Industry News and Discussions Posts

Posted By

Recently Alarm.com announced the release of several new cameras for their Pro Series Video Camera collection. With a dome, bullet, and turret option available, there is sure to be an Alarm.com camera to meet your needs. All offer 1080P resolution, are Indoor/Outdoor, with many more features.

Alarm.com ADC-VC847PF:


The Alarm.com ADC-VC847PF is a 1080P, Indoor/Outdoor Varifocal Dome Camera. A unique feature of nearly all of these new cameras is that they offer a motorized varifocal lens. This feature allows the user to remotely adjust the cameras field of view (FoV) as well as focus, without sacrificing video quality. The VC847PF comes with the option of installing with a white or dark gray (shown above) mounting base. It has an IP66 rating, which means it is waterproof and dust-tight, perfect for use outdoors or in industrial environments.

The ADC-VC847PF supports Power over Ethernet (PoE). This is not a WIFI capable camera, it must have a wired connection to a network. But, with PoE, you can run both network and power through a single Cat5e cable. Some routers and/or switches support PoE, but others do not. If your current networking equipment doesn't support PoE, you can use a PoE injector instead. The power requirement is 12 VDC ± 10% or PoE (IEEE 802.3af), 10 W.

This camera supports 24/7 recording using a compatible MicroSD card (not included) a Commercial Stream Video Recorder (CSVR126), or both. This is in addition to any clips that are uploaded to Alarm.com cloud storage. It supports HDR (High Dynamic Range), an IR night vision range of ~95' (30m) and many more features. You can see the full specifications in the Data Sheet or by clicking the product link above.

Alarm.com ADC-VC838PF:


The Alarm.com ADC-VC838PF 1080P Indoor/Outdoor Varifocal Turret Camera has many of the same features of the VC847PF, but in a turret style. It too has a motorized varifocal lens which allows remote adjustment of FoV and focus by the end-user. The VC838PF is a PoE camera, using a single Cat5e cable to carry both ethernet and power to the camera. The power requirements are listed as 12VDC ± 10% or PoE (IEEE 802.3af). The IEEE 802.3af standard is an intelligent standard. This means that the devices that use it actually communicate with one another about power. The device receiving power tells the device supplying power how much is required.

The ADC-VC838PF also supports HDR, and has excellent IR night vision, with a range of ~95' (30m). It offers image adjustments of Flip, Brightness, Contrast, Saturation, Sharpness, and Exposure. It also supports 24/7 recording using either a compatible MicroSD card, Commercial Stream Video Recorder (CSVR126),or both. This is in addition to uploaded clips to Alarm.com cloud storage. You can read the full specifications in the Data Sheet, or by clicking the product link above.

Alarm.com ADC-VC827P:


The Alarm.com ADC-VC827P is the only one in this group of cameras that doesn't have a motorized varifocal lens. That means there is no remote FoV or focal adjustment capability on this camera. It is a 1080P, Indoor/Outdoor Dome Camera, just like the ADC-VC847PF, and aside from the varifocal lens, their specs are nearly identical. The angle adjustments available on this model are Pan: 0° to 350°; Tilt: 0° to 55°; Rotation: 0° to 180°. The VC827P supports PoE (no WIFI) and the power requirements are listed as 12VDC ± 10% or PoE (IEEE 802.3af), 9.5 W. With its IP66 rating, it is waterproof and dust-tight and like the ADC-VC847PF it comes with a white (shown above) or dark gray mounting base. You can read the full specifications in the Data Sheet, or by clicking the product link above.

Alarm.com ADC-VC728PF:


The Alarm.com ADC-VC728PF is a 1080P Indoor/Outdoor Varifocal Bullet Camera. As you may have gathered by now, when the model number of the camera ends in PF, the camera includes the motorized varifocal lens feature. That is true in this case. Traditionally, bullet cameras have been somewhat unsightly. They often have a metal shroud covering them to protect them from damage. The damage in question could be anything from vandalism to sunlight. They get their name because of their long profile. They are also sometimes called lipstick cameras.

The ADC-VC728PF is an attractive version of a bullet camera. Its dimensions are 6.8" L x 3.0" W x 3.0" H (17.4cm L x 7.5cm W x 7.5cm H). It's almost small enough that it doesn't qualify as a bullet camera. But then, what would you call it? This camera has all the same great features of the rest of the cameras in this list. It has an Ingress Protection rating of IP66, so it's waterproof and dust-tight. The remote varifocal adjustments available are focal length, manual focus adjustment, and autofocus. It supports 24/7 recording via compatible MicroSD card, Alarm.com Commercial Stream Video Recorder (CSVR126) or both. And this is in addition to any clips that are uploaded to the Alarm.com cloud.

This is a PoE camera, so it does not support WIFI, only a wired ethernet connection. It also uses the PoE IEEE 802.3af standard, and the power requirements are 12 VDC ± 10% if using a PoE injector. The VC728PF weighs just 19.1 Oz. (540g). For full specifications, you can read the Data Sheet, or click the product link above.

