WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A WI-FI OR CELLULAR-MONITORED SECURITY SYSTEM?
An overview of different home monitoring options available today.
Home security has come a long way since the keypads and VHS surveillance systems of yesteryear. With all the different types of home security monitoring options available, it’s easy to get them mixed up. Or, to assume they all work the same way. Here’s a quick guide outlining the three types of systems in the industry, landline, broadband (includes Wi-Fi), and cellular monitoring, and how they work to keep you safe.
As a hardwired system that uses your home phone line to link to monitoring services, this type of system relies on your landline to communicate. While landline-based security systems are often the more affordable option, over the past decade most home phones have been phased out in favor of mobile phones. Additionally, if your home monitoring system is controlled by your landline, it’s likely not compatible with automated smart security systems, which offer lifestyle convenience and app-based system controls.
Home security systems that utilize Wi-Fi monitoring use your internet source to transmit a signal. Faster than landline-operated security systems, they can rapidly communicate a distress signal and reach places your home phone network might not be able to. However, it only takes a power outage to leave you unprotected. Plus, losing your internet connection, even temporarily, means your connection to your monitoring provider disconnects, too. Many homeowners use cellular monitoring as a backup to their broadband-based system to combat this. This way, you maintain the fastest signal and can rely on cellular-based monitoring if and when your internet goes out.
Cellular monitoring is the most reliable and consistent route when it comes to home security systems. This option uses radio signals to connect your control panel to a security center and/or with a mobile device. Plus, cellular monitoring uses encryption technology, meaning your data is protected and only accessible by authorized users. Furthermore, since its wireless, you never have to worry about losing connectivity during storms or power outages. Simply put, it means you’re always covered.
When comparing monitoring systems, it’s important to remember that Brinks Home Security™ systems use dual-path technology, meaning we employ both cellular data and WiFi to connect your security panel and devices to our U.S.-based Alarm Response Center as well as to your mobile phone. Should an alarm be triggered, this dual-path technology automatically selects the fastest way to signal for help, even if your Wi-Fi is down. It’s more responsive, more connected, and more secure.
Lauren Slade is a Dallas-based writer and editor.