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We have already talked about the phase out of AT&T's 2G cellular network, but if you haven't read our previous article about the new GSMX4G and GSMV4G cellular alarm communicators, then you may not know that all existing AlarmNet cellular alarm communicators will become obsolete by the end of 2016.

Here at Alarm Grid, we urge everyone looking for a new cellular alarm communicator to only invest in 4G capable communicators. AT&T has formally announced that they will have completely dropped support of the 2G cellular network by the end of 2016. As cellular data use increases, AT&T has to find ways to add new throughput to their most advanced networks. One easy way to expand that throughput is to cannibalize their older and slower 2G network. As it is extremely rare to find a cellular phone in use today that still uses the 2G network, AT&T has no problems sacrificing the older 2G network to make the newer 4G network bigger and faster. Unfortunately, the alarm industry will be affected by the discontinuation of the 2G network as nearly all cellular alarm communicators in existence today use the 2G network. Since the difference in speed between the 2G and the 3G or 4G network wasn't needed when transmitting alarm signals, cellular alarm manufacturers never bothered to upgrade their communicators to support the faster networks. Now however, all alarm companies must act and act quickly. While the end of 2016 is the formal end of the 2G cellular network, certain areas of the country will lost 2G support well before 2016.

For most people, upgrading to the newer cellular network will be as simple as swapping their existing communicator to a newer communicator that has 3G and 4G support. Unfortunately, for everyone that invested in Honeywell's VISTA-21iP alarm control panel, the change to 4G cellular alarm communications won't be so easy. The VISTA-21iP is a great security system because it has a built-in internet alarm communicator.

While internet alarm monitoring is fast and inexpensive, it is not as reliable or secure as cellular alarm communications. Therefore, the VISTA-GSM was available as a snap-on module to the VISTA-21iP to provide an integrated back up cellular communication path. For some reason, Honeywell's engineers did not design the new VISTA-GSM4G to be backwards compatible with existing VISTA-21iP security systems. Therefore, all people that have dual path alarm monitoring using a VISTA-21iP and the VISTA-GSM cellular communicator will have to replace both their VISTA-GSM communicator AND their VISTA-21iP alarm control panel if they want a system that is supported by the 3G/4G cellular network.


We are fully aware of the burden this will place on people looking to upgrade to the future of cellular communications and we will do everything we can to help those people that are left having to replace their system and their communicator. If you have a VISTA-21iP and you are wondering if it is compatible with the VISTA-GSM4G cellular add on, you will have to look at your VISTA-21iP circuit board. If there is a sticker that says "SUPPORTS VISTA-GSM/4G" then it is compatible. Without that sticker, your system will not accept a new VISTA-GSM4G. We are not sure of the exact date that Honeywell began manufacturing the new VISTA-21iP panels, and the model and revision number are the same, but we do know that it was sometime in November. Chances are, unless you got your VISTA-21iP from a reputable source in the past month or so, your system will not support the 4G cellular communicator.

Of course, here at Alarm Grid, we only ship brand new VISTA-21iP panels that have the sticker and do support the VISTA-GSM4G. If you have questions about upgrading your VISTA-21iP, please call us today.

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While wireless security systems like the L5100PK LYNX Touch are easier to install then traditional wired security systems, there are some applications where the LYNX Series control panels will not be the right fit. When you have an older existing wired security system and you want to upgrade it to take advantage of today's  technology, the VISTA-21iP-6160KT is a great choice. 

The VISTA-21iP-6160KT includes a VISTA-21iP alarm control panel and a 6160 alphanumeric alarm keypad. You can use the VISTA-21iP control panel to replace any existing wired security system and the 6160 will provide a keypad that you can use to program and control the VISTA-21iP. If you need additional alarm keypads because your existing wired system has more than one keypad, you can add any of the Honeywell wired alarm keypads. Every Honeywell security system needs at least one alphanumeric alarm keypad to access the more advanced programming menus. The 6160 that is included with the VISTA-21iP-6160KT will provide you with ability to program the system but you can use regular fixed English alarm keypads like the 6150 for places in your home that you'd want regular system control. 

The VISTA-21iP is different than most wired alarm control panels, because it has a built-in AlarmNet internet alarm monitoring communicator that you can use to get central station monitoring. The VISTA-21iP is also compatible with AlarmNet's Total Connect interactive service. By signing up for an alarm monitoring plan that includes Total Connect, you will be able to remotely arm and disarm your VISTA-21iP from any computer or iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ or Blackberry® device. You can also setup the VISTA-21iP to send you instant emails and/or text message notifications when different security system events occur. 

You can save over $100 by designing your new wired security system around the VISTA-21iP-6160KT instead of ordering the VISTA-21iP alarm control panel and the 6160 alarm keypads separately. Call us at 888-818-7728 to speak with a security expert who can advise you on which security products to add to your VISTA-21iP-6160KT so that you can get the perfect security system for your property.