In addition to the cameras above, we've also added two accessories used for mounting the cameras. These mounting bases act as adapters, adapting the camera's base to fit a standard, third-party mounting base. The ADC-VACC-MNT130 fits the ADC-VC847PF and the ADC-VC838PF. The ADC-VACC-MNT110 fits the ADC-VC827P, ADC-VC728PF, and the ADC-V724 1080P Outdoor WIFI Camera w/2-Way Audio.

What do you think about the new camera offerings from Alarm.com? Their camera hardware, as well as their video service offerings just continue to improve. We think it's very impressive. Drop a comment down below and let us know how you feel about them, or anything else security related you might have a burning desire to discuss. We always look forward to hearing from you!.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

We are in the midst of a strange confluence of events. The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on both manufacturing and supply chains, with both sub-assembly parts and product delivery being affected. Add to that the AT&T 3G/4G GSM sunset and you'll have a good picture of where we are today.

We've known about the AT&T sunset for some time. We've written about it in this blog on numerous occasions. Alarm Grid implemented an email campaign to proactively remind our customers who needed an upgrade not to wait until the last minute. But there will always be people who want to wring every last bit of usefulness out of their current product, before upgrading to a new one. I don't blame them, really. But the strange confluence of events I mentioned earlier may find those folks scrambling to upgrade at the last minute.

Security communicator manufacturers, including Resideo, and Alarm.com are doing everything they can to bridge the gap between supply and demand. They are introducing new product lines, with alternatives to standard LTE such as those that use the LTE Cat-M1 network. Resideo has introduced the LTEM-PA and LTEM-PV and they are beta testing the LTEM-IA for future release. The benefit of these products is that they provide nearly the same experience as the previously released LTE products, but either due to happenstance or good planning, components for these products are readily available, so while other LTE products are on backorder, these units are plentiful.

Alarm.com also has a series of LTE Cat-M1 System Enhancement Modules (SEM), including the Alarm.com ADC-SEM300-VT-AT-M (coming soon) and the ADC-SEM300-VT-VZ-M which is available for purchase now. Both of these SEMs are compatible with the Honeywell VISTA product line (with the exception of the VISTA-128 and VISTA-250 panels). They allow compatible VISTA panels to communicate using Alarm.com, and to work with the Alarm.com remote control features. These are dual-path communicators that also have a Z-Wave plus controller built in. Alarm.com will soon have the ADC-SEM210-PS-AT-M and the ADC-SEM210-PS-VZ-M. These dual-path communicators with Z-Wave Plus controllers will support the older DSC Power Series panels (PC1616, PC1832, PC1864 all version 4.20+).

Perhaps the most intriguing "Bridge the Gap" product available currently is the Resideo Cellbounce. This product has some limitations, it only works with AT&T 3G communicators, it only works in states within the contiguous US (sorry Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico), and it can only be installed with a communicator that is currently still registered and active on the AT&T 3G network. If the communicator is in comm failure, this condition has to be resolved before a Cellbounce can be added. There are some other limitations too, such as it can't support Total Connect 2.0, so be sure to read the full product description linked above before deciding to purchase.

The Cellbounce is a plug-and-play device. Anyone can install it, so no installer visit is required. It can work with any Honeywell or Resideo AT&T 3G communicator. The Cellbounce is installed within range, which is 25' (7.6m), of an existing, registered AT&T 3G communicator. The Alarm Dealer will need the Serial Number and IMEI Number from the Callbounce unit. These can be found on the box the device comes in.

Important Note: Provisioning must take place on the AlarmNet360 server BEFORE the Cellbounce unit is powered on.

Once the Cellbounce has been provisioned, it should be powered up using an unswitched outlet, not a power strip. From there, the Cellbounce does all the heavy lifting. On one hand, it reaches out and finds an LTE signal, on the other, it reaches out to the existing 3G communicator and locks on to it. Once both of these connections have been made, any time the 3G communicator sends a signal, the Cellbounce captures it and transfers it to the LTE network. AT&T has promised that the Cellbounce units will continue to function until at least Q1 2025. This should give any Cellbounce users plenty of additional time to upgrade. There are a limited number of Cellbounce units available, so if this sounds like an attractive option for you, order yours today. Don't get left behind!

Sunset Graphic courtesy of AlarmNet360:


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

We told you in 2020 how the Total Connect 2.0 app for Android could support Google Assistant voice commands. This feature allowed you to use your voice to control your system, but only through your phone. Now, the ProSeries panels, including the PROA7PLUS, can fully support Google Assistant.

What this meant back then was that there was nothing to download. Once the feature was enabled on your phone, a blue microphone icon would appear at the bottom of the Total Connect 2.0 app screen. When you pressed it, you could use your voice to check system status, and to arm or disarm the system. Now, with the latest Total Connect 2.0 release, you can actually set up TC2 within Google Home, and control your system from any Google Home capable device you have connected to your account.

Another improvement is the fact that this functionality is now available to both Android and iOS users. On either platform, make sure you have the Google Home app and then follow the steps to configure the Total Connect 2.0 skill within it.

