Today’s best home security packages are more feature-rich than ever. New advancements in artificial intelligence, voice and facial recognition software, and smartphone-friendly interfaces have brought the humble home alarm system firmly into the 21st century. These are the features to look for in 2019.
1. Smart Interfaces
If you’re still punching your security code into a wall panel, it’s time to upgrade. Modern home security systems are giving homeowners new ways to interact with their home security devices, which makes programming routines and checking alarms easier than ever before.
Almost all modern security systems in 2019 are smartphone-friendly, utilizing apps to control the various features of your alarm system. Some companies are pushing these interfaces even further; Google’s latest smart security hub, the Nest Hub Max, uses facial recognition technology and gesture controls for many simple commands. Even better, the smart display and camera on the Nest Hub Max also doubles as a wide-angle home security camera.
2. Facial Recognition Technology
The Nest Hub Max’s facial recognition technology isn’t touted as a security feature, but many similar systems are pushing the technology to the next level. Artificial intelligence engines are increasingly being used to power facial recognition software on home security cameras.
A home security camera with facial recognition technology can learn the faces of your friends and family over time to build a database of people that are likely to be in your home. This technology allows these cameras to alert you on your smartphone when there’s an unfamiliar person in your home. Facial recognition tech has other applications as well—smart cameras can provide peace of mind by letting you know when your kids get home after school, and the best systems can even monitor the family pet.
3. Doorbell Cameras
In 2013, the doorbell camera company Ring debuted on the hit TV show Shark Tank and was rejected by the investors. In 2018, the company was acquired by Amazon for $1 billion. The meteoric rise of these clever cameras is a testament to their popularity and effectiveness, offering a first line of defense for any home security system.
Today’s doorbell cameras are the smartest generation yet. Amazon’s social media app, Neighbors, allows doorbell camera owners and law enforcement to share images, potentially identifying and stopping crime. Amazon’s app raises a few questions about the ethics and privacy concerns surrounding doorbell cameras, but for now, the technology is a must-have for many homeowners.
4. Smart Locks
If you’re looking to upgrade your home security system on a budget, a smart lock may be the best bang for your buck. Smart locks are as easy to install as a traditional deadbolt, and they work great as standalone systems if you don’t have a smart security hub. They work with your cellphone or a small plastic key and they’re instantly reprogrammable, giving you total control over who has access to your front door.
Smart locks are ideal for landlords and renters alike. These convenient systems let homeowners grant temporary access to specific people, which makes revoking access at the end of a lease easier than ever. They’re also great for Airbnb users, eliminating the hassle of a lost key.
5. Wireless Sensors
With security devices in 2019, a wide variety of wireless, networked sensors are pushing the boundaries of home protection. Flood sensors, fire sensors, broken glass sensors, and air quality sensors all work together to create a web of total protection around you and your family.
Smart sensors are becoming a must-have item for homeowners as worsening storm events, floods, and wildfires threaten homes with increasing regularity. An early warning from a wireless sensor can give homeowners a chance to protect their property before the worst damage is done.
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