Amcest enables account tracking on the fly

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Friday, April 1, 2005

ROSELLE, N.J. - In response to the number of handheld devices on the market, third-party monitoring firm Amcest Corp. designed a program that enables dealers to remotely manage their accounts from PDAs.

Amcest started development of the software last summer, and the software works with its proprietary monitoring platform. Now, dealers can use a wireless device to access accounts online, receive test results and view alarm histories.

“We’re not forcing people to buy PDAs; dealers already have these things,” according to Fred Rosenfeld, executive vice president at the company. Rosenfeld said the service will officially launch in the second quarter and will be free to dealers.

As of the beginning of the year, six unnamed alarm companies were beta testing the service to help smooth out potential kinks. This helped the company ensure the service operates as promised and with different types of devices. In order to use it, a device must be used that either operates on a cellular network or has access to the Internet through other means.

Founded in 1975, Amcest handles approximately 150,000 accounts and works with 1,000 dealers. The company employs 96.

Rosenfeld expects interest in the new service to be strong, however he did not project any adoption figures. In addition to account tracking using a handheld device, the company already offers dealers the ability to view event information on its web site.

With services like these now entering the market, it is not far fetched to think that end users might one day use either PDAs or mobile phones to manage their security systems, Rosenfeld said.

In the future, monitoring firms could offer alarm customers the ability to receive remote video feeds from their homes or businesses.

“We think that is the next usage for it,” Rosenfeld said, adding, “we’re short-term storing images already.”