Below is the Google Home App as seen in the Apple App Store:


The ProSeries panels include the Honeywell Home PROA7 and Honeywell Home PROA7PLUS and the Resideo PROA7C and Resideo PROA7PLUSC. Currently, these are the only Total Connect 2.0 compatible panels that support the improved Google integration. If you have one of the ProSeries panels, coupled with a Total Connect 2.0 account and you would like to take advantage of voice commands through Google Assistant, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Google Home App, then click the [Plus (+)] Icon at the top left of the main screen.
  2. Select, [Set up Device].
  3. Select [Works with Google].
  4. Search for [Total Connect] then select it.
  5. Use your Total Connect 2.0 login credentials to log into TC2 from the skill.
  6. Read the User Agreement and if you agree, press [Allow].
  7. Be sure the Security System icon is selected, then press [Connect].
  8. Click the [Pencil Icon] to assign the system to a room, then choose which room you'd like to add it to.
  9. Hit the [Back button] repeatedly until you reach the Home screen.
  10. You should now be able to query Google for system status, as well as arm the system to Away, Stay, or Night and Disarm the system using Google Assistant.

Voice control of automation devices is not yet available unless the automation is achieved through a scene tied to system arming or disarming. For example, if you have a scene that turns on the porch light when the system is armed to Away, and you use the Google Assistant to arm in this mode, then the porch light will come on once the system is armed.

Total Connect 2.0 also supports integration with Amazon Alexa, and has for a while now. The configuration is very similar between the two services. One difference between them is that Amazon Alexa is compatible with more different panel types. Most of the Honeywell Wireless All-in-One panels support it. This means that in addition to the ProSeries panels, the Lyric, Lynx, and even the VISTA panels all support being used with Amazon Alexa. As long as the panel is tied to a Total Connect 2.0 account.

To integrate Total Connect 2.0 with Amazon Alexa for voice control of any of the above panels, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Alexa App and search for the Total Connect 2.0 skill.
  2. Click [Enable]
  3. You will be prompted to enter your Total Connect 2.0 login credentials. Enter them, then hit [Login]
  4. You will see a User Agreement, read through it, and if you agree click [Allow].
  5. Make sure the Security System icon is selected, then click [Connect].
  6. A screen should appear showing "Total Connect 2.0 has been successfully linked".

Once the above steps have been completed, log into the Total Connect 2.0 app and go to the Profile Page. Under the Access section, be sure that your user code has been saved and synched with the panel. If this isn't done, Amazon Alexa won't function properly. In the past, we've made FAQs for integrating some different panels with Amazon Alexa. You can find links to those FAQs below:

How Do I Connect My Lyric Alarm System to Alexa?

How Do I Connect My VISTA-21iP to Alexa?

Resideo Official Instruction Sheet on Integration

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

If you read our blog regularly, you know that certain Qolsys IQ Panel 2 systems that use the AT&T LTE 4G network require an update to the communicator. Without this update, these cellular units will stop communicating after the 3G Sunset. On January 10, these updates will begin automatically.

Qolsys IQ Panel 2 panels that use an AT&T LTE Cellular Communicator will need a firmware update prior to the AT&T 3G sunset, which is scheduled to occur on 02/22/22. Without this update, these panels will lose their connection to the cellular network and could leave the alarm system with no communication path. The update can be performed over WIFI, or by using an SD Card.

For those panels that have a WIFI connection, Alarm.com will begin to automatically push the update on Monday, January 10, 2022. Once these updates begin, they will continue from 8 am - 8 pm seven (7) days per week until all are completed. Some panels will require both a panel firmware update and the cellular communicator update. The Alarm.com server will determine the panels that fall into this category and will perform the updates in the correct order automatically. Once the update has been applied, the panel will reboot as part of the update process. This is normal.

If a WIFI signal is available in the location where the panel is installed, but the panel is not currently connected to it, there are a few different ways to get the panel connected:

  1. Locally: The connection can be made at the panel using the touchscreen. Instructions for connecting to WIFI locally can be found here.
  2. By the dealer, remotely: Alarm.com dealers, like Alarm Grid, can use the Partner Portal to connect the panel to WIFI. This is found on the Partner Portal website under the Signaling/Broadband Settings.
  3. By the end-user, remotely: Starting on 12/13/21, Alarm.com has enabled a tool that allows an end-user to connect the panel to WIFI through the Customer Alarm.com App or Alarm.com Website.

If you would like to go ahead and perform the update on your own, and you need to connect the system to WIFI first, from the customer's Alarm.com app click on Menu > Manage Devices > Select the 3-dots icon next to the panel's name > Select Device Settings > Select Panel WIFI. From there you can either choose an existing camera to copy that device's WIFI settings or select the SSID and complete the authentication process by entering the proper password. Once the connection to WIFI is made, the communication path will be changed from Cell-only to Dual-Path.

Panels that are on version 2.3.0 or lower must be updated to a minimum of 2.3.1 or higher before applying the communicator firmware patch. Panel firmware updates on panels that have a WIFI connection can be performed locally from the panel with a Patch Tag or can be completed remotely by the alarm dealer via Alarm.com's Partner Portal. Once the panel's firmware is on a compatible version (see the link in the paragraph below) the cellular firmware can be installed using the patch tag: ATT3GSunset

For panels that have no WIFI connection available, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 can be updated locally using a MicroSD Card. The upgrade files, as well as instructions on how to perform the local upgrade, are available on Alarm Grid's Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Update page. Both the panel firmware files and the ATT3GSunset patch can be downloaded from there.

