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The maker of the 2GIG GC3 and GC3e recommends that all users with a panel approaching 3 years of age replace the backup battery. Initially, the expected battery life was between three and five years. With the recent notice Nice, 2GIG's parent company is now suggesting a battery replacement ahead of schedule.


Apparently, swelling has been observed in some of these panels' lithium-polymer batteries. The manufacturer notes that some minor swelling is normal, but based on the notice it sounds like some batteries may be swelling beyond what is normal.



Once you open up the GC3/GC3 panel to access the battery, Nice is also warning not to puncture the battery upon removal. Do not use any type of sharp object to remove the battery. Puncturing the battery could allow dangerous chemicals to spill from the casing. Once the battery is removed, please follow local guidelines with regard to the proper disposal of lithium-ion batteries.

It is also recommended in this notice to do a firmware upgrade of your 2GIG GC3 or GC3e alarm panel at the time you replace the battery. The latest revision for these panels is 3.2.6.6770.

Reading through the firmware release notes, it does mention that the latest firmware update includes the addition of battery testing, and conditioning, as well as a status indicator for battery replacement. So, we will double down on the advice to update your panel's firmware. This revision also includes compliance with UL 985 edition 6. This standard requires that the panel recognize batteries that can no longer provide battery backup for at least 5 minutes worth of alarm signaling. When the panel recognizes that the battery lacks this capacity, it will alert the user of a low battery and the battery should be replaced at that time.

The 2GIG GC3 and GC3e use the same firmware beginning with revision 3.2.3. If you already have revision 3.2.1 or higher, then you can find all updates on the GC3e firmware update page. Older revisions may require a stepped approach to upgrading and cannot be updated all-at-once. You can find the older firmware versions on the GC3 firmware update page.

You must update to the base build of each revision, and then you can skip to the latest build of that revision. The base of each version is 3.0.x then 3.1.x, then 3.2.x. If you have an earlier revision and attempt to update directly to 3.2.1, your panel will very likely be damaged and will have to be replaced. Updating over the air using Alarm.com can help with this process, as their server should only allow you to update in the proper order.

GC3/GC3e firmware updates can be sent by your alarm dealer. When the update can be sent using WIFI at the panel, there is usually no charge, though different dealers may have different policies on this. An upgrade that has to be sent using cellular data will incur a fee, which will likely be passed onto the user by the dealer. Alarm Grid always passes these fees along with no markup. We recommend that you update using the USB port at the top of the panel. We have written detailed instructions on updating the firmware using the USB port to make this process easier to accomplish.


If your panel is approaching or past the 3-year mark, it is best to be proactive and purchase your new GC3/GC3e battery today. Then make sure to install the latest firmware, as recommended.


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A New Rules Builder feature has been added for customers who have a monitoring plan with Alarm.com. It was designed to simplify the process of automating actions for scenes and rules. The feature can easily be accessed using either the customer website or the iOS or Android app.

A benefit of modern-day alarm systems is the ability to add smart devices to them. This allows for control directly from your alarm panel, remote app, computer, or by using your voice (when connected to Google Home or Alexa). Rules allow you to automate many of these actions rather than having to manually activate your devices over and over.

Previously, there was only an option to create event triggered rules, which is still a thing on the customer website, but Alarm.com has also made this new rules builder available. Alarm.com can be accessed via an app on a mobile device or a web browser on a computer. The Alarm.com mobile app is available on iOS and Android app stores. On a computer, navigate to alarm.com to log into the website.

If you always want the connected lights to come on when you enter a room that has a motion detector, you can set up a rule for that to occur any time the motion detector is activated. In an attempt to make building these types of rules easier, Alarm.com created the New Rules Builder to assist.

For example, to set up a light to turn on when motion is activated:

After logging in and selecting Automation, select +ADD NEW RULE then New Rules Builder.



Select "when." When is the trigger or what initiates the automation rule to run. In this case, when motion is detected in the Living Room. Next, you select "then." Then is the action(s) that the rule will perform after it is triggered. In our example, we want the Office Hallway light to turn on. Next, decide if the rule will run at all times or only during specific time windows. Finally, don't forget to "Save" your work.

The creation of rules can automate many repetitive functions to save time and make life easier. Rules can also go a long way toward going green and becoming more energy efficient. They provide convenience and can save you precious time and money.

