Electronix Systems beta tests GSM technology

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Friday, September 1, 2006

HUNTINGTON STATION, N.J.--Earlier this year, as cellular providers decreased their AMPS network, Electronix Systems Central Station Alarms, a full-service central station, noticed that some accounts were not working. In May, president Fred Leonardo started to beta test a new Honeywell GSM radio at those locations.
Electronix's reach spans the metropolitan New York area and has more than 20,000 accounts. The company continues to use AlarmNet-A, a private network covering 18 metropolitan areas owned and operated by Radscan. The central has roughly 2,000 accounts using this network, "which is not going away. So the feeling was, let's use more of those radios." Leonardo said, "The only time you use cell radios is when you have an area where you can't get the AlarmNet-A radios to work." However, another 2,000 accounts that are on the AMPS network have started to either not work or are in jeopardy. In those areas, Electronix recently began beta testing 12 new GSM radios from Honeywell. The product will be launched at ASIS this year.
The beta units were placed at end user sites without charge. However, Leonardo said, future conversions will be treated like a service call. "We look at this as an opportunity to re-sign the customer for another five years or to add five dollars more a month to the customer's recurring revenue," Leonardo said. "We will give them options."
The central has also seen an increase in Internet monitoring. "The new GSM radio and Internet radio will work out very well with VoIP out there," Leonard said.
Also, with the new GSM product, Leonardo said, "installers can download and upload through the radio. So, you don't have to go to the location to do the programming."
Gordon Hope, vice president of marketing and business development for Honeywell, said that most of the security industry has concluded that they need to replace the old traditional AMPS radio. "For the most part, because of price and the performance, the majority of manufacturers have chosen GSM technology."
Hope added that the migration to GSM technology bodes well for the installer and dealer community. "This technology will at least be up and running in the future. It is a worldwide standard. It has already been heavily deployed in Europe and throughout the world."