This issue only affects AT&T LTE Cellular units. Verizon cellular units are in no way affected. This update is required because early Qolsys AT&T units used a provisional VoLTE Firmware Version. This later changed when VoLTE was fully released and because the difference between the two firmware versions didn't affect a panel's ability to send signals via cellular, no action was required at that time. AT&T realized that the upcoming sunset would have a detrimental affect on these early communicators and alerted Qolsys and Alarm.com of the required update.

If you are unsure whether your panel requires the update or not, contact your alarm dealer. They can verify whether or not your panel requires the panel update as well as the cellular update. This version information is only available when checked through the Partner Portal Website, and is not available from the Alarm.com Customer App or Website. You can read the full Qolsys Technical Service Bulletin regarding this upgrade here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

Alarm.com continues to improve the user experience with its service. They made swapping a communicator or a whole system easy when it comes to backing up and restoring users and zones. But until now, all Z-Wave devices had to be excluded then re-included on the new panel. That is changing.

An important thing to remember is that currently, not all Alarm.com compatible Z-Wave Controllers support backing up and restoring the Z-Wave network. The following modules are the ones that support this feature as of this writing:

Panel Minimum Original Module Version Minimum Current Module Version
DSC PowerSeries Neo 187j 191a
DSC PowerSeries PRO 187e 189e
Interlogix Concord 4 187e 189e
Interlogix NX 187a 189b
Interlogix Simon XT/XTi/XTi-5/XTi-5i 191c 191f
SEM DSC PowerSeries 187i 189e
SEM Honeywell/Ademco VISTA 187d 189b

As you can see from this list, it's the communicators manufactured by ADC, that have the Z-Wave controller built into the communicator that currently support this new feature. Hopefully, this list will grow to include the Qolsys and 2GIG alarm panels.

At this time, the backup and restore of a customer's Z-Wave network can only be performed by the alarm dealer through either the Partner Portal, or the Mobile Tech App. The end-user can't perform these steps. A Z-Wave network backup occurs automatically about eight (8) hours after a device is either added to, or removed from, the Z-Wave network. The backup takes about five (5) minutes, plus two (2) to three (3) minutes for verification purposes. The amount of time the back process takes is not dependant on the number of devices that are paired with the Z-Wave Controller.

To backup a Z-Wave Network on a compatible device using the Alarm.com Partner Portal (Website) perform the following steps:

  1. Login to the Portal. Using your Alarm.com dealer portal login credentials, log into the Partner Portal, completing any 2-factor authentication required.
  2. Pull up the account. Find the account whose Z-Wave network you would like to back up.
  3. Navigate to equipment. Click on the Equipment menu option on the left side of the screen. Then click on Z-Wave Devices.
  4. Backup the network. Under Advanced Z-Wave Commands click Backup Network. Stay on the network backup page to monitor the status of the backup. Once backed up, the backup will be verified, then the process will complete.

A backup is usually performed in order to prepare to move as much of the panel/module programming from the existing system to a new module. This could be due to an upgrade, or due to the replacement of an existing module that is determined to be malfunctioning.

Once a backup has been made, the next step is to restore the backed-up information to the new module or system. To restore backed-up Z-Wave information to a new module during a module swap, via the Alarm.com Partner Portal, perform these steps:

  1. Power down the existing module. Power down the panel and remove the existing Alarm.com module from it.
  2. Swap the module. Log into the Alarm.com Partner Portal, then find the customer account. In the Customer Information section, choose Swap Module. Enter the new module's serial number into the appropriate location on the module swap screen. If there is a specific reason for the swap, enter this info in the Swap Reason field.
  3. Restore Z-Wave Network. Click on the option to Restore Z-Wave Network then click Submit.
  4. Install new module. Install the new Alarm.com module into the panel (while still powered down). Power up the panel and module.
  5. Perform a Communication Test Perform a communication test from the panel using the new communication module. The process for sending a test signal will differ from one panel to another. Check the Installation Instructions for the new module, it should provide instructions on how to perform this test.
  6. Monitor the process. You will automatically be taken to the Z-Wave Network Restore page. Monitor the progress of the restore until it is complete. The process of a full module swap, including restoring panel information as well as Z-Wave devices can take 25 minutes or longer. Be patient and allow the process to complete.

What do you think of this new feature from Alarm.com? If you have ever had to replace a Z-Wave Controller in a robust Z-Wave network and had to exclude, then include all the devices in the new module along with re-programming all schedules and scenes, you will appreciate this feature. Leave a comment below and tell us about your experiences with this type of situation. We enjoy hearing from our readers.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

Alarm Grid customers with PROA7/PROA7PLUS panels who use Night Stay Arming may have received notification calls in error when arming their system in this mode. This issue came to light recently, and we have resolved it with the monitoring station, CMS. We apologize for any inconvenience.