Try out the new rules builder and let us know what cool things you are doing with it, and what you think of the feature.


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Alarm.com partners with electrical power companies all across the country to offer a demand response program they call "Give Back, Get Back". They have recently announced they will be adding AEP I&M to this program. AEP I&M is the power company for some Indiana and Michigan customers.

When summer comes along and temperatures rise, so does the demand for energy. Managing this energy consumption and controlling energy use during high-demand periods, allows the power company to rely on more renewable sources of energy. These high-demand times are called "Peak Energy Use Events". According to the program, there are usually up to fifteen (15) of these events per summer.

When you opt into the program, you will receive notifications when any Peak Energy Use Events occur. Each event typically lasts between two (2) and three (3) hours. During these times, AEP I&M will make slight adjustments to your thermostat in order to decrease overall energy demand. Before a peak event, AEP I&M may alter your set point to help with an expected increased demand. You still maintain control of your thermostat, and you can adjust your thermostat during an event. You also have the ability to opt-out of a particular energy event, or out of the entire program. If you manually adjust your thermostat during an event it may affect your ability to obtain credit for that particular high-demand event.

Alarm.com customers with a compatible thermostat can now enroll in this rewards program through AEP I&M. Upon enrollment, Give Back Get Back participants will receive a $25 credit per device for up to two (2) devices. Plus, Michigan customers will receive a bill credit of $1.95 and Indiana customers will receive a bill credit of $2.40 per Peak Energy Use Event when your participation is at least 50% of the event’s duration.

To be eligible for the program, it does require a compatible WIFI-Connected Smart Thermostat with central air conditioning. Compatible thermostats are listed in the chart below.

AEP I&M Qualifying Thermostats:
Manufacturer Approved Thermostats
ecobee ecobee3; ecobee3 Lite; ecobee4; ecobee Smart; ecobee SmartThermostat with Voice Control
Honeywell Home WIFI Smart Color Thermostat; WIFI 7-Day Programmable Thermostat; WIFI 9000 7-Day Programmable Thermostat; 9000 Smart Thermostat; 7-Day Programmable Smart Thermostat; VisionPro 8000 Smart Thermostat; Round Smart Thermostat; T5+ Smart Thermostat; T6 Pro Smart Thermostat; T9 Smart Thermostat, T10 Smart Thermostat
Amazon Amazon Smart Thermostat

Thermostats and discounts vary, based on your utility provider. If you have Alarm.com and a WIFI thermostat, check enroll my thermostat to see if you qualify for the program in your area. Check our website, to look into adding a compatible thermostat.

To opt-in from the customer website only, login and click the > symbol on the Thermostat card. If you have an eligible thermostat, you should see an option for "Give Back, Get Back". Click this option, then click Settings and Notifications and follow the instructions. Alarm Grid customers needing additional assistance, please email us at support@alarmgrid.com. Our support hours are from 9:00 AM - 8:00 PM Eastern, Monday - Friday.

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Alarm.com announced via their Release Notes for the week of 10/24/22 that they will be hosting a firmware update for the Qolsys IQ Panel 2/2Plus panels. This firmware gives a programmer the option to set the panel to report to the monitoring station if the panel is manually powered down.

In addition to this added capability, there will be various fixes implemented. This includes an issue where the panel would sometimes report a false AC Failure trouble condition in error, and also an issue with controlling garage door openers from the panel touchscreen.

There could be more in this firmware upgrade, but Qolsys hasn't yet posted the full Release Notes for it. Nor have they posted the software itself, for those who have a panel that is not connected to WIFI. Once they do, we will update our Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Updates page.

There have been instances in the past where a firmware patch is never posted to the Qolsys site. This usually only happens if there is some prerequisite that must be verified in the panel before the firmware is applied, and Qolsys deems it necessary to have the Alarm.com server verify this prerequisite prior to downloading the new firmware. If a situation like that arises with this software, we'll let you know.

If the panel has WIFI, then your alarm dealer can simply send the firmware to the panel over-the-air (OTA). You can also request the firmware update manually through the panel touchscreen. The only subscribers who may have an issue are those whose panel cannot connect to WIFI. Qolsys and Alarm.com prevent the Qolsys panels from updating their firmware OTA if there is no WIFI connection at the panel. In other words, the firmware file can't be sent using cellular data.

