The traditional alarms that sends you a text message is not a perfect security solution. You’re in doubt what’s really happened when you get the SMS. Video camera surveillance is not really a perfect security solution either, because it’s not a cost efficient way to secure doors and windows in large estate and there’s no siren to stress the burglar. However, with the latest version of Alarmhandler, you no longer have to choose. It’s the first app that lets you control both your SMS alarm and camera surveillance. Read on to learn about Alarmhandler 3.1 that launches today.
Control cameras using an app
There are several video recording services out there, but they don’t use the alarm metaphor to make it simple to turn all cameras on or off. Alarmhandler was the first video camera recording service to provide a simple user interface for doing this.
SMS alarm control cameras using an app
There are several apps for sending predefined SMS messages to an alarm when you hit a button. Indeed, most SMS alarm producers make an app that can be used for controlling the alarm. Alarmhandler does this too, but takes it one step further. Alarmhandler is the first SMS alarm control app that has a crowdsourced and expanding database of SMS alarm types. When several users add an identical alarm type definition, it becomes available to other users.
The first app to combine SMS alarm and camera surveillance
Alarmhandler is also the first app to combine any brand of SMS alarms with any brand of IP cameras – as long as the camera supports the ftp transfer protocol. With the app, first add the alarm definition to your estate. It’s as simple a choosing the alarm type and entering the phone number for the alarm. Then connect your IP cameras to the Alarmhandler servers as described in the app. After that, arming or disarming both just happens at the press of a button.
Alarmhandler let’s you start small and later on extend your solution:
- If you have an SMS alarm, you can just start by controlling that with the app. Later on, you may add cameras to allow you to validate alarms.
- If you have an IP cameras, you can start by using Alarmhandler as a video recording service. Later on, you may add an SMS based alarm with magnetic sensors for your front door and a siren to provide a fuller security solution.
What if you’re not always using the app to control the SMS alarm?
It’s not really a problem. Alarmhandler is able to detect if the SMS alarm goes off via sound detection. The siren will be picked up by the IP camera microphone that will trigger camera uploads to our servers. This in turn will show up as an alarm in Alarmhandler. Of course, this requires that the IP camera surveillance has been enabled. If you sometimes use the physical control panel to arm the SMS alarm, your IP cameras might not be armed. Therefore we suggest you turn on the geofence based Auto ON/OFF function for camera surveillance. This makes activation of IP cameras automatic – read more about it here.
Increase the alarm redundancy
Another benefit of having a SMS and IP camera based alarm solution is the increased redundancy:
- In case the SMS alarm is unable to send an SMS, you will still get a push notification from Alarmhandler.
- In your power or internet connection fails, Alarmhandler cannot send you a push message, but the SMS alarm typically has battery backup and will send you an SMS.
Home ARM mode for cameras
As most SMS alarms support Home ARM, we’ve decided to support this mode for IP cameras as well. Home ARM is a partial arming of your estate, where only sensors located at the perimeter is turned on. It’s typically used when going to sleep and you don’t want to trigger the alarm when moving around inside the estate.
In Alarmhandler, you can now mark an IP camera in the app as “perimeter” camera. Only the perimeter cameras are activated when you tap Home ARM in the app. If you tap ON, all cameras are active – no matter if they’re marked perimeter or not.
Other changes and fixes
We’ve made a bunch of small changes, most notably
- Auto ON: open app when not at home causes alarm to be armed even though manually turned off
- Push notifications now work on Android 7
- Trial period started before you had successfully connected a camera – you now get the full 30 days not after signing up, but after connecting a camera
- The app stays functional even though you’ve not paid for camera surveillance, you can just use it for SMS alarm control
- Menu and pin entry screen sometimes overlapped by keyboard
Any questions about our SMS alarm control? Check out the FAQ here.
We hope you like the update, please write to let us know what you think on our social media channels or using the Send Message function on our homepage. Thanks!
The Alarmhandler Team