The Honeywell Home PROA7, Honeywell Home PROA7PLUS, Resideo PROA7C and Resideo PROA7PLUSC are the newest All-in-One (AiO) panels from what used to be Honeywell and is now Resideo. The difference between the Honeywell Home versions, and the Resideo versions is strictly cosmetic as you can see below, with one panel having Honeywell Home branding and the other having Resideo branding:


When an alarm panel reports a signal to a monitoring station, it does so in a particular format. The most prevalent format used by the PROA7 and PROA7PLUS panels is called Ademco Contact ID. With Ademco being the creator of the format (and the company Honeywell purchased to get into the security system manufacturing business). In a Contact ID Signal the information transmitted follows this format:


Further, monitoring stations have Automation software that receives the above signal and turns it into useful information. The account number is turned into "The Smith Residence at 123 Smith Ln, etc...." An E131 is turned into a Perimeter Burglary Alarm (R131 would be a restore of a previously reported perimeter alarm), Partition is self explanatory, and a Z003 would indicate that this is a perimeter alarm on Zone 003, automation turns this into something like "Living Room Window". If the signal is an arming or disarming event, then instead of a Zone Number, the monitoring station would receive a User Number to indicate who armed or disarmed. For a full list of 3-Digit Contact ID codes, check the Installation Instructions for your alarm panel. All Honeywell, Resideo, and Honeywell Home panels have a list of the Contact ID Codes that can be transmitted by the panel, and what they mean.

The problem occurred because Honeywell Home and Resideo changed the Contact ID code they use when the system is Armed to Night Stay Mode. In the past, panels such as the Lyric and the LynxTouch panels used the Code R441 to indicate any type of Stay Arming, including Night Stay (in arm and disarm signals a Restore is reported when a user Arms, and a new Event is reported when a user Disarms.) On the ProSeries panels, they chose to use R444 to indicate when a user armed in the Night Stay Mode, while reporting an E401 to indicate when the system was disarmed. E401 is a more generic "Disarm by User" signal. This is also unusual, as in the past the panel would have reported an E444 when the system was disarmed from this mode.

Since this is an unusual signal to receive, and the monitoring station didn't have default instructions in their automation system on how to treat it, when it was received they chose to err on the side of caution and called the premises to report it. This is not the normal default protocol for signals regarding arming and disarming. Once we became aware that there was an issue, we investigated with the monitoring station, confirmed the issue, and took steps to be sure these signals would be treated properly in the future. We are doing the same with Rapid Response, the monitoring station for our Canadian customers. Once again, we apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused and we look forward to serving all our customers, old and new, in 2022!


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

In 2021 we said goodbye to some products (here's lookin' at you, Qolsys IQ Panel 2) and hello to others. We'll take a look back on 2021 and highlight some of the changes we've seen in the industry. From new Alarm.com cameras to redesigned alarm panels, here's a look back at 2021, as it was.

January, 2021: The new year saw the release of the Alarm.com ADC-V515 Camera. This budget-friendly camera offers 1080p recording with High Dynamic Range (HDR) and a 110° field of view. The IR Night Vision feature has a range of ~15 feet. This is an indoor camera that connects to 2.4 GHz WIFI networks, and it supports the full suite of Video Analytics features.

We also said goodbye to the Honeywell 5877 Garage Door Relay. This product works in conjunction with the Honeywell Wireless Alarm Panels, with the exception of the ProSeries panels, to allow automation and remote control of a garage door. We said "Goodbye" to it in January, but we should have said "See you later" because in October we said "Hello" again! Alarm Grid was able to obtain a number of 5877s, and we'll continue to offer it until stock exhaustion. Since Honeywell has decided they will no longer produce it, at that point, it will be "Goodbye forever".

February, 2021: In February, Alarm.com announced the discontinuation of the ADC-SVR122. Although they still offer the ADC-CSVR126 this is a commercial version of the SVR122, and may not be suitable for the average residential user. In lieu of using a Stream Video Recorder, Alarm.com offers the Onboard Recording feature as an alternative to a traditional residential DVR. Click here for a list of cameras that support this feature.

March, 2021: In March, Resideo discontinued the IPCAM-WOC1, leaving their Total Connect 2.0 product with no outdoor camera option. Later in the year, they released a replacement, so TC2 users will have an outdoor camera choice, but until recently the IPCAM-WOC2 was on backorder due to supply chain issues. It is now available for purchase again and ready to ship!

Honeywell Home added the PROA7 panel to the ProSeries Lineup that they released late in 2020. In reality, the Honeywell Home PROA7 and PROA7PLUS are basically the same products as the Resideo PROA7C and PROA7PLUSC, but with different branding on the front of the panel. The PROA7 and PROA7C are "Lite" versions of the PROA7PLUS and PROA7PLUSC. The non-plus versions have no front-facing camera for disarm photos and don't support Bluetooth. They will support WIFI and Z-Wave, but don't come with the Honeywell Home PROWIFIZW built-in. For these panels, if you want WIFI, but no Z-Wave, you can choose to add the Honeywell Home PROWIFI module instead. All of the ProSeries panels support the addition of either the PROLTE-A or PROLTE-V LTE Cellular Communicators and the Honeywell Home PROTAKEOVER legacy wireless takeover module.

April, 2021: In April, 2GIG released the 2GIG Edge. They teased their newest panel for quite some time, via its own countdown webpage. After a couple of release date changes, on April 1, 2021 it became available. The Edge was an instant sensation, with a number of industry awards in addition to an honorable mention. The Edge has a strong feature set, and comes in both an Edge AT&T LTE and an Edge Verizon LTE version. Dual-path ready, with 100 Zones, 100 User Codes, Z-Wave Plus V2, and Facial Recognition Arming and Disarming, the Edge is an excellent option for a new and modern security system.