If you have a Qolsys IQ Panel 2/2 Plus panel and it doesn't have a connection to WIFI, you may still be able to update it OTA. If you have a cellular hotspot, either a stand-alone or by using your cellular phone, you can allow the Qolsys panel to join the hotspot, then request the update OTA while it is connected. Technically, this uses cellular data, but it's the phone or hotspot's cellular data. This tricks the panel and the Alarm.com server into thinking the panel is connected via WIFI.

If the above suggestion is not an option, then check back on our Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Updates page. If this firmware is made available by Qolsys for SD Card updates to the panel, we will host it on our site.


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Qolsys recently released firmware version 4.2.0, which added a lot of new features as well as fixes and improvements to the panel. However, after updating, a small number of panels reported receiving an error message regarding a panel shut down due to high temperature. This issue is corrected in firmware version 4.2.1.

If you see a message on your Qolsys IQ Panel 4, or IQ4 Hub, that mentions an overheating situation, and/or if the panel shuts itself down without you having a chance to see the message, don't worry. Use the power button on the side of the panel to turn it back on. Press and hold the button for three (3) seconds. Once the panel powers back on, update the firmware to 4.2.1. This should take care of the erroneous panel logic that is making the panel think the battery is too hot. Read the TSB# 221017 IQ Panel 4/IQ4 Hub - 4.2.1 Software Update - Release Notes and Instructions here.

As always, you have three (3) ways to update the panel firmware. If the panel is monitored and has a connection to WIFI, you can have your alarm dealer push the update to your panel over-the-air (OTA) using Alarm.com. You can also choose to request the update from the panel using a Patch Tag. Instructions for how to perform this type of update are included on our Qolsys IQ Panel 4 Firmware Updates page along with the update file, for those who don't have WIFI.

If you don't have a WIFI connection at the panel, then the previous two options are not available to you. In that case, you'll need to download the firmware file, which you can get at our above-linked page, and then use the panel's access point feature to perform the update. Instructions for this type of update are also included on Alarm Grid's IQ Panel 4 Firmware Updates page. We'll post them here as well to make things as easy as possible.

Instructions for Updating the Qolsys IQ Panel 4 Via Access Point

  1. Download and save the required file from our site. You'll need to use a smartphone, tablet, or computer with WIFI capability to perform the update. Remember, the panel should have had 4.1.1 installed prior to installing the 4.2.0 (or higher) firmware.
  2. On the IQ Panel 4, go to Settings > Advanced Settings > Enter Installer or Dealer Code (Default 1111, or 2222 respectively) > Upgrade Software > "Upgrade Using Access Point". The Access Point will need to be enabled in order to use this feature.
    • To enable the Access Point, be sure the panel has WIFI enabled, then go to Settings > Advanced Settings > Enter Installer or Dealer Code > Installation > Devices > WIFI Devices. First, click on WIFI and be sure Activate WIFI has a Check in the box to the right. Then press the back arrow at the bottom of the screen. Go to Access Point Settings. Be sure the WIFI Access Point is enabled with a check in the box at the right. Press the Home button at the bottom of the screen, then go back to Step 2 and continue.
  3. A QR Code will be displayed on the panel. Scan it with your phone or tablet. If you're on a device that won't allow you to scan the QR Code, then you will have to manually join the panel's access point network by entering the panel's SSID and Password which will be displayed on the same screen as the QR Code.


  4. Press "Start" to begin the local server session, then from your device, scan the second QR code provided by the IQ Panel 4. If that is not an option, navigate to the "https:" URL shown on the panel's screen.

  5. Follow the prompts on your phone, tablet, or computer to select the correct files and transfer them to the panel. The file you download is in .zip format. It should automatically unzip and create a folder called Software-Patch-421. This folder will have three (3) files in it.

    When you go to the URL or use the 2nd QR Code, you'll see a screen that will allow you to choose each of these three (3) files. When you click Choose File on each option, it will only allow you to select the correct file from those available. The other two files will be grayed out.



