Home security trends – this year and beyond

Smart technology and home automation continues to play a major role for safe homes this year, with innovative technology revolutionising the way consumers protect their homes. However, even though smart home security has been around for some time, it seems it is only recently that it has gained momentum in the mainstream market.

Advancements in home automation has also meant rapid changes in home security, with home and business owners now having the ability to remotely access cameras and videos throughout their properties. And this interactive technology is also now accessible to more people than ever before. A recent survey released by Coldwell Banker Real Estate’s Smart Home Technology, found nearly half of those polled either had a piece of smart home security technology or planned to invest in it in the next year.

“We can only expect those numbers to grow as consumers realise the value of automation. Imagine hearing the doorbell and checking a camera to see who is at the door. What if you could let trusted friends into your home with a swipe on your smartphone app, unlocking your front door from across town? With home automation, these things are possible,” according to the report.

“Right now, many families have one or two pieces of smart home tech. In 2017, we expect those households to add even more to their home security arsenal. As families realise their investments are paying off, they will add more. In 2017, consumers will look for complete home security solutions. Families will combine technology, cameras, garage door controls and smart locks, with lighting automation and other safety measures for security like never before,” the report said.

Older generations embrace smart security
The Coldwell Banker survey also found that older generations were beginning to embrace smart home technology faster than younger consumers, particularly as systems become more affordable, and the discrepancies between income brackets disappear.

“Over the next few years we will see smart home security systems installed in homes of all shapes and sizes. Families are beginning to realise what manufacturers of smart tech have known all along: smart home security is an investment, not a cost, and it is an affordable one at that. We will see citizens from all walks of life realising value and making the investment in smart home technology. Through automation and combining several smart home elements, homes in 2017 will be safer than ever,” according to the report.
Source: (www.vivint.com)

Increasing need for home security
So why are Australians opting for more advanced, smarter home security options than ever before?

When considering over 200,000 burglaries are recorded in Australia annually, with 20 per cent of burgled houses broken into more than once, it is no surprise that innovative security options are becoming more popular. It seems consumers have also become more security savvy with the realisation that a home can be cleaned out of its prime possessions within minutes. Quick and easy targets include items such as cash, laptops, jewellery, cameras, mobile phones, wallets/handbags, identification documents (especially credit cards), TVs and computers.
Source: (http://www.aic.gov.au)

What about the cost?
While it seems many Australian home and business owners have developed a growing need to protect their homes with smart security, does price dictate the quality of the security they buy?
Although prices do vary, depending on the quality and type of security product, your customers may need to be reassured that the initial cost to upgrade their locks, front door security or cameras is money well spent. This is because their money only needs to be invested once and there will no doubt be cost savings when your customers go to insure their homes or businesses. And of course if they prevent their property from being broken into, the cost savings are substantial.

Masterlock’s Bluetooth Smart Key Safes have turned users smart phones into keys.

Mayo Hardware contributes to the ‘smart home’ dream
Mayo Hardware’s Product Manager, Sean Devlin-Look, agrees that the smart home is no longer a utopian dream. In fact, it is closer than we ever thought possible, he said.

“In time, the trend of a smarter home will no longer become a fad, but an industry standard. And with more people concerned about home security, smart homes and smart locking systems are poised to become common practice,” Mr Devlin-Look said.

“As market leaders, we aim to continue to lead the way in providing innovative keyless control. Master Lock Bluetooth Smart Padlocks and Bluetooth Smart Key Safes have revolutionised padlock security by turning user’s smart phones into a key. With a free easy to use app, users do not have to worry about losing keys, forgetting combinations or unauthorised and expensive key duplication ever again,” he said.

Users can remotely share access with friends and family, monitor the lock’s activity and a GPS feature even allows users to find their last known opened location. For extra added convenience, the Bluetooth Key Safe access can also be forward scheduled.

“The trend towards higher to maximum security continues to grow due to a rise in the value of personal assets, such as phones, laptops, jewellery etc. We are also noticing a rising trend in school children carrying thousands of dollars’ worth of technology. Consequently, requirements to protect these assets have increased with consumers seeking more robust and powerful locking solutions,” he said.

