular service the Ring hub uses but I do see it fail over when the internet goes down.  It is around $8 per month if you pay for it by the year.  No contracts with it and they are owned by Amazon these days.  Primarily it uses the ISP connection with a fail-over to cellular connection.
 
I do not utilize my phone to manage the Ring Alarm.  I use a Ring to MQTT plugin and it works well.
 
With the HA integration I trigger TTS events to Amazon Alexa devices with the Ring sensors which are all Z-Wave (with batteries).
 
I can now also monitor power levels of the batteries in all of the wireless sensors (contact switches and PIRs).
 
After all of the years that I have used wired sensors with the OmniPro 2 alarm panel I never even looked at wireless / cloud alarm systems.
 
Main house alarm (OmniPro) went from using copper lines to Ooma VOIP which has worked fine now for years.  Now alarm aux failover is LTE modem and that works great.
 
Did find an issue which was validated with XFInity.  Everything here is on back up power.  That said if I have an area power failure and firewall / modem goes to back up power XFinity ISP connection still goes down and doesn't work where as Cellular internet connection does not go down similar to the old copper lines.
 

pete_c

Guru
Here is my view and management of the Ring alarm system with HA remotely.
 
The Ring cloud connected cameras now have been reverse engineering such that I can remotely see them with HA these days and not have to use my cell phone.  I really dislike Android and looking now for a Linux phone.
 
[sharedmedia=gallery:images:1504]
 
Locally I use the contact switches and PIRs to trigger events with the Tasmosta WiFi switches.
 

heffneil

Active Member
I didn't love Alarm Relay when I moved my old home to it from NextAlarm.  They required a full year, and they tried to sell me their device which I declined with some effort.  Also subsequent years are more expensive than the first?  I didn't love their business tactics.  I will check out SafeHomeCentral
 

lanbrown

Active Member
Almost every company that provides a service seems to up their price year after year.  If you call to cancel then you get sent to a customer retention group that then will lower your payment to what you were paying.  I just wish companies would offer a price and keep to it.  I guess overall they make more money even by hiring people to have a customer retention group.
 
So you have to spend about once a year talking to someone for 10 minutes to get the price that you were paying.
 

ano

Senior Member
lanbrown said:
Almost every company that provides a service seems to up their price year after year.  If you call to cancel then you get sent to a customer retention group that then will lower your payment to what you were paying.  I just wish companies would offer a price and keep to it.  I guess overall they make more money even by hiring people to have a customer retention group.
 
So you have to spend about once a year talking to someone for 10 minutes to get the price that you were paying.
The problem was, until recently, was that this company had a monopoly, so you could shop around, but there was no other alternatives, and when that is the case, you don't get the most user friendly businesses.
 

lanbrown

Active Member
Monopoly or not, they still want your money.  In many cars, you can subscribe to satellite radio service.  There is only one company that offers the service.  If you sign up, at the end of the agreement they raise the rates.  Call and say the words, "cancel service" and a customer retention group comes into play and can offer you the same price as you had previously.  In many places, cable is the only Internet option.  Same as above, they raise the rates, you call to cancel, the customer retention group pops into action and gives you the pricing you previously had.
 
Alarm monitoring is not a requirement to have.  It offers peace of mind.  So even if a company is the only option for service, people can still cancel.
 

ddennerline

Active Member
I signed up for AlarmRelay. The cost is mostly covered by the home insurance savings. If you have an ElkM1 with XEP, it's almost a no brainer. You don't need a pots line. AlarmRely has called for several of my trouble signals (low wireless battery), so I am pretty confident they will call when the alarm goes off.
I do miss NextAlarm though - the self-service web interface was really great.
 
AlarmRelay here as well.  Interface is with ipDataTell equipment.  CDMA-BAT provides both ethernet and cell communication so network backed up by cellular.  Never had a problem with it, easy to set up.  Great support during setup.
 

pete_c

Guru
My Homeowners alarm discount these days is minimal.  It used to be a bit better.  I did notice on last house insurance statement (yearly) an add for fire department coverage / call up to $400 now.

Same Insurance company / insurance agent for the last 40 years.
 

dkemme

Member
I've been very happy with Alarm Relay but with my C1M1 CDMA becoming obsolete with cell network changes, I'll need to change.  They don't support the new C1M1 modules and have asked me to utilize an Alula Bat module.  I'm just not ready to give up more control of my M1G.  
 
Does anyone know of another company that supports the new C1M1 LTE modules?
 

dkemme

Member
Pondering my options, I wonder if I can keep my C1M1 CDMA connected for control via eKeypad when I connect the Alula Bat module to the R1/T1 lines?
 
Top