    Once all three files have been successfully chosen, press "Send Files". A progress bar will be shown on the phone, tablet, or computer, showing that the files are being uploaded to the IQ Panel 4. A message will come up saying "Uploaded ALL files successfully". Hit "Close" on the phone, tablet, or computer.
  6. Once the files have been loaded to the IQ Panel 4, it should automatically begin the update. Once the update begins, don't touch the panel screen. The panel will reboot as part of the firmware update process.
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Alarm.com first reported issues with remote commands failing or being heavily delayed at 3:40 AM this morning 10/10/2022. The delay in receiving commands at a customer's system, would also result in notifications being delayed. Alarm.com assured dealers that they were working on the issue.

At 5:10 AM, Alarm.com notified that commands were being processed at that time. When an issue like this occurs, commands that aren't immediately processed aren't necessarily lost. Often they are queued, and once the issue is resolved, those queued commands must then be processed in order. This can make it seem as though an issue still exists when in reality the delay is caused by those queued commands.

At 6:35 AM Alarm.com advised that there was still some delay in remote commands being processed. We can't say for certain these delays were caused by earlier queued commands that were working their way through the system, but that could very well be the case.

At 7:45 AM, Alarm.com provided another update. According to them, the situation had improved, but at this time, there were still some delays in remote commands being received at the alarm system. This was still causing some delays with notifications as well.

At 10:00 AM Eastern Time, Alarm.com advised that this issue has been resolved, remote commands are being processed normally. They are still monitoring the system, and if any issues should appear, they will begin the resolution process immediately.

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Since alarm panels began using WIFI as a means to communicate both alarm signals and end-user notifications, issues with connectivity have become an issue for the alarm service technician. The Qolsys IQ WIFI 6 means to make those problems a thing of the past.

Those of us in the alarm industry have all gotten the call. A customer with a panel that uses WIFI calls because their system is offline. After asking some preliminary questions, you discover that the customer switched internet providers and their WIFI network credentials changed along with their provider. They forgot that the alarm panel's WIFI settings need to be updated just like every other WIFI device in the home or business. For Alarm Grid customers, we walk them through updating the settings in their panel with no expensive service call required.

But, what if you could prevent this type of thing from happening in the first place? That's where the Qolsys IQ WIFI 6 comes in. The Qolsys IQ WIFI 6 is a state-of-the-art router that supports both IPv4 and IPv6. It comes with three (3) network partitions enabled. There is a Guest Network, a Main Network, and a Security Network partition. Each partition supports both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz WIFI and the unit has band steering enabled all the time. This means that devices will be moved between the two network bands automatically, depending on which WIFI band offers the best performance for each individual device.

Most routers are dual-band, and most routers offer a primary network and a guest network, but the IQ WIFI 6 distinguishes itself with its Security Network. By putting all WIFI equipment related to the security system on the Security Network, the dealer can control the credentials for this partition, making sure that they aren't changed, accidentally or otherwise. This means that the equipment associated with the security system will remain connected and able to communicate on behalf of the customer.

Alarm.com's extensive line of cameras and Qolsys alarm panels will move themselves to the Security Network automatically if they are initially set up using one of the other partitions. The alarm dealer can configure and troubleshoot the IQ WIFI 6 remotely using the Alarm.com Partner Portal or the Mobile Tech app. The end-user can also configure their network remotely using the Alarm.com customer website and/or iOS or Android App. That way, the networking guru in your family doesn't have to be onsite in order to help with a WIFI issue. And if you don't happen to have a networking guru, then your alarm dealer can assist you remotely.

The IQ WIFI 6 is powerful and can act as the only router on your network. But, if you have a service where a router from your carrier is provided, or even required, then the WIFI 6 can still be used. It can connect via its WAN port to your existing router, then any ethernet connections you want to make using the WIFI 6 can be run using its LAN port (usually run to a switch if you have more than one device you want to connect in this way) and any WIFI devices you want to connect to the IQ WIFI 6 can be connected using its SSID and Password (or WPS).

This is called a parallel network configuration and using the IQ WIFI 6 in this way provides another layer of security for anyone attempting to hack into your devices from outside. By running the IQ WIFI 6 in parallel, if your ISP changes you can change your main router to whatever equipment is provided by your new ISP, and then connect the IQ WIFI 6 to the new equipment in the same way it was connected to the old. For all of the WIFI devices connected through the IQ WIFI 6, it'll be as if nothing has changed.

