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ADT provides a product option called ADT Pulse so that customers can arm and disarm their home security siren system remotely. The Pulse product uses a wireless modular device called a Z wave. The Z wave device connects to a remote device such as a laptop or mobile phone. For example, if an owner forgets to arm the security system before leaving home, she can turn it on from her computer at work or from her mobile phone. The Pulse system can also be set up for video monitoring of the interior and exterior of the home. Customers also receive an email or text alert if an interior or exterior siren is activated or a smoke detector goes off. An exterior siren goes off outside of the home; however, you can also hear it inside of the home. The reverse is true of an interior siren; however, the sound level will not be very pronounced outside of the home. The advantage of having audible sirens, whether the sound is louder inside or outside, is debatable. On one hand, the siren lets intruders know that police have been alerted, which may deter them from taking any further action, while some intruders may still proceed. Audible exterior sirens are also beneficial if you live in a populated neighborhood with neighbors close by, as they will hear the alarm; however, the audibility of the siren may be marginally beneficial if you live in a remote area where neighbors’ homes are out of range.

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It’s a little frustrating that SimpliSafe gates the smart home integrations and smartphone app behind its most expensive plan, but it’s less expensive than a traditional security system and can be canceled and restarted at any time. Home automation allows you manage features of your home — such as lights and door locks — with a mobile app or via voice commands. This means you can perform tasks like closing your garage door, adjusting your thermostat, or turning on lights even if you’re not at home. Most home security providers offer home automation and include a variety of smart home devices. If you already have a smart home and use an Amazon or Google smart hub, you can integrate your security system and manage it on the same app as your other devices. That said, it’s important to make sure your security system pairs with your smart hub before purchasing so as to avoid any issues when syncing the two. Yes. As home automation becomes a bigger part of many people’s lives, home security providers are updating their equipment to fulfill the demand. The Nest Secure and Vivint’s Smart Hub, for example, not only function as the brains of your security system, but also as hubs for home automation. Most home security companies also offer smart devices — like locks, garage doors, and doorbell cameras — that pair with their systems and can be managed through their apps. And if your security system doesn’t operate as a smart hub, you may sync with third party smart hubs that let you manage both security and non security related devices on a single platform.