May, 2021: With the release of the 2GIG Edge, the GC3e was discontinued upon stock exhaustion. Alarm Grid originally retained some stock of the product, and offered it at an attractive price for a limited time, until our stock was exhausted. The 2GIG GC3e has now gone the way of the dinosaurs. Also in May, Alarm.com announced new support for Ecobee Smart Thermostats via server-to-server integration.

June, 2021: Alarm.com announced the release of some new System Enhancement Modules (SEM) to support the Honeywell VISTA-10P, VISTA-15P, VISTA-20P, and VISTA-21iP panels. These are Dual-Path communicators with lower power consumption than their predecessors, with the ability to be used without an external power supply. The ADC-SEM300-VT-AT uses AT&T LTE while the ADC-SEM300-VT-VZ uses Verizon LTE.

In June, Qolsys also introduced two (2) Smart Water Valve Kits. The Qolsys IQWV908-KIT-PG includes the DSC PG9985 PowerG Flood Sensor coupled with Qolsys' Z-Wave Plus 700-Series Smart Water Valve. With these two products, you can have your system sense a water leak in the early stages, and through an Alarm.com Automation Rule, automatically turn off the water until the issue can be resolved. The PowerG sensor provides exceptional wireless transmitting range. It can work up to 4,000 feet (1219m) away from a Qolsys IQ Panel 4 without a repeater being required, and will work with all variations of that panel.

Qolsys also introduced the Qolsys IQWV908-KIT-SL. This kit includes the same great Z-Wave water valve, but with a Qolsys IQ Flood-S 319.5 MHz flood sensor for use with the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 & 2 Plus 319.5 MHz version or Qolsys IQ Panel 4 AT&T 319.5 Mhz version or Qolsys IQ Panel 4 Verizon 319.5 MHz version, or even one of the Interlogix panels that support the 319.5 MHz frequency. This flood sensor will only work with the 319.5 MHz version panels, so be certain which panel you have when ordering.

Resideo and Honeywell Home introduced a firmware update for the Honeywell Home PROA7 and PROA7PLUS, and the Resideo PROA7C and PROA7PLUSC that enabled programming through the panel touchscreen (or via a remote touchscreen keypad, the PROWLTOUCH or PROWLTOUCHC). Many users had been waiting not-so-patiently for this update, particularly DIY users who prefer to handle their own panel programming. Prior to this update, referred to as MR3, only an alarm dealer could program the ProSeries panels and only remotely via AlarmNet360 or via the AlarmNet360 Mobile App.

And finally, in June we discovered that the 2GIG Edge had a limitation with regard to using Image Sensors. Namely, that at the time of the panel's release, the 2GIG IMAGE3 only behaved like any other motion sensor when paired with the panel. It did not provide any alarm images, or the ability to peek in. Fortunately, in August 2GIG released Firmware Version 3.1.0.011, which solved this issue.

July, 2021: Honeywell Home announced in July the addition of the PROSIXRPTR Encrypted Wireless Repeater. Up to two (2) repeaters can be used with each ProSeries system and each repeater increases the range for PROSIX and SiX Series sensors by about 200 feet (60m).

Qolsys released the Qolsys IQ WIFI just ahead of ISC West. This product allows the alarm dealer to control all, or a portion of the customer's network to provide for easier alarm system integration to WIFI, as well as easier remote troubleshooting. Up to eight (8) IQ WIFI devices can be used per network with one (1) behaving as the controller, while up to seven (7) behave as agents. Locally, the IQ WIFIs can be configured using the touchscreen on a Qolsys panel (IQ Panel 2 must be version 2.6.0 or higher).

Z-Wave continued to evolve in 2021, and we began to move up from Z-Wave Plus to Z-Wave Plus V2 products. Z-Wave Plus uses the 500-Series Chipset, while Z-Wave Plus V2 uses the 700-Series Chipset. The 2GIG Edge uses a Z-Wave Plus V2 Chip as does the Qolsys IQ Panel 4. We've received no word on when, or if the ProSeries panels from Resideo and Honeywell Home will move up from the 500-Series Chipset to the 700-Series. You can read about the differences between the versions of Z-Wave here.

August, 2021: August was a sad month for us at Alarm Grid. We lost our beloved, and prolific writer Michael Goris suddenly and unexpectedly. Not only did Michael write about everything having to do with alarms, he was also featured in many of our videos, particularly once COVID-19 hit hard and we couldn't all always be in the office together. We miss you Michael.

Resideo and Honeywell Home announced compatibility issues between certain of their 6160RF keypads and the 5800WAVE or 5800RL products. The issue had to do with the 6160RF not sending correct status information from the panel to the 5800WAVE or 5800RL. This issue affected keypads manufactured between May 26, 2020 and February 18, 2021. You can read the full post about it here to determine if you have a keypad that may be affected.

September, 2021: Resideo and Honeywell Home announced in September that the Weather feature on the TUXWIFIW and TUXWIFIS would no longer be available. This, after they had issues for months with the information for this screen not updating properly. In the final week of December, we received good news that this issue has been resolved and that the weather for these products is now operating as it should!