The IQ WIFI 6 also works as a mesh network. It has a coverage area of about 1,500 sq ft. (457㎡) per point, and up to eight (8) nodes total can be used. One node, usually the IQ WIFI 6, will act as the controller, and up to seven (7) IQ WIFI devices acting as agents. The IQ Panel 2 & 2 Plus, IQ Panel 4, and IQ4 Hub (coming very soon) panels can all be used to configure the IQ WIFI 6 locally, as long as they're each on the latest version of their respective firmware versions and are connected to the IQ WIFI 6 or IQ WIFI network.

There is a lot to see in the Qolsys IQ WIFI 6 to get the basic technical specs, you can take a look at the IQ WIFI 6 Specification Sheet. We also have the Quick Install Guide, which covers the basics and can get you up and running quickly. And if you need to know everything there is to know about the IQ WIFI 6, you can see the full Install Guide. The Qolsys IQ WIFI 6 is truly next-level. We recommend you check it out and if you're in the market for a new router with lots of features and the latest technology, give it a try!

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Qolsys has released Firmware Version 4.2.0 for the IQ Panel 4, and the IQ4 Hub (coming very soon). This is a huge update with lots of new features and bug fixes. In this blog, we'll discuss what to expect from this release. The IQ Panel 4 MUST be on version 4.1.1 to install version 4.2.0.

For those of you with panels that can't access WIFI, we've updated our Qolsys IQ Panel 4 Firmware Updates page with the newest release. In addition, if your panel isn't yet on version 4.1.1, we have that file available too, so you can get your panel completely updated just by visiting our page. Just scroll down the page until you see the green download button for 4.1.1. Instructions on updating are included on the page.

The marquee feature in this release is support for the new Qolsys IQ WIFI 6. This is an all-new, IPv4 and IPv6 capable router purpose-built for security professionals. Out of the box it has three (3) partitions enabled. A Guest partition that is capable of using both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz, and the Main partition that also supports both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. The biggest differentiator for the IQ WIFI 6 is that it also has a Security partition. This partition is there to support all of the security system elements that use WIFI. This includes the panel itself, any Alarm.com video devices, and remote keypads that use WIFI in order to communicate with the panel. By putting security devices together on a partition that is controlled by the alarm dealer, WIFI issues for accidental configuration changes made by the end-user are virtually eliminated.

Alarm.com cameras will automatically move themselves to the Security partition if they are initially added to the network on one of the other partitions. The alarm dealer will have access through the Partner Portal and through Mobile Tech to configure and troubleshoot the IQ WIFI 6. The end-user will have access to configuration settings through the end-user website and the Alarm.com app.

The IQ WIFI 6 offers band steering, which causes WIFI devices to switch between the 2.4 GHz and 5GHz bands. This is an ongoing process that optimizes both speed and reliability for each device on the network. Let's say you're walking through your home, on your smartphone, which is connected to WIFI, and you're surfing the web as you walk. When you're close to the router, 5GHz is likely the best band for you to be using. But as you walk further from the router, 2.4 GHz may become the better option. The IQ WIFI 6 will automatically cause you to switch from 5GHz to 2.4 GHz without you ever even knowing a change took place. Band steering is always enabled on the IQ WIFI 6. That means if you change the SSID for the 2.4 GHz band, the SSID for the 5 GHz band will be changed to match it.

The Qolsys IQ Panel 4 has an open slot where a new daughterboard can be installed. Qolsys will soon be offering a Zigbee card (QC000E-840) that can be installed in this slot. With the Zigbee card installed, the IQ Panel 4 can support both Zigbee automation devices and Zigbee security devices. There are alarm dealers out there (Comcast Xfinity) who use Zigbee sensors for their proprietary systems. If you have one of these systems and thought you were stuck either staying with your current company or purchasing all new equipment, rest easy. By adding the Zigbee card to an IQ Panel 4, you can replace just the alarm panel, keep your existing sensors, and move to any dealer who supports Alarm.com communication. It just so happens, Alarm Grid is one of those dealers! Firmware version 4.2.0 adds end-to-end Alarm.com support for Zigbee automation devices when the optional Zigbee daughtercard is installed.