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The Honeywell L5100PK-WIFI-4G is the perfect choice for anyone that wants the most secure and reliable alarm monitoring communications available. In the past, Honeywell did not have an option for dual path alarm monitoring using the wireless all-in-one LYNX Series alarm control panels. There was no dual path alarm communicator compatible with the LYNX Series alarm control panels and you could not install both an internet alarm communicator and cellular alarm communicator inside a single LYNX system. Therefore, you had to choose between the faster, less expensive internet communications and the more reliable cellular communications. This was a disadvantage of the easier to install LYNX Series wireless alarm control panels and forced people over to the VISTA Series alarm control panels which were compatible with the discontinued 7845-iGSM and the iGSMV dual path alarm communicators.  

Now however, with the Honeywell L5100 LYNX Touch system, you can use the L5100-WIFI internet communicator in conjunction with the GSMVLP5-4G cellular communicator for a true dual path alarm monitoring option using a LYNX Series wireless alarm control panel. If the internet connection ever goes down (due to a power outage or service interruption), the system will switch over to the GSMVLP5-4G and your alarm signals will go out over the AT&T cellular network. 

The L5100PK-WIFI-4G includes the same (3) 5816 wireless door and window contacts, 5800PIR-RES wireless motion detector and 5834-4 wireless key fob that are included in the L5100PK LYNX Touch security system kit, but it also comes with the L5100-WIFI and GSMVLP5-4G AlarmNet communicators so you can get the peace of mind that only dual path alarm monitoring can provide. 

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Alarm Grid now offers the Altronix SMP3 auxiliary power supply which works great when adding multiple Tuxedo Touch or Tuxedo Touch WIFI keypads to a Honeywell VISTA Series alarm control panel. A Honeywell VISTA-20P alarm control panel has 600mA of auxiliary power supply. Each Tuxedo Touch draws up to 310mA and each Tuxedo Touch WIFI draws up to 350mA. Also, any alarm keypadwireless receiver or AlarmNet alarm monitoring communicator connected to your VISTA-20P will also need power from the available 600mA auxiliary. That means that there is very little power left over for your Tuxedo Touch keypads. While the Honeywell AD12612 is an auxiliary power supply with 1.2A of power output, you will need a larger power supply like the SMP3 which puts out 2.5A if you have lots of devices drawing power or you have multiple Tuxedo Touch keypads.

Here at Alarm Grid, we recommend connecting all of your Tuxedo Touch and Tuxedo Touch WIFI keypads to an SMP3 power supply to make your alarm installation as easy as possible. You will need to hook up a Honeywell 1361 AC transformer to your SMP3 and you should also connect an Ultratech 1240 backup battery so that your Tuxedo Touch keypads will work even during a power outage. With a VISTA-20P alarm control panel, you should be able to fit the SMP3 and the extra backup battery inside the same alarm cabinet that houses the VISTA-20P. Powering your Tuxedo Touch keypads is easy with an SMP3 auxiliary power supply.

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While we currently offer wired motion detectors that utilize passive infrared (PIR) technology, the DT7435 is the first Honeywell DUAL TEC® motion detector offered by Alarm Grid. Motion detectors that use PIR technology are the most common type of motion detector. PIR motion detectors are able to detect the ambient temperature within a protected room. If an intruder enters the room, the PIR motion detector senses that their body temperature is different than the normal environment and an alarm is triggered. However, motion detectors that rely on PIR technology only can be susceptible to false alarms. Therefore, Honeywell DUAL TEC motion detectors are valuable because they introduce microwave technology which is used in conjunction with PIR technology.

Motion detectors that use microwave technology emit microwave energy and detect the frequency of the energy reflected back to the motion detector. If an intruder enters the protected area, the frequency changes and the motion detector triggers an alarm. Unfortunately, microwaves go through walls and therefore motion detectors using microwave technology only would not be useful as they would detect movement outside of the protected are and cause false alarms.

Honeywell DUAL TEC motion detectors like the DT7435 combine both types of detection to make a motion detector that is extremely unlikely to trigger a false alarm. If you have experienced false alarm issues with your current wired motion detectors, you should consider swapping them out to the DT7435 DUAL TEC motion detector.

  

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Alarm Grid is happy to announce that we now stock the Honeywell 719 self contained siren. As a self contained siren, you can wire the 719 directly to any VISTA Series alarm control panel without needing a separate power supply or siren driver. Another great feature of the 719 alarm siren is that it is made of highly durable weatherproof plastic so that you can install it inside or outside. Many people like to install a siren outside so that their neighbors can be alerted to any alarms that may occur when the family is not home. The Honeywell 719 is extremely loud with a sound output of 115dB at 10' so you can be sure that your neighbors hear your alarms.

 

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We are proud to announce the addition of the Honeywell 702 and the Honeywell 5899 to Alarm Grid's product offering.

