[CES] 2007 Exclusive Update - NEXTALARM


CocoonTech CES 2007 Exclusive Updates - Next Alarm

Notice: Please be aware that information gathered from the various vendors’ booths was done at an incredibly fast and furious pace. The purpose of these updates is to make our members aware of the new technologies introduced during the show as quickly as possible. Some details and statements may have been (unintentionally) misinterpreted and thus not be entirely correct/accurate during this process.

I journeyed from the Las Vegas Convention Center over to the Sands Convention Center to visit with Next Alarm. There I spoke with Dan Elliot who is also a Cocooner (Dan_NA).

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NextAlarm is offering a new alarm monitoring service for your security systems called "V-Notify". This service can call your phone based on a trigger from your security system. You can then deem if it is an emergency and then press a number on your phone to dial the appropriate needed emergency services (police, fire, etc...). For example, you can be notified if your front door opened and if you want press one for police. No human interaction is involved (totally automated system).

This new service can be an alternate to, or run in conjunction with, their traditional human dispatchers.

V-Notify also includes an on-line log so you can see a history of your events that you want the service to be notified of.

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EDIT: Please refer to Dan_NA's post below for current pricing information.

Here is the press announcement release at CES 2007:


LAS VEGAS, NEVADA (JAN. 8, 2007) - NextAlarm.com today announced at the 2007 International CES that it is offering an industry-first, with the introduction of its automated Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system, called "V-Notify."

With V-Notify, customers are immediately notified of any alarm signals at their home or business at the phone number of their choice by NextAlarm's automated system. NextAlarm can even cross-connect the customer with their local police, fire department or paramedics, when needed.

"Our goal at NextAlarm has always been to put the customer in control of their security system and give them more options to choose from," said Alex Elliot, NextAlarm.com's founder and CEO. "Our new automated IVR system certainly helps give the customer control over their home's or business' security system."

V-Notify is a standard feature in all of NextAlarm's service plans, except for the Free NextAlarm Notify Plan.

V-Notify has two major sets of features: inbound and outbound. With the inbound feature, customers can call a phone number from any phone. After the customer enters their customer number and PIN, NextAlarm's voice attendant allows the customer to:

Hear whether their alarm system is currently armed or disarmed.
Put their account in "test mode" or cancel the test mode.
Listen to their recent alarm activity (e.g., "John disarmed system at 2:45 p.m.").
If the customer is using the Alarm Broadband Network™ (ABN), they can be connected through to their alarm system so they can interact with it (i.e., arm or disarm it, listen in to a room, etc.).

With the outbound feature, the customer, using the NextAlarm.com website, can configure their service for NextAlarm to call them whenever any alarm activity occurs. They just specify the phone number where NextAlarm can reach them. NextAlarm then informs the customer of what has occurred (e.g., "motion detector violation, upstairs hallway") and provides the customer with the option to be connected to the local police, fire department or paramedics.

For more information on NextAlarm.com, visit www.NextAlarm.com.
benjmurray said:
Any news about IP support for ELK
I was under the impression this would work with the Elk Ethernet (IP) interface.

Edit: Please refer to Dan's post below for updated information!
Elk and GE IP support is the next big thing we'll be doing. We have the receiver, and barring any catastrophes, we'll have it up and running soon. All of our services, including E-Notify and V-Notify, should work fine with it, and there won't be any additional cost. Thanks for stopping by the booth, BraveSirRobbin.

One minor correction: V-Notify is available with the NetAlarm ($5/mo.) and Full Dispatch ($14.95/mo. or $11.95/mo. if prepaid annnually) plans. NetAlarm has all of our Internet features like the signal log and E-Notify, and now V-Notify, but no central station response (i.e. police dispatch). Full Dispatch is the whole enchilada, everything we offer plus central station response. So if you pay the $5 Robbin mentions, you'll get V-Notify, E-Notify, the online log, online programming of Simon and Powermax systems, and all the rest.
Great update, and great news on the ethernet support. A (few) questions though (and I looked on the site but did not see the answer, although I think you offer it):

Do you offer cellular backup as an option (I thought you did)? What are the additional rates to the full service if prepaid?
There isn't a PIN required at this time, though that is a good idea to offer as an option.

The idea with V-Notify is twofold. One, you can get phone calls on many more signals than are feasible with live operators (arming and disarming, mostly). That's applicable to the full dispatch plan and the $5 NetAlarm plan.

Secondly, it's a great feature for self-monitoring if you are on the NetAlarm plan. If you're away from home, you can have the call come to your cell phone, then be cross-connected to your local police if you feel it's appropriate. We don't anticipate people using this to have phone calls made to their homes, although we'll certainly make changes if that's how people want to use it. If you're at home, you're probably well aware that your alarm system has triggered anyway, and you can dial 911.
What happens if the bad guy answers your telephone and he doesn't press one to call the police?

You have to voice announce instructions for the burglar to answer the phone and press 1 to "cancel" the police. :)
I would also assume that most people are going to use a cell phone number as the notification number.

The idea is that you would be notified of an alarm and then you can make a judgement call whether or not to call the police. If you have a system like IVB and can check on the status of your house, you might be able to save some false alarms from going out.

Of course if you can't check the status when you receive the call, then it will be no better with false alarms than having a central office make those calls automatically.
Sorry, still confused. Here's the scenario. Customer comes home, enters the garage, bad guy follows customer into garage. Customer lets alarm time out and alarm goes off. Burglar tells customer to shut off alarm. Customer shuts off alarm. Customers cell phone rings and burglar takes customers cell phone. What does burglar hear when he answers customers cell phone? What are the options that burglar now has?
Couldn't the owner have used a duress code to disarm which then would have called a different sequence of people? You would still have your situation if there was only one duress code and the sequence was to call both homeowners.
Everyone should also remember that NextAlarm STILL offers their traditional human interface/operator monitoring service for those that want to encompass protection for ALL types of possible scenarios. :)
Yes, we still offer live operator dispatch service, just like other alarm companies. For real UL-listed home security, yes, you should pay $14.95 per month (a little less if prepaid annually) and use our full dispatch service. What V-Notify does is let you have, firstly, phone notifications when your system is armed or disarmed, or its weekly test, or anything else you'd like a phone call on. You can also have a degree of security with it, which certainly is not as secure as a room full of dispatchers watching for your alarm signals, but is also much more cost-effective.

We think the people who are going to get the most use out of V-Notify are the people who aren't using the full dispatch service. In other words, you're only paying $5 a month, and the police won't be dispatched automatically. If you are using the full dispatch service, it's a nice supplement to E-Notify if you're not sitting in front of a computer.

Here's a link that might get this across better: https://nextalarm.com/help/Wiki.jsp?page=NetAlarm
Dan_NA said:
Elk and GE IP support is the next big thing we'll be doing. We have the receiver, and barring any catastrophes, we'll have it up and running soon.
Let us know when you're ready for IP monitoring. I'm ready to pitch my current provider and sign up with NA!