On another positive note, the Resideo and Honeywell home ProSeries panels won the CEPro Best Product Award. Specifically, they won the award for Best Integrated Security System/Module/Device/Surveillance Camera System. You can read the full announcement here.

October, 2021: In October, Alarm.com announced the release of the Alarm.com ADC-V724 their first outdoor camera that supports 2-way audio. In addition, it supports the full suite of video analytics, and onboard recording, it also supports dual-band WIFI and IR Night Vision with a range of up to 49 feet (15m). This camera came out just in time for homeowners to really mess with the trick-or-treaters in their neighborhood using the 2-way audio feature!

In October we also got a sneak-peek at the new Resideo IPCAM-WOC2, which replaced the IPCAM-WOC1. Briefly, we had a new supply of outdoor cameras that were compatible with Total Connect 2.0, however we sold out pretty quickly. Supply chain issues had this camera back on the unavailable list but as of December, 2021 it is back in stock and ready to ship.

Resideo and Honeywell Home announced in October that with Firmware Version 03.592.107.0 for the ProSeries panels the Honeywell Home PROTAKEOVER Legacy RF Receiver module will now support wireless life-safety devices. Although you can now program any supported legacy RF device for life-safety, the Honeywell 5800 Series wireless devices have actually been tested to ETL standards for Residential Fire. This update also brought other exciting features and fixes. You can read all about them here.

November, 2021: This is the sad month we knew would come when the Qolsys IQ Panel 4 was announced earlier in the year. In November, Qolsys announced the End of Life for the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus 319.5 MHz panel versions. Users can now purchase the IQ Panel 4 in the 319.5 MHz flavor. As supply chain issues abate, the IQ Panel 4 345 MHz option, and the 433 MHz option will become available, and as they do, their corresponding IQ Panel 2 Plus versions will also be discontinued.

We also discovered in November that the IQ Panel 4 will only support the newest version of the Qolsys IQ Remote. An easy way to tell if you have the newest version of the IQ Remote is to look for the front-facing camera. If the camera is in the top center, you have a newer keypad. If the camera is in the upper-right corner, then you have an older IQ Remote that won't work with the IQ Panel 4. Read our full notice on this information.

December, 2021: In December we received critical notices from both Alarm.com/Qolsys and AlarmNet that a couple of their products will require a firmware update prior to the 2022 AT&T 3G Sunset. For AlarmNet, any Lyric Controller with a LYRICLTE-A AT&T LTE Communicator installed must be updated prior to 02/22/22. Read the full notice from AlarmNet and Resideo. The Verizon communicators are not affected by this notice.

On the Alarm.com side, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 and IQ Panel 2 Plus panels with an AT&T LTE Cellular Communicator also require an update prior to 02/22/22. In some cases, the panel firmware needs to be updated first, before the cellular firmware update can be implemented. Read the full notice on the Alarm.com update requirement. Again, the Verizon versions of these products are not affected.

So that's it, 2021 in a nutshell. As is usually the case, it has been a year full of ups and downs. We have seen a lot of positive change in our industry. The era of COVID-19 has exposed some opportunities in the physical safety world that may not otherwise have been considered without the pandemic having occurred. Touchless doorbells, and biometric system control are just a couple of things that have come to fruition during this time. I don't know about you, but I can't wait to see what 2022 has in store for us.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

In October Alarm Grid received a limited supply of the new IPCAM-WOC2, which sold out quickly. Since that time, Total Connect has been without an outdoor camera option. We're happy to announce that the Resideo IPCAM-WOC2 is back in stock, ready to ship. If you've been waiting, wait no more.

As we reported in October, the IPCAM-WOC2 is the updated replacement for the discontinued IPCAM-WOC1. The two items look almost identical, with the IPCAM-WOC2 having an internal BlueTooth Antenna, as opposed to an external one on the wire dongle. The reset switch has also been redesigned to be slightly easier to reach once the camera is mounted.

In October, we had ten (10) of these cameras available, and they sold out pretty quickly. Since then, we've been waiting for this, and many other items' stock to be replenished, and today we got the word that the Total Connect 2.0 outdoor camera option is available once again. Hopefully, this will be the first of many items to have their stock replenished.

The IPCAM-WOC2 is an outdoor camera with an IP66 rated housing. It captures video in 1080p HD and can connect to a 2.4 GHz WIFI network. It has a 117.0° diagonal field of view, which provides excellent coverage. It has superior night vision capabilities compared to the IPCAM-WOC1, and also supports audio analytics with intelligent sound detection. It supports a MicroSD card for backup storage in the event the network connection goes down, and comes with a 16 GB card included.

As with the other Resideo HD cameras supported by Total Connect 2.0, the IPCAM-WOC2 uses a QR Code generated on a smart device in order to be associated with the proper Total Connect 2.0 account. For this reason, it is best to configure the camera with the account prior to actually mounting it in its final location. Doing so may prevent a few extra trips up and down a ladder. Pairing the camera with the account prior to installation also allows you to verify the installation location and viewing angle before you permanently tighten everything down in the installation.

