How Frontpoint’s Cellular System Works
Before learning about the advantages of Frontpoint cellular home security systems, it’s important to understand some of the more common terms in the security industry that may be confusing to some consumers:
The cellular communication chip located inside the main control panel. There are two types of cellular communication chips that may be used:
- CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) – Used to communicate over the networks of Sprint, Verizon and U.S Cellular.
- GSM (Global Systems for Mobiles) – Used to transmit data through the networks of AT&T and T-Mobile (in the U.S.). This is the chip used by the majority of carriers outside the U.S.
Used to describe how the sensors of a home security system communicate with the main control panel. This has nothing to do with how your alarm system communicates with the central monitoring station or with authorities.
It’s important to understand that a wireless system may not utilize cellular communication and a system that has a cellular chip may not be wireless.
Let’s take a look at the different ways a security system can communicate with the outside world.
Signal Connection Options for Security Monitoring
- Landline (Traditional phone line)
More and more companies are adapting their equipment and technology to support cellular communication with their systems; however, there are still a lot of providers that continue to rely on landlines and broadband connections, neither of which is as safe as a cellular protocol.
The more common method of connecting your alarm system to a physical phone line is a recipe for disaster. Most home telephone lines run from the ground outside of your home to a small phone box (usually located on the side of your house). To disable your security system, all a burglar needs to do is cut the phone line leading to the box before even trying to enter your home.
While used less than phone lines, this connection method is even more inherently unsafe. Like the phone line, the internet line can also be cut prior to entering the home. But in addition to that, any disruption in internet service also impacts your alarm system. If you’re internet goes down, so does your home’s security. Not a situation you want to be in.
Note: if you receive phone service through your cable provider, your alarm system is most likely utilizing a broadband connection to communicate with the monitoring station.
Cellular is the safest communication method currently available. Because there are no physical lines to cut, it is considered to be the most reliable way for your system to communicate. Cellular CAN be defeated. A burglar equipped with a cell jamming device could disable your system. Cell jamming devices are expensive, illegal and unavailable commercially in the U.S. Law enforcement studies show cell jamming to be an extremely uncommon method used by criminals. It’s much more likely a burglar will have a $5 pair of wire cutters than a $700 cell jammer.
So Why Do Companies Still Use Landline and Broadband?
The answer is simple…
Alarm companies using cellular communication have to install a GSM or CDMA chip in the control panel and pay the cell provider to access the network. All of this costs more money for the company.
If they can connect their control panel to your phone line or internet line, they don’t have to install additional equipment and can piggyback off the monthly phone or Internet service you’re paying for.
Don’t Alarm Companies Charge a Higher Monitoring Rate to Offset the Increased Cost to Them?
Yes, the majority of alarm providers that offer cellular do so an as optional upgrade available for an increased monthly fee. Unfortunately, most alarm companies use low priced promotions and inexpensive landline or broadband monitoring rates to lure customers in.
Why is Frontpoint Home Security Better?
Frontpoint doesn’t use “bait and switch” tactics to get customers to call. Frontpoint only offers their customers the safestthe option: cellular. More alarm companies should take the same approach. After all, shouldn’t the security and safety of the customer be an alarm company’s #1 priority?
If you’re interested in one of Frontpoint’s cellular based home security systems you can give them a call at (855) 903-7510 or submit your information on Frontpoint’s website and a security consultant will reach out to you.
Tags: #KnowSecurity, Frontpoint Security, Home Security, Home Security Monitoring