“Another trend is convenient security. People are constantly on the move so sharing access and keyless security has become more main-stream. With a rapid increase of homeowners renting out their property on a short-term basis and a need for access for housekeepers, carers and tradesmen, key safes provide a convenient, simple and compact solution,” Mr Devlin-Look said.

Master Lock remains at the forefront of convenient security with an impressive range of key safes ranging from alpha/numeric, push button and Bluetooth key safes to add to the new Bluetooth Smart Padlocks range, where the user’s smartphone is the key.

“Master Lock recently released an indoor and outdoor Bluetooth Padlock where smartphones are the key. With an advanced, easy to use app, your customers never have to worry about losing keys, forgetting combinations or unauthorised and expensive key duplications.”

“True keyless convenience provides greater control and flexibility as users may share and revoke access to whomever they want and also enjoy peace of mind as they monitor the lock’s activity and receive tamper alerts. With anti-shim technology offering maximum security, these padlocks combine ergonomic features with strength, durability and reliability, making them the perfect choice for use at home, the office, job sites or schools,” he said.

Master Lock Bluetooth Padlocks also recently gained multiple global awards in recognition for innovation in advanced security, security and peace of mind including the 2016 Silver Edison Award (NYC) for Innovation Excellence, Home and Personal Security.

“In 2018, we plan on expanding on the success of Bluetooth with an exciting new range of Bluetooth key safes. Master Lock Bluetooth key safes offer the freedom to protect and control access to homes, businesses or vacation and rental properties right from your smartphone. The free and intuitive Master Lock Vault® eLocks App allows users to assign who can access their property, for how long and schedule access for future dates. It’s the smart and simple way to confidently secure property and manage access from anywhere at any time,” he said.

Digital lock with style
Gainsborough also recently reported that innovation and technology will continually grow the security market, particularly the domestic segment, through app controlled locks and smart homes.

The current market is very competitive and new products are constantly being developed, according to Gainsborough, with just some of the latest products to be launched by the company throughout the year including: Austral Horizon, Trilock Urban Aurora range, DELL Ambassador Lever and the 450 Omni Accent.

Gainsborough recently reported that its main point of difference in today’s market is in its market leading Trilock ‘three in one’ technology and its evolution of designs and styles. The Trilock lever is also available in privacy, passage and dummy functions so users can coordinate interior doors for a consistent look throughout their homes.

Producing quality products remains a high priority for Gainsborough, with the company recently reporting that it prides itself on manufacturing to the highest quality standards, which actually exceed industry standards.

“Gainsborough products are manufactured to designs and specifications provided by Gainsborough engineers and research and developers. All Gainsborough products are tested at the manufacturing level and on arrival into the warehouse, using the same testing process, to ensure quality standards are met. Builders generally know that if it is Gainsborough, they can trust the quality,” according to the company.

Making hardware easy
With the world caught up in high tech madness and the market always looking forward to the revolutionary latest and greatest product, Trio’s Business Manager for Sales and Marketing, Nick Demourtzidis, said that part of the dollar growth of the category of late, is from the increase in purchase value due to higher costing locks such as digital products.

“In saying this, the category growth in digital locks, I believe, will be driven through the home connectivity or smart home offerings,” Mr Demourtzidis said.

“There are always ‘new’ digital locks popping onto the market place. Some are of great quality and offer something unique to a market segment, while others are just a glorified traditional lock that flashes and beeps when used. Home connectivity is currently a ‘turf war’ between the big guys such as Amazon, Google, Apple etc. All of the lock technology that comes to market from these big guys will play a big part in door security. By all means ‘watch this space’ and watch it grow exponentially in the coming years.”

“When it comes to door furniture the focus starts with digital, but we all know the market’s demand for lower cost, fit for purpose product is growing. This is where the competitive landscape becomes extremely difficult; there is not much of an offering in the lower end range of product to differentiate you, unlike higher priced or digital products.”

“Traditional mechanical locks in the past have had a focus on security, while the market continues to be saturated with both new high tech options which potentially focus on aesthetics and convenience. More companies are also adding more and more ‘me too’ lower cost options (where the volume sales still remain), where the focus remains on lower costs at the expense of quality and security,” he said.

