Since buying this hub I am pretty happy with it. Still getting everything setup just the way I like it, but a lot less of a headache. I am having an issue with the battery being no good, but I opened a ticket for it and I am sure it's as easy as sending a new one out to replace it. It is a bit price, but I had ADT come out to give me a quote and just for the bear minimum it was about $1200. So, $400 is not too bad from that point of view and also no long-term contract. I can start and stop my monitoring at any time. I also got all of my sensors and motion detectors at 50% off during a sale so that was pretty good too.
Today I had my 14th visit from ADT since I got their system in June. This is after they replaced the entire system one month ago. There is yet another problem and they have to come out next week again. Please DO NOT buy anything from ADT. I payed $3,000 up front and $67 a month for nothing. I can’t get out of the contract unless I pay another $1,000. Anyone but ADT.
Of all the DIY systems we looked at, Abode’s free self-monitoring plan packs the most punch. With no subscription whatsoever, you can use every feature available on the mobile app (which includes options like push notifications, a live surveillance feed, and system controls) and you get access to three days’ worth of system activity, like when a particular door was opened or a particular motion sensor was triggered. If you want to bump that history up to two weeks, the Connect plan costs $10 per month. And for $30 per month, you get a 90-day timeline plus professional monitoring.
Once your service rep has designed a system for you and you've signed off, you'll get your second visit from ADT installation technicians. Installation is a four- to eight-hour affair. In my case, technicians arrived at 8:00 in the morning and left by 3:30 in the afternoon. My sales rep was there to walk me through what was happening, as well as two ADT technicians who did most of the work, but also, at separate intervals, an independent locksmith came to handle the smart lock and an electrician to handle the thermostat controls and other components like cabling for the Z-Wave hub ADT uses for its home automation equipment. Pulse is touted as a wireless system, but various central components, like the hub and the CellGuard backup box require the techs to run some cable and also require one physical port on your home Internet router (lower service tiers with less advanced equipment can make do with a landline or even just a cell connection).
With professional monitoring, a monitoring service keeps an eye on the status of your alarm system and will contact you within minutes of an alarm to confirm if it’s a true emergency. If so, they’ll dispatch the police or other services for you. If you don’t pick up, most companies will call whomever you’ve designated as your emergency contact. If there’s still no response, they’ll typically dispatch the police.
Iris has quite a few flaws, as you can see below in the list of cons, which is why it isn’t higher on the list. But if you’re looking for a system that will integrate with tons of other home automation products and smart devices, Iris may be right for you. It comes with both Zigbee and Z-Wave compatibility, so it can be connected to a huge list of devices.
GetSafe is another home security system that allows for DIY installation. Setup is easy since sensors are peel and stick, meaning no special tools are needed. One of GetSafe’s biggest perks is the contract flexibility. The company offers 24/7 professional monitoring on a month-to-month basis, 12-month contract and 36-month contract. So, if you’re a renter who wants a security system, but can’t commit to a lengthy term agreement, GetSafe is a great option. The downside to choosing a month-to-month plan is that you do have to pay for your equipment upfront, which can be expensive. If you can afford to do so, though, GetSafe is worth considering.
We required all systems have Z-Wave Support — the most universal mesh network for communicating appliance to appliance. One of the biggest draws of a DIY system is the opportunity to add in third-party equipment (like Philips Hue lights or a Nest Thermostat) at any point. A Z-Wave compatible system can connect 1,700 home security and automation products from more than 450 companies. Plus, you have flexibility in where you place various devices because Z-Wave can communicate farther distances than competitor networks.
The ADT Pulse control panel is an effort to compete with Vivint, which solely uses proprietary gear—a fact that has historically separated Vivint from the rest of the pack. While we find no problem with the standard equipment from most providers, we do like to see proprietary equipment designed with the whole system in mind, plus they look a bit more sleek. The ADT Pulse is definitely easy on the eyes compared to the standard panels, but is it any better?
ADT is a trusted name, which is what keeps them at the top of the security game. However, there are a lot of new players that are giving ADT a run for their money. If you want home security that comes with years of experience and expertise—this company has had more than 140 years to hone its home security know-how—ADT is a solid choice. But costly packages and upgrades can put ADT out of reach for some home security shoppers.
The camera is a standalone unit with a wide base that you can place on any flat surface around the home. For the best results, use this camera in high areas in the living or family room to keep an eye on the home’s common spaces. Using the downloadable app, you can control the camera’s settings from anywhere with a wifi connection. The camera is also IFTTT-compatible, meaning you can use it with other smart devices or program your own commands for advanced automatic functionality.
Average contracts: Customers sometimes complain that the 36-month contracts for ADT monitoring are too long. We should point out that a 36-month contract is fairly standard in the home security industry. However, customers who care about shorter contracts with more flexibility could look into other companies. For example, Vivint customers who pay for all their security equipment up front don’t need monthly contracts, and Link Interactive offers shorter contract options (starting at 12 months).
If there is a lightning storm I found out ADT's security system still works for 7-10 days if the power goes out. I didn't find this out until it happened in my area but it made me happy I was with them! Luckily our power was out only 2 days but there was a lot of break ins throughout the city in those 2 days. I also learned when I called them during this time that if one of their monitoring stations goes out in a lightning storm that it automatically reroutes your monitoring to another station.
Really disappointed in these cameras. We had outdoor cameras installed and a few weeks later that they record 30 second clips, but after each 30 sec clip the camera is UNABLE TO RECORD for 4 minutes?? So, a bad guy pulls into my property. There's a 30 sec recording of them and then at a critical time there's no recording for 4 minutes? Why is this and how does this make sense??
ADT's latest rev of its software also supports its own Amazon Alexa skill. According to ADT, customers with an Alexa-enabled device, like an Amazon Echo, will be able to use it to arm and disarm their alarms and even access their smart devices using Alexa's voice recognition. However, this is not biometric voice security, meaning your individual voice pattern will not be enough to access the system; you'll still need to enter your alarm code or Pulse access pin number verbally.