Using WIFI as Primary and GSM as Backup on my Qolsys IQ Panel 2
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In this video, Jorge explains how the Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus can use both WIFI and cellular communication. However, GSM refers to an older type of cellular communication technology that is mostly a thing of the past. A Qolsys IQ Panel 2 Plus System will instead use LTE connectivity, not GSM service.
All alarm systems use one or more communication paths for communicating with monitoring servers. The IQ Panel 2 Plus is equipped with both a WIFI card and an LTE cellular communicator. When the system needs to communicate with Alarm.com, it sends out signals across both paths. Whichever signal reaches the intended destination first will go through as normal. The other signal will be automatically discarded. This is to prevent the same command from being executed twice. Since WIFI is typically faster than cellular, the WIFI signal will usually go through, while the backup cellular signal will be discarded. But the cellular communication path is still important, as internet outages are relatively common.
Per Alarm.com requirements, a security system must have a cellular communication path set up in order to work with their services. Having an IP communication path is optional. However, most IQ Panel 2 Plus users will set up IP connectivity, since most users will have WIFI service in their homes. And it really never hurts to have a second communication path available. You do not need to do anything to make WIFI the primary communication path and LTE cellular the backup communication path. The system will communicate in that manner simply by enabling both communication paths. Keep in mind though that you will need a monitoring plan that includes cellular connectivity and access to Alarm.com in order to use the system for alarm monitoring. All signals will be passed through Alarm.com, before ultimately being forwarded to a central station and/or the end user directly.
Hi, DIYers, I'm Jorge from AlarmGrid. Today we're going to be going over if you can use Wi-Fi as the primary path, GSM as your backup path on a Qolsys IQ panel 2 or IQ panel 2 plus. So, basically just to start off the IQ panel 2, it actually has Wi-Fi and LTE now built in. GSM is a thing of the past. It's kind of like what you were referred when they're talking about 3G, 4G. Or if you're on Verizon's older network CDMA. Now the new communication parts that are made for alarm systems across the board are all LTE. So if you do have a 3G, 4G, or even a CDMA communicator out there makes sure-- I just want to make sure that you're aware only LTE now is allowed to be activated. So it's just something to keep in mind when moving forward. Now luckily for you all of the IQ 2s and the IQ 2 pluses should now, if you're buying them new, have LTE communication paths built in. Now just going off of that the alarm.com service-- a lot of you guys are used to other alarm systems where they use Wi-Fi or internet as a primary path and only use cellular in the event that the internet or Wi-Fi goes down. However, the IQ 2 plus or the IQ 2 is different in the fact that it actually sends out both signals simultaneously through the cellular and through the Wi-Fi path at the same time. What happens then through the alarm.com? Whichever signal reaches the alarm servers faster that's the one that alarm.com recognizes and then it ignores the second one. So basically your system is actually using both paths to send out alarm signals and whichever one's received first that's the one that gets-- I guess noticed by alarm.com or that gets received and put into the servers for alarm.com. Again, this is different than your normal other systems where cellular only kicked in if you're I guess you can say if your Wi-Fi failed or if the internet failed. Now, most systems back in the day, they used to use phone line connections and phone line connections-- they were actually pretty vulnerable and somewhat unreliable as well. What you see nowadays is now internet has taken over the phone line connections. They have a bunch of VoIP companies out there you can plug in your phone jack to the modem, or there's the magicJack. There's a whole bunch of things out there right now that actually allow you to get a phone line through your internet, which again that is still-- Wi-Fi internet is still vulnerable, which is why alarm.com actually requires a cellular path to be enabled. So even though the IQ 2 plus has Wi-Fi and cellular some of you guys maybe looking at some alarm companies that have Wi-Fi only enabled plans. With the IQ 2 plus because it has Wi-Fi and because it uses alarm.com, that's what it's partnered with, you pretty much have to have a cellular communicator backup enabled or the cellular communication path enabled. Alarm.com requires all of the cellular parts to be enabled. First of all it's more secure, so they're actually watching out for you guys in the end. And second of all, it's a more reliable path. So they only have cellular based plans. Even if you have internet you can still use internet only if you wanted to but they're still going to require that a cellular is enabled. So it doesn't really matter whether or not you guys are planning on using Wi-Fi or not you need to have that cellular enabled. So whenever you guys are looking for monitoring plans for your Qolsys IQ 2 or IQ 2 plus you want to make sure you're thinking about getting these cellular based plans. Now the cool thing about the IQ 2 plus is it actually comes in a whole bunch of different flavors. So the first thing is, if you have an IQ two plus, it comes a different data board cards so you want to make sure that you're buying the correct one that's going to work with your sensors, but each flavor actually comes Verizon and AT&T or Verizon version. Now the most common question we get here at AlarmGrid is, oh well, what if my phone plan is with Verizon or what if my phone plan is with AT&T? The cellular communicator that's in the alarm system has nothing to do with who you guys are using for your cellular phones or as your cellular provider. This is independent and it's for the alarm system only. You will not be contacting Verizon you will not be contacting AT&T to let them know that you have a Sim card in an alarm system that you want to get activated on a new line. That sim card is actually registered and activated by the alarm company that you guys decide to go with. The panel has a unique IMEI number and when you guys sign up for the monitoring plan your company is usually going to require that IMEI number to activate your system. So what does this mean for you? You don't have to worry about contacting AT&T or Verizon, you have to make sure you're signing up for cellular based plans because the cellular fees from AT&T or Verizon actually get pretty much sent to the alarm company. So whenever the alarm company enables or activates your alarm system they're actually taking on the cellular fees associated with that sim card that's in your panel. So that's why you're always going to see as I was saying before that you have to make sure you have to sign up for the cellular plan, so that the cellular fees are covered. Normally, your alarm company is going to tell you whether or not you are signing up for the correct plan. If you have signed up for the incorrect plan with us, we're obviously going to let you know what plan to sign up for, and what you need to upgrade to. If you guys do have any questions about our cellular plans, you can visit our monitoring page online alarmgrid.com. If you guys have any questions about the different level of plans that we offer, you can send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you guys found the video helpful, please make sure you hit Like underneath, subscribe to the YouTube channel, and hit the little bell icon, so that way whenever we upload new content, you guys get notified. I'm Jorge and I'll see you guys next time.