Trio’s point of difference
“Our point of difference is not something that needs to be studied out of Harvard University. It is very simple and it is based on our retail statement, ‘making hardware easy’. Being a family business we care and we get it. It is tough out there, so our job is to help customers make the right decisions for their stores to be profitable and grow. Give them the best offering, not just fill the gap. With this simple mentality we are winning every day. Very simply we match the right products/range to the specific needs of individual clients,” Mr Demourtzidis said.

Trio’s latest launch of its PATRIOT Deadbolt has gained traction into the market place, and the company has already started to see a shift towards builders using the deadlock more, Mr Demourtzidis said.

“Furthermore we are seeing more and more PATRIOTS in store for the retail customer which has been quite rewarding. After only one exhibition at the Las Vegas Hardware Show earlier this year, we have sold the PATRIOT into USA, Canada and Mexico. Usually orders take time to work through with customers as we experienced when we started selling into the UAE 12 years ago, but the PATRIOT is a different story.”

“We are now stocking this product in USA along with our digital lever which is suited for the North American market, something that we are working on to bring to Australia in the near future. One of the main attractions and benefits, along with the unique security features of the Patriot, is the ease of fitting compared to any other deadbolt in the market,” he said.

The future of home security
When looking at where home security is headed into the future, global market research company, Technavio, recently released a report analysing the global home security system market through to 2020.

The report highlighted four emerging market trends, as identified by Technavio’s ICT research analysts, which included: high growth in home cloud solutions, remote arming of smart home alarms, pocket drones with personal security features and adoption of cloud-based technologies.

1. High growth of home cloud solutions
The report indicated home cloud solutions continue to grow in popularity including: content (video, music and pictures), productivity (email, documents and contacts) and sensors. Increasing the amount of data is creating a strong demand for remote storage and access, which is primarily video.

“Home cloud solution companies provide a vast array of offers such as interactivity, service personalisation, and multi-screen usage,” Technavio’s M2M Lead Analyst, Rakesh Kumar said.

2. Remote arming of the smart home alarm system
All-in-one home security systems also feature smart arming that allows users to set the system remotely through an app. Some apps allow users to check if anyone is at home and sets the alarm when it detects the home is vacant. Some systems also provide notifications to inform local police by text, phone call and email, should it detect untoward behaviour.

3. Integration of pocket drones with personal security features
Pocket-sized drones have the ability to fly at an altitude of 20 feet and can capture vital identification information of an assailant. The drone’s control devices have a built-in biometric scanning system to prevent an assailant from operating or stealing the device, while its recharge system can be deployed in less than 20 seconds. Pocket-sized drones can be controlled using radio controllers or through Android phones with a USB port.

4. Adoption of cloud-based technologies
Cloud-based services decrease the complexity of software issues in the devices and diminish the interoperability of devices in a simpler way. Most residential users are rapidly adopting cloud-based residential security solutions that are user-friendly, self-monitoring and can be operated from remote locations.

“Cloud-based services are also used to store images captured by surveillance systems that can be used on demand. It ensures low cost of ownership and on-demand scalability without any additional cost for homeowners,” Mr Kumar said.
Source – (www.dealerscope.com)

Amazon’s smart lock allows easy deliveries
Interestingly, Amazon recently announced the launch of Amazon Key, a new program for Prime members that allows the delivery of packages inside customers’ homes. To make this possible, Amazon has introduced its own $120USD internet-connected security camera, called Amazon Cloud Cam. Customers who want to participate in the program need to purchase an accompanying smart lock to allow delivery people to enter their home. Combined camera-lock packages start at $250USD, according to www.recode.net

Questions have already been raised as to whether customers will trust delivery people to enter their home, with Amazon reminding customers they can watch a delivery via their phone.

“Each time a delivery driver requests access to a customer’s home, Amazon verifies that the correct driver is at the right address, at the intended time, through an encrypted authentication process. Once this process is successfully completed, Amazon Cloud Cam starts recording and the door is then unlocked,” according to the company.

Amazon is also offering free in-home set-up to customers who do not want to install the lock and camera themselves, according to www.recode.net