What do you think about the IPCAM-WOC2 and its availability? Have you been waiting impatiently to purchase a Total Connect 2.0 compatible outdoor camera? Is there some other product you're waiting for? Leave a comment below and let us know. We always look forward to hearing from you.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

Qolsys IQ Panel 2 equipment that uses an AT&T LTE Cellular Communicator requires a firmware update prior to the AT&T 3G sunset date of 02/22/22. Without this update, these devices will lose their connection to the cellular network. The update can be performed over WIFI, or by using an SD Card

If a WIFI signal is available in the location where the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 is installed, but the panel is not currently connected to it, there are a few different ways to connect:

  1. Locally: The connection can be made at the panel using the touchscreen. Instructions for connecting to WIFI locally can be found here.
  2. By dealer remotely: Alarm.com dealers, like Alarm Grid, can use the Partner Portal to connect the panel to WIFI. This is found on the Partner Portal website under the Signaling/Broadband Settings.
  3. By user remotely: Starting on 12/13/21, Alarm.com is enabling a tool that allows an end-user to connect the panel to WIFI through the Customer Alarm.com App or Alarm.com Website.

In order for the customer to connect their panel to WIFI using the customer app they will click on: Menu > Manage Devices > Select the 3-dots icon next to the panel's name > Select Device Settings > Select Panel WIFI. From there the user can either choose an existing camera to copy that device's WIFI settings, or select the SSID and complete the authentication process. Once the connection to WIFI is made, the communication path will be changed from Cell-only to Dual-Path. This may be useful for panels installed in locations where the building is not always occupied.

Starting on Monday, January 10, 2022 Alarm.com will begin to automatically deploy the firmware update to any WIFI connected panel that has not already received it. The automatic update process will proceed through the queue of needy panels 7 days per week during daytime hours (8am - 8pm panel time). As part of the update, a system reboot will occur.

In some cases, the panel's firmware may require an update before the cellular firmware update can be implemented. Panels that are on version 2.3.0 or lower must update to a minimum of 2.3.1 or higher. Panel firmware updates on panels that have a WIFI connection can also be performed locally from the panel with a Patch Tag, or can be done remotely via Alarm.com's Partner Portal. Once the panel's firmware is on a compatible version (see the link in the paragraph below) the cellular firmware can be installed using the patch tag: ATT3GSunset

For panels that have no WIFI connection available, the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 can be updated locally using a Micro SD Card. The upgrade files, as well as instructions on how to perform the local upgrade are available on Alarm Grid's Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus Firmware Update page. Eventually, Qolsys will also make the cellular firmware update patch available for download and install via Micro SD. Once they do, we will also host it on our site. As of 12/10/21, it is not yet available.

This issue only affects AT&T LTE Cellular units. Verizon units are not affected. This issue is occurring because early Qolsys AT&T units used a provisional VoLTE Firmware Version. This later changed when VoLTE was fully released. Since the difference between the provisional firmware and the released version didn't affect a panel's ability to communicate via cellular, no action was required before. If you are unsure whether your panel requires the update or not, contact your alarm dealer. They will be able to verify this information for you, as this information is only available when checked through the Partner Portal Website, and is not available from the Alarm.com Customer App or Website. Read the full Qolsys Technical Service Bulletin here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments


Posted By

Users of the Lyric Alarm System with an LYRICLTE-A AT&T LTE Communicator installed take note. Resideo has identified an issue where, after the AT&T 3G sunset on 02/22/22, any panel not properly updated will lose its connection with the cellular network. This issue does not affect Verizon units.

The firmware version that resolves this issue is 01.09.07772.494, and it is available now on the Resideo AlarmNet360 servers. The issue at play here is that the AT&T cellular communicator currently falls back on the 3G network when it can't connect to LTE. Once an LYRICLTE-A communicator is registered, it looks for both an LTE signal and a 3G one. Without this critical firmware update, these communicators would continue to look for a 3G signal after the 3G sunset. Being unable to find a 3G signal, they will lose connection and go offline.

Users who find themselves in this situation have a few options. If you are a Lyric Alarm System user with the AT&T LTE communicator installed, you can choose to go ahead and manually update your system now. The system needs to be disarmed and have no trouble conditions present in order for the firmware update to go through, so a manual update allows you to choose a time when it is disarmed and ready. It also allows you to confirm that the update was successful after you see your panel reboot.

Since this is a critical update, AlarmNet will begin automatically updating panels that are affected by this issue starting on December 8, 2021. Since a firmware update can only go through when the panel is disarmed with no troubles, any users with a zone trouble, or a low battery message that they have been putting off correcting, should go ahead and take care of the issue. Once all trouble conditions are clear and the system is disarmed, we recommend that you go ahead and manually perform the firmware update. Instructions for updating are linked above.

If your system is automatically updated, it will reboot as part of the update process, so don't be alarmed if you see this happen. Step 3 in the FAQ on updating the panel linked above shows you how to confirm the panel's firmware version. So, if you see your panel reboot you can verify that an update was successfully completed.

Any Lyric Controller with a LYRICLTE-A AT&T LTE Communicator that is being installed on or after 02/22/22 will need to be updated to firmware version 01.09.07772.494 via the built-in WIFI communicator before the LYRICLTE-A will work properly. The firmware update should be completed prior to the installation of the LYRICLTE-A. The LYRICLTE-V Verizon LTE Communicator is not affected by this issue. You can read the full notice from Resideo here.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments