Honeywell Security’s CTO on the growth of wireless alarm systems

Ken Addy shares thoughts on faster install times, better battery life, and technology issues

A final growth area for wireless security devices is in asset protection, where tampering or vibration-type sensors could be placed on semi-permanent assets to detect if they are being moved, removed or tampered with.

What the future might hold for wireless-based alarm systems

Clearly the wireless technology is going to be a core part of security systems being installed in the future, but also asked Honeywell’s Ken Addy what might change in the technology and applications. Addy felt that one of the areas for technology change could be that more of the devices might support 2-way communication – rather than simply being a transmitter or a receiver. This could potentially allow for applications like monitoring the status of these sensors (basically the panel transceiver would ask “Sensor, are your OK and working?” and the sensor replies “Yes, working fine/status is good.”) or to send system updates to remote devices. He also said that the systems could link in different wireless systems such that a PERS type of sensor/button would wirelessly transmit an alarm to the panel, which could then open up (on a different frequency) a voice channel for the PERS alarm station to communicate with the individual. Finally, said Addy, “We might send more wireless data – we’re interested in wireless voice and wireless video. The opportunities to send more data are going to change in the future.”

In the end, though, it comes back to the issue of cost and being able to do more jobs in less time for most security installing companies. And that means lower costs for your residential and commercial alarm system customers, too.

“I'm sure there will always be a few holdouts, but in terms of ease of install, length of battery life, there are not a lot of reasons to not use wireless these days,” concluded Addy. “The tradeoff between the time it takes to run wires around a home and the extra cost of wireless devices favors wireless.”