This firmware release also prepares the IQ Panel 4 and IQ4 Hub to support Z-Wave 800 Series. At the core of Z-Wave 800 Series are the ZG23 SoC (System on Chip) and the ZGM230S, a module with a ZG23 already connected. Devices using this hardware will have low sleep and active current consumption, with 50% longer battery life than Z-Wave 700 Series. For modules that use coin cell batteries, Z-Wave 800 supports up to ten (10) year battery life. Using the ARM Cortex-M33 microprocessor, Z-Wave 800 delivers ~20% more processing power than the previous Cortex-M4. It can also support Z-Wave Long Range (LR), which has a wireless range of ~1.5 miles.

There is so much to unpack in 4.2.0 that we can't cover it all here. PowerG PIR Cameras, like the PG9934 will now send up to six (6) images to the Alarm.com backend for each device trip during the same arming period. Previously, only images from the first alarm trip were sent. There is a fix for improved WIFI connectivity between IQ Remote Keypads and the alarm panel, basically causing WIFI to toggle OFF and then ON if the remote keypad loses connection to the panel. There is new PowerG Modem Firmware (Version 3.0 / Build 10.87). To see everything that is included in this firmware release, you'll need to read the full Release Notes.

What do you think about Firmware Version 4.2.0 for Qolsys IQ Panel 4 and IQ4 Hub? Are you looking forward to the release of the new panel? Have you been following Z-Wave 800, or is this the first you've heard of it? Drop a comment below and let us know what you think, we always look forward to hearing from our readers. Until next time, stay safe!

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The Smart Arming feature can be enabled for any residential customer who has an interactive monitoring plan with Alarm.com. Once enabled, the feature can easily be configured using either the customer website or iOS or Android app.

Once configured, the Smart Arming feature will automatically arm the system to the Stay Mode once the occupants of the home have gone to bed. This can be accomplished using a schedule, or by configuring certain door and/or motion sensors to work in conjunction with the feature. You can reach the Smart Arming settings by going to Security, or through the Automation page. The Smart Arming programming is listed as Goodnight for Arming, and Wake Up for Disarming.


For example, you can set the system to Arm Stay at 10:00 PM, or you can set the system to Arm Stay when no activity has been detected for 30 Minutes between 10:00 PM and 11:30 PM (this is just an example, and you can use whatever time frame you want). If you choose the latter option, you then configure which zones you want to apply this logic to.

For the Stay Arming feature, doors, windows, and motions can be used along with the feature. So, once you choose the zones to be used with this logic, if no activity has been detected on ALL of those zones for a full 30 Minutes, and the time is between 10:00 PM and 11:30 PM, the system will automatically Arm Stay. Smart Arming logic is canceled if the system is already Armed Away.

For Disarming the options are similar. You can set the system to Disarm at a specific time, or you can set it to Disarm when motion is detected on certain motion detectors within a specific time window. For example, in our screenshot below, you can see we have our system set to Disarm if the Upstairs Motion detects movement between 8:00 AM and 9:00 AM. We also have it set so that if no motion is detected, the system will still disarm at 9:00 AM, which is sort of the best of both worlds.

Notice that only Motion Detectors are now available to tie to the Disarm logic. You don't want someone opening a door to disarm the system. By the same token, be sure that no outdoor motions are configured to work with this automation.


This is an excellent new feature that can go a long way toward preventing false alarms. No more forgetting to disarm the system when you go to let the dog out in the morning. As long as you set it up so that a motion you walk past on your way to the door causes the system to Disarm, you're all set. No more laying in bed wondering if you remembered to set the alarm. Now, as long as you have configured the Goodnight options, you know your system will arm itself based on either a schedule or activity (or lack thereof) combined with a time window.

The following Alarm.com compatible panels support this feature:

Panel Compatible Motion Sensor
Groups (Arm & Disarm)
Compatible Contact
Sensor Groups (Arm Only)
2GIG GC2/e 4, 10, 23 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 23
2GIG GC3/e 4, 10, 23 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10, 23
2GIG Edge 4, 10, 23 All
DSC PowerSeries Neo/Pro 4, 5, 9, 10 4, 5, 9, 10
Interlogix Concord 15, 17, 18, 20 14, 16
Interlogix Simon XT/XTi/XTi-5i 15, 35 14, 16
Qolsys IQ Panel 2 17, 20, 44, 43, 35 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 16, 25
Qolsys IQ Panel 4 17, 20, 44, 43, 35 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 16, 25
Note: Sensor-based disarming is only available in the Simon XT/XTi/XTi-5i with firmware versions below 193a.

