The folks at ADT have invested a tremendous amount of time and energy in developing and marketing their Pulse platform. The offering is a massive effort to help ADT try to catch up with other alarm companies, especially in the areas of interactive monitoring and home automation. Now that Pulse has been out for a number of months, the reviews are coming in – and they are mixed. A great example was posted to the FrontPoint web site, in the form of a request for us to contact an unhappy Pulse customer:
We bought ADT’s Pulse system, but they can’t figure out how to program a static router in their iHub. Two installs and two months later we’re thinking about giving up and asking for money back. No installer has done anything as they just give up at “go” and pass it to someone else.
ADT Quality in General
There’s no question that ADT is the largest alarm company in the US: roughly 6 million customers, and few people can even name the next largest company (it’s Protection One, by the way!). But as I’ve had ample opportunity to point out, bigger does not necessarily mean better for you, the consumer. In fact, while some companies use size as an advantage, others may use it as an excuse for sub-par service or behind-the-times technology. And in the case of ADT’s Pulse, many of us in the alarm industry are convinced that they chose the wrong platform for advanced services. That’s because those advanced services rely on a broadband connection instead of a cellular connection. That Internet link is more vulnerable than cellular – and much more complex, as this review from www.yelp.com demonstrates.
The tech/installer had to come back twice because of problems with the installation. As the “Pulse” system is new, there were a few kinks that had to be worked out to accommodate the new system. My DSL router was too far from the control panel to be effective so I had to redo my whole network in my house. Not a big deal for me, but if you struggle with routers and wireless settings you might want to make sure everything will go smoothly with the installation before signing the contract.
This is hardly what you call a plug and play approach. Most people can barely remember their WiFi security code, to say nothing of reconstructing their entire home network! The best system (offered by FrontPoint and a few other select companies) combines GSM cellular communication with Z-Wave in-home automation technology for the most robust and reliable suite of next-generation services. Add in the fact that FrontPoint has always used safer cellular monitoring, and you can see why homeowners turn to us for peace of mind.
They Forgot Crash and Smash Protection
The Pulse system is also vulnerable to what the industry calls Crash and Smash, meaning an intruder takes out your alarm system before it can communicate to the monitoring center. When it comes to Crash & Smash, there’s only one technology that is virtually undefeatable, and it was developed and patented by Alarm.com, the leader in advanced alarm monitoring technology. And as the leader in wireless, interactive home security, FrontPoint has it. We’ll continue to check the Pulse – but it seems this patient is still under close observation!