The Honeywell 702 is a self-contained alarm siren that can be used with any wired alarm control panel. Of course, as it is a Honeywell siren, it is recommended that you use it with a Honeywell wired alarm control panel such as any of the VISTA Series alarm control panels. The siren has dual channels so that it can sound a steady alarm and/or a warble alarm. It is also weatherproof which makes it ideal for anyone looking to install a siren outside their home.

The Honeywell 5899 is a replacement magnet designed for the Honeywell 5816 wireless contacts, however you can use the 5899 magnets with nearly any door or window sensor. If you have lost a magnet from your door and window sensor, the 5899 is a great option. Also, the 5899 are great for venting windows which require (2) magnets for each window sensor. To vent the window you simply mount one magnet at the bottom of the window and another magnet a few inches up the window. You then mount the window sensor on the frame across from the top magnet. When the window is closed, the top magnet and the window contact are aligned and when the window is open a few inches, the window contact is aligned with the bottom contact. Now you can have your security system armed and still get a nice breeze flowing throughout your home.

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A Honeywell wireless security system can do so much more than simply protect against burglaries and intrusion. With 5802WXT and 5802WXT-2 wireless medical alert transmitters, you can use your Honeywell wireless security system as a medical alert system as well. The newly designed wireless panic buttons are ideal for elders living alone or for any family member with serious health risks. Each 5802WXT or 5802WXT-2 includes a lanyard, wristband, belt clip and keychain so that your sick or elderly family members will always be a button press away from receiving the emergency response they may need. The wireless medical alert devices are water resistant so they can even be used in the shower or bath tub where dangerous slip and fall situations are likely to occur!

   

When Alarm Grid's central station receives an alarm from a medical alert device, the operator can call you to notify you that your sick or elderly family member is in an emergency situation. If you are not available, or you request immediate medical response, the central station operator can also call the paramedics so that your loved ones get rapid medical response. 

Of course, you can use a 5802WXT or 5802WXT-2 as a normal panic button as well. When programmed as a panic button, the Honeywell 5802WXT/5802WXT-2 can trigger a silent or audible alarm and Alarm Grid's central station will call the police immediately upon receipt of the alarm. Make the most of your Honeywell wireless security system and your central station alarm monitoring service by adding wireless medical alert/panic buttons using the Honeywell 5802WXT or 5802WXT-2.

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Alarm Grid now offers the Honeywell VISTA-21iP and the Honeywell VISTA-128BPTSIA alarm control panels. We feel it is every alarm company's responsibility to focus on false alarm reduction to avoid unnecessary false alarm fines for the customer and more importantly, to ensure that local authorities will continue to respond to central station alarm dispatches. The Security Industry Association (SIA) recognizes that if police departments continue to respond to a high number of false alarms, they may eventually refuse to respond to any alarm dispatched by a central station. If this were to happen, the entire alarm monitoring industry would be at risk as alarm monitoring relies on the quick and effective response by the local authorities. Just like the story of the boy who cried wolf, police officers that continually respond to false alarms begin to assume all central station dispatched alarms are false alarms and therefore, response time goes way up and apprehensions go way down.

If local agencies feel they are wasting too much time and resources responding to false alarms, they may refuse to respond at all. Customers would then be required to hire expensive private guard services to respond to their alarms. Alarm monitoring is expensive enough already. Without the important partnership with local authorities, customers would be left with a very difficult decision. Do you save your money and have your security system just make a loud noise, or do you shell out the high cost for a guard service to respond to all alarms? At Alarm Grid, we feel everyone should be able to afford to protect their family and their property and therefore, we recommend SIA CP-01 compliant alarm control panels for every new security system installation. All SIA CP-01 compliant alarm control panels were manufactured to comply with the ANSI/SIA CP-01 standards document which details the features required to prevent false alarms. The VISTA-21iPSIA is a great residential option for a SIA CP-01 alarm control panel, while the VISTA-128BPTSIA is ideal for commercial applications. Both systems will ensure that you minimize your chance of activating false alarms. Since, the VISTA-21iPSIA and VISTA-128BPTSIA are the same price as the standard VISTA-21iP and VISTA-128BPTSIA, you do not have to pay extra to avoid the high cost of false alarm fines and you will be doing your part to ensure that alarm companies will be able to continue to offer low cost alarm monitoring services.

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Alarm Grid is the first to offer the brand new Honeywell GSMX4G and GSMV4G cellular alarm communicators. With the release of these advanced 4G cellular alarm communicators, you now have a 4G cellular option for a VISTA Series alarm control panel. AT&T has formally announced that December 31st, 2016 will be the last day they provide support for the older 2G cellular networks. Even before this date, certain areas of the country may see a degradation in the 2G network which could prevent an existing GSMX or GSMV cellular alarm communicator from reliability communicating with AlarmNet and your central station. Therefore, we highly recommend that everyone swap out all existing GSMX and GSMV communicators with the new GSMX4G or GSMV4G 4G cellular alarm communicators.

 

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