What do you think of this new Alarm.com feature? For that matter, what do you think of Alarm.com's commitment to bringing you new products and features in general? They're doing an excellent job of listening to customers and responding with great new options. Drop us a note in the comments and let us know what you think. We always look forward to hearing from you!

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Alarm.com is offering a new feature called Perimeter Guard™ proactive defense for their compatible cameras. All that is required to use this feature is a video plan that includes video analytics, a compatible camera, and a video analytics recording rule applied to an appropriate camera.

This new feature is considered a proactive method of defense because when an analytics rule is activated on a compatible camera with the Perimeter Guard™ feature enabled, it causes the camera LED to flash, and a sound to be emitted from the camera's speaker, when supported. This is done to let the potential intruder know that they've been seen and to encourage them to move along to some other location.

The following cameras support the Perimeter Guard™ feature:

Camera Model Firmware Required Behavior Supported
ADC-V724/724X Version 0.6.1.387+ LED and Audio Alert
ADC-V523/523X Version 0.6.1.387+ LED and Audio Alert
ADC-V723/723X Version 0.6.1.387+ LED Only
ADC-VC827P All Versions LED Only
ADC-VC847PF All Versions LED Only
ADC-VC728PF All Versions LED Alert
ADC-VC728PF Version 0.6.3.601+ LED and Audio Alert
ADC-VC838PF All Versions LED Only

The Alarm.com Video Analytics feature must be enabled in order to use this feature. This allows the user to be as sure as possible that it is actually an intruder that is causing the disturbance, rather than a neighbor's pet running loose or some other source of a potential accidental activation. A compatible Alarm.com camera that has been properly calibrated for use with the analytics feature ensures that false activations are virtually eliminated. Once the camera has been calibrated simply create a Video Analytics Rule for the calibrated camera and choose to Activate Perimeter Guard.

In the "Activate Perimeter Guard" section of the recording rule, choose the option or options you want to enable. You can choose to set up a trip wire recording, or a ground zone recording. Refer to the full instructions on setting up video analytics rules that we've linked above for more information on these two (2) different options.

Basically, a trip wire recording allows you to draw a virtual line within the camera's field of view, and if anyone crosses that line while the rule is active, a clip recording is triggered, and the options selected for the Perimeter Guard feature are also triggered. When using a ground zone, the behavior is similar, but instead of an invisible trip wire, you're configuring an invisible space within the camera's viewing area. If someone enters that space and stays for a specified amount of time, a recording and the Perimeter Guard behavior are activated.

Depending on the camera you are using, you have the option to illuminate the LED, and for how long, to have the camera produce sounds, if supported, and to set a delay between alerts. The LED duration options are 3, 5, 10, or 30 seconds. The "Delay between Alerts" options are 30 seconds, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 10, or 15 minutes. The Audio Alert options are shown in the screenshot below. This feature can be configured using either the customer website or the Alarm.com app.


Once you've selected the options you want for the rule, be sure to Save and then be sure that the "Rule is Active" toggle is enabled at the very top of the rule creation screen. If you ever need to disable this rule, you can easily do so by toggling the rule off, rather than deleting it. Then, when you're ready to use it again, simply toggle it back on.

This is another example of how Alarm.com continues to innovate within the video surveillance space. Particularly when outdoor cameras are used, this feature can go a long way toward not just notifying of a break-in, but discouraging one. For Alarm Grid customers, you will need either our Platinum Plan (Full or Self) or a Stand-alone Video Plan.

If you're activating new video service with us, and you want to check out this feature, be sure to tell your activator that you want to enable Video Analytics. If you're already a video customer and you would like to have the Video Analytics feature enabled for your account so that you can check out this intriguing new feature, drop an email to support@alarmgrid.com and let us know, we'll gladly enable it for you. We pay more for the Video Analytics feature, but we don't charge more for it. This is why we don't simply enable Video Analytics for every video account automatically.

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